The first son of Úrsula Iguarán and José Arcadio Buendía, he is eight years older than his brother Aureliano. He inherits his father's amazing strength and his impulsive drive. After running off with the gypsies, José Arcadio returns larger than life, tattooed and savage. The family has a hard time welcoming him into their fold and Úrsula ostracizes him when he marries his adopted sister Rebeca. He is the father with Pilar Ternera of the unknowing Arcadio (José Arcadio III), and brother to Colonel Aureliano Buendía and Amaranta.