Quotation Rainer, Franz. 2007. De 'Porfiriato' a 'zapaterato'. Linguistica Española Actual 29 (2): 251-259.




The suffix ato, meaning ‘rank, office, etc.’, was introduced into the Spanish language at the end of the Middle Ages. While our suffix led a rather inconspicuous life during centuries, it has recently become fashionable in Spanish newspapers to attach it to the name of a president in order to refer to his government in a derogatory or playful manner: felipato ‘government of Felipe González’, aznarato ‘government of José María Aznar’, etc. In the present short note it is shown that this pattern arose in Mexico in the first half of the 20th century, where the long and authoritarian rule of General Porfirio Díaz was referred to as Porfiariato. Later on, the pattern was picked up in other Latin-American countries, especially Cuba (cf. batistato ‘Batista’s rule’), before, enriched with a banana-republican tinge, it crossed the Atlantic in the eighties.


Press 'enter' for creating the tag

Publication's profile

Status of publication Published
Affiliation WU
Type of publication Journal article
Journal Linguistica Española Actual
Language Spanish
Title De 'Porfiriato' a 'zapaterato'
Volume 29
Number 2
Year 2007
Page from 251
Page to 259
Reviewed? Y


Rainer, Franz (Details)
Institute for Romance Languages IN (Details)
Research areas (ÖSTAT Classification 'Statistik Austria')
6615 Romance studies (Details)
Google Scholar: Search