El Jinchaíto of Moca

The Town of Moca has a legend: “¡Llegó un Jinchaíto de moca!”

According to legend families living in the Moca area in the early 20th century were people of white color with straight hair, blue eyes and a little plump. The families living here used the water from the stream Juan Lopez for their water supply. Along came a drought and the stream dried up almost completely. The only water left in the area where large “puddles” of water.

These small reservoirs of water soon became contaminated. The thirsty people living in Moca had no other place where they could get their water so they had no choice but to use this nasty water. The Mocanos (The name was given to the inhabitants of the Moca area) who used this contaminated water started to have a swollen (in Spanish the word is hinchadas) appearance. When these swollen people left Moca and went to town the people called them `the jinchaítos of Juan Lopez”.

This name, Jinchaíto, is still used today. The Mocanos still hear ‘‘¡Llegó un Jinchaíto de Moca!’’ / “There goes a Jinchaito from Moca!” coming from the babbling waters of the arroyos as they flow past.

Carnaval El Jinchaíto

Today the famous Carnival Character from Moca is the swollen faced “El Jinchaíto”.

The swollen-faced carnival personality from Moca, El Jinchaíto, participating in Carnaval in Santo Domingo.
The swollen-faced carnival personality from Moca, El Jinchaíto, participating in Carnaval in Santo Domingo.

To read more about the carnival characters and to see some pictures of carnaval (we have some pictures of carnival in Moca in our collection also).

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