4

Note: I'm not looking for namesake.

I heard a friend use such a word in the context of the following sentence, and now I've forgotten it:

"Anna and my sister [Anna] may not have much in common, but they are [word]"

I am a hundred percent sure that the word wasn't namesakes, but I think it might have started with an n as well. I tried some reverse dictionaries, but couldn't find anything, so I turned here for help.

Are there any other single words to describe the situation of sharing someone's name (when not named after that person; or in a coincidental manner)? Thanks.

6
  • 1
    Homonymous? But it is usually not used for people.
    – vickyace
    Mar 27 '17 at 21:56
  • 7
    I've never actually met anybody whose first name was Hot although I've seen a few advertisements. Mar 27 '17 at 22:13
  • 1
    A fancier, Latin-ier word for namesake is eponym, or adjectively, eponymous.
    – Dan Bron
    Mar 27 '17 at 22:32
  • 4
    I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because the answer to the question as posed is namesake. "What word am I thinking of? No, you're wrong" is not a proper Stack Exchange question. Mar 27 '17 at 22:37
  • 1
    @RonaldSole I guess you have never seen M* A * S * H.
    – Cascabel
    Mar 27 '17 at 22:52
7

Could it have been cognominal? From the OED:

A. adj. 1. Having the same name or cognomen, like-named.
†B. n. One who or that which has the same name as another; a namesake. Obs. rare.
("cognominal, adj. and n." OED Online. Oxford University Press, March 2017.)

Only the noun is marked as obsolete/rare, but I'd venture to suggest that both forms are pretty darn unusual nowadays. However, I can imagine a word enthusiast using it in the context you describe.

Anna and my sister [Anna] may not have much in common, but they are cognominal!

At the less obscure end of the spectrum, the common term synonym is occasionally used for namesakes, since its root meaning is something like "similar name". This is the fourth (and last) definition of the word in the OED, but I would expect that usage today would generally be tongue-in-cheek.

1
  • That's a great word...that I have never heard before. :-)
    – Adam
    Mar 28 '17 at 15:11
-1

Hunting for a bit of time led me to the adjective homonymic. Taken from Dictionary.com

homonymic adj. a word that is both a homophone and a homograph, that is, exactly the same as another in sound and spelling but different in meaning, as chase “to pursue” and chase “to ornament metal.”

As someone said in the comments, it's not typically used for people, but I wouldn't say it's out of the quesiton to do so.

1
  • 1
    Ah, yes! "I'd like to teach the world to sing / in perfect homony!"
    – Hot Licks
    Mar 27 '17 at 22:06

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.