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Difference Between Hispanic and Spanish

Hispanic vs Spanish

Originally the term “Hispanic” was used to refer to the people, culture, cuisine, and other things relating to Hispania or the Iberian Peninsula comprised by the countries of Spain and Portugal.

After the colonization of the New World by Spain and Portugal, it has come to denote the culture and people of their colonies which have been culturally influenced by both countries. These countries have adapted the language of the two colonizers as well as their customs and traditions. Surnames of people in these colonies are courtesy of Spain and Portugal as many of their people have intermarried with the colonizers.

The term is most commonly used in the United States of America to refer to people who are from Central American countries which have been colonies of the two countries as well as U.S. citizens who are of Hispanic descent. The word “Hispanic” comes from the Latin word “Hispanicus” which means “from Hispania or the Iberian Peninsula.” It later came to refer to the Spanish-speaking parts of the world and still later to the Spanish-speaking Americans citizens of Latin American descent.

The term “Spanish,” on the other hand, refers to all things, people, religion, music, language, culture, traditions, and food which relates to the country of Spain. It refers to the people of Spain and their distinct characteristics. Also called Spaniards, the Spanish people have the Palaeolithic people as ancestors. Later the Celts, Turdetanians, Phoenicians, Greeks, Carthaginians, and Romans came to establish settlements.

The Spanish language is also called Espanol or Castillan. It is a Romance language from the Ibero-Romance group which was developed in the 9th century. It is spoken by almost ten per cent of the world’s population and is one of the six official languages of the United Nations.

Spanish cuisine, on the other hand, consists more of seafood and wheat although it has been influenced by food from other parts of the world. Paella, tortilla, embutido, chorizo, and jamon are just some of its most popular culinary offerings.

Spain is a country with a predominantly Roman Catholic population, and it helped in the spread of Christianity throughout the world through colonization. Today, 97 per cent of its population is Roman Catholic with several minor religions comprising the other 3 per cent.

The word “Spanish” comes from the Old French word “Espaigne” and the Old English word “Speonisc” which means “Spain” or “Spaniard.” Its first known use in the English language was in the 13th century.


1.“Hispanic” was originally meant to refer to the people, culture, and other things which relate to the Iberian Peninsula or Hispania while “Spanish” is used to refer to all things relating to the country of Spain.
2.Today, “Hispanic” is used to refer to the Spanish-speaking people in all parts of the world particularly in the USA while “Spanish” refers to the language, people, cuisine, and other things relating to Spain.
3.“Hispanic” comes from the Latin word “Hispanicus” which means “from Hispania or the Iberian Peninsula” while “Spanish” comes from the Old French word “Espaigne” and the Old English word “Speonisc” which means “Spain” or “Spaniard.”

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1 Comment

  1. Spanish is synonimous with Hispano. Check the dictionary. The majority of the people in Spain use the word ‘Hispano’ (Hispanic) or Espanol to identify themselves. While the USA chooses to classify a sectment of thier citizenery as ‘Hispanic’ simply because of where they come from is understandable. However, most of the people from the Americas are of mixed race. The Spanish intermarried with the indigenous people of the land thus creating new caste. In the early times this caste were referred to as ‘mestizo” Racially, they became a mixed race of caucasian and mongollion. The indigenous people of the Americans came from the migration of asian people that crossed the Alaskan Straits dating back to the big ice age. Somehow the identity of the “American” Indian’ (Ameriindian) and the mongollion ancestry has been slided when depicting this group as “Hispanic”
    There are people from Mexico that have migrated to the USA who are called Hispanic becasue of where he came from but his cousin who is a member from a USA indian tribe is called ‘Native American” The mongollion identity is not even mentioned or thought of. My mother is from Spain while my father is an indian from Mexico and Texas. Racially, I consider myself mixed of caucasian/mongollion extration; heritage, I am Spanish and Amerindian

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