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Mexican naming question - The Phantom Librarian
Spewing out too many words since November 2003
Mexican naming question
Why yes, I am still still working on this.

So, I'm trying to get both Hector and Miguel being Riveras, along with Imelda (since it's her shoe business). I managed to avoid the question throughout "The Wedding Guitar," but if I go forward, it's going to be in Enrique's point of view, and it's going to have to involve actual names, since they'd most likely need to give them to authorities as they're trying to press Hector's case.

So, would it work if both Hector and Imelda began their lives with the Rivera paterno? As orphans, they might have just been assigned a name, and probably not given maternos. (Is that how that would work? I guess that wouldn't have much impact, since the maternos would have long since dropped away, anyway, but out of curiosity.)

That would make Coco Socorro (or maybe Maria de Socorro) Rivera Rivera. In the case of a doubled name like that, would the second just typically be dropped? Then when she got married, she'd be Socorro Rivera Rivera de [Julio's paterno].

From there, it's just a question of one more coincidental Rivera happening: Franco, Elena's husband. Elena would be Elena [Julio's paterno] Rivera de Rivera, which would make Miguel's father once again a Rivera -- Enrique Rivera [Julio's paterno] -- and Miguel also a Rivera -- Miguel Rivera [Luisa's paterno], both using Rivera as the general short form.

So it's three unrelated people in the same town having the same name, two marrying each other and a third marrying their granddaughter. Given that it's Rivera and not, like, Espigares, it's not impossible. Though it's still more gymnastics than I'd be likely to do on my own for a story! But does it make at least a modicum of sense of the names?
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alphabet26 From: alphabet26 Date: May 23rd, 2018 03:46 am (UTC) (Link)
My husband’s cousins are Rodriguez Rodriguez and use both last names when it comes up, but they’re Puerto Rican, not Mexican. I can ask him about this if you’d like!
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: May 23rd, 2018 04:01 am (UTC) (Link)
If they wouldn't mind being prodded, I wouldn't mind an answer!
alphabet26 From: alphabet26 Date: May 24th, 2018 05:09 am (UTC) (Link)
So I talked with my husband and here’s his answer (with the caveat that he’s Puerto Rican-Dominican, so Mexican could be different, but he’s pretty sure not).

Rivera is a super common name, so no one would blink at Rivera Rivera. It could easily happen.

The second Rivera would not be dropped. It makes no difference they’re the same name—it’s still the paternal name and the maternal name.

And he said that kids in an orphanage (without known parents—they wouldn’t take away someone's name) would be assigned a last name. Generally, it’d be a Catholic orphanage, so maybe the name of a saint, or maybe the name of the priest or mother superior who ran the place. So that could work very well for your story with two orphans from the same orphanage.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: May 24th, 2018 05:44 am (UTC) (Link)
Thanks so much for asking! I think it's a practice from Spain rather than from the local traditions, so it probably carried over fairly straightforwardly in all the colonies, or at least that would be my guess. The format is the same, anyway. One site said that, for simplicity's sake, people will often only use one in daily use, which would seem to fit what what we see in the movie (Hector Rivera, rather than Hector Rivera ______... unless there's another name in the Spanish dub, which I haven't gotten my hands on), but the full form is the legal name.

I wasn't able to find anything on orphanages, so super-thanks on that. The best I could find was that abandoned children were sometimes named Exposito or Esposito (Exposed) for having been exposed to the elements, but since we know that wasn't the name, that didn't help!

Edited at 2018-05-24 05:46 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous) Date: May 30th, 2018 01:05 pm (UTC) (Link)
I just found out that my HR Director, Héctor Rivera, is actually Rivera-Rivera. So that exists!
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