2 Vote

No tiene un buen hueso en todo el cuerpo. I nearly said this today, and then thought better of it. I'm betting it doesn't translate. Es un mal hombre. What's the Spanish way to say this? Gracias.

  • Posted Oct 23, 2010
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9 Answers

3 Vote

I've heard "un bueno para nada" and "un zero a la izquierda".

2 Vote

I wasn't aware of this idiom, so I thought your sentence was about broken bones in an accident. Obviously I inferred from your question that the expression uses a metaphor, infusing badness into bones in a way. So, no, it doesn't work, and it won't be understood. We often say "Es una mala persona", "Tiene mala leche" (bad blood) and many other expressions that I can't think of right now.

  • The idiom means things like: he is completely bad; he doesn't have even the smallest bit of goodness in him; he is mean through and through. - webdunce Oct 23, 2010 flag
  • Tiene mala leche? I like it. Bad milk though, how is that related to blood? Gracias. - jeezzle Oct 23, 2010 flag
  • I think the milk/blood connection comes from archaic medical theories like around the time of Galen - nizhoni1 Oct 23, 2010 flag
  • All his blood was "milked " out of him. Milk is the life-blood of mankind. Archaic as you say. - ray76 Oct 24, 2010 flag
2 Vote

Sangre pesada...un tipo asqueroso.

2 Vote

Es más malo que pegarle a la madre.

Now, to use your phrase (even though I never heard it before) I would twist it a little to give the idea of bad person:

No tiene un hueso de bueno en todo su cuerpo

1 Vote

Sorry I never heard this expression. Other can be "Es una mala persona"

1 Vote

I have heard several versions of this saying in English, "He/She doesn't have a mean bone in His/her body." "He/She doesn't have a jealous bone in His/her body." "He/She doesn't have a unkind bone in His/her body."

  • These are, of course, the complete opposite. In these case, the English means the person doesn't have a single bit of meanness or rudeness in them; they are completely kind and good; they are good and kind through and through. - webdunce Oct 23, 2010 flag
  • Well said. He/she does not have a (blank) bone in his/her body means they are not at all (blank), whatever (blank) is. - KevinB Oct 23, 2010 flag
  • Though I agree that it is mostly used in the positive sense. I've never heard jeezzle's phrase in English, either. - KevinB Oct 23, 2010 flag
  • Correct, I have only heard it in the positive as a good thing not a bad one. - Nilda-Ballar Oct 23, 2010 flag
  • That's not to say jeezzle's phrase is incorrect, but its not common knowledge amongst Enlish speakers. It's a new variation that English speakers would probably understand, but it's nonstandard - KevinB Oct 23, 2010 flag
1 Vote

I have never heard this expression in my life, He does not have a mean bone in his body is what I am used to hearing, and for a bad person He is rotten to the core.

1 Vote

I agree with Webdunce's assessment: a thoroughly rotten person. It is not an expression I recall ever using myself, though.

1 Vote

I have heard this expression many times. I grew up in the Northeast and Midwest. Maybe it's a regional thing.

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