Andrew Douglas Clifford maps te reo place names

Andrew Douglas-Clifford, who is in his early twenties, used a range of resources to put together an online map and poster giving New Zealand places and natural features the te reo Māori names bestowed by the indigenous people.

He spent months creating the detailed, interactive online map that offers Māori names for towns, cities, lakes, notable mountain peaks, rivers, bays and international cities and countries. The map on his Map Kiwi website also shows marae locations around the country.

You can read more about his work, or listen to an audio version of the story at the Radio New Zealand website.

Call for Papers: 21st International Cartographic Conference (ICC2019), Tokyo, Japan, July 15-20 2019

The 29th International Cartographic Conference will take place in Tokyo, Japan, 15–20 July 2019. The Organizing Committee of ICC2019 invites all interested participants to submit full papers or abstracts for the oral or poster presentations. Join and share the latest innovations and developments in mapping techniques, technological advancements, and current research in cartography and GIScience. Conference themes and topics are listed, but not limited to, below. The event is a unique experience to exchange ideas and encourage collaboration with colleagues from academia, government and industry.

All submissions will be reviewed by the International Scientific Committee. All accepted submissions will be published as the Advances in Cartography and GIScience of the ICAProceedings of the ICA, or Abstracts of the ICA. Selected papers will also be published in the International Journal of Cartography.

All details and the submission form can be found on the ICC website:

The deadline for abstract submissions is 19 December 2018,

The Skinny on Meal Kit Company Names

Meal kit delivery is relatively new, but the concept has spawned fierce competition in the last six years. With a raft of similar companies vying for the same customers, the pressure is on for branding teams to make sure their company stands out from the crowd. That process starts with the company name. And for those of us outside of the meal kit industry, looking at an entire category like this provides great naming lessons for how to differentiate our brands.

Of course, in its branding and marketing, each company conveys messages beyond what’s obvious from the name. Most of those are common to the category: farm-to-table freshness, great taste, healthful eating, sustainability, ease, convenience. But focusing on the names themselves yields plenty of choice branding morsels.

At Marketing Profs, Mark Skoultchi of the naming firm Catchword dives into the meal kit naming world and provides five takeaways from the naming of meal kit brands. Click through to get some tasty naming naming lessons!

Fifth International Conference on Onomastics Name and Naming (ICONN), Baia Mare, Romania, September 3-5, 2019

Announcing the Fifth International Conference on Onomastics Name and Naming: The event will be held September 3-5, 2019, in Baia Mare, Romania. It will focus on “Multiculturalism in Onomastics”. Further information about the conference can be found on the ICONN 5 website.

Multiculturalism is a more and more prominent topic in contemporary international public space, whether one considers it in relation to politics, religion, ethnicity or culture. In what onomastics is concerned, multiculturalism appears in all its subfields. In toponymy, for instance, in multi-ethnic areas there are names with etymologies from different languages; when analysed in diachrony, these names testify to the history and geography of the places in question. In anthroponymy, the multicultural element is associated with religion, ethnic belonging and the onomastic fashion of a certain age. In ergonymy, multiculturalism mirrors the configuration of the present-day world, in which globalisation determines the existence of an increasingly diverse landscape, as regards names of companies, brands and products.

The Changing Place Names of Washington, D.C.

“View looking northwest from Anacostia: [Washington D.C.],” John L. Trout, 1901. Geography and Map Division, Library of Congress.

Kim Edwin, a library technician in the Geography and Map Division, has written about the history of place names in Washington, D.C. for the Library of Congress. She discusses the complicated array of toponyms and political geography over its history. Here’s a sample:

The Residence Act of 1790 created a national capital, known as the Federal District, from portions of Maryland and Virginia, centered on the convergence of the Potomac and the Anacostia rivers, which are names derived from the Algonquian Native American language. In 1791, President George Washington appointed Major Pierre Charles L’Enfant to develop a plan for the new city. This resulted in a map, now famously known as the L’Enfant Plan, an enhanced version of which can be seen below. L’Enfant does not name the new city in his map, but within his layout of streets, marked by circles and diagonals, he shows locations for the “President’s House” as well as the “Congress House.” It even has a “Grand Avenue” on the site of today’s National Mall.

Want to know more? Click through to read it all at the website for the Library of Congress!

About Names: Swahili names like Taraji, Sanaa see swell in popularity

Taraji P. Henson

Dr. Cleveland Evans writes about names for the Omaha World-Herald. In his September 10th column, he looks at Swahili names.

Actress Taraji P. Henson turned 48 recently. Bernice and Boris Henson named their daughter Taraji Penda. In Swahili, taraji means “hope” and penda means “love”. Both taraji and penda are verbs in Swahili. “Penda maadui wako” is Swahili for “Love your enemies.”

The English verb “hope” is more often translated by the Swahili word “tumaini” than “taraji.” Swahili speakers use “tumaini” when they trust what’s hoped for will really happen. “Taraji” is a bit more tentative, closer to English “wish.”

Swahili was first spoken in Zanzibar and coastal Tanzania and Kenya. It became the trade language of all East Africa. Today, it has around 75 million speakers in Uganda, Mozambique, Rwanda and the Congo, as well as Kenya and Tanzania.

Since the 1960s, African-American parents have turned Swahili words into names. Many of them aren’t actually used as names in East Africa. Of course, they aren’t the only foreign words turned into American names — Irish “colleen” (girl) and French “chérie” (darling) weren’t names in Ireland or France.

In East Africa, the huge majority of Swahili speakers are Muslim, and most of the names they use are Islamic. Swahili variations of Muslim Arabic names are also used by African-Americans. One of the most common is Omari, Swahili form of the Arabic “Umar,” “long life” or “flourishing,” name of the second caliph after Muhammad’s death. Actor Omari Hardwick (1974), since 2014 starring as the nightclub owner “Ghost” St. Patrick on the crime drama “Power,” has helped this name boom in the African-American community. Omari ranked 512th for American boys in 2017.

Want to know more? Read on to find out more about Swahili names in American history!

Registration opens for the 2019 ANS Conference, New York City, NY, January 3-6, 2019

American Name SocietyRegistration is now open for the 2019 ANS Conference in New York City, NY. The ANS conference will take place in conjunction with the Linguistics Society of American (LSA) Conference from January 3-6, 2019.

To register, you must join the ANS or renew your ANS membership.

LSA Registration is now open! Go to the LSA Meeting page to register. You must be a member of the LSA (as well as the ANS) in order to attend.

You can also reserve your room at the Sheraton in New York City via the LSA. Use the LSA link to receive a special discounted room rate.

Note that to renew your ANS membership, you will be redirected to the Taylor & Francis website where you will need to enter information from your renewal notice.

Once your membership is up to date, you can register online here, or download a PDF of the Conference Registration Form and mail it to ANS Treasurer Saundra Wright, as per the instructions on the form.

For more information about the ANS Conference and the LSA Conference, including rate and hotel information, please visit our Conference Page.

Book Announcement: Onomastics Between Sacred and Profane, ed. by Oliviu Felecan, Vernon Press

Vernon Press announces publication of the volume Onomastics Between Sacred and Profane, edited by Oliviu Felecan, part of the Vernon Series in Language and Linguistics. A free sample of the book is available as a PDF download, containing the Table of Contents, the Foreword, the list of Contributors, the Preface and the Indexes.

Religiously, God is the creator of everything seen and unseen; thus, one can ascribe to Him the names of His creation as well, at least in their primordial form. In the mentality of ancient Semitic peoples, naming a place or a person meant determining the role or fate of the named entity, as names were considered to be mysteriously connected with the reality they designated. Subsequently, God gave people the freedom to name persons, objects, and places. However, people carried out this act (precisely) in relation to the divinity, either by remaining devoted to the sacred or by growing estranged from it, an attitude that generated profane names. The sacred/profane dichotomy occurs in all the branches of onomastics, such as anthroponymy, toponymy, and ergonymy. It is circumscribed to complex and interdisciplinary analysis which does not rely on language sciences exclusively, but also on theology, ethnology, sociology, psychology, philosophy, anthropology, geography, history and other connected fields, as well as culture in general.

Despite the contributors’ cultural diversity (29 researchers from 16 countries – England, Finland, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Japan, Jordan, Kenya, Nigeria, Poland, Romania, Russia, South Africa, Spain, U.S.A., and Zimbabwe – on four continents) and their adherence to different religions and faiths, the studies in Onomastics between Sacred and Profane share a common goal that consist of the analysis of names that reveal a person’s identity and behavior, or the existence, configuration and symbolic nature of a place or an object.

If you would like to order a copy through the publisher,  you can get a 24% discount using coupon CFC7736DFEE at Vernon Press. You can also order this book on Amazon.

5th International Symposium on Place Names: Recognition, regulation, revitalisation: place names and indigenous languages, Clarens, South Africa, Sept. 18-20 2019

The Unit for Language Facilitation and Empowerment at the University of the Free State (UFS), in partnership with the Joint IGU/ICA Commission on Toponymy, is pleased to announce the next biannual international symposium on place names. The 5th International Symposium on Place Names: Recognition, regulation, revitalisation: place names and indigenous languages will be held at Mont d’Or Hotel, Clarens, South Africa, 18-20 September 2019.

The toponymic landscape of any place is inscribed with names from different periods of human history. These place names are not only records of natural and social events, but also of indigenous languages and language contact. Very often, place names are all that remain of certain languages and even communities. However, place names are often not recorded in their original languages, but have been adapted or translated into other languages over time. Researching the etymology of place names is one way of uncovering this treasure of indigenous knowledge. ISPN 2019 aims to explore the
processes of researching, maintaining and restoring indigenous place names, as well as the preservation and promotion of the indigenous languages from which these place names originate.

Prof Charles Pfukwa (Bindura University of Science Education, Bindura, Zimbabwe)
Prof Peter Jordan (Austrian Academy of Sciences, Vienna, Austria)

Potential subtopics

  • Place names and indigenous languages
  • Etymology of indigenous place names
  • Regulation and standardisation of indigenous place names
  • Indigenous place names and language development/maintenance/promotion/revitalisation
  • Indigenous place names as artefacts of languages, cultures or historical events
  • Other dimensions of indigenous place names: Administrative, commercial and/or economic, cultural and historical/commemorative, linguistic, physical, political

The first call for papers will go out in November 2018.

The announcement can be downloaded as a PDF here.