Definition of Hypocoristic in English

It is known as hypocoristic the diminutive names, abbreviated or used children in a loving, family or euphemistic . Etymologically, the word hypocoristic is of Greek origin “hypokoristikós” which means “relative to the caress”.

In our language the hypocoristic ones abound, these are certain words whose formation is due to a repetition of the same syllable. Practically, the hypocoristic is based on the conjugation of a consonant or consonant group, a vowel or diphthong and then repeat the syllable thus formed.

Apart from what has been established above, hypocoristics are also formed as follows:

  • Aggregation of suffixes: ito (a), illa (a), ino (a), among others, for example: Luisillo, Carlitos, Vanesita.
  • Elimination of one or more syllables, is the case of: Jessi, Susi, Ale.
  • Union of two names, such as: JuanMa (Juan Manuel), Juancar (Juan Carlos).

The hypocoristic seem to be, originally, the creation of childish or familiar language. De facto, the learning of children’s language begins, in order, by hypocoristic. It is the case of the words: mom, dad, titi, among others. In the case of family language, it is mainly observed in the creation of the diminutives of proper names, such as: Celia (Cecilia), Antonio (Toni), Nico (Nicolás), Kiko (Francisco), Joaquín (Juaco), among others.

In conclusion, for the formation of the hypocoristic, the words suffer a certain deformation, often being diminutive, and sometimes it can have an etymological origin different from the original, such as: Pepe to identify a person named José.

It is noteworthy, that the pseudonyms should not be confused with the hypocoristic , since the first ones aim to hide the true identity of the character, it is widely used by writers, such as: JKRowling, used the pseudonym of Robert Galbraith, Fernando Pessoa, some of his pseudonyms were Alberto Caieiro, Álvaro de Campos, Ricardo Reis, and so on.