[ANSTHRLD] Name Change Question

Tim McDaniel tmcd at panix.com
Tue Feb 12 12:08:34 PST 2008

On Tue, 12 Feb 2008, Cerise Jennings <calibrey at yahoo.com> wrote:
> I know that "one element of a submitter's mundane name may be
> used as a name element of their SCA name, provided proof of name
> (DL/birth cert) is included in the submission. "

It's best not to use quotation marks around something that's not a
quotation (except for "sneer quotes", definitional quotes, and such).


     4. Legal Names. - Elements of the submitters legal name may be
        used as the corresponding part of a Society name, if such
        elements are not excessively obtrusive and do not violate other
        sections of these rules.

        This allows individuals to register elements of their legal
        name that cannot be documented from period sources. The
        allowance is only made for the actual legal name, not any
        variants. Someone whose legal given name is Ruby may register
        Ruby as a Society given name, but not Rubie, Rubyat, or
        Rube. Corresponding elements are defined by their type, not
        solely their position in the name. This means a person with the
        legal name Andrew Jackson could use Jackson as a surname in his
        Society name in any position where a surname is appropriate,
        such as Raymond Jackson Turner or Raymond Jackson of London,
        not just as his last name element.

> But I didn't want her legally changing her name, in hopes of it
> helping her SCA naming process and then get disappointed and stuck
> with a new middle name, etc.

That's an excellent notion, most worthy one.

> I have a submitter that has been using an SCA name that is not for
> her gender or country or time period...but she's horribly in love
> with it. ... She's wanting to get her last name changed for
> mundane reasons. While she's in there changing, she wants to change
> her middle name too, to make it that documentable name so she can
> use it with this "it's my mundane name" clause for her SCA name.

In general, when asking for help on SCA names or armory, it's really
best to give the name or armory in question.  Many is the time when
someone has asked a question "Is <whatever> OK?", I've said "yes", and
they've come back explaining "<whatever>" and it turns out to be
- one of the special cases that I glossed over where it's not OK
- unusable for some other reason

This is one of those cases.  "Corresponding elements are defined by
their type, not solely their position in the name." applies
particularly strongly to middle names, which in American culture can
easily be either from given-name stock or an inherited surname
(American women often moved their birth surname to be their middle
name upon marriage).  Witnesseth my sister, who started as
Mary Sue McDaniel and became Mary McDaniel Lewis.

I'm not sure whether "Madison McMurphy" could argue that the first
name in American culture is always considered a given name regardless
of its origin, and therefore register "Madison of London".  Certainly
if she were "Anne Madison McMurphy", Laurel (Pelican) would see that
"Madison" was a surname in origin and would return "Madison of

So: what's the name element in question?

Daniel Lincolinum
Tim McDaniel, tmcd at panix.com

More information about the Heralds mailing list