- So I posted a little while ago about designing a persona, and now I have another question - how do you guys source names? What resorces do you use? Be specific, don't say 'a book' or 'a website', give me titles and links. I've read the avoid lists so I know what not to use.
On a similar note, can someone point me at a page describing the naming practices of renissance italy?
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- Tikuko wrote:
> . . .how do you guys source names? What resorces do you use?The single best resource available online is the Medieval Names Archive
Which printed resources will serve is, of course, determined by which
language, culture, and period you want.
> On a similar note, can someone point me at a page describing theIf you visit the guide to Italian names in the Medieval Names Archive
> naming practices of renissance italy?
<http://www.s-gabriel.org/names/italian.shtml>, you'll find several
articles that give information on the patterns seen in names in
specific sources from northern, central, or southern Italy. "Italian
Men's Names in Rome, 1473-1484" is one example; a full page of the
article is devoted to the discussion of name construction
Barony of Bryn Gwlad
Kingdom of Ansteorra
- Quoth Tikuko:
> So I posted a little while ago about designing a persona, and now I have an=My first place is always the Medieval Names Archive:
> other question - how do you guys source names? What resorces do you use? Be=
> specific, don't say 'a book' or 'a website', give me titles and links. I'v=
After that, my next place is my heraldic library. I won't list
everything that is in it, but I will list the books the get used
frequently enough to be on the shelf closest to the computer (or
indeed sitting permanently on the computer desk because they get
referenced every day!)
Reaney, P. H., & R. M. Wilson, _A Dictionary of English Surnames_
(London: Routledge, 1991; Oxford University Press, 1995). The best
source out there for English names. Even though the title says
"surnames", you'll also get info on given names, since most surnames
are exampled with complete names.
_Cambridge Dictionary of English Place-Names, Based on the Collections
of the English Place-Name Society_, Edited by Victor Watts, Edited in
association with John Insley, Margaret Gelling (Cambridge University
Press: January 2004). Very comprehensive
Morgan, T.J. and Prys Morgan, _Welsh Surnames_ (Cardiff: University of
Wales Press, 1985). Not the easiest to use, but the best available on
Mills, A. D., _A Dictionary of English Place-Names_ (Oxford: Oxford
University Press, 1991). Every once in awhile has something that Watts
doesn't, but Watts is always my first choice.
O/ Corra/in, Donnchadh and Fidelma Maguire, _Irish Names_ (Dublin: The
Lilliput Press, 1990). Not all of the names in here are medieval, but
they are very good at saying when a name was used in the Middle Ages,
if it was.
Withycombe, E.G., _The Oxford Dictionary of English Christian Names_,
3rd ed. (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988). Highly recommended.
MacLysaght, Edward, _The Surnames of Ireland_ (Dublin: Irish Academic
Press Ltd., 1985, ISBN 0-7165-2366-3). Recommended as a starting point
only. All his forms are modern, and so are generally not registerable
without independent evidence that they are also medieval.
De Felice, Emidio, _Dizionario dei cognomi italiani_ (Arnoldo Mondadori
De Felice, Emidio, _Dizionario dei nomi italiani_ (Arnoldo Mondadori
Editore, Milan, 1992). These fall in the "better than nothing" category.
They rarely have dates, but often have general information about
Bardsley, Charles Wareing, _Curiosities of Puritan Nomenclature_ (Detroit:
Gale Research Company, 1970). Narrow in focus, but absolutely hilarious.
Dauzat, Albert, _Dictionnaire Etymologique des Noms de Famille et Prenoms
de France_ (Paris: Libraire Larousse, 1987). Like the two de Felice books
above; most forms are undated, but there sometimes is information about
Black, George F., _The Surnames of Scotland: Their Origin, Meaning and
History_, (New York: The New York Public Library, 1986). Highly recommended
with the caveat that unless he states explicitly otherwise, his Gaelic
spellings are all modern.
Bahlow, Hans, _Dictionary of German Names_, tr. Edda Gentry (German-
American Cultural Society, 1994 ISBN: 0924119357). Not very comprehensive,
but most entires have dated citations.
Bardsley, Charles, _A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames_ (Baltimore:
Genealogical Publishing Company, 1980). Often has later-period citations
that Reaney & Wilson doesn't have.
> On a similar note, can someone point me at a page describing the naming pra=What part of Italy, and for a man or a woman?
> ctices of renissance italy?
A good place to start is the Italian section of the Medieval Names Archive
that I linked to above.
vita sine literis mors est