Dec 3, 2003, 4:53 PM
Post #1 of 4
In English, most people have a three part name, such as John Thomas Smith, with John the first name, Thomas the middle name, and Smith the last name. Smith is the family name of the father, in most cases.
In Spanish, I think that most people have a four part name, such as Juan Thomas Garcia Macias. I think that the apellido is the father's family name, Garcias in this case. I think that Juan would be the nombre. But what do you call Macias, which I believe would be the mother's family name. What about Thomas? And do most Mexicans have a four part name? (A friend of mine, a very high-class Mexican, is named Luis Felipe Gomez-Do'Ibarra de Chauyfet, but I don't think that most Mexicans have such fancy names). If a Mexican was filling out a form in Mexico, what would they write, and what would the form call for?
And just to make the topic complete, does the name change after a marriage, and if so how? In the US, the wife usually takes the husband's family name, and her family name becomes her new middle (maiden) name.
This topic keeps coming up in the ESL class that I teach, maybe it is my problem not their's, but it seems important to understand the difference in name structure, especially when filling out job applications.
Thanks in advance. (How do I say that in Spanish, Gracias de antemano?