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Re: [SCA-JML] Name question; mixing elements

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  • Anthony J. Bryant
    ... You d love academe. ... Interesting question. Quite often those one-kanji names are positive adjectives or verbs (Takeshi, Susumu, etc.) but you do
    Message 1 of 4 , Feb 16, 2002
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      Ii Saburou wrote:

      > > There is a handful of kanji that only have one (either on or kun) reading,
      > > so these tend to affect a name they might find their way into. By and large,
      > > though, I can't recall which kanji these might be, but I don't think they're
      > > particularly common in names.
      > I couldn't exactly recall, but I did know that some kanji have no on or
      > kun readings (actually, I've also seen some where it states that the on
      > and kun are the same; I'm not sure if the reference was making a special
      > statement that it did have both on and kun readings or if it was just, in
      > a round-about way, saying that it only had one reading--which is
      > effectively true, but if the former were the reality it seems that it
      > might be of interest to some... and now I'm rambling)

      You'd love academe. <G>

      > > > However, one would not expect a nanori to have an on-yomi kanji in it,
      > > > unless it was something like a Buddhist name.
      > >
      > > Not usually, but it happens. Look at people like Matsudaira Ken, or the
      > > craftsman Matsumura(?) Gou.
      > I wasn't sure if craftsmen's names were still nanori, or if that was just
      > a term for the names taken by members of the buke and kuge.

      Interesting question. Quite often those one-kanji names are positive adjectives or
      verbs (Takeshi, Susumu, etc.) but you do encounter the rare one using on'yomi. I'd
      have to go back and do some real looking on some old village rolls and such to get
      these names to see what it really represents.

      Yesterday Prof. Rubinger gave a talk here illustrated with slides of the signature
      page of several shumon aratame ("inquisition investigation rolls") and
      anti-Christian oaths and voting rolls of the early Tokugawa days, and I was in hog
      heaven looking at the names. Of course, it was a discussion on literacy
      (signaturesand kao [cyphers] as indicators of "familiarity with the brush") but I
      didn't get as much of a chance to study them as I'd like. I have to talk to him
      about these. (Side note: A lecture on literacy in premodern Japan? I'd thought,
      ho-hum, dull, but departmental politics suggest it would be good to go. I left the
      lecture as a convert, and in search of more material for my own research.)

      > Out of curiosity, do we know if this tradition was influenced by Buddhism
      > (like we see all of the 'Ami' names) or if it was done because China was
      > considered the center of the arts, and so it became more distinguished to
      > have a 'Chinese' name?

      Good question. I'd expect there might be, but not so much Buddhism qua Buddhism
      per se, but more Chinese = cultured and cool. It's the old "signing your name in
      Latin" thing, I guess. <G>

      This would be something that I would have to do a lot more research to see about,
      but Prof. Rubinger has given some hints of excellent places to start looking for
      these kinds of things.

      I have a few books here that are nothing but rolls of genealogies of historical
      o-erai-san*, and when I get some time (damn all the crap I've got to do!) I'm
      going to start with those and see if there might be a pattern in some families.

      > > > On a related note, are yobina all on-yomi? I was just going over it in my
      > > > head, and they use 'I-', 'Ryuu-', etc.
      > >
      > > Nope. See above and Tora-san.
      > But that is a more recent development, correct?

      Not this one, but it is a naming practice that continues.

      You can look at the childhood names of some of history's greats: "Takechiyo"
      (Ieyasu) which is an on/kun combination, and the yobina of others from the same
      period where you see things like Torazaemon and Tatsusaburo mixing them as well.

      I do believe that for whatever reason, yobina was the only instance where such
      mixing was really commonly "allowed." More things to look into. <G>

      > > Yup. There's a lot to digest with any lingo's onomastics, and it's easy to
      > > make the booboos.
      > Yes, but the more we learn the easier it is to avoid them :)

      Yeah, I get that a lot, too. <wink>

      > > They *thought* they were writing Chinese, using Chinese grammar and so on.
      > > They were reading it in Japanese however (something that really causes
      > > cognitive dissonance). Kanbun is a pain in the butt. It looks like regular
      > > Wenyan (classical Chinese) but it does have its variations (much as medieval
      > > Latin varies from Classical Latin), but it's read in a wholly classical
      > > Japanese way, which calls for an understanding of both classical C and
      > > classical J and the way texts were pointed to hint at the proper way to read
      > > them.
      > Atama itaku nari!*
      > *My head hurts!

      Deshou?** <G>


      * "important people"
      ** hard to translate here: literally "is it [not] so?" but sort of like a more
      conspiratorial/collegial "ya think?" <G>
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