I've been translating some stories from my mother tongue (Spanish) to English, but I have struggled with certain titles, for example:

  • La Siguanaba in English would be the Siguanaba. This is a unique spirit.
  • El Cadejo in English would be the Cadejo. This can be considered as a species because there are two of them, but only two.

My concern is the following, Cadejo and Siguanaba are proper names from mythical beasts/spirits. However, I'm not sure if I should treat them as regular proper names in the stories (Siguanaba or Cadejo without the), or "the" determiner should precede the name as in Spanish.

Thanks for your time.


It is normal to use articles before the names of those legendary creatures.

“The Siguanaba” is a Salvadoran mythological character that shows herself in a phantom female form and beautiful body.

In Guatemala, the Siguanaba appears as a beautiful, seductive woman with very long hair.

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The cadejo is a character from Salvadoran, Belizean, Nicaraguan, Costa Rican, Honduran, Guatemalan and southern Mexican folklore.

The cadejo is a character from Central American and southern Mexican folklore. There is a good white cadejo and an evil black cadejo.

The Cadejo has been described in several ways. It's usually a big, doglike creature with hooves of a deer and abundant fur.

  • Thanks, Michael, I wasn't sure! May 17 '20 at 8:09
  • By the way, where did you find this article? May 17 '20 at 8:10
  • 1
    @FedericoNavarrete - I quoted from more than one article or book. I found them by using Google's 'exact text' search. To do this, enclose the text you want to find in double quote marks, for example like this: "the Siguanaba" or "the Cadejo". May 17 '20 at 8:13

No article is used before names.

In your examples Siguanaba and Cadejo are proper names of mythical beasts and spirits. "Siguanaba" is a unique spirit and "Cadejo" is a specific species.

The is used to mean there is only one spirit or species : "La Siguanaba" (i.e., the Siguanaba); "El Cadejo" (i.e., the Cadejo).

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