mojigato, mojigata

Discussion in 'Spanish-English Vocabulary / Vocabulario Español-Inglés' started by kotosquito, Dec 5, 2012.

  1. kotosquito Senior Member

    Champaign, Illinois, USA
    United States, English
    de "la palabra del día":
    mojigato: se usa para aludir a la persona que tiene dos caras, mostrando en su carácter dos rasgos opuestos del gato doméstico o que, al menos, se le suelen atribuir: por un lado, el animal es suave, modoso y temeroso, y por otro, taimado y traicionero, capaz de atacar cuando nadie lo espera.

    ...esto me sugiere como traducciOn al inglEs "two-faced"; o sea, a la vez amable y traicionero. Pero sOlo veo en el diccionario "prudish". ? Se usa en los dos sentidos, no? ? CuAl es mAs popular? ? COmo se distinguen?--supongo que por contexto, hala.

    Gracias por su ayuda.
     
  2. JOFlah Junior Member

    English USA
    El Diccionario de la Real Academia ofrece dos acepciones:

    mojigato:
    (De *mojo, voz para llamar al gato, y gato).
    1.
    adj. Que afecta humildad o cobardía para lograr su intento en la ocasión.
    2.
    adj. Beato hazañero que hace escrúpulo de todo.

    El vínculo entre las dos es hipocresía. Me parece que "two-faced" es adecuada para la primera, y "holier-than-thou" para la segunda.
     
  3. aurilla Senior Member

    Puerto Rico
    Am Eng/PR Spanish
    The difference is in the country. In Puerto Rico, a "mojigato" is the equivalent of "wimp."

    "moji" derived from "mojado," meaning "wet"

    "gato" is "cat"

    There is nothing sadder looking than a wet cat.

    It also is less often used to mean the first definition mentioned above.
    1. adj. Que afecta humildad o cobardía para lograr su intento en la ocasión. Meaning the person is acting weak and defenseless to fool others.
     
  4. inib

    inib Senior Member

    La Rioja, Spain
    British English
    In my experience of Spain, I agree with Aurilla. A "mojigato" is a wimp, or in certain situations an "aguafiestas", but I've never heard it in the sense of "two-faced".
     
  5. KirkandRafer

    KirkandRafer Senior Member

    Español (Murcia, España)
    Yep. Over here a two-faced person may be a "mosquita muerta" (only used when referring to women) or a "falso/a".
     
  6. inib

    inib Senior Member

    La Rioja, Spain
    British English
    Thanks, Kirk. I may have to take back my words then, because I'd only ever heard of "mosquita muerta" as a wimp too, not "two-faced".
    The dictionaries do give two definitions, of which I'm only familiar with one: the dull, righteous (= holier-than-thou) person, (but I wouldn't take it as meaning "facetious" or "false").
     
  7. aurilla Senior Member

    Puerto Rico
    Am Eng/PR Spanish
    "mosquita muerta" for me is usually a girl or woman who is faking she is an ingenue, naive, when in reality is very streetwise.

    The expression comes from the fact that some flies play dead, then suddenly bounce back up and fly away.
     
  8. inib

    inib Senior Member

    La Rioja, Spain
    British English
    Fair enough. All the evidence and the majority say you are right. Maybe it's just that the "mosquitas muertas" I know don't even arouse any suspicion in me.
    Though I must admit that I may have seen it used in an ironic sense: "¿Mosquita muerta ella? ¡Fíjate ahora!"
     
  9. kotosquito Senior Member

    Champaign, Illinois, USA
    United States, English
     

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