Las Mañanitas

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Las Mañanitas is a traditional Mexican[1] birthday song sung in Mexico and other Latin American countries at birthday parties, usually early in the morning to awaken the birthday person, also before eating cake, and especially as part of the custom of serenading women. In Mexico, Las Mañanitas is sung to men and women of all ages. In some countries, such as Colombia, the song is only sung to girls, especially on their 15th birthdays. Perhaps the most famous rendition of "Las Mañanitas" is that sung by Pedro Infante to "Chachita" in the movie Nosotros los pobres.


Spanish original/ European Spanish English translation

Estas son las mañanitas que cantaba el rey David.
Hoy por ser día de tu santo, te las cantamos a ti.

Despierta, mi bien, despierta, mira que ya amaneció
ya los pajaritos cantan la luna ya se metió.

Qué linda está la mañana en que vengo a saludarte
venimos todos con gusto y placer a felicitarte.

El día en que tu naciste nacieron todas las flores
y en la pila del bautismo cantaron los ruiseñores.

Ya viene amaneciendo, ya la luz del día nos dio.
Levántate de mañana, mira que ya amaneció.

These are the mornings songs that King David used to sing.
To all the pretty girls we sing them here to you
Awake, my beloved , awake see that it has already dawned
the sun is already shining the moons already gone

How lovely is this morning, when I come to greet you
we all come with joy and pleasure to congratulate you.

The day on which you were born all the flowers were born
and on the baptismal font the nightingales sang.

It's already dawning, the day's light has already come.
Rise up in the morning, see that it's already dawned.

Often if being sung instead of played from a recording, "mi bien" ("my dear") is replaced with the name of the person being celebrated, e.g. Despierta Jacob, despierta, mira que ya amaneció. Single syllable names are stretched through the two original notes, and longer or compound names are often elided to fit the music, such as Guadalupe or "José Alberto", which in Spanish would be sung "Josealberto", creating a diphthong in the second syllable.

The second line of the first stanza is sometimes sung "... a las muchachas bonitas se las cantamos aquí", or, in English, "... to the pretty girls we sing them here". In some regions is changed instead of hoy por ser día de tu Santo te las cantamos aqui.

Years ago, it was common to give a child the name of the patron saint that corresponded to the day the child was born. (see Calendar of saints) Thus, a child born on 17 March was named Patrick (Patricio for a boy or Patricia for a girl). Someone born on 12 December was often named Guadalupe.[citation needed] (See also name day), and someone born on 25 December was named Jesús.

Puerto Rico[edit]

Las Mañanitas are also an annual event held in Ponce, Puerto Rico, dedicated to Our Lady of Guadalupe. It consists of a pre-dawn festival parade, followed by a Catholic Mass, and a popular breakfast.[2] The celebration started in 1964,[3] but the circumstances of its origin are uncertain. Some say it was started by immigrant Mexican engineers while others state it was started by Spaniards from Extremadura, Spain.[3] The early morning, pre-dawn celebration is attended by over 10,000 people,[4] including mayors and other prominent figures. The city of Ponce offers a free breakfast to everyone present at the historic Ponce City Hall after the religious Mass concludes.[5]


Every year, during the night between 11 and 12 December, mañanitas are sung to the honor of Our Lady of Guadalupe by Mexico's most famous and popular artist in the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe.


  1. ^ Las Mananitas for Guadalupe. John Rieping. The Madera Tribune. Madera, California. 6 September 2013 . Retrieved 18 March 2014.
  2. ^ Vuelven a Ponce las Fiestas Patronales. Carmen Cila Rodríguez. La Perla del Sur. Ponce, Puerto Rico. 5 December 2012. Retrieved 5 December 2012.
  3. ^ a b Latente la Tradicion: Multitud Madruga para Venerar en Ponce la Virgen de Guadalupe. Coral Negron Almodovar. La Perla del Sur. Year 35, Issue 1724. (14 to 20 December 2016) Ponce, Puerto Rico. p.4.
  4. ^ Miles le cantan las Mañanitas a la Virgen de Guadalupe en Ponce. Primera Hora. 12 December 2010. Retrieved 3 April 2014.
  5. ^ Vivo el fervor por la Guadalupana. La Perla del Sur. Ponce, Puerto Rico. 12 December 2013. Retrieved 18 December 2013.

See also[edit]

  • Laura Vázquez Blázquez, "Leyendas, historias, canciones e himnos populares." Culturas Populares. Revista electrónica vol. 1, pp. 1–25. (January–April 2006).
  • Olga Martha Peña Doria, "La dramaturgia femenina y el corrido mexicano teatralizado." Sincronía, Fall 2002, p. 2.

External links[edit]