If you enter the word "Spanish" into Google Translate when translating English to French, you get "Espanol". However all other references to Spanish have "Espagnol" (with a 'g').


Adjective: Espagnol

Spanish language: Langue espagnole

What I want is simply the word "Spanish" (a menu choice) where I'm referring to the language but I don't want the word "Language" in there.

What is correct here?

  • There has to be an error in your system ("Español" only in Spanish) : bing.com/…
    – LPH
    Commented Jun 21, 2021 at 12:31
  • 3
    @LPH Not in the OP system but with Google translate. I just reported the mistake to them. Not sure about the effect it will have...
    – jlliagre
    Commented Jun 21, 2021 at 12:35
  • @jlliagre There is no error when I type "Spanish" in the space "Anglais" of Google translate; I get "Espagnol" in the space "Français".
    – LPH
    Commented Jun 21, 2021 at 12:52
  • 1
    @LPH You might indeed, but Google translate results are provided by remote servers, not built inside the browser, that was my point
    – jlliagre
    Commented Jun 21, 2021 at 13:20
  • As a sidenote, any user that want to change the language should be assumed to know the target language, so there is little use to translate the language names in every languages. However, it could be useful to show the equivalent in english, which is the universal language, if the language is changed by accident.
    – Simon
    Commented Jun 24, 2021 at 9:53

4 Answers 4


"Espanol" is entirely wrong.

The language is espagnol in French, as is the adjective.

Espagnol with a capital E is a noun: Spaniard.


Do not blindly trust on-line tools.
Do not use Google Translate for something it is not designed for.

Here is the final reply I got from Google Translate support regarding this issue:

By design, Google Translate's goal is to enhance communication of commonly spoken languages among people. i.e. to translate a conversation or a text; It is neither designed to serve as a dictionary nor to translate a single word - though it does do this task with a certain level of inaccuracy;

enter image description here

The checkmark right of "Espanol" means someone validated this translation1 but in doubt, double check. It would have been easy to discover that Espanol doesn't appear in any French dictionary and very rarely in French texts, where it is either from a Spanish text incorrectly detected as French, or an incomplete transcription of the Spanish Español due to the fact the character "ñ" is difficult (sometimes even impossible) to type with a French keyboard, or the tilde has been dropped by the OCR program.

I reported that one to Google:

As I suspected, it is not simple to have this mistranslation corrected.

Unlike in English, language names aren't capitalized in French, but in a menu choice where this word appears alone, you can use an uppercase E for consistency or just because a choice can be considered a single word sentence.

1 Actually, it might have been validated by an algorithm.


The word "Espanol" does not exist in French. In your example, langue is feminine, so we write the adjective in feminine form :

La langue espagnole.

But for mentioning the language alone, we say "espagnol" (without "e" at the end).

Je parle (en) espagnol.

By the way, the word for spanish people is the same, but with a capital at the beginning :

Un Espagnol


If you are referring to the language then you should write « espagnol » when you are writing in French and « español » if you mean to write in Spanish. As opposed to English, language names are not always capitalized.

Usually, for menu options, the name of the language is written in the language itself so that the local speaker will recognize the words. Usually, menu options are capitalized too. This gives you something like this (from MacOS preferences):

enter image description here

Note that « espanol » is neither a French nor a Spanish word.

  • And languages in English are capitalized: Spanish and French
    – Lambie
    Commented Jun 24, 2021 at 19:48

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.