Are you from Braga? – the typical phrases of Braga

The good Portuguese is fertile in popular phrases and dialects that make us forget the rules of our language and Braga, specifically, is a source of inspiration for these idiomatic expressions.

In this article, we find the explanation to some of the most famous phrases of the city that ended up in many of the country’ sayings.


  1. That’s older than Braga’s Cathedral

Probably the Braga-connected most used phrase all around the country. This phrase is used when you refer to something really, really old and outdated. The explanation is in the fact that Braga is the oldest archdioceses in the Portugal, counting more than 8 centuries of existence.

  1. See Braga through a telescope

 Rafael Bordalo Pinheiro immortalized this famous phrase in the caricature album “António Maria” and it all comes from the telescope that you can find on Bom Jesus do Monte and that allows to see the whole city.

It reflects the feeling you get when your expectations are not met, when you get very close to reach your objective and then you can’t quite reach it – the proximity that the telescope produces almost makes us feel like that because you get to see the city really close by when, in the reality, it is really far away.

  1. Are you from Braga?

The phrase used in this article’s tittle is inspired in Arco da Porta Nova – literally Arch of the New Door – which really never had a door. When it was built, wars weren’t registered so frequently, so the door wasn’t considered.

Every time someone leaves the door open, for some reason, he/she will immediately get a “Are you from Braga?”.

It is also said that the phrase represents the hospitality of the people from Braga. So that the neighbors can go in whenever they like, Braga’s people simply let the door open.

  1. “Estou a ougar por umas papas de sarrabulho”

This phrase doesn’t really translate, but generally it means you really feel like eating and eating. Braga is master of creating new concepts and, according to an old belief, “ougar” comes from the fact you get spiky hair for not being able to get completely satiated no matter what or how much you eat.

It’s also said that, in correct linguistic terms, the word ‘ougar’ is just a derivation of ‘aguar’ – which means to get water in your mouth.