About Names: McCartney is a rare talent, and a (historically) rare British Paul

Dr. Cleveland Evans writes about names for the Omaha World-Herald. In his July 18 column, he looks at the history of the name Paul.

The name Paul is the English form of Latin name Paulus or Paullus, meaning “small” or “humble.” St. Paul was an important leader of early Christianity. Despite Paul’s biblical significance, his name wasn’t popular in medieval Western Europe.

Paul had a minor uptick from 19th to 16th in the U.S. when Beatlemania crossed the Atlantic. For Americans, though, Paul wasn’t “fresh” enough for that to last, and it fell out of the top 50 names in 1991. McCartney is the most famous modern Paul, but there are scores of others. Paul Robeson (1898-1976), singer and political activist whose version of “Ol’ Man River” is still the most famous rendition of the song, kept the name known among African-Americans. Read on to find out more about Pauls in history!


Final Call for Papers: ANS 2018, Salt Lake City, UT, January 4-7, 2018

The ANS is inviting abstract submissions for the 2018 annual conference to be held in conjunction with the Linguistic Society of America.  Abstracts in any area of onomastic research are welcome. The deadline for receipt of abstracts is July 30, 2017.  To submit a proposal, simply complete the 2018 Author Information Form.

A downloadable PDF of the Call for Papers can be found here.

Please email this completed form to Dr. Dorothy Dodge Robbins using the following address: drobbins@latech.edu. For organizational purposes, please be sure to include the phrase “ANS 2018” in the subject line of your email. Presenters who may need additional time to secure international payments and travel visas to the United States are urged to submit their proposal as soon as possible.

All proposals will be subjected to blind review. Official notification of proposal acceptances will be sent on or before September 30, 2017. All authors whose papers have been accepted must be current members of the ANS and need to register with both the ANS and the Linguistic Society of America. Please feel free to contact Dr. Dorothy Dodge Robbins should you have any questions or concerns.

We look forward to receiving your submission!

Voprosy Onomastiki (Problems of Onomastics) publishes Vol. 14 (2017), Issue 2

The editorial board of the journal Voprosy Onomastiki (Problems of Onomastics) is pleased to inform you of the publication of Vol. 14 (2017), Issue 2. The issue is available on the journal’s website.


Nikolaev, S. L. Etymology and Comparative Phonology of North Germanic Personal Names in the Primary Chronicle

Toporova, T. V. Proper Name as a Marker of a Cosmogonic Song

Krivoshchapova, J. A. Russian River Names: The Potential of Semantic Development (With Reference to Dialectal Vocabulary)

Brodsky, I. V. Anthroponyms in Finno-Permic Compound Plant Names

Feoktistova, L. A. Anthroponyms in Russian Appellative Names for Alcoholic Drinks (yerofeich, erokha, ivashko, ivanushko, etc.)

Madieva, G. B., Suprun, V. I. The System of Modern Russian Urbanonymic Terminology

Gridina, Т. А., Konovalova, N. I. Pen Name as a Form of a Journalist’s Self-Presentation in the Late 19th — Early 20th Centuries Russian Regional Press


Coates, R. Popular Books on English Place-Names — a Serious Issue in Onomastics

Lozić Knezović, K., Marasović-Alujević, M. Transonymization as Revitalization: Old Toponyms of Split

Book Reviews

Suprun, V. I.
Astrakhan’s Anthroponymy over Time. Review of the book: Kopylova, E. V. (2016). Imia i vremia: dva veka istorii imen astrakhantsev (1800–2000 gg.) [Name and Time: Two Centuries in the History of Astrakhan Citizens’ Names (1800–2000)]. Moscow: KnoRus; Astrakhan: Astrakhan University Press

Morgunova, О. V.
Folk Calendar of Czechs and Slovaks through the Lens of Language. Review of the book: Valentsova, M. M. (2016). Narodnyi kalendar chekhov i slovakov. Etnolingvisticheskii aspekt [The Folk Calendar of Czechs and Slovaks. An Ethnolinguistic Aspect]. Moscow: Indrik



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“Southern Stars” name dropped from Australian women’s cricket team

Australia vs West Indies women’s cricket

Cricket Australia has adopted a naming convention that will see its men’s and women’s international teams referred to in the same manner. The two national outfits will be referred to in the same way — simply as the Australian women’s cricket team and the Australian men’s cricket team. The women’s Southern Stars moniker will remain in a colloquial capacity, but some questions by businesswoman Ann Sherry prompted the change. Australia’s women’s cricket captain Meg Lanning has praised Cricket Australia’s (CA) decision to drop Southern Stars as the official women’s team name. “I think it’s a big step towards gender equality and it’s great that Cricket Australia have recognized that,” she said.

Mumbai steps up removal of British names from railway stations

Indian authorities are moving to strip Mumbai’s railway stations of their British names, as leaders seek to purge the city of remnants of its colonial past. Critics say the name changes are a cynical ploy to appeal to the local Maratha community, which makes up the bulk of Shiv Sena’s support base, while historians lament any attempt to eradicate the city’s history. Elphinstone Road station – named after a British-era governor – officially became Prabhadevi station this week, after a local Hindu deity, and ministers say more changes are in the works. In addition to the Guardian article, this YouTube video from Lehren News provides good coverage.

Call for Papers: ICHLL9 (9th International Conference on Historical Lexicology and Lexicography ), Santa Margherita Ligure, Italy, June 20-22 2018

The 9th International Conference on Historical Lexicology and Lexicography (ICHLL9) will be held from the 20th to the 22nd of June 2018 in Santa Margherita Ligure, Italy. The focus of the conference is to offer scholars a forum for exchanging their research findings on historical lexicology, the history of dictionaries, and the making of historical dictionaries, and will be hosted by the Department of Modern Languages and Cultures of the University of Genova. Proposals for scientific paper and poster presentations are welcomed until the 31st of December 2017; more information on submission requirements can be found at the website.

When “milk” is milk – and when it’s not

Soy milk, almond milk, coconut milk, oat milk, flax milk, rice milk….what do all of these products have in common? Not one of them was, well, “milked” from a cow. For that reason, the dairy industry has said “enough is ENOUGH!” Plant-based products that use the name “milk” are, according to dairy industry leaders, deceiving consumers. If the Food and Drug Administration is anything to go by, they might well have a point. The FDA defines “milk” as a “lacteal secretion”. Sound yummy? Want to learn what all the naming uproar is about? This New York Times article examines the controversy.


Call for Papers: ICELL (International Conference on English Language and Literature) 2018, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, December 3-4, 2018

The 20th International Conference on English Language and Literature (ICELL) will be held in Amsterdam from the 3rd to the 4th of December 2018. Conference organizers are currently accepting abstracts for papers on a variety of topics, including lexicography and lexicology; terminology in translation; and language and globalization. The call for papers is here and the deadline for abstracts is October 31, 2017.

The ICELL 2018: 20th International Conference on English Language and Literature aims to bring together leading academic scientists, researchers and research scholars to exchange and share their experiences and research results on all aspects of English Language and Literature. It also provides a premier interdisciplinary platform for researchers, practitioners and educators to present and discuss the most recent innovations, trends, and concerns as well as practical challenges encountered and solutions adopted in the fields of English Language and Literature.

All honorable authors are kindly encouraged to contribute to and help shape the conference through submissions of their research abstracts, papers and e-posters. Also, high quality research contributions describing original and unpublished results of conceptual, constructive, empirical, experimental, or theoretical work in all areas of English Language and Literature are cordially invited for presentation at the conference. The conference solicits contributions of abstracts, papers and e-posters that address themes and topics of the conference, including figures, tables and references of novel research materials.W

A History Of Shocking and Controversial Beauty Product Names

From “Dusty Rose” and “Ruby Red” to “X-

Rated” and “Better than Sex”, over the past few years, the product names of women’s cosmetics have gone through revolutionary change. What used to be considered too risqué or offensive to sell has now become commonplace in the marketplace. While some have hailed these onomastic changes as liberating and fun, others have begun to wonder if product namers have gone too far. In this article at Bravo by Adele Chapin, a fascinating discussion of this controversy is offered. (Warning: autoplay video upon landing on the page)