30 things you should know about Spain and Spaniards

1. Spanish is the second most widely spoken language in the world by native speakers, according to this. Behind Chinese and before English.

Language Approx. number
of speakers
 1. Chinese 1,197,000,000
 2. Spanish 414,000,000
 3. English 335,000,000
 4. Hindi 260,000,000
 5. Arabic 237,000,000
 6. Portuguese 203,000,000
 7. Bengali 193,000,000
 8. Russian 167,000,000
 9. Japanese 122,000,000
10. Javanese 84,300,000

2. But no one really speaks Spanish in Spain. Spaniards speak Castellano, which is the same thing. But there are other 3 co-official languages: Catalan, Galician, Basque, and plenty of dialects.

3. Spanish has also many Arabic sounding words, since it was conquered by the Islamic Moorish armies for many years.

4. It’s said that Christopher Columbus was Italian, but he conquered the Indies under the orders of the Spanish Catholic Monarchs. Not that Spaniards are very proud of South America colonisation or marrying their princesses with other convenient Royal Families in Europe, but the Spanish Empire used to be known as “the empire on which the sun never sets”.

source: wikipedia.com

5. Despite that past, Spain didn’t officially participate in either the First or the Second World War.

6. But things got pretty bad for them too and Spain had a military dictatorship, that in fact,  ideologically aligned with Germany and Italy during World War II. Franco ruled the country as a dictator until his death in 1975.

7. Spain is now a Constitutional Monarchy. The King is Felipe VI, the Queen is Letizia and the President of the Country… still to be decided (after a second election).

King Felipe and Queen Letizia
source: hola.com

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Pancake day

És una sensanció estranya trobar a faltar el dijous gras el dimarts següent, no?

Que per què ho vaig trobar a faltar, a part de perquè la coca de llardons està tremenda (si no és molt greixosa)? Doncs perquè dimarts passat va ser el Pancake Day o Shrove Tuesday.

Tal qual de la viquipèdia: “The word shrove is the past tense of the English verb shrive, which means to obtain absolution for one’s sins by way of Confession and doing penance.”  

A efectes pràctics, la mateixa cosa.

Es celebra dins la cristianitat abans del Dimecres de Cendra, que va ser ahir, perquè vénen uns 40 dies d’abstinència i penitència abans de Setmana Santa.

Em va sobtar, però, que la meva companya, espanyola, no fes res similar al dijous gras o al pancake day. Tot i que el carnestoltes també és una manera d’esbargir-se abans de la Quaresma i ella és de Cádiz.

Aquí us deixo un link, que pot resoldre dubtes, d’un bloc molt molongui que em passa molt freqüentment un amic. Molt interessant.

El cas és que el dilluns vespre em vaig quedar amb les ganes de crêpes, perquè unes amigues m’explicaven que havien anat a una creperia boníssima.

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