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What's in a Mexican Names, Surnames and Some Facts About Mexico

Updated on July 18, 2012

The Battle of Puebla, Mexico in May 5, 1862 is the battle between the Mexican militia who won against the French colonizers

What's in a Mexican Names and Surnames and Some Facts About Mexico

What's in a Mexican Names and Surnames and Some Facts About Mexico. In view of the celebration about "Cinco De Mayo" which is a known holiday celebration in Mexico honoring the day that the Mexican forces battled the French forces and won an unlikely victory in 1862, I will look at the culture of naming names and surnames in Mexico and some facts about Mexico..

This is a hub about Mexican names and surnames. I reside in an area where there are lots of Mexicans, here at Dallas, Tx, USA, that is why I have an interest about this topic. It is amusing because almost all the people here who are of Mexican descent are named either Jose, Juan, Antonio, Roberto etc. for men or Maria, Ana, Elena etc., for women. Surnames are almost the same as well, Perez, Gracia, Martinez. I will try to look at why is it that some names are so familiar and what is the reason behind why the mothers maiden surname is important in Mexican culture.

Mexico flag and the coat of arms in the middle

Cinco De Mayo (5th of May) embedded in the Mexican flag
Cinco De Mayo (5th of May) embedded in the Mexican flag

What's in a Mexican Names and Surnames and Some Facts About Mexico

A Little Backgrounder About Mexico :

  • Mexico is a federal constitutional republic in North America. It is bordered on the north by the United States; on the south and west by the Pacific Ocean; on the southeast by Guatemala, Belize, and the Caribbean Sea; and on the east by the Gulf of Mexico.
  • It covers almost almost 2 million square kilometres (over 760,000 sq mi),
  • Mexico is the fifth-largest country in the Americas by total area and the 14th largest independent nation of the world.
  • With an estimated population of 111 million, it is the 11th most populous country of the world
  • Mexico is a federation comprising 31 states and a Federal district, the capital city.
  • Capital is Mexico City
  • Being the world's tenth most visited country with over 21.4 million international arrivals. Mexico boasts a long tradition in the arts, renowned cuisine, and culture.
  • It ranked as the world's fifth country with the most UNESCO World Heritage Sites to date and the first in the Americas.
  • It gained official independence from Spain after 300 years of colonization in 1827
  • The official language is Spanish with 70 plus other indigenous languages
  • It is 90 percent Roman Catholic

Mexican Names

What's in a Mexican Names and Surnames

Famous Girls Name

  • Maria
  • Gabriela
  • Carmen
  • Adriana
  • Alejandra
  • Guadalupe
  • Mariana
  • Claudia
  • Monica
  • Teresa
  • Elena

What's in a Mexican Names and Surnames

Famous Boys Name

  • Alejandro
  • Juan
  • Carlos
  • Miguel
  • Angel
  • Eduardo
  • Fernando
  • Carlos
  • Rodirgo
  • Ricardo
  • Javier
  • Jose

What's in a Mexican Names and Surnames

  1. According to Jose Perez, a Mexican in his article about naming in Mexico, he said that--- "In Mexico, at least two last names are required. Mexicans, use their middle names to distinguish names because lots of names are just so popular to distinguish the multitude of Juan's, Roberto's and Jaime's from all the others. You will often hear men referred to as Jose Manuel or Juan Antonio as if it were a single name". It is a way to distinguish another person with similar names they add another name.
  2. Women sometimes because there are lots of Maria's, usually have two names, the first name is Maria, example is Maria Elena to distinguish from Maria Soledad for example. This is also true for men, to distinguish other Jose's from Jose Antonio and Jose Ricardo, they used to affix Jose.
  3. Nick names are also used a lot in Mexico to discuss persons and talk about them, so that they cant be confused with another Jose for example. Example will be Jose the "Big" or Jose the "Small"
  4. On any legal papers or documents or identification, the paternal and maternal names must be utilized. When filling out forms for the Immigrations for example, even the maiden names of your grandmothers are required.
  5. Since almost all Mexicans are Roman Catholics (90 percent of them are Roman Catholics) --- this is due to the fact that they were colonized by Spain for three hundred years and the legacy of Spain is the religion Roman Catholic, they also name their children with saints and biblical connotations like Maria for Mary and Jose for Joseph. They also name their children the same name as Saints.
  6. Usually women's name have a De before the surname of their husband,  like me if I am married to a man with a surname Perez I will be called Maita De Perez, it is some kind of ownership that the woman is the ownership of the man, De means "of" then the surname of my husband Perez, Maita of Perez -- in Mexico, Maita De Perez. Cool for the man, they own the woman hehe, their wife.



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    • lorlie6 profile image

      Laurel Rogers 7 years ago from Bishop, Ca

      Hi Alexandria! You know, I always wondered when I was using Western Union to send my son money, that if you're sending $ to Mexico you must include the mother's name.

      Now I know-thanks so much!

    • Ann Nonymous profile image

      Ann Nonymous 7 years ago from Virginia

      Muchas Gracias, Alexandria, on this educational and fun hub! I learned a lot! Good job!

    • Micky Dee profile image

      Micky Dee 7 years ago

      Great hub!Thanks Alexandriaruthk! I'll come back to this a few times.

    • rprcarz50 profile image

      rprcarz50 7 years ago

      Hi Alex, Very good content ! Knowledge of Mexican and Spanish heritage is more and more helpful in the American society. Nicely laid out .

      Thank you for your research on this Hub!

      Have a good day!


      as Always Also a2z50

    • Pamela99 profile image

      Pamela Oglesby 7 years ago from United States

      Very nice hub with a lot of pertinent information. Thank your for all the research you must have done to write this hub. Excellent job.

    • alexandriaruthk profile image

      alexandriaruthk 7 years ago from US

      Hi Pamela Thank you for the nice comments,

    • alexandriaruthk profile image

      alexandriaruthk 7 years ago from US

      Ron, thanks and enjoy,

    • alexandriaruthk profile image

      alexandriaruthk 7 years ago from US

      Micky Dee, thanks

    • alexandriaruthk profile image

      alexandriaruthk 7 years ago from US

      thanks Ann

    • alexandriaruthk profile image

      alexandriaruthk 7 years ago from US

      I am glad you discovered it now lorlie, is your son still there now? Maita

    • BkCreative profile image

      BkCreative 7 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City

      This is so interesting. Well, then again your hubs are always informative. I now know about adding "De" - I like that!

      Thanks so much!

    • Smireles profile image

      Sandra Mireles 7 years ago from Texas

      Thanks for this fun an informative hub. My husband had no idea that his birth certificate recorded his name as Santos Fidel Rodriguez Mireles! haha! Everyone calls him Sam...go figure! Our last name means mirrors. I think if translated into English it would be Glass. Nice hub.

    • alexandriaruthk profile image

      alexandriaruthk 7 years ago from US

      Thanks BK, you like that hah, hehe, maita

    • alexandriaruthk profile image

      alexandriaruthk 7 years ago from US

      Hi smireless, mirrors hehe, long name for your hubby, but it is always like that, are you a Mexican yourself mam, Thanks for the read,

    • profile image

      diogenes 7 years ago

      Useful article for anyone who loves Mexico. I lived there for 15 of the happiest years of my life.

      Muchisimos gracias...Viva Mexico!

    • alexandriaruthk profile image

      alexandriaruthk 6 years ago from US

      hi diogenes, thanks for dropping by, you were lucky to have lived there!

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