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

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Is it wise to specify a country name in brackets when referring to foreign city in an official document

While writing a formal document in an English language, I would like to know whether it's wise to specify a country name in brackets when referring to foreign city in an official document. For ...
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68 views

Surname plural, Wolf becomes The Wolves? [duplicate]

The Simpson family becomes The Simpsons, does that mean I can call a family with surname Wolf, The Wolves or The Wolfs? I don't know if changing letters of someone's surname is appropriate or not.
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1k views

Why do the names of so many places end in -ia?

Many countries, continents, states, and cities have an English name ending in ‘-ia’: India, Indonesia, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Australia, Asia, Alexandria, Philadelphia, California, … What ...
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93 views

How would a speaker of English vocalize W'soran, a sci-fi/fantasy conlang word, taking into consideration that some languages are unpronounceable? [closed]

There is a character in the Warhammer Fantasy universe by the name of W'soran. I've never been sure how to pronounce his name. He's from an Egyptian type culture. Could anyone tell me if they think ...
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52 views

Who is entitled to call themself a 'futurist'?

I've read the term being described to many inventors. e.g. Ray Kurzweil . Is anyone who discusses futuristic technology or hypothesises the future, a futurist?
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302 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 ...
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423 views

Pseudonym of a graffiti artist

What do you call a pseudonym of a street art/graffiti artist? Word 'pseudonym' is too general. So I need exactly something like '[street] artist pseudonym', but also not 'tag' or 'nickname'. To the ...
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847 views

Translation of foreign company names and abbreviations [closed]

How do I deal with translation of names of foreign organisations or company names and their abbreviations? I have an example where I want to refer to the Swedish television company SVT, which is an ...
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3answers
25k views

What's the right way to pronounce “Louis”?

The name of the comedian Louis C.K. is pronounced LU-EE-SEE-KAY. Is the S pronounced as a part of the given name "Louis", or just the first constant of the of the letter C? Is there a canonical way ...
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6k views

Use of the definite article before a person's name or pronoun

Hey native English speakers, My question is regarding the use of the definite article before a person's name, as in Realtime with the Bill Maher on HBO (youtu.be/I9HCbOmwndA?t=8m40s) or in the ...
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104 views

Express a phrase as compound [closed]

I need to express this phrase as a short compound to be used as programming variable name (this phrase is in the context of a software user interface): the block showing current chatters I have ...
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67 views

How to mark a stressed vowel in a text?

I write an article containing many Russian names and surnames, and sometimes it is important to specify which vowel is stressed (e.g. to distinguish Baskov from Baskov). In Russian we put an accent ...
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74 views

Title for student organization

I'm updating the website for my student organization. Link. Officially, we are the Texas A&M University Student Branch of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics. The banner at the ...
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162 views

Proper ways to refer to New York City [closed]

Excluding the myriad nicknames of the city, I've seen it called both "New York City" and "New York" in contexts where it was not ambiguous that the city, and not the state, was being referred to. I ...
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83 views

What is the correct plural form of a family name that ends in -i? [closed]

I have just made a family group with my surname which is Karami, and I want to make my surname plural to show this is a family group, so I'm wondering whether I should add -s or -es? Which one is ...
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1k 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?
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449 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: ...
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71 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 ...
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4k 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 ...
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116 views

Why we are not translating western institustion names?

I saw this in many places but want to ask my question in a specific example. In Wikipedia article on European Central Bank there is a section Preceded by 17 national banks National Bank of Austria ...
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250 views

Is it acceptable to drop the Jr. suffix in a citation?

I want to cite a book written by John P. Smith, Jr. Should I write see Smith [2009] for details. or see Smith, Jr. [2009] for details. I think my question boils down to: is his surname ...
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64 views

'Petrovski's home/residence' or 'Petrovski home/residence' [duplicate]

What's correct? Petrovski's home/residence or Petrovski home/residence. Note that Petrovski is the family name (last name), not the first name. I know that for first name is always 's, but what ...
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48 views

using a brand name in MLA style

Should a brand name be italicized when used in a MLA-style paper? For example, tin he following paragraph: Future Shop, which offered technology supplies, was closed and in an statement the CEO ...
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52 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 ...
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2k views

use of articles with personal names modified by adjectives

Suddenly, to everybody's surprise, the silent Mr.Smith swung around and addressed Barbara. The dinner was served by a silent Mrs. Keats. I saw an infuriated Jennifer, who started shouting at ...
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335 views

Possession in Business Name With Apostrophe [duplicate]

In the following sentence, how would I indicate possession if the word "business'" were replaced by the name of the business: like "Fry's" or "Wendy's"? Some business' employees are happy. It ...
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1k 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 ...
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6k views

What is another name for Dick?

Coming from "Changes in English names of people" telling: Richard → Dick Can I substitute Dick by Richard? I need it to know because my Emails with the use of name Dick are being returned by ...
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5k views

First name or last name with “Sir”

If my teacher's first name is Robert and his last name is Dowry, and I have to send him an email, then which of the following will be correct? Dear Sir Dowry, Dear Sir Robert, Dear Sir ...
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298 views

Term for partially abbreviating names

Is there a name for the tabloid media practice of part-initializing, part-abbreviating people's names? E.g. Jennifer Lopez -> J-Lo, Robert Pattinson -> R-Patz and so on.
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295 views

What do you call a 'Nickname' that's longer than the actual name?

I'm pretty sure I used to know the term for a nickname that was longer or an expansion of a person's name. EXAMPLE: My name is Sunny but friends sometimes call me Sunshine. Though longer, Sunshine ...
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105 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?
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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?
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302 views

How to pronounce “Zoubin Ghahramani”? [closed]

Zoubin Ghahramani is a computer scientist and statistician. I tried Google translate but it sound a little weird. Does anyone know the pronunciation of his name? Is it from another language other than ...
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900 views

First name Constantin or Constantine? [closed]

Which is correct: "Constantin" or "Constantine"? I also encountered in texts "Konstantin" and "Kostantine". Or else is another spelling preferred?
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451 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 ...
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66 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 ...
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651 views

What word describes the form of address in which someone is called “Dad” or “Mum”?

I'm writing about what people might call God when praying, things like "Lord" or "Father" etc. With respect to using "Dad" or "Mum", would you call them names? (not exactly - not like "Brian" for ...
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379 views

When writing a formal report is it bad to make up names when giving an example?

I was giving an example and was trying to immerse the reader in the experience as much as possible and made up a man's name. Consider the following example: Joseph is testing a program built for ...
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70 views

Should I use “Team X” or “X Team” when “X” alone is ambiguous?

Suppose I want to put a description below a picture of a sports team or prepare t-shirts and other promotional gadgets with the name of the team. Sometimes the team is well-known (Manchester United) ...
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177 views

Mentioning someone's name in 1-to-1 conversation

When only two interlocutors are communicating in a face-to-face or equivalent setup without the need to get the other's attention, there is no necessity to mention the other person's name. Yet ...
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202 views

If you called someone named “Shelly” “Shels” for short, would you spell it “Shels” or “Shells?” [closed]

Or Kelly -- "Kels" or "Kells?" Is there a rule for this? If it's just a judgement call, I'm inclined to go with one "l" as both "Shells" and "Kells" have potentially confusing homonyms. I'm talking ...
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62 views

Become / get, successfully / effectually, together / common / united [closed]

Currently I'm looking for a product name. The goal of this product is that everyone can get successful with the power of a network (together, united) But I don't know which combination makes sense: ...
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108 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?
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187 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 ...
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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 ...
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Party at the Johnsons's? [duplicate]

What is the proper use of the apostrophe in this phrase: The party is at the Johnsons's Assuming, the regular form of the last name is "Johnson" and there are at least two people in the Johnson ...
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140 views

Which sounds better: “What’s in ――” or “What’s on――”?

I’m making the title of a web page with classifieds, and I’d like to name it either “What’s in (town name)” or “What’s on (town name)”. Which one sounds better for a town classified web page? Right ...
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129 views

J.A. Gagarin's flight vs J.A. Gagarin flight

1) Is it Ok to leave the initials or would you drop them? Writing his name in full seems odd since it isn't Gagarin who is the point of discussion. 2) Is it Gagarin's or Gagarin? Is there any ...
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40 views

Why they pronounce 'Shehab', 'Shebab'? [closed]

My name, Shehab, is an Arabic word. Interesting, more than 10 white Americans and a black American have addressed me 'Shebab' (both in writing and verbally). Why is this particular mistake is so ...