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The Spanish Word of the Year 2021

Last year, we chose the word pandemia (pandemic) as the Spanish Word of the Year. This year, our choice was a bit predictable. In fact, after reading our lesson about The Spanish Word of the Year 2020, one of our users sent us a message with a very accurate prediction. The following are his words:

 

"Dear friends from Yabla,

The Spanish Word of the Year 2020 is pandemia. And the Spanish Word for the Year 2021 will be vacuna!

Thanks for all the work, take care and stay safe."

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"Vacuna": The Spanish Word of the Year 2021

And yes! He was totally right! The Word of the Year 2021 is vacuna (vaccine). Let's hear how that word sounds in Spanish:

 

Espero que pronto puedan conseguir una vacuna y dar fin a esta situación.

I hope they can get a vaccine soon and end this situation.

Captions 17-18, El coronavirus La cuarentena en Coro, Venezuela - Part 2

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The Spanish word vacuna comes from the English word "vaccine," which in turn comes from the Latin word "vaccīnus," meaning "of or from a cow." In fact, there was a cow involved in the first ever vaccine: the smallpox vaccine developed by British scientist Edward Jenner.

 

Vacuna, however, wasn't the only trendy word this year. Just like last year, most of the runner-up words were related to the coronavirus pandemic, this year, some of our runners-up are linked to the word vacuna. Let's take a look at some of the other terms that defined 2021.

 

BY THE WAY, HAVE YOU SEEN OUR SPECIAL SERIES ABOUT THE CORONAVIRUS? CHECK IT OUT!

 

Runners-up for 2021 Spanish Word of the Year

 

dosis (dose)

y también a disminuir las dosis necesarias de insulina

and also to reduce the necessary doses of insulin

Caption 55, Los médicos explican Beneficios del ozono

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Keep in mind that because the word dosis is a paroxytone noun ending in "s," it has the same form in singular and plural:

la dosis (the dose)

las dosis (the doses)

 

For more about this topic, please check out our lesson about the rules for forming the plurals of nouns in Spanish.

 

síntoma (symptom)

 

La verdad es que no tiene, pues, ningún síntoma, pues, por ejemplo que tenga poco apetito,

The truth is that he doesn't have, well, any symptoms, well, for example if he has lack of appetite,

Captions 70-71, Animales en familia Un día en Bioparc: Microchip para Nacahué - Part 1

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variante (variant)

As in the Delta or Omnicron variants.

 

impredecible (unpredictable)

Just recently, The Economist stated this: "it is time to face the world’s predictable unpredictability." It seem like impredecible is going to stay trendy for a little while. In the meantime, let's see how to say it:

 

Llueve, hace frío... frío, hace frío, llueve, todo... ah... aquí... es impredecible.

It rains, it's cold... cold, it's cold, it rains, everything... uh... Here... it's unpredictable.

Caption 27, Peluquería La Percha Félix

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híbrido (hybrid)

If you have been following the conversation about how people are working nowadays, you know why this word is on this list. While some workers have gone back to the office, there are millions of people around the world whose work model is now a hybrid one that mixes on-site and off-site work. Along those lines, another trendy word is teletrabajo (telecommuting):

 

Por ejemplo, las compañías han tenido que acudir al teletrabajo para seguir con sus actividades productivas

For example, companies have had to resort to telecommuting to continue with their production activities,

Captions 35-36, El coronavirus Efectos y consecuencias

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And that wraps up Yabla's Spanish Word of the Year for 2021. Do you agree with our choice? Can you think of any other pertinent term(s) that we didn't mention? What is your prediction for next year's Word of the Year? Please feel free to share with us your comments and suggestions, and here's to hoping that 2022 is a better year!

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