Recently I stumbled on a discussion where the word "chico" in Spanish is translated to "boy". To my knowledge, using "chico" to refer to someone younger is considered normal. But in English, calling an adult "boy", even if younger, would be considered rude. I believe "garçon" in French is also rude.
Can someone confirm my understanding of the connotations of these words in French and Spanish?
- Did "boy" in English always have a negative meaning? (when used to refer to adults)
- Is there a record of these words gaining/losing their negative connotations?
- Why is it different between Spanish and French, despite both being Romance languages?
My closest guess is the definition that Merriam-Webster has:
2 - often offensive : a male servant
and "garçon" is an outdated way of referring to waiters.