A recent xkcd strip introduced the game of name dominoes (see also large version of image). I’m a little surprised to see that I haven’t posted before about making chains of names; I’ve been doing it now and then for a long time. But usually I only get linear chains of three or four names […]
Archive for Names
A bunch of interesting assorted notes about Irish names. (Published in 2016.) (Link via Marguerite.) Example: A few hundred years ago people paid little attention to how names were spelled. One extreme example is on a tombstone in Ireland where the surname for a family of six is shown as McEneaney, McAneany, McAneny, McEnaney, McEneany—and […]
Alfonso the Slobberer and Ivar the Boneless [and more]: Worst Nicknames for Medieval Rulers. (From 2013.)
According to Wikipedia: A hypocorism […] is a diminutive form of a name. Hypocorisms include pet names or calling names[…] The article also includes lists of dozens of hypocorisms from many languages.
Entertaining-by-modern-standards Puritan names: part one (2012), part two (2013). The posts don’t explicitly say whether these are real historical Puritan names or modern made-up ones, but I think the former. They appear to be extracted from Curiosities of Puritan Nomenclature, by Charles Wareing Endell Bardsley (1888), which you can now view online in its entirety […]
On the International Astronomical Union processes for naming asteroids, comets, and planetary features: “How Do New Planets Get Their Names?” (Published in 2017.)
Janelle Shane, who has trained neural nets to generate entertainingly semi-plausible names for all sorts of things (Pokémon, Star Wars characters, etc), posted a new list about a month ago: bird names. But this time, most of the names weren’t much weirder than real names of bird species. Still, I enjoyed them. A few I […]
Earlier today, I had occasion to look at the Wikipedia article about Russian composer Modest Mussorgsky. I was amused by the section about variant spellings of his last name, especially...
Back in December, linguistics grad student Gretchen McCulloch analyzed joke variants on Benedict Cumberbatch's name to see what the underlying patterns are. She gave more statistical detail in a post...
Someone mentioned the Emmy Awards the other day, and I realized I wasn't sure why they were called that. I figured they must have been named after some famous person...