1. worldwoanend New Member

    WI, US
    America- English
    lo siento pero no puedo escribir todo en espanol porque no tengo los acentos ni el talento. i heard a friend of mine use the word ostia (he's from spain originally) in a sentence like "me cago en la ostia", but he couldn't expain to me what it meant. i think he said it wasnt necesarily polite, but would it be usable among friends or is the meaning that bad? thanx for all of your help!
  2. Melina Senior Member

    Buenos Aires
    I would need more context, because "ostia" and "me cago en la ostia" may have different meanings. "Me cago en la ostia" may be a very informal way of saying "what a bad luck", or something like that. The spanish friends may be more helpful.
  3. ElGato

    ElGato Senior Member

    Coral Gables, FL
    Puerto Rico/Cuba, Spanish
    the word is actually "hostia" which means "host or Eucharistic wafer" given during communion during Catholic mass. As you may know, Spain has a huge Catholic background, responsible for spreading Catholithism to the Americas. At the same time, with no offense to our Spaniard friends, Spanish have the worst and most sacriligious swear phrases. The men specially can be very foul mouth and use the phrase you mentioned often. It literaly means "I shit on the host" but it's more used like saying "fucking shit". When people use it, it is more as a swear phrase than a sacriligious intention. When they use the word "hostia" alone it could be translated as "damn it" or "f-ck".

    Hope it helps.

    Corrections welcome.

  4. morgana05 Member

    hi all, could hostia also mean a smack??? (te doy una hostia)
  5. crispy Member

    Zapopan, Jalisco, México
    United States, English
    I have a slang dictionary that translates your friend's phrase exactly like El Gato does, both literally and figuratively. It is a swear that has no intended object (you're not cursing someone or something, but just swearing in-general at the situation), and it has the added social benefit of not insulting someone's mother like many Spanish-language swears.
  6. mexnack

    mexnack Senior Member

    Santander (Spain)
    morgana05 wrote:
    Yes indeed. If you say "le sacamos del coche a hostias" means that we used violence to force him out of the car.
    You can also use it with other meanings. If you say "él conducía a toda hostia" you mean at a very fast clip.
    It is a multipurpose word with something in common. It is VERY VULGAR (aside from the original meaning of "host" mentioned above)
  7. morgana05 Member

    thanks a bunch Mexnack
  8. worldwoanend New Member

    WI, US
    America- English
    a big thank you to everyone who posted on this one, especially mexnack, and elgato! it was a big help and cleared the whole thing up, even my friend's inability to spell...lol.
  9. Cracker Jack Senior Member

    Hostia in reality refers to JC or to an allusion to God. In all cultures, I find this expression the most blasphemous. It is one worthy of being called "hatched in hell." Cagarse is to dump. Can you imagine dumping on G--? Therefore, this is the most scurrilous, sacrilegious and blasphemous expression I have encountered the world ever. I just don't know if there exists something worse in other cultures.

    It is an expression of supreme aversion or aberration that in itself is loathsome and abhorrent. Even the Spanish people find this disgusting. It is usually uttered by someone seething with rage. Even educated and enlightened individuals utter it. However, this invective supposedly should only be reserved for apostates.
  10. fivergrand New Member

    I agree with Cracker Jack. The word "hostia" is the most vulgar and the worst swearword in spanish.
    Anyway, mexnack has described its meanings very well.
  11. Txiri

    Txiri Senior Member

    USA English
    Easy does it, Cracker Jack. I´m a Catholic, too ... and I had pals in Spain in my "youth" who would "soltar tacos tan gordos como "me cago en las tetas de la virgen para que dios mame la mierda" ... I know you will find that very offensive, and I am sorry. We, I, are talking about language here, and not offensiveness or blasphemy. In Christianity generally, one should not take the name of the Lord in vain. The ultra catholic swear expressions, derive their shock value precisely from the ability to shock. One of your authors, Juan Goytisolo, precisely recurred to the shock reaction in many of his works.
  12. Txiri

    Txiri Senior Member

    USA English
    PS: "God damn" is pretty sacrilegious, and worthy of being extirpated from the English language. I cringe every time I hear someone say it, but people keep saying it, nonetheless.
  13. palomica

    palomica Senior Member

    New York City
    English, USA
    I agree with the meanings given for hostia and also heard it many times among my college friends in Madrid in my youth. It is sacriligious, possibly that is part of the delight taken in saying it by all those (mostly young men) who were raised in the church but who have "liberated themselves" and are among the non-practicing now. One thing that is interesting to note is that in Spain, much of the foul language centers around religion while in the Americas it has a lot more to do with sex.
  14. Txiri

    Txiri Senior Member

    USA English
    You are quite right about that. What is taboo to say, is what most often is said, in a spirit of breaking taboos. We are more concerned in the USA about maintiainng sexual morés, hence our greatest swear word, motherfucker ...while the culture in other countries, finds, xxx of the greatest impact.
  15. thuja Senior Member

    english; united states
    Yes, and to English speakers the curious thing is that this curse has no resonance whatsoever. You could say "host, host host!" all day long and people (even catholics) would just think you were crazy. They certainly wouldn't know you were cursing.

    Perhaps in Ireland, the only solidly catholic part of the English-speaking world, they have some blasphemies regarding hosts, but if they do, they've never made it to North America.

    Another oddity, I think that "cunt" is probably the most loaded, most dangerous swear word in english, and Spaniards of all sorts use "coño" so liberally you might think it meant something like "whoa" or "darn" or "jellybean".
  16. Aljb5302 Member

    Des Moines, IA USA
    United States (Midwest) English
    Y que de frase, <<Me entra muy mala ostia>>
  17. arnauri Senior Member

    España - Español y Euskera
    Me entra (muy) mala hostia=I get (very) angry
    (Algo/alguien) me pone de mala hostia=Sth/Sbd makes me angry

    Un saludo
  18. Sammo Senior Member

    ¿Es universal "hostia" (en el sentido vulgar por supuesto) o es ante todo una palabra limitada a la jerga española?
  19. Basenjigirl Senior Member

    English, USA
  20. ElGato

    ElGato Senior Member

    Coral Gables, FL
    Puerto Rico/Cuba, Spanish
    If it were Hostia, it would be shocking, but note that the name is Ostia with no H I'm not sure if it means anything.


  21. jalibusa Senior Member

    Tacoma, WA US
    Uruguay Español
    Ostia: lovely city in lovely Italy
  22. jalibusa Senior Member

    Tacoma, WA US
    Uruguay Español
    Ostia: Lovely city in lovely Italy
  23. SaritaSarang

    SaritaSarang Senior Member

    English - United States
    He oido muchas veces " hostia" como, " slap" or "smack".
  24. ElGato

    ElGato Senior Member

    Coral Gables, FL
    Puerto Rico/Cuba, Spanish
    Bella Italia... I guess you learn something new every day. EG

  25. ivanovic77

    ivanovic77 Senior Member

    Spanish, Catalan - Spain
    Sorry, I'm a bit shocked to read some comments here, even those from some Spaniards. Is the word hostia (or ostia) very vulgar? Really? Well, not in Barcelona. Here it is a common usage word, and although it can be a bit rough, it is widely used and I would even say that in a naively innocent manner. I can understand that Catholics may get shocked when they find out the origin of this expression, but I assure you that most Spaniards (if not all) say "me cago en la ostia" without even thinking about any religious sense. Remember that words lose their meanings after many years (or decades, or centuries) of being used. I've been hearing the word "ostia" in a wide range of expressions since I was a child, and to me is like saying shit in English. It's coarse, it's rough, but everybody says it, and by no means with the idea of hurting someone's sensibility.
  26. Begonaf

    Begonaf Senior Member

    Spain, Spanish

    I'm form Spain and I can tell you that everything that you said is true. But since we are almost no more Catholics (you can see the last news and the problems that our government have with the Catholic Church) is like no one's care any moe about words like "me cago en la Ostia" or "la Ostia bendita".
    I also heard for many of my "hispanoamericano" friends that they consider Spaniards as very bad talkers (in the sense that we use a lot of curse words):D
  27. ElGato

    ElGato Senior Member

    Coral Gables, FL
    Puerto Rico/Cuba, Spanish
    For Spaniards it might just be another "slang curse word", but I don't believe it is widely used in the Americas. I've only heard Spaniards say it, and to tell you the truth, the first time I heard it I was shocked, and I really do not consider myself a prude in any sense. I am Catholic because I was raised that way and I'm a believer, but not a practicing Catholic that goes to church every Sunday, if you know what I mean. I don't get offended easily, but I believe the phrase is totally over the top.



  28. MazZzta Member

    There are a lot of different sentence composition with the word 'ostia' that could mean the same, and it depends very much on the context.

    I've gathered here some examples:

    "Me cago en la ostia! / Ostia puta! / ...(lots, lots, lots of different orders and compositions) " - Exclamation of someone very angry or annoyed for something - "f-ck-ng shit!"
    "Ostia!" - Exclamation of someone really surprised - "What the f-ck?" or "What the hell...?"
    "te voy a dar/pegar/meter una ostia" - Exclamation of someone very angry which express his intention of become violent and hurt you, particulary using his hands punching or smacking with all his might and fury.
    "Se pegó/metió/dió una ostia" - Someone who is telling that other person fall, stumble on something and hurts himself against the ground, floor or even anything. It maybe express the idea of hurting oneself because of a lack of care or because of doing things in a stupid way. It extremely emphasizes the fact even overdramatizing it.
    "a toda ostia" - It express velocity, power or strength in its maximun value of anything.

    Anyway, instead of its Catholic meaning, this word sound very unpolite and vulgar. People use it when they are talking between friends because it sounds funny (even its pronunciation) and it quickly attracts everyone's attention. It is sacriligious of course.

    I hope this will be useful for you.
  29. Joe Tamargo Senior Member

    New York, NY, USA
    United States English
    Ostia was the port of ancient Rome.
  30. Senis New Member

    Catalan & Spanish
    I just want to add that spanish people (and I mean common people) use this expression "me cago en la ostia" as well as "me cago en la puta" (I shit on the whore), "me cago en dios" (I shit on God), etc. Of course is vulgar, and most of the people wouldn't use it at work, but it's just slang and widely used.
  31. inib

    inib Senior Member

    La Rioja, Spain
    British English
    I've seen that this thread is years old, but I came across it while trying to look something up. I agree with everything in this post, and the contents of many others in the thread, but just had the inspiration that in English we could maintain the religious/blasphemous tone if we used the translation "Holy Shit!", which I've heard quite often in Am E.
    Nevertheless, I realise that the same tone is NOT always the way to achieve the same effect when translating, especially when dealing with colloquialisms.
  32. juandiego

    juandiego Senior Member

    Granada. España
    Spanish from Spain
    As some have already pointed out, the cursing expressions using this word have lost most of their blasphemous 'appeal' and are perfectly replaceable by other curses with quite similar effect, especially in colloquial conversations between people you feel confidence with. In general people say it without minding what they are really saying.

    However, in my opinion, this is not always this way. I can imagine situations compelling to use a polite and educated register and in which you might dare to utter some curse in order to cause an impact in your audience. I really doubt in those cases many would decide to use it precisely because of its blasphemous origin, it would be a bit too much.
  33. pablomad

    pablomad Senior Member

    spanish - euskadi
    But, on the other hand, you can say "eres la hostia" with a positive meaning of the word.
    So i think "hostia" in spanish (at least in Spain) is just enphatic. You like it or not.
  34. Senis New Member

    Catalan & Spanish
    I agree completely.
    "Es la hostia de caro" = is extremely expensive.
    "Está la hostia de lejos" = is far far away

  35. Spanish proud New Member

    La ostia!!! ostias!!! me cago en la ostia!! ostia puta!!
    todos son expresiones de sorpresa/enfado/desgrado.
    la palabra ostia es la deformación de "hostia", que es la Sagrada forma, el pan que usan los cristianos en la misa, de ahí que sea un insulto blasfemo, algo así como "me cago en Dios"
  36. Guillo1 Senior Member

    Spanish - Argentina
    Due to the heavy Catholic background of Spain and it's former American colonies, blasphemous swear words are very common as a way at cursing at the word. In Argentina the word "hostia" is not used a lot while swearing, but things like "me cago en Dios" or "me cago en la Virgen" can be heard used in the same way.
  37. Csalrais

    Csalrais Senior Member

    Spanish - Spain
    ¿Pero "hostia" sin hache está aceptado? No sé, es que yo no hago esa diferenciación, ni para el significado religioso ni para la blasfemia, "hostia" para todo. Y la RAE redirige ostia hacia la acepción de ostra, nada más.
  38. inib

    inib Senior Member

    La Rioja, Spain
    British English
    A mí una vez me dijeron que "ostia" sin hache se empleaba como exclamación, y "hostia" para la eucaristía. Esto fue hace muchos años, y todavía no he encontrado diccionario ni fuente fiable que lo confirme. Sin embargo, por lo que se puede leer en este hilo, otros que tratan de similar tema, e incluso en otros medios, parece que el uso de "ostia" es TAN extendido que resulta casi aceptable.
  39. pablomad

    pablomad Senior Member

    spanish - euskadi
    Yo creo que escribir "ostia" es una especie de eufemismo un poco absurdo. Ostia es el puerto de Roma. Punto. Cuando decimos "Eres la hostia" nos referimos a la sagrada forma de los cristianos, no a una ciudad de Italia. Creo yo.
    Y desde luego, existen, al menos en el idioma que yo hablo (en España) usos positivos, no solo negativos, de la palabra. Por ejemplo:
    "Messi es un jugador de la hostia"
    "Me gusta la hostia el fútbol"
  40. rodsa Senior Member

    Not necessarily. "Eres la hostia" can be said with a negative meaning (i.e., "Juan es la hostia, quedó en venir a recogerme pero me ha dejado tirado").

  41. LeoLeo9

    LeoLeo9 Senior Member

    Ostia was an ancient Roman port
  42. rodsa Senior Member

    Yes, but in Spain as "hostia" is used as a cursing word in a rude context, "h" could be elided perfectly.

  43. pablomad

    pablomad Senior Member

    spanish - euskadi
    I don't agree.
    If you want to use the enphatic word, you should always use "hostia".
    "ostia" means exclusively "ostra". Nothing else.
    Look up the Real Academia dictionary.
    Apart from the famous Italian city: Ostia.
  44. rodsa Senior Member

    What I try to mean is that if you write "ostia" instead of "hostia" nobody will say you "hey,that's a spelling mistake!"

    Take into account that "hostia" is used most of times in a very informal, spoken context where "h" is irrelevant.

  45. inib

    inib Senior Member

    La Rioja, Spain
    British English
    Estoy de acuerdo en todo. Solo decía lo que había observado, y puede que tengas razón en lo del eufemismo, vamos, ¡que algunos le quitan la hache para ser más políticamente correctos! (Como lo de joper or joé en lugar de lo que todos sabemos)
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2011
  46. Spanish proud New Member

    Tienes toda la razón, se debe escribir con "h", pero en ambientes informales el 100% de las veces lo vas a encontrar sin h. de todas formas, me corrijo, para la gente que esté aprendiendo español, por favor escríbanlo con h, que es el único modo correcto.
  47. rodsa Senior Member

    Para la gente que esté aprendiendo español: mejor NO USAR esa palabra (y menos por escrito) por su vulgaridad.

  48. juandiego

    juandiego Senior Member

    Granada. España
    Spanish from Spain
    Estoy de acuerdo con que hostia debe ir siempre escrito con "h" porque se refiere, etimológicamente al menos, a la consagrada y ésta la lleva. Que se decida escribirla sin ella por alguna razón cuando la ortografía no es tan importante o se juega con la propia intención del error ortográfico, no lo convierte en aceptable simplemente porque no cause la misma mala impresión que en contextos formales. Omitir intencionadamente la ortografía por razones prácticas o de estilo no implica ortografía también correcta.
  49. Spanish proud New Member

    vamos a ver, hostia con h no es nada vulgar, es la hostia consagrada, lo que es vulgar es usarlo como insulto.

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