[ANSTHRLD] Commentary Dec 2001 ILOI

Doug Bell debell at txcyber.com
Fri Jan 18 13:28:50 PST 2002

Magnus von Lübeck from Raven's Fort sends commentary on December 2001

1) Anastasia Ciosa dell'Acqua (Bryn Gwlad)
[Name] The Venetian Personal Name article also has some evidence for
double given names.  De Felice, Cognomi italiani, page 43 header Acqua
also gives dell'Acqua.

2) Ana Maria de Cerdanya (Northkeep)
[Device] Is there a proper color for a tortoise?  Turtles range from
black to brown to shades of green.  Starra Skraelingadottir registered
one in August of 1989 (via Atlantia).  The default in the SCA looks like
tergiant palewise.

5) Gerard le Wise (Wastelands)
[Device] Even after 2 and half years that chevron inverted is still thin
to the point of starving.  This risks yet another return for this
otherwise fine armory.  The previous blazon is more accurate than the
current one.

6) Gregory Kildare (Bryn Gwlad)
[Name] Room, Dictionary of Irish Place-Names, page 72 header Kildare
gives it a traditional location of St. Brigid's cell.

7) Muirenn an Dalán-clé (Northkeep)
[Name] Looking for a period name in a modern foreign language dictionary
is like wandering in a minefield.  You will find something but probably
not what you bargained for.  The given name looks OK but the byname has
serious problems.  MacBain is useful for telling you that Dalán-clé is
modern Irish Gaelic for butterfly.  It doesn't tell us the word is
period or that it was used to name people in period.  So this has to be
returned for lack of documentation of the byname.
I will try to detail some of the problems with this name.  First is the
problem with the byname structure.  Most Gaelic names were patronymics.
Descriptive bynames are rare and take very simple, literal forms.  Mor
'big', Finn 'light', Dub 'dark', Dunn 'brown'.
An article is also due out soon from St. Gabriel's Academy on
descriptive Gaelic names that will really sink this submission.
The other issue is use of animal names in Gaelic.  There are very rare
and limited as given names.  I can't recall seeing one as a descriptive
byname but it may have happened.  Given names were used for such animals
as raven, fox, hound, seal, and badger.  The wolf and the bear were
taboo animals.  The wolf is called by various hound names.  This is a
limited pool of mammals and birds that had some trait the Gaels
admired.  There are no insects and I don't see these folks even noticing
anything about a butterfly.  Our view of the world has changed much in
the last 1000 years.  We also have the recent precedent from the return
of mac Tarbh meaning son of the bull.  This is a patronymic and the word
is period.  It was still returned for lack of documentation that it was
used as a given name in period.  I think we have plenty of evidence to
return this name and that is an unfortunate case.

8) Simon Piroska (Raven's Fort)
[Name] This name is a fine historical 16th century name but it will need
some work to pass.  This is a case where the SCA has ruled historical
practice to be unregisterable despite overwhelming evidence.  Yes, the
SCA does strange things like that.  "The question was raised as to which
is the appropriate form for Hungarian names, with the given name first
or the byname first. Hungarian names may be registered with either the
given name or byname as the first element, except when the byname is an
unmarked patronym or metronym. In that case, the byname should follow
the given name; this is consistent with Hungarian practice through the
mid 16th century, and should help to avoid future confusion. [For a
longer discussion of this ruling see the Cover Letter to the August 1998
Laurel letter.] (István Nyiregyhazi, 8/98 p. 8)"

So what is to be done?  First the lady needs to consent to change the
desired gender to Don't Care.  Now, back to Walraven articles. Hungarian
Personal Names of the 16th Century documents Simon as a man's given
name.  Hungarian Feminine Names documents Piroska as a female name.
Hungarian Names 101 gives us usage of unmarked metronymic bynames.  So
by changing one box we can make
this name registerable.

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