Friday, April 29, 2016

Hidden Colors

Gray-names seem to be trending right now--Grey/Grey, Grady, & Grayden for boys, and Grayson for both, with "Gray" potential from girls' Grace names as well. It got me wondering--what other color nickname-names can we find? Hmm....

"Red":
  • Alfred
  • Frederick
  • Jared/Yered
  • MeredithMaredudd (mah-RED-ith [hard th, like in "the"], Welsh)
  • Redford [English surname]
  • Redmond

  • Mared (MAH-red, Welsh)
  • Meredith
  • Mildred
  • Vered (veh-RED, Hebrew)
  • Winifred

"Blue"
  • [no boys' names]

  • Abelu, Abeluna (AH-bel-oo, ah-beh-LOO-nah, [archaic] Scandinavian) 
  • Bleuenn (bleu-EN, Breton, French)
  • Bluma (BLOO-mah, Yiddish)

"Teal"
  • Tilo (TEE-loh, German)

  • Bertille (behr-TEEL, French)
  • Mathilde (mah-TEELD, French)
  • Tehila (teh-hee-LAH, Hebrew)
  • Tialda (tee-AHL-dah, Frisian)
  • Tilia (TEEL-yah, Scandinavian)

"Green"
  • Guerino (gwehr-EE-noh, Italian)
  • Peregrine, and the Italian form Pellegrino (pel-eh-GREEN-oh)

  • [no girls' names]

"Jet"
  • Jarrett
  • Jethro

  • JacquettaJacquette
  • Jeanette
  • Josette
  • Juliet

"Gold"/"Goldie"
  • [no boys' names]

  • Golda
  • Marigold

And even more "Gray"!
  • Graeme (GRAY-em, English, Scottish)
  • Gratian (GRAY-shen, Anglicized Latin)
  • Grayer [English surname]
  • Grégoire (gray-GWAHR, French) [and Gregory, too, if your accent allows :) ]

  • Igraine (ee-GRAYN, Arthurian mythology)
  • Margrete (mahr-GREH-teh, Norwegian)

Saturday, March 26, 2016

Random Fact of the Day: Every Tom, Dick, and Harry

Many cultures have generic placeholder names. In American English, we have "Tom, Dick, and Harry" (that is, 'any/all men'), and "John Doe" or "Richard Roe"  (an anonymous/unknown person, although the latter is rather archaic now); while in the UK & Australia there's also "Joe Bloggs" and "John Smith".
For some languages, the 'names' aren't actual names you'll find on people; rather, they literally just mean "anonymous" or "whoever"; but others are (or were) in general usage [indicated by bold].

Arabic:
  • "Fulan" --- "whoever"
  • "Fulan bin Fulan" --- "whoever, son of whoever"

Bulgarian:
  • "Petar Petrov"

Chinese:
  • "Zhang San", "Li Si", "Wang Wu" -- "Zhang Three", "Li Four", "Wang Five" [Zhang, Li, & Wang are surnames]
  • "Wang Xiaoming", "Chen Xiaoming", "Chen Tai Man"

Danish:
  • "Morten Menigmand" -- "Morten Ordinary-man"

Dutch:
  • "Jan Jansen"

Finnish:
  • "Matti  & Maija Meikäläinen" -- "Matti & Maija One-of-us"

French:
  • "Jean Dupont"
  • "Pierre, Paul, & Jacques"

German:
  • "Hinz & Kunz"/ "Heinrich & Konrad"
  • "Lieschen Müller"
  • "Max & Erika Mustermann" --- "Max and Erika Sample-man"
  • "Otto Normalverbraucher" --- "Otto Average-consumer"

Hebrew:
  • "Ploni", "Ploni Almoni" -- poss. "indicated", "indicated hidden"; a Biblical placeholder name

Hungarian:
  • "Minta János" -- "John Sample"

Irish:
  • "Seán Ó Rudaí" -- "Sean O'Things"

Italian:
  • "Tizio, Caio, e Sempronio" -- modern Italian version of Roman placeholders (Titus, Caius, & Sempronius)

Japanese:
  • "Daredare" -- "whoever"

Lithuanian:
  • "Jonas Jonaitis", "Petras Petraitis"
  • "Vardenis Pavardenis" (m) / "Vardenė Pavardenė" (f) -- "Name Surname"

Norwegian:
  • "Ola & Kari Nordmann" --- "Ola & Kari Norwegian"

Persian:
  • "Fulan" -- "whoever"
  • "Bahman" --- "whoever"
  • "Fulan o Bahman" --- "whoever and whoever"

Polish:
  • "Jan Kowalski" / "Janina Kowalska"
  • "Jan Novak"

Portuguese: 
  • "Fulano" -- "whoever"
  • "Fulano, Sicrano e Beltrano" / "Fulana, Sicrana e Beltrana"  -- "whoever, _____, & Beltrano" [origin of Sicrano is unknown; Beltrano is a surname]

Russian:
  • "Imyarek" -- "name"
  • "Ivan Ivanovich Ivanov", "Pyotr Petrovich Petrov", "Sidor Sidorovich Sidorov" -- sometimes mix-and-match

Serbian:
  • "Pera Perić"

Slovak:
  • "Janko Mrkvička", "Jožko Mrkvička"  -- "Johnny Carrot", "Joey Carrot"

Spanish:
  • "Fulano" / "Fulanita" -- "whoever"
  • "Fulano, Mengano, y Zutano" -- "whoever, whoever, & _____?" [poss. related to Latin scire "to know"]
  • "Juan Perez" [Latin America]

Swedish:
  • "Medelsvensson" -- "average Svensson"