Date: Tue, 29 Jul 1997 14:10:13 -0400

From: Alan Baragona baragonaa[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]VAX.VMI.EDU

Subject: Re: Garcia (Marquez)

Ron Butters wrote:

Alan B.writes:

*******. . . in Colombia, where Garcia

Marquez hails from . . . the first surname is the patronymic and

the the second is the matronymic and is frequently dropped. Gabriel's

father's name was Garcia. I am relatively sure that this is the

practice throughout the Spanish-speaking world, including Mexico, but I

could be wrong.*********

I'm sure you are right--and for Mexico as well. I knew that ONE of the names

could be dropped--maybe I was mixing up Spanish and Russian? (Does anybody

know about Russian?)

And why, by the way, did Ludwig Mies Van Der Rohe have such a complicated


Anyway, thanks for the explanation--and thanks for being polite and gentle

about it. I will file this in my memory blank.

Ah, polite and gentle are my middle names. One way to keep the order

straight (which I should have mentioned in the first place) is to

remember that it's Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra. Calling Garcia Marquez

"Marquez" is like calling Cervantes "Saavedra." I suppose "Garcia" is

such a common name that it's preferable to use both patro- and matro-

for him, whereas there's only one Cervantes worth talking about.

In Russian the patronymic comes before the surname, and its form is

based on the father's first name ("Nikolaievich"--sp?), with -skaya

instead of -evich being added for a daughter. Then there's Icelandic,

which really confuses things by using a Russian-type patronymic as the

ONLY surname, so that Eric Ericsson and Ingrid Ericsdottr can be brother

and sister. But it's a small island.

Alan B.