1. PEF

    PEF Senior Member

    @ home
    Hola. Quisiera saber si en inglés existe alguna diferencia en shovel y spade. Aparentemente en español se los llama por igual: pala. Por ejemplo, uno de los elementos que se deben llevar en un auto.

    ideaS? sugerencias?

  2. JohanG Senior Member

    Vancouver Canada
    English, Canada
    They are different. A Spade is a special shovel. All spades are shovels but not all shovels are spades. For example snow shovels and scoop shovels are not spades.
  3. Basenjigirl Senior Member

    English, USA
    Shovel : a tool used to dig up or move loose material like earth, gravel, sand or snow.
    Spade : a type of shovel, usually light and often small, typically used in gardening.

    From wikipedia: A spade is designed primarily for breaking up ("spading") clumps of soil. A spade usually has a point and is designed to be pushed into the soil with a foot. Spade blades usually have a rounded face without sharply upturned sides.
  4. cyberpedant

    cyberpedant Senior Member

    North Adams, MA
    English USA, Northeast, NYC
    Para mi, sí hay una diferencia importante. "Spade" es un tipo de pala con un punto, es decir, la parte que se mete en la tierra es casi triangular. Se usa para quebrar, o sea, entrar en un suelo compacto. Shovel tiene una terminación recta, y se usa para levantar materiales sueltas, como arena, carbon, nieve, etc.
  5. PEF

    PEF Senior Member

    @ home
    Thank you!

    Now, I come across these two terms in the same sentece, like this (whitin a list of elements to be taken inside your car):

    Broom & Shovel/Spade

    how can I make a difference when translating them? I have to find a short term, I can´t write a sentence too long.
  6. Basenjigirl Senior Member

    English, USA
    escoba y pala pequeña.
  7. sound shift

    sound shift Senior Member

    Derby (central England)
    English - England
    That's interesting, because the spades we have here are not pointed. To my mind the difference between a spade and a shovel consists in the fact that a shovel has "sides" intended to contain whatever is being removed from the ground, and is therefore not suitable for digging, whereas a spade is intended for digging and has no "sides".
  8. Cannister7 Senior Member

    English, England
    I agree completely with that last comment, a shovel is for lifting up and moving loose stuff (earth for example) and a space is for digging, it us usally square like a shovel (at least in England) but has no sides.

    I have asked Spanish speaking people about this before but they've only come up with the one word ´pala'
  9. Basenjigirl Senior Member

    English, USA
    That's because the Spanish don't have the same gardening tradition as the British. :)
  10. cyberpedant

    cyberpedant Senior Member

    North Adams, MA
    English USA, Northeast, NYC
    "it us usally square like a shovel (at least in England) but has no sides."

    Now that you mention it, I guess I have seen "spades" as you describe (in this case much smaller that "shovels,") and with a squared-off top to put your foot on. But I have always thought of a "spade" as shaped like the symbol on playing cards.
  11. Smac

    Smac Senior Member

    UK English
    You do not need to make a difference. The English expression means "a broom plus either a shovel or a spade", so pala is all you need! :)
  12. RosettaStone Banned

    Scotland English
    Correct: A spade can be square or semi triangular BUT DOESN' T have any sides. Its used for digging.

    A shovel which has sides a normally squareish is used for lifting and is extremely difficult for digging (in hard ground) unless it is loose material like sand or snow.
  13. PEF

    PEF Senior Member

    @ home
    Great!! Then it´ll be just pala.

    Thank you all for your contributions! :)
  14. aluza

    aluza Senior Member

    Spanish (Colombia)
    ¡Hola a todos!

    Para referirme a la pala que llevan los niños a la playa ¿puedo usar cualquiera de las dos palabras?
  15. cyberpedant

    cyberpedant Senior Member

    North Adams, MA
    English USA, Northeast, NYC
    It's been an awfully long time since I've used one of those, but I think we always called them "shovels."
  16. grubble

    grubble Senior Member

    South of England, UK
    British English
  17. cirrus

    cirrus Senior Member

    Crug Hywel
    UK English
    I agree about a shovel always having sides. On the beach I agree that in the UK it's always bucket and spade (even though they might actually be shovels as they have sides.)
  18. cyberpedant

    cyberpedant Senior Member

    North Adams, MA
    English USA, Northeast, NYC
    Interesting! Over here, it's "pail and shovel."
  19. Cajico New Member

    Spanish - Spain
    Hola, como uso este recurso con frecuencia pensé que podría aportar algo.
    We have more of a tradition of digging trenches:

    f. Especie de pala herrada de la mitad abajo, con un corte acerado, que usan los zapadores o gastadores.

    Es la pala con forma algo trapezoidal. También llamada pala de zapa o, en el ejército, zapa-pala.

    Un saludo.
  20. Cajico New Member

    Spanish - Spain
    By the way, in the following page of wordreference.com "zapa" is translated as "mattox" and as "pick".


    To the best of my knowledge "mattox" doesn't exist in English. Would it be "mattock" instead? Which in case it translates as "azadón", not as "zapa".
    And "pick" translates as "pico".

  21. SydLexia Senior Member

    London, EU
    UK English
    I'd say it's because the equivalent agricultural tool in Spain is the "mattock" (azadón). :)

  22. Ferrol Senior Member


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