Maybe in high school you had to translate your given name into a foreign language for foreign language class. If you were an Elizabeth, you may have become an Elisabet or a Liesel or a Jelica. If you were a Steve, maybe you became an Esteban or a Szczepan or a Tapani. Or perhaps you've just always wondered why supporters of King James were called Jacobites, or you'd like to find some feminine forms of Michael for your new baby girl. Whatever it is, Behind the Name's Family Trees will take you all over the world with your name and its variants and diminutives. [more inside]
"Unlike the names of almost every celestial body in the solar system, the names of the moons of Mars are words. They’re names, but they’re words as well.", Fortunato Salazar
"What's in a Necronym?" by Jeannie Vanasco: "Whether the knowledge affected van Gogh—that he shared both his name and birthday with a dead sibling—remains unknown, the guide said. 'Does anyone have any questions?' he asked. My mind filled with loud, hurried thoughts and just as suddenly emptied, like a flock of birds scattering from a field." [more inside]
The Dictionary of Medieval Names from European Sources aims to document all given names recorded in European sources written between 600 and 1600.
What would your name be if your parents gave you the name that was as popular now as your name was when you were born? Data from the Social Security Name site (2014 data just released).
"For any given profession, it turns out that there are certain names that appear more often in that profession than in the general population. Here's a chart with 6 of the names that are the most disproportionately common in 37 professions." [more inside]
How Liberal or Conservative is your name? A rare "what x are you?" online tool which is apparently based on real data. There is no need to search for the most liberal of all (past and present) MeFi moderator names, I've already done that for you.
Name Distributions in the Social Security Area doesn't sound like hours of fun, but it's wasted a lot of my time today. After visiting a list of the top 100 names for births in 2001 you can check out similar lists going back to 1880.
Osama's Place... "In a town full of soldiers, on the edge of Fort Bragg, there could be worse names for a restaurant these days than Osama's Place, but it is hard to think of any."
Homophobic decision in my home state is to be appealled. Requests to change one's name are very rarely denied. This judge has really stepped over the line by worrying about "the appearance of [the requester] being married. . . [and] . . . how this would appear to our neighbors, to our shopkeepers and to society at large."