from pp. 162-163
replicar to reply, to answer; to retort. This word looks easy but note it does not mean "to replicate", in spite of cognation. The noun réplica, however, does have the sense of "replica" in addition to "answer", "retort".
cercanía proximity, closeness, vicinity. See also acercar ("to approach"), cercano ("near").
telón curtain, backdrop. From tela ("cloth") + -ón (augmentative suffix). Consider a curtain to be a big piece of cloth. This word has nothing to do with talon ("claw"). See also tela.
toreo bullfighting. From toro ("bull") + -ero (suffix indicating profession or occupation). See also toro.
feto fetus (cognate). Note English fatal is also spelled fatal in Spanish, but is unrelated to feto.
legado legacy (cognate). The softening of the third syllable consonant in English legacy happened in Old French legacie, which is from Medieval Latin legatia, which is from legatus ("legate", "envoy"), from which Spanish legado is directly derived.
provecho profit (cognate), advantage. From Latin profectus. Note the change of Latin f to Spanish v. See also aprovechar ("to make use of").
centavo cent (cognate)(subunit of currency in many Latin American countries). Suffix -avo is like -th in English, signifying a division, e.g., doceavo ("twelfth").
Dinamarca Denmark (cognate). It's interesting to note that i as the first syllable vowel of this word is largely limited to the languages of the Iberian Peninsula, and a slightly more open vowel e or ä is limited to Germanic languages such as English and German. The rest use the open vowel a, as in Danish Danmark, which is from Old Norse Danmǫrk.
gremio guild, union. Cognate with gremial ("of the lap"; "cloth on the lap of a bishop"), gregarious ("enjoying being in a crowd"), and with the root of congregate ("to collect into an assembly"), -greg-. When a person is in a group, he's offered protection, hence the meaning of "guild". Alternatively, use a mnemonic such as "a Grammy award from the music guild".
espinoso thorny, spiny (cognate), prickly; difficult, tricky.
patrocinio sponsorship, patronage (cognate).
cuantía level, quantity (cognate), amount; importance, extent.
borrar to delete, to erase. Cognate with bureau. The cognation is due to the fact that the common Latin source borra means "coarse wool or fabric". In the old days, coarse wool was used to cover the desk (usage taken by French and so English) and to erase writings (usage taken by Spanish). The desk was later metonymically used to refer to an office, while borra, Spanish for "rough wool", begot the verb borrar. If all this etymology is unhelpful, use a mnemonic such as "Use borax to erase stains."
cortesía courtesy (cognate).
criado servant. criar to rear, to raise (children). crianza upbringing. Cognate with create. Doublet with crear ("to create"). Regarding criado, a child is raised by the señor or lord to be a servant. Historically, that may be true (cf. G. Silva, Breve Diccionario).
esconder to hide, to abscond (cognate). It's probably not cognate with ensconce ("to put in a safe place"). Alternatively, as a mnemonic, imagine a hiding skunk.
lata can, tin; tinplate. Possibly cognate with lath ("thin flat strip of wood"). Alternatively, use a mnemonic such as "a small can of latte".
callar to calm, to shut up, to be silent. Etymology doesn't help. Use a mnemonic such as "Rowing a kayak is very quiet." If you were to use call or caller as a mnemonic, it would be the opposite of calmness; calling someone can hardly be quiet.
estrato layer, stratum (cognate), strata (cognate), stratus (cognate).
uva grape. Cognate with uvula ("fleshy extension that hangs from the back of the palate above the throat", so called because it looks like a small grape). If that etymology sounds uninteresting or unpleasant, use a mnemonic such as "Do grapes grow differently under the radiation of UV-A, the A-range ultraviolet light?" (The answer to that question, incidentally, is No; if there's a difference, it will be due to UV-B, not A.)
excitación (sexual) arousal; excitation (cognate). Note that this word more commonly refers to "sexual arousal or excitation" than "excitation" in general. The same can be said of its verb excitar. Some consider these pairs of words to be false friends between Spanish and English.
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