The posts in this column about portmanteau, bronco, cerrojo, and sporks and foons have given examples of the way people sometimes create a new term by blending the first part of one word with the last of another. English calls the result a portmanteau word, a blend, or a cross[ing]; Spanish says palabra-maleta or cruce. In browsing the Internet recently I came across a Spanish example I hadn’t seen before: turigrino, a crossing of turista ‘tourist’ with peregrino ‘pilgrim.’ A turigrino is ‘a person who goes on a religious pilgrimage not for reasons of faith but to take advantage of the low prices and other benefits offered to religious pilgrims. The word, which I’ll translate into English as tourgrim, seems to have arisen specifically in connection with the Camino de Santiago, or Way of St. James, the famous pilgrimage that leads to Santiago de Compostela in Galicia. You can read a good Spanish-language article about turigrino at elcastellano.org.

The two similar English adages “One good turn deserves another” and “You can’t get enough of a good thing” came to mind when I looked at the Internet page entitled Muchos y originales tipos de peregrinos, where in 2003 the writer, who goes by the nom de plume Iñaki, listed many Spanish creations on the model of turigrino. For example, a perugrino is ‘a pilgrim from Peru’ and a bicigrino is ‘a pilgrim who travels on a bicycle.’ I can’t resist adding that etimologrinos, in whose ranks I gladly travel, must be ‘people who make reverent pilgrimages to the dictionary to look up the origins of words.’

© 2011 Steven Schwartzman

1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Trackback: False portmanteau words « Spanish-English Word Connections

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If you encounter an unfamiliar technical term in any of these postings, check the Glossary in the bar across the top of the page.

©2011–2018 Steven Schwartzman

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