Federico Chavez Sosa:  People here have at least two family names.  The first last name is the father’s name followed by the mother’s name.  Federico’s father was Jose Chavez Ruiz and his wife is Soledad Sosa XXX. Federico’s wife is Dolores Santiago Arellanas.  Their children are Eric Chavez Santiago, Janet Chavez Santiago and Omar Chavez Santiago; they carry both their father’s and mother’s names.  This is helpful and important in a village where many share the same surnames.  So, for example, there several people who are named Eric Chavez, but only one Eric Chavez Santiago.  There is a distant cousin named Eric Chavez Sosa, so it is important to be clear about the distinctions in order to find the people you are looking for.    Take, for another example, Josefina Ruiz Vasquez, the owner/operator of Las Granadas bed and breakfast.  She was married to Eligio Bazan Ruiz, who died almost three years ago at age 38 of cancer.  He was a master weaver who traveled with Scott Roth throughout the United States exhibiting rugs and making some of the finest work of the village.  When Eligio died, Josefina had no livelihood.  She was living with her mother in law, Eligio’s mother, Magdalena, in her husband’s family home.  Josefina has three children, Eloisa Francesca Bazan Ruiz, Willibaldo Bazan Ruiz, and Eligio Bazan Ruiz.   

According to HarperCollins Dictionary….. 

nombre de pila, noun

first name

The pila referred to here is the font in which Christian children are traditionally baptized.

Most of the first names in Spain have some kind of Christian associations. It’s not uncommon for a boy to be called Jesús (with an accent) after Jesus, or José, after Joseph. It’s equally common for a girl to be named María, after the Virgin Mary. There is also a tendency to sandwich names together, making combinations like José María (for a boy) or María Jesús (for a girl).

Though a lot of these names are used in Latin America, you are also more likely to come across names which do not have any specific religious associations.

Comments are closed.