What room the differences in between "jefe", "patrón", "capo", when used to average "boss"? If I wanted to jokingly contact my girl friend "The Boss" should I go with "La Jefa" ?

I"m interested mainly in Mexican and bsci-ch.org dialects, if that makes a difference, back I"m additionally interested come know more generally around geographical differences, e.g. In "Narcos" I notification that Escobar"s guys refer to him together "Patrón" - is that largely a Colombian consumption ?


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The deccionario de americanismos is a great tool because that these sort of questions.

You are watching: What does el jefe mean in spanish

There you can for example see:

patrón, -na I. 1. M. Y f. Ec. Señor, amo. II. 1. Adj. Ni. Referido a persona, de pies grandes. ● a. ǁ ~. Fórm. Mx, Ho, CR, Ve, Ch, Py; Ur, obsol. Se usa como tratamiento de respeto a alguien. □ a. ǁ ~ de fundo. Loc. Sust. Ch. Persona que ejerce un poder despótico y arbitrario. Popular music + cult → espon. B. ǁ ~ de prueba. Loc. Sust. Cu. Gráfico fijo con líneas y colores que permiten ajustar la imagen de un televisor. C. ǁ ~ grande. Loc. Sust. Ec. Latifundista o hacendado. Rur.

That is, a good set of interpretations for patrón depending upon the country. Usually (I don"t recognize if you recognize bsci-ch.org) definition boss, but additionally other things.

From what I watch in the definition, patrón does no have any special definition in Colombia, for this reason you have the right to go straight to the dictionary of the RAE and also check the word:

patrón, na Del lat. Patrōnus; la forma f., del lat. Patrōna. 1. M. Y f. Defensor, protector. 2. M. Y f. Santo titular de una iglesia. 3. M. Y f. Santo elegido como protector de un pueblo o congregación religiosa, profesional o civil. 4. M. Y f. Dueño de la casa donde alguien se aloja u hospeda. 5. M. Y f. Señor (‖ persona a la que sirve un criado). 6. M. Y f. Patrono (‖ persona que emplea trabajadores).

All of lock can apply here, since Pablo Escobar was seen as something in between a boss, a saint and also a protector amongst his workers.

This gift said,

jefe: this is, to me, the many straight-forward method to translate boss. In Spain is the one we usage all the time.

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patrón: as suggested above, this word describes a boss in a work place. In Spain, i hardly ever hear the in colloquial conversations, but (as listed by Nox in comments) that is used to mention the captain of a ship.

So if you want to jokingly contact Boss to your girlfriend, I would certainly go for Jefa. Uneven you are in some smelly service together and also you desire to contact her capo :)

Bear in mind, though, what DGaleano comment below:

I recognize that Mexicans speak to their mom "la jefa" or "la jefecita"... So please examine this out prior to you gain into trouble with your girlfriend. Below a connect for the http://www.tubabel.com/definicion/1106 "La patrona" can work much better for Mexico