The waiting game is over. Prince Harry and Meghan, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, have named their first child, a son born on the 6th May 2019, Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor. The royal couple made the announcement today via their official Instagram account, ending several days of feverish speculation about the baby’s name.
Archie became the 7th in line to the British throne the instant he was born, but he won’t be called “his royal highness,” as the rules around the granting of royal titles were tightened up about 100 years ago. Britain’s booming betting business had shown before Wednesday’s announcement that a lot of punters expected the new baby to be named Alexander, Arthur, Philip or a handful of other go-to historical British royal names.
Many of our towns and geographical features have names to match. Some of these names, although blunt, really tell their own story: Mount Terror, for example, or Foulweather Bluff.
A lot of those origins seem weather-related. In one case, an explorer couldn’t find something because of the fog. In a few cases, an expedition – or a group of cattlemen – got stuck somewhere kind of miserable and inconvenient during a harsh winter. Others are almost a personal vendetta towards the places themselves: Deception Pass, Mount Horrible, Useless Bay.
It’s notable that most of these places had perfectly serviceable names before white explorers came along and gave their own bummer spin while drawing their maps. Find the map and all names here.
The Linguistics Circle of the Frisian Academy (Fryske Akademy) organizes its annual meeting in October 2019. The 10th Conference on Frisian Linguistics will be of interest to anyone who actively or passively participates in Frisian linguistics: grammar, phonetics/phonology, onomastics, lexicology, sociolinguistics, historical linguistics. Papers may focus on the results of scientific research, but presentations of research plans, of speculations or of language corpora are also welcome. They may be presented in any of the West-Germanic languages.
To participate, please, send an abstract – as soon as possible, but not later than August 1 – of half A4, with name and address, to Eric Hoekstra (secretary of the Linguistics Circle), e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
In public radio they do our utmost to get things right, including the pronunciation of names and places. It shows they know their stuff and conveys respect — for the people they report about and the people who make up audiences.
But words in other languages can be difficult to say on air, and some public radio listeners bristle at hearing names enunciated with non-English accents. As a multilingual journalist who spent nearly two decades reporting from overseas, Jerome Socolovsky has thought a lot about how to name people and places in a way that is accurate and understandable to listeners. What do you do? Here’s a guide.
Last year, officials from Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Hindu Bharatiya Janata Party changed the name of Allahabad to Prayagraj — a word that references the Hindu pilgrimage site there. The name Allahabad dated to the 16th century, a legacy of a Muslim ruler, the Mughal Emperor Akbar.
Allahabad’s renaming has made headlines not for the hassles of changing signs, but for a growing trend of Hindu nationalism in Indian politics. Over the past five years of Modi’s term as prime minister, Hindu nationalist politicians from the BJP have renamed Indian towns, streets, airports and one of the country’s biggest train stations, swapping names that reflect Muslim heritage for Hinducentric ones.