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18 hilarious Portuguese phrases that will leave you “feito ao bife”

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Learning Portuguese can sometimes seem daunting for those who are just starting. But don’t despair! Once you get past the pronunciation, irregular verbs and quirky formalities, the list of hilarious proverbs makes Portuguese one of the funniest languages to learn. 

Here are some examples of hilarious Portuguese phrases that may leave some foreigners “feitos ao bife”: 


Portugal Realty Portuguese expressions Feito ao Bife






















Translation:
Done to the steak
Meaning: If a Portuguese person tells you that you’re “feito ao bife”, you’re definitely in trouble or in a complicated situation.



Portugal Realty Portuguese Vai pentear macacos






















Translation:
Go comb the monkeys
Meaning: This is the Portuguese version of “get lost” or “go away”. And yes, this is one of the phrases that make no sense at all! 





Translation: It’s chicken soup!
Meaning: When something is easy to do, the Portuguese will probably smile and say “é canja!”. Because let’s face it, any Portuguese can make chicken soup. 

 



Portugal Realty Portuguese Muitos anos a virar frangos

Translation: Plenty of years turning chickens
Meaning: If you visit a Portuguese “churrasqueira”, you’ll understand why this phrase means “to have a lot of experience”. It might not be rocket science, but experience is required to grill a perfect “frango no churrasco”.  

 



Portugal Realty Portuguese Engolir Sapos

Translation: Swallow frogs
Meaning: Having to do something we disagree with or staying quiet when we would prefer to speak. Which is almost like… swallowing a frog. 

 



Portugal Realty Portuguese Arrastar a asa

Translation: Dragging a wing
Meaning: When someone is smitten, they’ll probably be caught “dragging their wing” towards the one they love. 

 



Portugal Realty Portuguese Estar com as azeites

Translation: Having the olive oils
Meaning: When someone is in bad humour or upset with a situation. 

 



Portugal Realty Portuguese Pulga atras da orelha

Translation: A flea behind our ear
Meaning: To be suspicious about something or to feel that something isn’t right.
 



Portugal Realty Portuguese Expressions No tempo da vacas gordas

Translation: In the days of the fat cows
Meaning: In a time when there was more money or things were cheaper.

 


Portugal Realty_Portuguese_expressions_Macaquinhos na cabeça

Translation: Little monkeys in your head
Meaning: Anyone with “macaquinhos na cabeça” is worried about things that may never happen or are unreal. 

 



Portugal Realty_Portuguese_expressions_Encher chouriços

Translation: Stuffing sausages
Meaning: To write, speak or do something in a boring and time-consuming manner without finishing or addressing what was initially intended. 

 



Portugal Realty_Portuguese_expressions_Pão pão queijo queijo

Translation: Bread bread, cheese cheese
Meaning: A situation or a person that is frank or direct. When you go straight to the point or demand something straightforward. 

 



Portugal Realty_Portuguese_expressions_A minha alma está parva

Translation: My soul is dumb 
Meaning: When someone is surprised or astonished to learn something new or unexpected. 

 



Portugal Realty_Portuguese_expressions_Podes tirar o cavalinho da chuva

Translation: You can get that little horse out of the rain 
Meaning: Advice for someone to give up on an illusion or stop waiting for something that will probably never happen.

 



Portugal Realty_Portuguese_expressions_Fazer uma vaquinha

Translation: Make a little cow 
Meaning: To collect money with the help of several people to reach a certain goal or buy something. To “chip in”. 

 



Portugal Realty_Portuguese_expressions_Soltar a franga

Translation: Release the chicken 
Meaning: When someone becomes more “crazy”, behaves extravagantly or is having a blast.

 



Portugal Realty_Portuguese_expressions_Fia-te na virgem e não corras

Translation: Believe in the Virgin and don't run! 
Meaning: Advice not to wait for a solution to fall from the sky, but to do something to solve a problem. 

 



Portugal Realty_Portuguese_expressions_Ir com os porcos

Translation: Go with the pigs 
Meaning: To die or when something finishes in a definite or abrupt manner. 


Despite all languages having funny idioms, the meaning will sometimes be lost in translation as they are unique to every country and culture. For example, if it's raining heavily in the UK one might say “it’s raining cats and dogs” while in Portugal it’ll probably be “raining pots” (“chover a potes”). 

The best way to familiarize yourself with the meaning and usage of the Portuguese language is to visit or live in the country. Discovering all the wacky idioms, proverbs and expressions is just one of the many pleasures of experiencing everyday life in Portugal!

If the language of Camões and Portuguese lifestyle interests you, don’t hesitate to give us a call and schedule your visit to find out more about buying a property in Portugal.

Our team of property specialists are happy to share their experience of living in Portugal and assist you in everything you need to invest or move to Portugal


Portugal Realty™ - Property for sale in Portugal

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