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Old April 13, 2010, 03:50 AM
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Mellizos o gemelos

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Santa Cruz de Tenerife/ Las familias canarias que tengan mellizos o gemelos recibirán a partir de ahora ayudas.
Exactly what is the difference? Does this difference have regional variations?
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Old April 13, 2010, 04:25 AM
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Gemelos = identical twins
Mellizos = non-identical twins

I think this has come up in another thread but I can't find it.
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Old April 13, 2010, 04:40 AM
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gemelos: Identical twins. They come from the same fertilliced cell
Mellizos: they come from diferent fertiliced cells, They can be both male, both female, or male and a female.

saludos
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Old April 13, 2010, 05:09 AM
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Thanks - my dictionary defines them both as 'twin'. Both words have the same root L. geminus (gemelo - gemellus - diminutive of geminus; mellizo from Vulg. Latin *gemellicius from gemellus). I was just wondering whether people really do make a distinction between the two.
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Old April 13, 2010, 12:45 PM
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My experience (I'm a non-identical twin, so I have a bit!) is that people with a degree in Spanish philology do make a distinction and most other people just call all twins gemelos. I've witnessed a native speaker call identical twins mellizos, and I've used "mellizo" with an Ecuadorian friend and then had to explain to him what it means.

Basically, it's like español vs castellano: whichever you use, you'll be wrong.
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Old April 13, 2010, 02:22 PM
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De todos modos, un médico te hablará de "embarazo gemelar", sean gemelos o mellizos (univitelino o bivitelino).
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Old April 13, 2010, 09:23 PM
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How about triplets? How would one express the idea of identical vs. fraternal triplets? (Likewise, quads, quints, etc.?)
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Old April 14, 2010, 02:06 AM
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Then x-llizos: trillizos, cuatrillizos, quintillizos y creo que hasta sextillizos.
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Old April 14, 2010, 04:09 AM
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Alltough I do make a distinction (I'm always curious ), I agree with pjt33 that the term is very relaxed, and in an usual conversation you can hear both with no proper signification.

@ irmamar
"De todos modos, un médico te hablará de "embarazo gemelar", sean gemelos o mellizos (univitelino o bivitelino). "
Es correcto, pero yo creo que se cura en salud, el médico no sabe si son mellizos hasta tarde ...

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Old April 14, 2010, 04:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by laepelba View Post
How about triplets? How would one express the idea of identical vs. fraternal triplets? (Likewise, quads, quints, etc.?)
Trust a mathematician to extend the specific to another case with a probability of 1 in 200 million.

From the internet: "TRILLIZOS GEMELARES IDENTICOS" NACEN UNO CADA 200 MILLONES DE PERSONAS
NACIERON EL 17 DE OCTUBRE DE 2007

Note the tautology.
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