Isabel Laguna I Cádiz, (EFE) which the city has decorated itself to receive the IX International Congress of the Spanish Language.
With more than three thousand years of history, Cádiz, the oldest city in the West and the most American in Europe, will become the scene of the most important forum in the world for reflection on the past, present and future starting next Monday. from Spanish.
Cádiz did not want to miss the opportunity to exhibit the peculiar Spanish talent and the crazy ingenuity that the residents of this city surrounded by the sea and, normally, wrapped in winds have developed throughout history, to create, by the most diverse chances, new words.
Sure, sure, sure… I ran
Some of them have traveled outside the city and have even become part of the most global and academic Spanish.
This is the case of the word “cheesy”, defined by the RAE as someone who “pretending to be elegant, is affected, ridiculous or in little taste”, and who was born in Cádiz when the daughters of a tailor named Sicourt were walking through the city and they sang in their wake “the girls of Sicur, Sicur, Sicur, Sicur…”.
Others are words that are reinvented in Cádiz: here, without going any further, a deck of cards more than a game is the metal closure that merchants put on their stores.
An exhibition on the façade of the Market, book editions, debates and even a new rap will invite the more than 300 language experts who will participate in the IX International Congress of the Spanish Language to learn about the intra-history of “gaditanismos” and even to make them yours.
Several ingredients contribute to the talent of the people of Cádiz to create their own lexicon, according to what Professor Pedro Payán, author of “El habla de Cádiz”, explains to EFE, a volume in which he recorded his research on a hundred “gaditanisms”.
One of them is “the very history of the city, which the Phoenicians founded as Gadir, the Romans renamed it Gades, the Arabs Qadis… It is a history that has been enriched, also with the splendor era of trade relations with America” says Payan.
gift for academics
Another is “its geography, because the city is like an open island”, which has given it deep contact with the sea and a third “the character of its people”: “In Cádiz we throw everything negative on our backs with joking, with ingenuity, as is also demonstrated in our carnival”, says Payán.
It was after spending fourteen years in the Canary Islands, when, upon returning to his city, he decided to collect and study the genuine expressions of Cádiz on Spanish.
“Sometimes I wrote them on napkins from a bar, as I was listening to them,” he says. “The book is already forty years old and it has not stopped growing,” he explains, while he tells that he has “a folder full of notes” that, at 85 years old, and due to vision problems, he is no longer “in a position” to incorporate .
The eighth edition will be one of the souvenirs that the 300 academics and experts in the Spanish language will receive as a gift.
The peculiar dictionary accounts for the variety of processes that have given rise to new words.
“Many are because of our way of being, we like to eat words, abbreviate, get to the point and we have a lot of imagination,” Daniel Prada, creator of the web series “Gaditanismos” and in which he has now published the rap “Hey You, speak in Cádiz”.
“Hey, you speak in Cádiz/ we didn’t invent all these words in vain, don’t be sieso, papafritas and julai/ I’ll tell you these little things from Caí in verse,” says this rap that reviews this dictionary in its chorus .
“The Congress of the Language where it was going to be held / if there is no greater wealth than in my Cádiz when speaking”, concludes the rap.
a private dictionary
Within this richness, there are phenomena due to its popular triple denial “no ni ná”, to emphasize an affirmation.
Or transformations from other languages such as “Al liquindoi”, which comes from the English expression “at looking doing” and has become a way of telling that one is alert.
And “guachisnai”, which comes from “What’s your name?” and it is used in Cádiz to refer to a foreign person and also to define an ordinary person.
History has left its mark too. When someone in Cádiz says that they are in “paradise”, it is likely that they mean that they are in the highest seats in a theater. The expression, says Payán, comes from the time of the Cádiz Cortes, when the public could access parliamentary sessions in the upper part of the San Felipe Neri Oratory, which they entered through a door with the shield of a paradise.
In “Cádiz” chiquillo is just “quillo”; when your nose bleeds you have a “hip”, you feel “biruji” with the cool winds and when they do an “ajogaílla” to you, it means they are doing an ahogadilla.
There are people who are “carajote”, because they are too good or clueless, and other unfriendly and unpleasant people who are called “malaje”, which seems to come from “bad angel”, and then there is the “pimpi”, a trickster.
The world of carnival has provided words such as “cajonazo” to refer to the groups that have not managed to enter the Grand Final of the Official Contest of Groups and Comparsas or to some type of failure, and the sailor others such as “bastinazo”, which have their origin in the name in a fish of low quality and is used to say, for example, that a bad movie is “a bastinazo”.
“The language is always effervescent”, emphasizes the Cádiz-born philologist.
However, academics should not have “jindoi” (fear, coming from caló) of leaving renamed after their stay in the city; nor feel “ardentía” (heartburn) when listening to certain twists of Spanish; if not rather enjoy the “tangai” (jaleo) and even celebrate with “papelillos” (confetti) that Spanish is a living language. EFE
The entry From “al liquindoi” to “biruji”, or how Cádiz invites us to reinvent Spanish was first published in EFE Noticias.