Living in Honduras or Guatemala as a foreigner is sometimes hard, mostly fun and never boring. This Blog is about more than just the oddities of my years in the not-so tranquil, cobble-stoned town of Copán Ruinas and, more recently, Antigua Guatemala. Hence Serendipity, the gift of finding without seeking…

Friday, February 10, 2012

What's in a name... Part IV


Honduras is, for the time being, mostly catholic, and the following names are very common:

Santos (Saints)
Concepción (Conception)
Encarnación (Incarnation)
Asunción (Ascension)
Cruz (Cross)
Martiro (Martyr)
Jesús (Jesus)
Santa (Saint fem.)

Interestingly, the name “Jesús” is, as far as I know, not used as a common name in any other language. Years ago I worked at a bilingual school in Copán that was involved in a pen pal project with children from a school in the US. One of them got to write to our student Jesús. It was quite obvious that the American kid was not writing to his nine year old Honduran pen pal! The letter was so heartbreaking and disturbing that we decided not to let "our" Jesús read it…

Also quite common here but strange to me, is the custom to name people after places. Except for Paris Hilton; I can’t think of any, not counting names as Virginia or Georgia that are places named after people. Here some people’s place names…

Asia
América
Kenia
Israel
Virginia
Saudí
Argentina
Francia
Bélgica

Then there are colours….

Celeste
Azul
Blanca
Rosa
Lila

And to wrap up the whole name issue, here some “big” names from world history that you can find in even the smallest villages in Honduras…

Lempira
Napoleón
Julio Cesar
Narciso
Demetrio
Hipólito

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