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REVEALED: The best new Spanish words added to the dictionary in 2022

Spain’s Royal Language Academy has officially added 3,000 words to the Spanish dictionary over the course of 2022. Here are 11 of the best you need to learn, with explanations and examples.

spain new words dictionary 2022
The term 'garciamarquiano' has been added to the Spanish dictionary to refer to something that is characteristic or reminiscent of the ‘magic realism’ writings of Colombian novelist Gabriel García Márquez. (Photo by Rafael Quiroz / AFP)

Mamitis: colloquial way of talking about the excessive attachment and favouritism a child has for their mother. Papitis is also used when referring to a dad, and there’s been some controversy as it hasn’t been included in the dictionary.


Raúl tiene un serio caso de mamitis. No se quiere despegar de su madre.

Raúl has a serious case of ‘mumitis’. He doesn’t want to leave his mother’s side.

Micromachismo: A misogynistic microaggression. According to Oxfam, some examples of this are choosing pink for girls and blue for boys, for a man to always pay the bill, saying that women and men can’t be friends and not using inclusive language.


Irene Montero quiere acabar con los micromachismos en el trabajo.

Irene Montero wants to get rid of misogynistic microaggressions in the workplace.

Puntocom: The same as spelling out ‘dotcom’ in English. Although anglicisms are becoming more prevalent in Spanish tech talk, there are still words Spaniards prefer to translate, such as buscador for a search engine.


La búrbuja puntocom causó estragos en la bolsa.

The dot-com bubble caused havoc in the stock market.

Conspiranoia: A noun which is a combination of the Spanish words for conspiracy and paranoia, referring to the tendency to believe in conspiracy theories. The adjective is conspiranoico/a


Es bastante conspiranoico, cree que las torres gemelas las derrumbó la CIA.

He’s quite the conspiracy theorist, he thinks the Twin Towers were blown up by the CIA.

Garciamarquiano: Characteristic or reminiscent of the ‘magic realism’ writings of Colombian novelist Gabriel García Márquez, similar to how Kafkaesque or Orwellian are used. Cortazariano, used to denote similarity with the work of Julio Cortázar, has also been added.


Es una situación garciamarquiana en la que no se distingue la realidad de la ficción.

It’s a ‘Garciamarquesque’ situation where truth can’t be told apart from fiction.

Rular: A colloquial verb used to say that something is working or moving.


Esto no rula, ¿seguro que no está roto?

This isn’t working, are you sure it isn’t broken?

Potar: A slang verb to say vomit, similar to saying puke or barf in English. There’s also the expression echar la pota. Pota is vomit as a noun.


¡Ni se te ocurra echar la pota en mi coche!

Don’t you dare puke in my car!

Portuñol: A combination of Portuguese and Spanish, similar to how Spanglish is used to refer to a mix of English and Spanish.


Yo la verdad que chapurreo el portugués, más bien hablo portuñol.

In all honesty I fumble through Portuguese, if anything I speak ‘Portuñol’.

Sesión golfa: ‘Naughty’ performance or screening at a theatre, cinema, nightclub or otherwise held after 1am and usually of an adult nature.


Puedes esperarte todo tipo de locuras durante la sesión golfa en la Sala X.

You can expect all kinds of madness during the naughty hour at the Sala X.

Gusa: A colloquial way of saying hunger. It could be derived from the expression matar el gusanillo, which means to take the edge off your hunger (although its literal translation is ‘to kill the worm’).


¡Qué gusa tengo! Estoy que me como un jabalí.

I’m so hungry! I could eat a wildbore. 

Cuarentañero: A forty-something person, cuarentañera to refer to a woman. How this wasn’t already in the Spanish dictionary we don’t know, as it’s common to also say veinteañero (twenty-something), treintañero (thirty-something), cincuentañero (fifty-something), sesentañero (sixty-something) and so on. 


Es una cuarentañera con tres hijos pero eso no le ha impedido ser jefa de una empresa.

She’s a forty-something woman with three kids but that hasn’t prevented her becoming a company boss.

Member comments

  1. Qué gusa tengo! Estoy que me como un jabalí.
    I’m so hungry! I could eat a wildbore.

    Is that similar to a “wild boar”? Or does it have a bigger hole in it…

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Six celebrities who are fluent in (Castilian) Spanish

David Beckham may have struggled to string a sentence together in Spanish after four years in Madrid, but other famous faces have reached almost native levels in the language after spending time in España or with Spanish people.

Six celebrities who are fluent in (Castilian) Spanish

Freddie Highmore 

British actor Freddie Highmore, who as a child appeared alongside Johnny Depp in ‘Charlie and the Chocolate Factory’ and ‘Finding Neverland’, is perhaps the most impressive Spanish speaker on the list. The star of ‘The Good Doctor’ TV series spent a year living in Madrid while he was studying and actually has a Galician grandmother. His Spanish accent, his grammar and spoken sentence construction is practically native.

Ivan Rakitic

There are dozens of foreign footballers playing in La Liga who speak Spanish at an almost native level: Frenchman Antoine Griezzman, Belgian Thibaut Cortois, Slovak Jan Oblak. But perhaps the most incredible of all is Croatian midfielder Ivan Rakitic, a former Barça player who’s returned to his old club Sevilla. It was in the Andalusian city where Rakitic met his now wife and where he developed a true Sevillian accent, with all the flair and consonant dropping that it’s famed for.

Gwyneth Paltrow

The American actress turned beauty product guru is a fluent Spanish speaker who mostly conjugates her verbs correctly and hardly has any traces of an American accent (she even pronounces c and z in the traditional Castilian way). It all started when as a teenager Paltrow did a year abroad in Talavera de la Reina near Toledo, where she stayed with a Spanish family who she still visits every time she’s in Spain.  

Jean Reno

You may not have known this, but French superstar Jean Reno’s real name is Juan Moreno y Herrera-Jiménez. Reno was born in the Moroccan city of Casablanca, where his parents fled to from their native Cádiz to escape Franco’s regime. The star of ‘Leon: The Professional’ obviously had a big advantage when it came to learning Spanish, but given that he’s lived most of his life in Morocco and France, his fluency in Spanish is commendable, bar his clear French accent.

James Rhodes

Ever since British-born concert pianist James Rhodes moved to Spain in 2017, he’s voiced his love for everything Spanish, including the language. His work spearheading a law to protect children from sexual abuse in Spain earned him the honour of fast-track Spanish citizenship. Rhodes regularly takes to Twitter, tweeting almost entirely in Spanish and demonstrating a thorough understanding of syntax, slang and more. He’s also more than capable of holding his own when speaking castellano

Michael Robinson

The late Michael Robinson, a British footballer who became Spain’s most famous TV football pundit, was and still is the perfect example of how the most important factor when learning a language is to immerse oneself in the culture and make mistakes without fear. Having been forced into early retirement due to injury while playing for Osasuna, he took on his new job without prior experience and with far from perfect Spanish. He improved despite holding onto his British accent, learnt Spanish expressions and jokes and laughed at his blunders. No wonder he was known as Spain’s most loved Brit.