Questions tagged [names]

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

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1answer
47 views

When a last name contains “Saint”, is it ever spelled out, or is it always “St.”?

When a last name contains "Saint", such as Richard St. Paul, how does "Saint" show up on this person's legal documents etc.? Is their legal name "Richard Saint Paul", &...
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2answers
49 views

As family name unambiguous defines surname versus last name what name should be used for social friendly name [closed]

In many parts of the world the sequence of first name and surname is not always the same and can cause misunderstanding what should be given. As family name unambiguous defines surname or last name ...
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1answer
29 views

Is there a word for using basic phonetics to teach someone your name's correct pronunciation?

For instance, if my name was Rehana then I'd tell them my name is pronounced like ray as in a ray of sunshine, hana as in Hannah. Is there an easier way to explain how I'm simplifying my name for ...
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2answers
58 views

When does it feel more natural to have articles in names?

In my observations, names usually don't have articles like the, a, an. For example: Stack Exchange (not The Stack Exchange); Facebook, (not The Facebook). However: There are cases when the name ...
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1answer
44 views

Is there a specific title for wizards?

I'm writing a fantasy story and I have a wizard in it. His name's Brad, and I'm wondering how a magical figure like him should be addressed. Mr. Brad seems a little lackluster, and Sir Brad wouldn't ...
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26 views

What are historical reasons why the US people put initial in between their first and last names? [closed]

As far as I know it is not mandatory form of the full name, but many Americans (I reckon it is true for other English speaking nations, but it is much more typical for people in the US) choose to ...
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1answer
73 views

Omis­si­bil­ity of the defi­n­ite ar­ti­cle “the” be­fore at­tribu­tive mod­i­fiers of per­sonal names in Amer­i­can English

Are both in­clu­sion and omis­sion of the defi­n­ite ar­ti­cle the be­fore per­sonal names that have at­tribu­tive mod­i­fiers (nom­i­nal or ad­jec­ti­val or both) con­sid­ered gram­mat­i­cal in Amer­i­...
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94 views

How do unisex names come about in English?

TL;DR How do unisex names develop amidst, or out of, gendered ones in English (and other languages)? Detail In English, many (most?) names have a gender assignment of male or female. However, some are ...
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74 views

Is it okay to write/enforce “Parent(s)” instead of “Parent” &/or “Parents”, w/ the s in paren, to explicitly specify I do not say if 1 or 2 parents?

Options: A) Parent(s) / Parent[s] / Parent{s} B) Parents C) Parent I think the question title is my entire question, I do not mean to be rude just clear (just I am being pretty powerfully judged/...
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2answers
57 views

What do you call someone who doesn't observe details?

My mom is so ... that I had to explain that I was being sarcastic.
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21 views

Finding Meanings of English Names [duplicate]

In Sinhala the name Suminda means calm disposition from the words Samya (calm) + Indu (faculties). In the case of English, how does one understand the meaning of names? E.g. names like Ann, Tom, Dick, ...
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99 views

First use of "jack-o'-Lantern” in reference to the Carved-Pumpkin?

According to OED the etymology of "Jack'o'-Lantern" (as a name for the carved pumpkin) dates to 1834: Jack-o'-lantern: also jack-o-lantern, jack-a-lantern, jackolantern, 1660s, "night-...
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2answers
108 views

English Pronunciation of name “Claire” [closed]

I got into a debate about whether I can pronounce "Claire" as "Clara" or not. Please help me if I can do the same or not, or is there any rule in the English language which says ...
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1answer
42 views

Is it OK to put last name before first name if the name comes from a culture with such a feature? [closed]

I have recently noticed that my first name goes after my last name in my Stack Exchange account. In my native language (Russian) it is OK to put them in any order. How shall I put my name in English (...
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1answer
41 views

Should we include the prefix Mrs. when we tell others our real name? [closed]

My question is so simple. We call a man with the prefix Mr. and a married woman with the prefix Mrs., followed by her husband's surname, right? Now, is it grammatically okay to include these prefixes ...
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46 views

Grammatical names and function

What is the grammatical name and function of the italicised expression in the sentence She communicated gladly with a man who was going to see his son in Lagos and they exchanged numbers.
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What is the proper way to use commas when addressing two or more people by placing their names at the start of the sentence?

I frequently need to address multiple people in writing at work. This is usually done in a way that makes it convenient to at them all at once. E.g. @dale, @emily, please take a look at this and, if ...
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1answer
71 views

What is the meaning of gim boy?

I received an e-mail from Spotify Customer Support a few months ago. They ended the email with the following: "Looking forward to hearing from you. Let us know if you have other questions or ...
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1answer
60 views

What's a girl's name meaning mixed emotions?

Does anyone know a girl's name meaning mixed emotions? I want to use it for a character I'm writing about. I also want it to sound cutesy and wholesome (something that rolls off the tongue easily). ...
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3answers
191 views

Referring to professors as “Dr.” in news articles and other formal wrtiting

In academia, "professor" is generally acknowledged as being a higher title than "doctor", as few PhD holders are professors, while basically all professors hold a PhD (RIP Freeman ...
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3answers
79 views

Is there a word for the commonly used given name of a person?

In Swedish we have the word tilltalsnamn (addressing name) which is one of the given names used when referring to a person. This name may or may not be the first among the given names. So a person ...
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1answer
2k views

How to indicate middle name is preferred name in professional email signature

In almost all situations, I prefer to be addressed by my legal middle name. However, in the email signature (what's automatically included at the bottom of the email) of my university email, I must ...
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1answer
2k views

What's a word for someone you haven't seen in a long time?

What's a word for someone that I haven't seen in a long time? I remember one person saying: "Oh, wow! I think I'm seeing a ghost. I can't believe it's you!" But I'm not so sure if "...
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1answer
95 views

How can I speak English fluently in 45 days? [closed]

I am new to start learning English. I want to improve my reading, writing & speaking english I have only 45 days to complete this course. Where I start learning. I am searching online for videos, ...
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Could Arkansas be considered an “Arch Kansas”? [closed]

The prefix arch- means "super" or "stronger than normal" as in the word archenemy. I looked up the etymology of the word Kansas. It said that it is an ethnonym meaning "people of the south wind". ...
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3answers
67 views

Brand name — how does it sound to American ears? [closed]

I work for a European tech start-up, and we are currently choosing a brand name for the US market. We obviously want the name to be unique, succinct, and memorable, but most importantly we want it to ...
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1answer
117 views

Looking for an appropriate English name to replace my Chinese name [closed]

Background: I am Chinese, and after living abroad from China for several years, I realize that I need an English name anyway. I’ve seen too many confused faces looking at my Chinese name. My Chinese ...
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1answer
110 views

How should this nickname for Adelaide be spelled? [closed]

Say you're writing a book, and a character calls another character this nickname for Adelaide. How should it be spelled? Lady Laidy Laidey Laidie Addelaide is an old name, so wondering if there's a ...
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1answer
83 views

The name Emmaculate

The name on my birth certificate is Emmaculate. I am not sure if it was a typo, but i love it that way. I have been looking up name meanings and apparently it has no meaning. What does Emmaculate ...
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51 views

Pronouncing initials as a word

I have long 3 names that i want to shorten so people can pronounce it easier, the initials of my full name are "M.E.Z", which sound a little heavy to pronounce letter by letter, do name initials have ...
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1answer
112 views

What is the proper way to spell and pronounce the name Yoanna or some certain names?

My name is "Yoanna" but I am not sure of how to pronounce or spell it properly in English. It is derived from "Joanna". Should I write it "Joanna" and pronounce it "Yoanna" or do I stick with "Yoanna" ...
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3answers
163 views

How should one differentiate between a father and son with identical names and don't have suffixes?

Specifically, I'm writing about the poet Ben Jonson, who had a son Ben Jonson, and later a second son, also named Ben Jonson. Some options I thought of: Ben Jonson, Sr.; Ben Jonson, Jr.; Ben ...
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1answer
42 views

Name suggestion [closed]

I'm a non-native English speaker and trying to choose the right name for my next business. Could any one help me to choose a right business name from the below list? 1) The geeks squad 2) Geek squad ...
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2answers
141 views

Should contractions be used with first names?

I understand that the apostrophe character ' is used to indicate missing characters, e.g. it's => It is. It is commonplace to use contractions in surnames, such as O'Reilly (of), or D'Artagnan (De), ...
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1answer
110 views

Addressing a person by their last name only [closed]

I've seen a couple of instances where someone is addressed exclusively by their last name (not like "Mr. X" but only "X"). The most prominent example is perhaps MacGyver, whose first name (Angus) is ...
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1answer
180 views

Could “Terry” be a diminutive for Peter or Walter?

I know "Terry" is used as a given name, and derives from french Thierry. It could also be used as a nickname for e.g. Terence. Here the first syllable of the given name is used as the stem in the ...
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1answer
112 views

Keeping the spelling 'Kristtorn' while sounding like 'Kriston' - possible with diacritics?

I want to change my name to Kristtorn, which, when pronounced in English, sounds like 'orn' as in horn (/ɔːn/), but I want to make it sound like 'kriston' (/krɪstɒn/). However what I am wondering is ...
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0answers
63 views

How can I describe this pattern? [closed]

I am trying to write a description of the back of a playing card. It includes a band that I am describing as "blue with a white arabesque". This seems like a weak description. I am sure that in the ...
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1answer
87 views

Spelling of Vietnamese names in formal context

I am a professor and I have a Vietnamese student called, say, Nguyen Hoang Thang. How should I write his name in the official documents, such as his diploma or transcript? How should his name be ...
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3answers
7k views

Difference between family name, name at birth and first names?

I'm filling an English document and I'm being asked to complete my family name, then my name at birth and then my first names. Does anyone know the difference between these 3 concepts? My guess is ...
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1answer
314 views

Pronunciation of “Makemake” versus “make”

"Makemake" is the name of a celestial object, a dwarf planet. The "i" in name "Makemake" is pronounced different than in the English word "make" meaning create*. It is pronounced as in "maki", the ...
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0answers
105 views

How to write my full name in English?

My first name is Thu, my middle name is Thi and my last name (which is also my father's name) is BUI. How should I write my full name: Thi - Thu BUI Thu Thi Bui
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111 views

Is there a name for those iconic wild west single-street american towns?

Is there a term that describes these (see pictures below) Used in sentence: X now serve as great tourist attractions OR X are iconic symbols of the western american frontier
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Does the word “uzi” need to be capitalized?

"Uzi" is not contained in any Scrabble® dictionary that I can find online. I am assuming that the Scrabble® powers that be are treating it as a proper noun. However, after reading the Wikipedia ...
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3answers
1k views

Why is ‘Earth’ often spelt with a lowercase e, even when referring to the planet?

The word earth has several meanings; the most central one is ‘soil, dirt’, that thing we walk on when we’re outside. It’s also used as a name for the planet we live on. The Lexico definition for this ...
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2answers
173 views

Chinese names in English [closed]

I have noticed certain Chinese names follow the English order, i.e., given name before family name, when occurring in English text, whereas others retain the Chinese order, i.e., family name before ...
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1answer
253 views

What does the quoted section in someone’s name mean?

As in the title, what does a quoted section in a name mean? Names like John “James” Doe (not someone’s name)
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3answers
240 views

How to pronounce August Dvorak's last name in English?

I've recently come across the existence of the Dvorak Simplified Keyboard created by professor August Dvorak. And I've been looking for solid sources on how to pronounce the man's name and I can't ...
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1answer
2k views

Capitalization in food

Morning everyone! Translating a Spanish restaurant menu into English, I found myself doubting whether to capitalize sauce names. Some examples are romesco and Sriracha. Not being familiar with them, ...
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326 views

Why is the Turkish president's surname is spelt in English as Erdogan, with g?

I recently got puzzled as to why American journalists spell the surname of the current Turkish president in articles written in English as Erdogan, with g (see, e.g., this article in New York Times). ...

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