4

Los Hermanos Ábalos have a song El mistolero, see/listen e.g. here:

I cannot find the meaning of "el mistolero" neither in the RAE dictionary, nor in SpanishDict, nor anywhere else. Even my native Spanish friends from Madrid and Chile have never heard such a word. (Well, the Spanish friend from Madrid said something like "there must be a typo, there should be el pistolero!" :) )

What does "el mistolero" mean? Is it somehow related to the fruit mistol, like "a person picking mistol for living"? Is it just some Argentinian slang not understood anywhere else in the Spanish-speaking word?

  • 1
    Difficult question! It seems that the piece El mistolero was not composed by Los hermanos Ábalos, but by Manuel Gómez Carrillo. This is stated in the Wikipedia article you link, and you can also see it on the second video you link. The full title of the piece seems to be "El mistolero: gato santiagueño". I thought I was on to something but no: gato here means a type of dance (see meanings 15 and 16). – wimi Oct 18 '20 at 13:02
  • 1
    So I guess it is just an invented word that is supposed to refer to the mistol tree, as in "the dance of the mistol" or something like that. There is surprisingly little information about this on the Internet... – wimi Oct 18 '20 at 13:03
10

"Mistolero" means "Santiagueño" (from Santiago del Estero, Argentina). "Gato santiagueño" is a variant (as danced in Santiago) of the Gato, a traditional folkloric dance.

The name derives from the mistol tree, very common in the province:

El mistol suele identificarse con la provincia de Santiago del Estero al punto que mistolero se ha convertido en gentilicio que designa a los santiagueños. (Mario C. Tebes, Atila Karlovich F., Sisa pallana: antología de textos quichuas santiagueños, p. 262)

You can see plenty of references to sport teams or athletes from Santiago as "mistoleros":

Gimnasia con tres cambios para recibir al “mistolero [...] En limpio entonces, Gimnasia formará ante los santiagueños con ...

Acuña, “mistolero” ganador en CEC

El santiagueño Alejandro Acuña se impuso este sábado 24 en la prueba de 13 Km. “Día del Empleado de Comercio” que unió Capital, Valle Viejo y Fray Mamerto Esquiú.

  • @HonzaZidek Truth be told, I had no idea of the why, just knew what it means because I'm from Córdoba and there are lots of santiagueños studying here. But since you asked, I found a couple of incredibly boring books that mention this. I'm updating the answer with the info. – Gaviota Oct 19 '20 at 11:57

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.