La Guayabera origins a little bit of ...

La Guayabera origins a little bit of history

There are 42 comments on the Hispanicmpr.com story from Sep 8, 2010, titled La Guayabera origins a little bit of history. In it, Hispanicmpr.com reports that:

Where did the guayabera come from and is there a history behind it? Most of the time, where it concerns popular history, those who have made a difference in the lives of millions of people were never aware of it, and therefore the facts of whatever they contributed to mankind is lost in the jumble of reality, fiction and, in the case of the ...

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L Cubano

Chester, NJ

#1 Sep 8, 2010
Where did the guayabera come from and is there a history behind it? Most of the time, where it concerns popular history, those who have made a difference in the lives of millions of people were never aware of it, and therefore the facts of whatever they contributed to mankind is lost in the jumble of reality, fiction and, in the case of the guayabera, in the fantasy of romance.

According to research conducted by Cuban journalist Pedro Carballo Bernal, several Andalusian and later Canary Island families who settled in Cuba around the Yayabo River, in Sancti Spiritus, began making shirts that would eventually become the precursors or prototypes of today’s guayaberas. More precisely, as the story goes, the first guayabera was made in 1709, by Encarnación Núñez García, an Andalusian wife from the town of Granada, hoping to please her husband, José Pérez Rodríguez, a potter by trade, who requested that she make him comfortable, loose shirts from a bolt of fine Belgian linen they had received from Spain.
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L Cubano

Chester, NJ

#2 Sep 8, 2010
Salsa is Cuban. The bolero is Cuban. So is a cigar worthy of the name, the Cuba Libre, the mojito and also, believe it or not, the guayabera. I can’t remember life without it. I bought my Chinese-Cuban-American grandson his first guayabera, the tiniest thing, when he was barely a few days old:“Little man” I said,“Welcome to our culture!”

The guayabera is solidly etched in the psyche of a Cuban woman of my generation. I think most of us are emotionally bound to it through memories we hold very dear of fathers, grandfathers, and older family patriarchs wearing them. I can remember the day my then young and very conservative grandfather, finally gave in to my grandmother’s pleas to wear long-sleeved guayaberas instead of sitting through his meals fully suited, in the hot, Cuban weather. I recall my dad sweeping me off the floor as a little girl, smelling his clean-shaven face and feeling his crisply pressed guayabera, double-dipped in thick and gooey homemade yucca starch as he carried me in his arms. I cherish the memories of Sunday afternoons at the Yacht Club watching all the elegant men strolling everywhere in – of course – their guayaberas.

As a young girl growing up in Cuba, I instinctively understood there was magic in the guayabera. Women with men wearing them seemed to be more romantic, sensual, feminine and beautiful in their own summer attire, usually made of light summery fabrics that rustled in the sea breeze. I remember very airy organza blouses and guayaberas; white linen dresses and guayaberas; blue polka-dotted dresses and guayaberas; soft, straw wide-rimmed hats and guayaberas; cigars and guayaberas; a well-groomed gray beard and guayaberas; the aromas of sweet lime-cologne, café cubano (Cuban coffee) and guayaberas; the mojito, a cubilete game and guayaberas; the smell of the ocean permeating Havana evenings and the guayabera.
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L Cubano

Chester, NJ

#3 Sep 8, 2010
When I became an adult, and settled in the States, with a husband and young children, I made sure my husband had a guayabera. I think I was probably one of the first young Cuban women who pushed for this very special shirt to be worn again by our men. It was a national emblem that lent us a visible identity during our early years in exile when we were all frantically holding on to our values and traditions which we felt were being threatened by the larger Anglo culture surrounding us. The guayabera became the expression of an emotional need deeply buried in our national memory. In Miami, during the early 70’s, the guayabera gradually gained renewed interest among what were then known as the yuccas (young up and coming Cuban Americans), an acronym derived form the name of the edible root, very popular in the Cuban diet.

But what is the guayabera? The traditional guayabera, originally a campesino or peasant shirt, as we know it today, and as it was finally handed down to us in the first decade of the XX Century, was white and made of fine linen. It was a long-sleeved shirt, with four large pockets, and five rows of very narrow pleats, two running down the front of the shirt and three down the back. The back of the guayabera is said to have been purposely designed to look like the Cuban flag with a triangle resting on the shoulder area and five stripes running down vertically below it. The flaps at waist level on either side had developed earlier to allow for easier handling by the campesino with his machete and hunting knife. Finally, if it is a traditional guayabera, it should also include twenty-seven very small mother-of-pearl buttons.

Where did the guayabera come from and is there a history behind it? Most of the time, where it concerns popular history, those who have made a difference in the lives of millions of people were never aware of it, and therefore the facts of whatever they contributed to mankind is lost in the jumble of reality, fiction and, in the case of the guayabera, in the fantasy of romance.
..........
L Cubano

Chester, NJ

#4 Sep 8, 2010
According to research conducted by Cuban journalist Pedro Carballo Bernal, several Andalusian and later Canary Island families who settled in Cuba around the Yayabo River, in Sancti Spiritus, began making shirts that would eventually become the precursors or prototypes of today’s guayaberas. More precisely, as the story goes, the first guayabera was made in 1709, by Encarnación Núñez García, an Andalusian wife from the town of Granada, hoping to please her husband, José Pérez Rodríguez, a potter by trade, who requested that she make him comfortable, loose shirts from a bolt of fine Belgian linen they had received from Spain.

These shirts were to be worn over his trousers, have long sleeves, and big, wide front pockets where he could carry, among other things, his smokes or fumas. Since these shirts first became popular in the region of the Yayabo River, which flows through Sancti Spiritus, from west to east, they were first called yayaberas, as were the natives of the area, who at the time were identified as Yayaberas (women) and Yayaberos (men), after the name of the river. Another version of the name guayabera is that men had the habit of filling the wide pockets of their shirts with ripe guayabas or guavas, thus the possible transition of the name from yayabera to guayabera. Ripe guayabas or guavas, with their wonderful but penetrating, pungent aroma, as every other tropical fruit, exude a sugary sap that can easily stain fabrics. I cannot imagine women of the XVIII and XIX Centuries fighting a guava stain without Clorox, Shout, or Wisk. And yet oral tradition around the Sancti Spiritus area supports the guava story:
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L Cubano

Chester, NJ

#5 Sep 8, 2010
Very soon, the peasants of the surrounding countryside took to wearing the guayabera and these shirts became popular almost immediately because they were appropriate for work and the hot weather. Townsfolk, however, rejected them as being too coarse and vulgar to be worn by even the lower classes within the town. The fact that this story is so precise seems to diminish its credibility among some historians. I for one believe it could be true since we have no way of knowing what it is that History will decide to save, regardless of how trivial future generations of historians might perceive the information to be.

Researchers also point to the fact that commercial regulations between the Spanish colonies and Spain restricted certain items from being imported into the colonies, linen being one of them. Also, they claim, there were no direct commercial ties between Sancti Spiritus and Spain. But pirates did abound, especially in the Caribbean area, and were quick to offer the shortcut to waiting for the Spanish fleet. Settlers, of course, availed themselves of contraband in order to quickly obtain much needed supplies for their languishing settlements. This could explain the bolt of linen.

Dr. Armando J. Casadevall, a native of Sancti Spiritus, in his article De la chupa a la guayabera universal (From the chupa to the universal guayabera), published in La Voz Libre in Miami in 1998, rejects the Sancti Spiritus origins of the guayabera. He cites stories written about Sancti Spritus by Tadeo Martínez-Moles in 1791, and by Rafael F. Pérez Luna in 1860, as well as the 1866 edition of the encyclopedic dictionary compiled by Jacobo de la Pezuela. Casadevall did not find any references to the guayabera originating in Sancti Spiritus. He even goes as far as stating that there were very few guava plants in the area and that the guayabera was definitely not suitable attire to pick guavas in.
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L Cubano

Chester, NJ

#6 Sep 8, 2010
Casadevall says that the word guayabera was not even used in Sancti Spiritus until after the establishment of the republic in 1902 and that the preferred item of clothing among Cuban men in the XIX Century was the chupa, a short shirt with four flaps beginning at the waist and rather tight sleeves, today considered by many as the precursor of the modern guayabera. He goes on to explain that what we identify today as a guayabera was then made of cotton khaki and called camisilla in the 1920’s, when he was a youngster. His father, who was Cuban and apparently proud of his origins and his Cuban ways, was fond of wearing these chupas or camisillas. Casadevall gives credit to a tailor by the name of Ángel Serrano for having introduced the pure white, fine linen shirt called guayabera to the city of Sancti Spiritus in the 1930’s.

These two opposing stories are recorded by history and exist side by side. It is for this reason and for the sake of objectivity that I present them to the reader. Judging from the many articles I have come across, the scale of history seems to tip in favor of the story about the Andalusian couple, Encarnación and Joselillo, and their bolt of linen.

The author holds a M.A. from the University of Miami. She is a free-lance writer and the editor of http://jose-marti.org and http://unacuartilla.wordpress.com .
..........

“America la bella!!”

Since: Jan 07

que Dios te bendiga

#7 Sep 8, 2010
Ay Dios cuando Dave Lopes se entere de esto va a formar otra guerra con las guayeras cubanas y la Salsa ........ Deja que lea esto, Yo lo digo los cubanos somos siempre los ;primeros en todo.ja jaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa
el cubanazo

West Palm Beach, FL

#8 Sep 9, 2010
\ASERE SOMOS LOS MEJORES...LOS CUBANOS NO SE PUEDEN NI CLONAR, ESO SEGUN LOS CIENTIFICOS. SOMOS ORIGINALES.....JAMAS HEMOS SIDO COPIONES DE NADA....COMO ALGUNOS BORICUAS ..... LO PRIMERO QUE SE LE COMPRA AL BEBE CUBANO ES UN GUAYABERITA DE HILO CUBANA................ jajajaj
El Cubanazzol

United States

#9 Sep 9, 2010
Cubanazo eres un chiste
Billy the Kid

Flemington, NJ

#10 Sep 9, 2010
pobre dave, patito feo!
Se va a deshacer de todas sus guayaberas!
defiant1

United States

#11 Sep 9, 2010
La verdad es que todo lo cubano es fino y de cache! Solo falta que vengan los boricuas y se copien la guayabera y digan que ellos la inventaron!No lo dudo!!!
Islas Canarias Man

United States

#12 Sep 9, 2010
defiant1 wrote:
La verdad es que todo lo cubano es fino y de cache! Solo falta que vengan los boricuas y se copien la guayabera y digan que ellos la inventaron!No lo dudo!!!
La guayabera fue inventada por una Espanola. No es nisiquiera creada por un/a Cubano/a. Nunca he visto a ninguna nacionalidad ser tan orgullosa de tan poco. Son la gente que tiene menos cosas que ofrecer y sin embargo lo poco que han producido lo agrandan como una bomba. Creen ser lo mas grande en todo.

Hay muchos paises que tienen mucho mas logros que Cuba y sin embargo no andan por todos lados alardeando de ello. Pero asi es la gente. Cuando menos son mas duro hablan.
No digo esto para criticar. Solo es una observacion. Me parece grosero la manera de ser de los Cubanos cuando quieren estrujarle a la gente sus pocos logros. Son muy inseguros.

“America la bella!!”

Since: Jan 07

que Dios te bendiga

#13 Sep 9, 2010
AHI ESTA LA NEGRA DAVE....ja jaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa aaaaa Lo sabia que iba a desmentir el escrito y a los cubanos..........No cabe duda que el boricua de Dave esta loco. Lo proximo sera decir que la inventaron ellos. me meo jajajjajaaja

“America la bella!!”

Since: Jan 07

que Dios te bendiga

#14 Sep 9, 2010
defiant1 wrote:
La verdad es que todo lo cubano es fino y de cache! Solo falta que vengan los boricuas y se copien la guayabera y digan que ellos la inventaron!No lo dudo!!!
Gracias, lo sabemos...muy bien, y que me dices de los que arrastran la R ja jaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa

“Its all in the mind..or is it?”

Since: Dec 06

Location hidden

#15 Sep 9, 2010
Marie in Miami Fl wrote:
AHI ESTA LA NEGRA DAVE....ja jaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa aaaaa Lo sabia que iba a desmentir el escrito y a los cubanos..........No cabe duda que el boricua de Dave esta loco. Lo proximo sera decir que la inventaron ellos. me meo jajajjajaaja
Se ve que no leiste el articulo. Claramente dice que fue hecha por una senora espanola como regalo para su esposo. Si la hizo en Cuba pero no fue un Cubano.
Edward

New York, NY

#16 Sep 9, 2010
Cherokee wrote:
<quoted text>Se ve que no leiste el articulo. Claramente dice que fue hecha por una senora espanola como regalo para su esposo. Si la hizo en Cuba pero no fue un Cubano.
ANIMAL EN LOS ANOS 1700 TODOS LOS CUBANOS ERAN ESPANOLES O ESCLAVOS NEGROS,EN ESA FECHA NO EXISTIA LA NACIONALIDAD CUBANOS.ESOS ESPANOLES FUERON NUESTROS ABUELOS!...ILUSTRATE MOJON!

“America la bella!!”

Since: Jan 07

que Dios te bendiga

#17 Sep 10, 2010
Cherokee wrote:
<quoted text>Se ve que no leiste el articulo. Claramente dice que fue hecha por una senora espanola como regalo para su esposo. Si la hizo en Cuba pero no fue un Cubano.
La ignorancia es duena de tu persona, claro si te sirve para atacar al pueblo indefenso de Cuba y humilde. Despues hablas de Dios y exiges que los demas lo tengan. Deberias ir a tu forum y estarte quieto por un tiempo. Claro alli la unica que te contesta es Marymerci. Eres ignorado

“Its all in the mind..or is it?”

Since: Dec 06

Location hidden

#18 Sep 10, 2010
Edward wrote:
<quoted text>
ANIMAL EN LOS ANOS 1700 TODOS LOS CUBANOS ERAN ESPANOLES O ESCLAVOS NEGROS,EN ESA FECHA NO EXISTIA LA NACIONALIDAD CUBANOS.ESOS ESPANOLES FUERON NUESTROS ABUELOS!...ILUSTRATE MOJON!
Animal es la pu ta que te pario sucio. No te tomes los creditos que no son tuyos. Fue inventada por una Espanola. Tragate esa si?

“Its all in the mind..or is it?”

Since: Dec 06

Location hidden

#19 Sep 10, 2010
Marie in Miami Fl wrote:
<quoted text>La ignorancia es duena de tu persona, claro si te sirve para atacar al pueblo indefenso de Cuba y humilde. Despues hablas de Dios y exiges que los demas lo tengan. Deberias ir a tu forum y estarte quieto por un tiempo. Claro alli la unica que te contesta es Marymerci. Eres ignorado
Cierra la geta que solo sale kaka de ahi mujer. Yo no creo en el dios tuyo inventado por el hombre. Tu si. Porque estas celosa de Marimerci?
defiant1

United States

#20 Sep 10, 2010
Cherokee wrote:
<quoted text>Cierra la geta que solo sale kaka de ahi mujer. Yo no creo en el dios tuyo inventado por el hombre. Tu si. Porque estas celosa de Marimerci?
Bestia...JETA se escribe con J!!!

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