Romanian language lesson: Foreign words in Romanian

During the last years, the influence of other languages over Romanian was powerful and a large number of foreign words have penetrated into Romanian. Some foreign words became very common and one of the most important spelling dictionaries, “Dicționarul ortografic, ortoepic și de punctuație”, has introduced them in its latest edition (2005).

Currently the influence of English language is very large. You will be surprised to find out how many words of English origin (pronounced like in English) were introduced in the dictionary.

English words

baby-sitter, banner, broker, cocktail, coffee-break, consulting, cool, copyright, copywriter, cover, cowboy, dandy, derby, design, designer, desktop, disc-jockey, discount, display, dressing, duty‑free, e-mail, exit-poll, fair, fairplay, fun club, fast-food, feedback, fitness, flash, flashback, full-time, gadget, grill, hard / hardware, hard-disk, hobby, input, output, indoor, mall, miss, mistress, modelling, mouse, musical, pager, pampers, play-back, player, plotter, pop-corn, rating, second‑hand, self-service, server, site, stick, weekend.

French words

bleu, bordeaux (wine), brie (cheese), cabernet (wine), café-frappé, camembert (cheese), café‑concert, chardonnay, chateaubriand, chou à la crème, deux-pièces, en détail, en titre, loisir, rendez-vous, tête-à-tête, anchetă (investigation), curaj (courage), destin (destiny), elev (pupil), piesă (piece), șofer (driver), gri (grey), simpatic (nice), a prefera (to prefer), a servi (to serve), a rezulta (to result), vizavi (opposite to), apropo (by the way) etc.

Italian words

commodo, da capo al fine, tutti-frutti, bilanț (balance sheet), maestru (maestro), piață (market), revistă (magazine), spaghete (spaghetti), speranță (hope), a oferi (to offer), a studia (to study).

Spanish words

avocado, bolivar (currency), cha-cha-cha, coridă, fiesta, flamenco, marijuana, peso, salsa.


“Dicționarul ortografic, ortoepic și morfologic al limbii române”, ediția a II-a, editura Academiei Române, București, 2005

“May we introduce the Romanian Language to you?”, Mioara Avram, Marius Sala, Romanian Cultural Foundation Publishing House, București, 2000

By Mona Moldoveanu Pologea, PhD. Linguist, ROLANG School Managing Director