Spanish borrowings into English

A list of words of Spanish origin.
164 words 954 learners

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Full list of words from this list:

  1. adios
    a farewell remark
  2. adobe
    sun-dried brick used in hot dry climates
  3. aficionado
    a serious devotee of some activity, genre, or performer
  4. albino
    a person with white hair, milky skin, and pink eyes
  5. alcove
    a small recess opening off a large room or garden
  6. alligator
    an amphibious reptile related to crocodiles
  7. alpaca
    domesticated mammal with long silky fleece
  8. armadillo
    a burrowing mammal whose body is covered with strong plates
  9. armada
    a large fleet
  10. arroyo
    a stream or brook
  11. avocado
    a pear-shaped tropical fruit with green or blackish skin
  12. banana
    a treelike herb bearing hanging clusters of elongated fruits
  13. bandoleer
    a broad cartridge belt worn over the shoulder by soldiers
    also "bandolier"
  14. barracuda
    a predatory marine fish with large, strong teeth
  15. barbecue
    a cookout in which food is cooked over an open fire
  16. bizarre
    conspicuously or grossly unconventional or unusual
  17. bonanza
    a sudden happening that brings good fortune
  18. booby
    small tropical gannet having a bright bill or bright feet or both
  19. bronco
    an unbroken or imperfectly broken mustang
  20. buckaroo
    local names for a cowboy
  21. bunco
    (offensive) a swindle that cheats someone out of money
  22. burrito
    a flour tortilla folded around a filling
  23. burro
    small donkey used as a pack animal
  24. cafeteria
    a restaurant where you serve yourself and pay a cashier
  25. caldera
    a large crater caused by the violent explosion of a volcano
  26. canary
    any of several small Old World finches
  27. canasta
    a form of rummy using two decks of cards and four jokers
  28. cannibal
    a person who eats human flesh
  29. canoe
    a small, light boat propelled with a paddle
  30. canyon
    a ravine formed by a river in an area with little rainfall
  31. cargo
    goods carried by a large vehicle
  32. castanets
    pair of hollow pieces of wood or bone made to click together
  33. chaparral
    dense vegetation consisting of stunted trees or bushes
  34. Chihuahua
    a state in northern Mexico; mostly high plateau
    Definition: an old breed of tiny short-haired dog with protruding eyes from Mexico held to antedate Aztec civilization
  35. chilli
    very hot and finely tapering pepper of special pungency
  36. chili con carne
    ground beef and chili peppers or chili powder often with tomatoes and kidney beans
  37. chocolate
    a food made from roasted ground cacao beans
  38. cigar
    a roll of tobacco for smoking
  39. cigarette
    finely ground tobacco wrapped in paper; for smoking
  40. cilantro
    Old World herb with aromatic leaves and seed resembling parsley
  41. cinch
    a band that holds a horse's saddle in place
  42. cocaine
    a narcotic extracted from coca leaves
  43. cockroach
    any of numerous chiefly nocturnal insects
  44. coco
    tall palm tree bearing coconuts as fruits
  45. comrade
    a friend who is frequently in the company of another
  46. conquistador
    a 16th-century Spanish conqueror of Peru and Mexico
  47. condor
    the largest flying birds in the western hemisphere
  48. corral
    a pen for cattle
  49. coyote
    small wolf native to western North America
  50. creole
    a mother tongue created by contact between two languages
  51. criollo
    a Spanish American of pure European stock (usually Spanish)
  52. dago
    (ethnic slur) offensive term for a person of Italian descent
  53. dengue
    a tropical disease spread by mosquitoes
  54. desperado
    a bold outlaw
  55. El Nino
    (oceanography) a warm ocean current that flows along the equator from the date line and south off the coast of Ecuador at Christmas time
    The Spanish spelling is "El Niño".
  56. embargo
    a government order imposing a trade barrier
  57. enchilada
    filled tortilla baked in chili-seasoned tomato sauce
  58. fiesta
    a public celebration or party
  59. filibuster
    a tactic for delaying legislation by making long speeches
  60. flotilla
    a fleet of small craft
  61. galleon
    a large square-rigged sailing ship with three or more masts
  62. garbanzo
    large white roundish Asiatic legume; usually dried
  63. guacamole
    a dip made of mashed avocado
  64. guerilla
    one who fights a stronger force by sabotage and harassment
  65. guitar
    a stringed instrument usually having six strings
  66. habanera
    a Cuban dance in duple time
  67. hammock
    a hanging bed of canvas or rope netting
  68. hacienda
    the main house on a ranch or large estate
  69. huarache
    a sandal with flat heels and an upper of woven leather straps
  70. hoosegow
    slang for a jail
  71. hurricane
    a severe tropical cyclone usually with heavy rains and winds
  72. iguana
    large tropical American arboreal lizard with a spiny crest
  73. incommunicado
    without means, right, or desire to be in contact with others
  74. jaguar
    a large spotted feline of tropical America similar to the leopard; in some classifications considered a member of the genus Felis
  75. jalapeno
    hot green or red pepper
    Spanish spelling "jalapeño".
  76. key
    metal device that allows a lock's mechanism to be rotated
    Definition: a coral reef off the southern coast of Florida
  77. lariat
    a long looped rope used to catch animals
  78. lasso
    a long noosed rope used to catch animals
  79. llama
    a cud-chewing, South American animal related to the camel
  80. machete
    a large knife used as a weapon or for cutting vegetation
  81. machismo
    exaggerated masculinity
  82. macho
    used of men; markedly masculine in appearance or manner
  83. maize
  84. manatee
    sirenian mammal of tropical coastal waters of America
  85. margarita
    a cocktail made of tequila and triple sec with lime and lemon juice
  86. mariachi
    a group of street musicians in Mexico
  87. matador
    the principal bullfighter who is appointed to make the final passes and kill the bull
  88. mesa
    flat tableland with steep edges
  89. mesquite
    any of several small spiny trees or shrubs of the genus Prosopis having small flowers in axillary cylindrical spikes followed by large pods rich in sugar
  90. mestizo
    a Latin American with both European and indigenous heritage
  91. mole
    a small congenital pigmented spot on the skin
    Definition: spicy sauce often containing chocolate
  92. mosquito
    two-winged insect that sucks the blood of humans and animals
  93. mulatto
    (offensive) a person with both black and white ancestry
  94. mustang
    small hardy range horse of the western plains descended from horses brought by the Spanish
  95. nacho
    a tortilla chip topped with cheese and chili-pepper and broiled
  96. nada
    a quantity of no importance
  97. negro
    of or belonging to a dark-skinned racial group
  98. nopal
    any of several cacti of the genus Nopalea resembling prickly pears
  99. ocelot
    nocturnal wildcat of Central America and South America having a dark-spotted buff-brown coat
  100. oregano
    aromatic Eurasian perennial
  101. paella
    saffron-flavored dish of rice with shellfish and chicken
  102. palomino
    a horse of light tan or golden color
  103. papaya
    tropical American shrub or small tree having huge deeply palmately cleft leaves and large oblong yellow fruit
  104. patio
    usually paved outdoor area adjoining a residence
  105. peccadillo
    a petty misdeed
  106. peso
    the basic unit of money in Mexico; equal to 100 centavos
  107. picaresque
    (of fiction) involving clever rogues or adventurers
  108. piccaninny
    (ethnic slur) offensive term for a Black child
  109. pimento
    plant bearing large mild thick-walled usually bell-shaped fruits; the principal salad peppers
    Also "pimiento".
  110. pina colada
    a mixed drink made of pineapple juice and coconut cream and rum
    Spanish spelling "piña colada".
  111. pinata
    plaything consisting of a container filled with toys and candy; suspended from a height for blindfolded children to break with sticks
    Spanish spelling "piñata".
  112. pinole
    meal made of finely ground corn mixed with sugar and spices
  113. pinto
    a spotted or calico horse or pony
  114. pinon
    any of several low-growing pines of western North America
    Spanish spelling "piñón".
  115. plantain
    a banana tree bearing hanging clusters of edible angular greenish starchy fruits; tropics and subtropics
    Definition: a banana tree bearing hanging clusters of edible angular greenish starchy fruits; tropics and subtropics
  116. plaza
    a public square with room for pedestrians
  117. poncho
    a blanket-like cloak with a hole in the center for the head
  118. potato
    an edible tuber native to South America
  119. pronto
    in a punctual manner
  120. pueblo
    a Native American village in the southwestern United States
  121. puma
    large American feline resembling a lion
  122. punctilio
    a fine point of etiquette or petty formality
  123. quadroon
    an offspring of a mulatto and a white parent
  124. quesadilla
    a tortilla that is filled with cheese and heated
  125. quirt
    whip with a leather thong at the end
  126. ranch
    farm consisting of a large tract of land along with facilities needed to raise livestock (especially cattle)
  127. reefer
    marijuana leaves rolled into a cigarette for smoking
  128. remuda
    the herd of horses from which those to be used the next day are chosen
  129. renegade
    someone who rebels and becomes an outlaw
  130. rodeo
    an exhibition of cowboy skills
  131. rumba
    a folk dance in duple time that originated in Cuba with Spanish and African elements; features complex footwork and violent movement
  132. salsa
    spicy sauce of tomatoes and onions and chili peppers to accompany Mexican foods
  133. sarape
    a long brightly colored shawl; worn mainly by Mexican men
    Also "serape".
  134. sarsaparilla
    any of various prickly climbing plants of the tropical American genus Smilax having aromatic roots and heart-shaped leaves
  135. sassafras
    yellowwood tree with brittle wood and aromatic leaves and bark; source of sassafras oil; widely distributed in eastern North America
  136. savanna
    a flat grassland in tropical or subtropical regions
    Also "savannah".
  137. shack
    small crude shelter used as a dwelling
  138. siesta
    a nap in the early afternoon
  139. silo
    a cylindrical tower used for storing grain
  140. sombrero
    a straw hat with a tall crown and broad brim
  141. alcazar
    any of various Spanish fortresses or palaces built by the Moors
  142. stampede
    a wild headlong rush of frightened animals
  143. stevedore
    a laborer who loads and unloads vessels in a port
  144. stockade
    fortification consisting of a fence set firmly for defense
  145. taco
    a tortilla rolled cupped around a filling
  146. tamale
    corn and cornmeal dough stuffed with a meat mixture then wrapped in corn husks and steamed
  147. tamarillo
    South American arborescent shrub having pale pink blossoms followed by egg-shaped reddish-brown edible fruit somewhat resembling a tomato in flavor
  148. tango
    a ballroom dance of Latin-American origin
  149. tequila
    Mexican liquor made from fermented juices of an agave plant
  150. tobacco
    aromatic annual or perennial herbs and shrubs
  151. tomatillo
    Mexican annual naturalized in eastern North America having yellow to purple edible fruit resembling small tomatoes
  152. tomato
    mildly acid red or yellow pulpy fruit eaten as a vegetable
  153. toreador
    someone who fights bulls
  154. tornado
    a violently destructive windstorm occurring over land
  155. tortilla
    thin unleavened pancake made from cornmeal or wheat flour
  156. tuna
    important warm-water fatty fish of the genus Thunnus of the family Scombridae; usually served as steaks
  157. vamoose
    leave suddenly
  158. vanilla
    any of numerous climbing plants having fleshy leaves
  159. vaquero
    a cowboy or cattle driver
  160. vicuna
    small wild cud-chewing Andean animal similar to the guanaco but smaller; valued for its fleecy undercoat
    Spanish spelling "vicuña".
  161. vigilante
    a person who takes the law into his or her own hands
  162. vinegarroon
    large whip-scorpion of Mexico and southern United States that emits a vinegary odor when alarmed
  163. yam
    any of a number of tropical vines of the genus Dioscorea many having edible tuberous roots
  164. yucca
    any of several evergreen plants of the genus Yucca having usually tall stout stems and a terminal cluster of white flowers; warmer regions of North America
Created on May 23, 2011 (updated June 14, 2011)

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