Italian Names?

Tim McDaniel tmcd at
Sat Feb 1 15:39:32 PST 1997

On Sat, 1 Feb 1997, Nathan W. Jones <njones at> wrote:
> There is no reason someone can't use Shakespeare as a starting point
> to finding an Italian name.  Note, I said _starting_point_.

A good amplification.  From the little I know, the Mabinogian and
Arthurian legends would be not as good to start with (lots of invented
names), where Norse sagas would (I think) probably be very good.  Just
don't think "it's in Beowulf" and expect to have it be perfectly

> I wouldn't recommend to anyone trying to use it as documentation.
> Heck, it probably wouldn't pass the local herald's office.

Oh, let me digress and quibble.  I'd expect it to pass local, if for
no other reason than they usually don't have the sources to say yea or
nay, and would want to put it before a larger audience who might know.
And documentation != heraldic submission.  If someone finds a lovely,
non-presumptuous period name and just uses it, more power to them.
However, if you register, there's a good chance that the result is a
period-style name, or not too far from it.

> I myself go by the Rule of Three.  [if you can find it in three
> different period documents it's probably correct.]

You're stricter than I.  Black's _Surnames of Scotland_ has dated
names with the spelling used in the document; I'm quite glad to accept
just that as justification.

> It could start someone out on the path to the Dark Side of Heraldry. 

"Come to the Dark Side, Luke ... you already have a twinkie surname

It's been years since Steppes did _The Wizard of Arms_.  Hmm, I wonder
if Star Wars would be productive of parodies.  _Arms Wars_?  _Star
Arms_?  (Hmm, the 'droids would be ...)

Daniel de Lincoln
                             Tim McDaniel
                        Reply-To: tmcd at
      tmcd at is wrong tool.  Never use this.

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