Topics related to given names, surnames, and linguistic aspects of naming in English.

learn more… | top users | synonyms

1
vote
0answers
53 views

Why are surnames often misspellings of English words? [duplicate]

Why do English surnames so often seem to be derived from slight misspellings of common English words? Weekes Thorne Browne Lilley Keene Paige Lowe Hooke Hawthorne Sargent Whyte Chappell Horne ad ...
1
vote
2answers
4k views

How to correctly abbreviate name [closed]

Please advice on how to correctly abbreviate name. Which are grammatically correct? (if there are more correct forms please kindly add them as well) NOTE, If there is no correct way, please point ...
2
votes
0answers
62 views

going home and going to work [duplicate]

The other day I've learned that you cannot use "to" in the sentence "I am going (to) home". At the same time, you should use "to" with other place names. For example, I am going to work. Could ...
0
votes
1answer
238 views

How to pronounce Alois in A Dog of Flanders? [closed]

The e-book I have downloaded from Amazon has Alois, but Wikipedia seems to have Aloise. I do not know which one is correct in the first place. I shall assume Alois is the correct one. A Dog of ...
1
vote
2answers
115 views

Which article is used between a “name” and a “tagline” [closed]

Suppose, I am selling a new product named as: "Innob" and there is a tagline followed by it: "___, new breath in (the) town". Which article shall I use between the name and the tagline ("the" vs "a/...
0
votes
1answer
134 views

How to hyphenate names starting with “Mc”

Take a name starting with Mc, like McDonald. How do you hyphenate it? McDon-ald or Mc-Don-ald?
-4
votes
1answer
426 views

Tolerance in English for names with vulgar everyday meaning? [closed]

Why does English (and perhaps other languages) allow collisions between names and nouns with vulgar/offensive meanings? I'm thinking of course of Dick vs. dick. Possible explanations (in no ...
-2
votes
1answer
824 views

What characters are used in English for a person's name? [closed]

Obviously the letters A-Z (upper and lower case) are used in a person's name. Last names like "Smith-Brown", "Van Buren", "O'Brian" also use -, space and '. Historical ÆLFRÆD and novel names like "...
67
votes
2answers
31k views

Why is Sean pronounced Shawn?

I've always had this question about the pronunciation of Sean. Is Sean a word from another language? Is it actually not pronounced Shawn and instead it's some sound between Shawn and Seen? Also, why ...
5
votes
2answers
992 views

Why is Dolge not a Christian name?

(Note: This might be better suited for a different stack site, but since literature closed, I thought this was the closest related site). I've recently been re-reading Great Expectations, and, in ...
2
votes
2answers
2k views

How do I address an envelope to a married couple, who are respectively Professor and Dr?

The form Mr & Mrs (or Ms) gives way to Dr & Mrs, or Professor & Mrs, or The Rev'd and Mrs, where the lady is a traditionalist who does not have a profession of her own. But when the lady ...
0
votes
1answer
71 views

How should I include names which are written in non-Latin scripts in a list of software authors?

I have a list of the authors of a software program, some of whose contributors are from such places as China and Russia. I would like to include both their transliterated Latin-script names and their ...
7
votes
3answers
606 views

What word describes languages that are written left-to-right, top-to-bottom?

I am trying to describe the set of languages that, like English, are written left to right, and was trying "romanized", but "romanized" describes transliteration to a different set of characters, such ...
1
vote
1answer
2k views

Using a name as a contraction with “is”, syntax looks possessive?

"Bob is fat" Would it be proper to do "Bob's fat"? To me, this looks possessive, as if we're talking about his fat rather than using "fat" as an adjective. What's the proper way to do this?
1
vote
2answers
651 views

In what order should you say people's names?

I know that when you include someone, you say their name first. For example: "John and I went to the beach" How do you order the names when there are more than one additional people? For example: "...
1
vote
1answer
72 views

“Knows an awful lot about the Dark Arts, Snape”

He teaches Potions, but he doesn't want to—everyone knows he's after Quirrell's job. Knows an awful lot about the Dark Arts, Snape. From time to time I stumble upon this type of speech with comma +...
0
votes
1answer
277 views

Are roller coasters proper names?

I want to write a sentence like this: I look up at the new roller coaster they built called Superman. Superman is the name of the roller coaster. Do I need to do anything special with the name? for ...
0
votes
2answers
591 views

Why does a company's name spelled like a name, even if it's spelled differently in its logo? [closed]

There are companies which spell their name in their logo in a non standard way, specifically in all caps or all lower case. Some examples are: Intel Acer Yahoo! Yet, when their names are ...
0
votes
2answers
1k views

How do I pronounce the name “Aurelius”?

I was reading a book out-loud and came across this name. At the time, I pronounced it Aurelius: ur-ell-ee-us The more I think about it, the more I'm sure it is not correct. The word Aura would ...
1
vote
3answers
110 views

Why are web browsers browsers, but I am a surfer?

What is the origin of the name of a program being used to access the Internet is a browser, but a human looking around on the internet is surfing? Why is there this discrepancy?
3
votes
1answer
428 views

What is the meaning of the name “Wilber” in English? [closed]

I'm thinking of picking Wilber as my English given name recently, since it has similar pronunciation with my Chinese given name. But I'm not sure about the meaning of Wilber in English, especially ...
-2
votes
1answer
38 views

Does “playhill” make sense as an english word? [closed]

I'd like to use the word "playhill" for a gaming website address like playhill.net - does this word combination work in native english? Or does it sound very odd?
-1
votes
1answer
164 views

Using “called” with status and name

Let's say I have a sentence like this: I have participated in an event where I had to present myself to a European Commissioner called Jacques Santer. Is it correct to use "called" in this sentence ...
3
votes
5answers
3k views

What do we call a person who doesn't like to stay at home? [closed]

What do we call a person who doesn't like to stay at home? That loves outdoor activities and most of his hobbies are outside?
2
votes
2answers
249 views

Is the title of a US President permanent? [duplicate]

Ultimately I'm wondering whether the descriptive in "former President [Name]" is superfluous or necessary in everyday usage, such as when talking to an audience who knows who the current president is.
1
vote
3answers
2k views

Maiden name vs birth name

My partner has changed her name in the past, for reasons not related to marriage, so I was wondering whether her maiden name would be considered her name at birth, or simply her pre-marital name? For ...
5
votes
6answers
3k views

How to write Vietnamese names in English correctly? (“Việt Nam” to “Vietnam” or “Viet Nam”?)

Commonly, in writing, the country name in Vietnamese is Việt Nam, in English is Vietnam; its capital city name in Vietnamese is Hà Nội, in English is Hanoi; its largest city name in Vietnamese is ...
0
votes
2answers
108 views

How to split a multiple word phrase and another word/phrase [closed]

I work in a global company that with many Japanese people has a general rule to add "san" to the names of people. With so many names from different countries and different order rules it is hard to ...
11
votes
3answers
953 views

Duane “Dog” Chapman, what is the word for the part in quotes between forename and surname?

Apologies if this has been asked before, I found it quite difficult to phrase what I meant! As the question title states: Duane "Dog" Chapman. What is the correct word to describe the part that is ...
3
votes
1answer
490 views

Would a restaurant name of “Punjab House” be offensive? [closed]

We are looking for a good name for an Indian restaurant that specializes in Punjabi food. We have heard that naming the restaurant "Punjab House" would be offensive. What specifically makes it ...
-1
votes
1answer
1k views

Usage of “Revised Document”

I offer two Word templates and recommend to use one of them in order to get a well-designed document. Using the expression revised document is correct in this case? For example: It is ...
0
votes
1answer
266 views

How to write down this name? [closed]

Is there an english name or English translation that matches the following voice recording? https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/62131673/audio/endesuelax2.wav The name might be Russian or Ukrainian.
2
votes
1answer
110 views

why was there a surge in the name 'Tiffany' in the late 1980s?

Last night Tiffany Porter won a gold medal for Britain in the European Athletics Championships (Womens 100m hurdles). It came as no surprise to discover that she began life as an American. Apart from ...
2
votes
1answer
640 views

Why are names considered proper nouns?

Names are supposed to be proper nouns because they refer to a unique entity, right? But what about when the condition of specificity is not applicable? Take the word "Albert". It's supposed to be a ...
1
vote
1answer
347 views

Using English naming customs for foreign names

In the English-speaking world, many Russians are known primarily by their first and last name: Fyodor Dostoevsky, Leo Tolstoy. However, from what I've read, the usual practice in Russian is to ...
8
votes
4answers
1k views

Last names that are English words with an extra 'e'

I noticed that there are a lot of last names that have an 'e' at the end. The pronunciation usually isn't changed from that of the base word. Poole Steele Browne Clarke Why do English words not ...
2
votes
1answer
171 views

What do you call “How do you do” type questions? [closed]

Does English have a name for questions with counterintuitive answers? For example: "How do you do?" -> not "I am fine."
0
votes
2answers
2k views

Middle initial placement

First question: My name is Anh D. Pham, but I go by “Andy”. If I want to include my nickname, where should I put the nickname portion? Anh D. “Andy” Pham Anh “Andy” D. Pham Second ...
3
votes
1answer
377 views

Why do many names use “y” in place of expected “i”?

I would expect names like Taylor, Poynting have "i" in place of actual "y", because they sound very similar to words "tailor" and "pointing". There's also Feynman, which some (not really credible ...
8
votes
3answers
5k views

What does “long” mean before a name?

What does long mean before a name? Like Long John Silver in Treasure Island or Long Susan in Ripper Street.
5
votes
2answers
1k views

Buckley's Chance

In Australian parlance we have the expression "He's got Buckley's chance" or "You've got two chances - Yours and Buckley's". Meaning - he o you have no chance at all. Who was Buckley?
1
vote
2answers
374 views

Any rule about superheroes and hyphens in their names? [closed]

You really know this fact that Spider-man is hyphenated. But why? Any grammatical rule? Is he unique hero written with a hyphen, unlike Batman, Superman etc.?
-2
votes
1answer
392 views

Signature for Doctor of Information Technology prefix and suffix [closed]

How can I sign my name with the degree of "Doctor of Information Technology" Is this all correct Dr.Full Name Full Name D.I.T Dr Full Name (Doctor of Information Technology) Dr.Last Name Can I ...
-1
votes
3answers
2k views

Does the word 'melao' have any special meaning when it is used as a name?

Yesterday, I told an Indian my English name is 'Melao', he smiled and asked me if there's any special meaning. In fact, I get this name from a song with Latin style -- 'Corazon De Melao', I think it's ...
2
votes
3answers
361 views

What is a succinct positive name for a busybody ( non impacted stakeholder )?

I am looking for a word that does not have a negative connotation and is a succinct general term for a: non user, but vocal, stakeholder. Arbitrary example: Say a new road was going to be built ...
1
vote
2answers
5k views

Single vs double quotation marks for nickname?

I am trying to conform to the British practice (specifically Oxford Style Guide) and I am a little confused which to use to mark a nickname: Andrew 'Andy' Johnson Andrew "Andy" Johnson I know ...
14
votes
4answers
5k views

Is there an English word for a person who shares your name? [duplicate]

In Sweden, if your name is Sven Andersson and there is a person of interest (for any reason) that has the same name as you, there is a slightly affectionate word you can use where you say that this ...
0
votes
2answers
67 views

Swashes: What are they? [closed]

I always thought swashes were a way to call wet wipes/wet tissues/wet towels/moist towelettes -or- whatever you call them. Recently, though, I realized that Swashes is actually a company that makes ...
0
votes
2answers
94 views

How to call the scientists who work in the natural sciences?

How to call the scientists who work in the natural, technical, biological and other sciences? Can I call them natural scientists, technical scientists and so on?
4
votes
1answer
191 views

Why is there an 'a' at the end of “Crimea”?

With the recent events in Crimea and the Ukraine the name of the peninsula appears a lot in both written and spoken, the a at the end is very conspicuous in the English pronunciation and writing, ...