Brazilian Names

Discussion in 'Brazil' started by Desert Rat, Sep 25, 2003.

  1. Desert Rat

    Desert Rat New Member

    Dec 19, 2000
    Phoenix, AZ
    OK, maybe this has been asked and answered here before, but I couldn't find it. I'd like to know if anyone can give an explanation of how and why Brazilians get their colorful one-word names. I'd like to know:

    1. Do they choose it themselves or some one else?
    2. Do they always mean something? Do they ever mean something?
    3. How good do you have to be to get a name, or is your level of play not a factor?
    4. How did it start in the beginning and does it have roots in some Brazilian cultural tradition?
    5. Some Portugese players have one word names, so did it start there?

    So many questions! If you can answer them I'd be most grateful.
     
  2. neovox

    neovox Member

    Aug 21, 2003
    Sul do Brasil
    1. Both.
    2. 99% of the time. Pelé means nothing. YES!
    3. ...not a factor.
    4. It´s the national culture. It has been so since the earliest days of the country.
    5. Yes, but we use nicknames most of the time.

    In Brazil, Rat means Rato. So, here you probably would be called Ratinho (little rat).
     
  3. Ombak

    Ombak Moderator
    Staff Member

    Apr 19, 1999
    Irvine, CA
    Club:
    Flamengo Rio Janeiro
    Nat'l Team:
    Brazil
    You've never met someone with a nickname?
     
  4. Ricardao

    Ricardao New Member

    Sep 6, 2003
    PraiaGrande,SPBRASIL
    Some names have a meaning but some don't. It's a nickname thing. How many people make up nicknames for themselves? Pretty lame if you ask me, actually kind of awesome that way in Brasil EVERYBODY has a nickname.
     
  5. Desert Rat

    Desert Rat New Member

    Dec 19, 2000
    Phoenix, AZ
    OK, thanks. So I guess you guys are saying that regular people in Brazil also have one-word names, not just soccer players? And I'm also gathering that some names really do mean something, like the Ratinho example.

    Lots of people have nicknames but the difference in Brazil seems to be that the nickname becomes their only publicly known name. Their Christian name is almost forgotten once they take their nickname.
     
  6. Ombak

    Ombak Moderator
    Staff Member

    Apr 19, 1999
    Irvine, CA
    Club:
    Flamengo Rio Janeiro
    Nat'l Team:
    Brazil
    *sigh*

    Why do people make such a big deal about this? So a soccer player in Brazil is often referred to by his nickname. Big f*** deal, His real name is not forgotten or anything.

    In fact outside of soccer and crime, this is a rarity, while many people have nicknames they are widely known by their given names.
     
  7. Desert Rat

    Desert Rat New Member

    Dec 19, 2000
    Phoenix, AZ
    Dude...calm down! I was just interested in the origins of this phenomenon in Brazil. I'm a cultural observer and this is unique to Brazil so it's interesting. Not sure how you think this is a big deal.
     
  8. Ombak

    Ombak Moderator
    Staff Member

    Apr 19, 1999
    Irvine, CA
    Club:
    Flamengo Rio Janeiro
    Nat'l Team:
    Brazil
    I'm trying to point out that it's not unique to Brazil. Every culture has nicknames. But people get a distorted perception of this Brazilian "custom" because players are referred to by nicknames.
     
  9. Desert Rat

    Desert Rat New Member

    Dec 19, 2000
    Phoenix, AZ
    Point taken. But, while every other country has nicknames, I cannot think of any country where the nickname becomes the individual's primarily known name. While Jerome Bettis is "The Bus" and Wayne Gretzky is "The Great One", those are only additions to their names. I wouldn't go up to Wayne Gretzky and say "Hi, Great One, nice to meet you". I would go up to Vampeta and say "Hey, Vampeta, nice to meet you". And most people would have no idea what Vampeta's real name is because it's become his primary title.
     
  10. neovox

    neovox Member

    Aug 21, 2003
    Sul do Brasil
    Exactly! In Brazil, the player´s name becomes a label.
     
  11. Desert Rat

    Desert Rat New Member

    Dec 19, 2000
    Phoenix, AZ
    Neovox--to further your example...

    If Ratinho means "little rat", then does Ronaldinho mean "Little Ronaldo"? That would make sense since they both have the big front teeth.

    It's all starting to come together now! :)
     
  12. InterSoccr6

    InterSoccr6 New Member

    Nov 12, 2001
    Ohio
    yeah thats what Ronaldinho means, they had to come up with a name for him since R9 was already on the team. Personally I prefer Ronaldo #1 and Ronaldo #2, you could just call them 1 and 2 for short, so much easier to say.
     
  13. neovox

    neovox Member

    Aug 21, 2003
    Sul do Brasil
    You got it: "inho" is a sufix that means "little".
     
  14. kaberon10

    kaberon10 New Member

    Aug 10, 2002
    Evanston
    just to mention...the suffix -ao (Ronaldao) would mean big Ronaldo...
     
  15. neovox

    neovox Member

    Aug 21, 2003
    Sul do Brasil
    Ronaldo was "Ronaldinho". When the other Ronaldinho was called to Seleção, the Brazilian press changed the way his (R9) name was wrote. It was in 2000. Well, now we have a generation of "Diegos". There are at least three Diegos, the most famous being Diego from Santos.
     
  16. Elninho

    Elninho Member+

    Sacramento Republic FC
    United States
    Oct 30, 2000
    Sacramento, CA
    Club:
    Los Angeles Galaxy
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Gotta love a culture where the nation's president is addressed as "Lula"...
     
  17. neovox

    neovox Member

    Aug 21, 2003
    Sul do Brasil
    HAHAHA!!!

    Good one!

    By the way: Lulinha Paz e Amor - Lulinha Peace and Love.
     
  18. MathuzaLem

    MathuzaLem New Member

    May 30, 2003
    SP, Brazil
    Yeah the most common thing in Brazil is be called by a nickname!

    most of the times those nicknames vary according with the person's name, (using the "inho" and "ão")... it most of the times shows charisma, intimacy with the person... like robinho, ronaldinho, marcelinho, felipão, ronaldão, luisão.... usually the weaker or the smaller ones receive the "inho" and the stronger or big ones receive the "ão" after the name...

    we also name players with the name of the places where they born... like juninho paulista, juninho pernambucano, marcelinho paraíba, marcelinho carioca, marcelinho paulista, ronaldinho gaúcho, actually you can see we used the "inho"s plus the name of the person who borns where they born...

    here in brazil ronaldo (R9) is called ronaldinho, and ronaldinho (barcelona) is called ronaldinho gaúcho...

    vampeta got his nickname for being so ugly, it means a mix of "VAMpiro" (vampire) with "caPETA"(devil)

    the teams are also often refered by their nicknames... who have never refered the teams by their nicknames, Peixe, Porco, Timão(or timinho), Mengo, Nense, Coxa, Fogão, Azulão, Galo, Tricolor(the many tricololor's around brazil), Bugre....?
     
  19. neovox

    neovox Member

    Aug 21, 2003
    Sul do Brasil
    HAHAHA!!!!!!!!!!

    I didn´t know that!
     
  20. Desert Rat

    Desert Rat New Member

    Dec 19, 2000
    Phoenix, AZ
    Thanks for all your answers! I have a much better understanding of the names and how they are created.

    To take it further, does anyone know why this is unique to Brazil? In Argentina, players might have nicknames but they are still commonly known by their Christian names. Diego Maradona, Gabriel Batistuta, Juan Veron, Diego Simeone, etc.

    Is it because soccer players in Brazil are revered more than any other country? Or does it maybe have origins in slaves from Africa?
     
  21. neovox

    neovox Member

    Aug 21, 2003
    Sul do Brasil
    1. Almost everybody has a nickname in Brazil. So, it is not something particular to football players. In Argentina, I think that nicknames are used more like an epithet, as complementary names: Diego Maradona, El Pibe de Oro (The Golden Boy), Gabriel Batistuta, El Batigol, Luis Cesar Menotti, El Flaco (The Thin Man) etc. Note: we do the same in a less extent - Rivelino, A Patada Atômica (The Atomic Kick), Dadá Peito de Aço (Dadá Iron-Chested), Euler, o Filho do Vento (The Son of the Wind) etc.

    2. No. It´s something related to the Brazilian sense of humor.
     
  22. Tottino

    Tottino Member+

    Mar 19, 2005
    Frosinone, Italia
    Club:
    AS Roma
    Brazilian footballers dont use their real names, why is it? What does Ronaldinho mean? I know why Kaka' wears kaka' thought, because his younger brother called him Kaka' trying to pronounce Ricardo when he was small. I like the brazilian style I play soccer and I want my name to be changed on my jersey my name is Maurizio any suggestions can anyone add stuff?
     
  23. celito

    celito Member+

    Palmeiras
    Brazil
    Feb 28, 2005
    USA
    Club:
    Palmeiras Sao Paulo
    Nat'l Team:
    Brazil
    Just like you said ... it just comes from what your nickname was as a kid. Ronaldinho is actually little Ronaldo. "inho" always means diminutive of something. Gaucho is actually not his nickname ... Gaucho is a name for people from the south of Brazil. He was named Gaucho not to get confused when fatty Ronaldo was called Ronaldinho.

    Some other nicknames are not obvious and have more obscure roots like Pele and Zico. Pele's name is Edson and Zico's is Arthur.
     

Share This Page