Compilation of a bunch of Q&A entries about Leif & Thorn characters and their names!
All “naming conventions for different racial/ethnic groups living in Ceannis.” I’ll probably do another one about the conventions within other countries at some point.
This was originally going to be a Thorn Explains, until I decided there wasn’t room for any setup/framing patter, it worked better as just “a map with a bunch of notes.”
Mainstream Ceannic names: Plant names + Spices
Kale: Ceannic pet names tend to be Gaelic, like Niamh here (“Nee-iv”). Just in case the French was too easy to pronounce.
Ceannic families of Sønheic descent tend to keep using distinctively Sønheic names: Nordic & sometimes Russian names
Alfhild: Some locals with Sønheic ancestry pick more mainstream-Ceannic names for themselves, or give those names to their kids! Those people are cowards.
Given names most popular with Ceannic people of West Coast descent: Plant Oils
West Coast last names: Professions
Given names most popular with Ceannic people of Eastern Continent (Feabhric) descent: Rose varieties
Eastern Continent last names: Natural Features
Violet: Since I’m mixed-race, and my last name is real Feabhric, sometimes I get called “Violette” by people who figure I’d use the more Feabhric spelling.
Ceannic families of Islander descent also frequently stick with extra-Islander names: Latin, Greek, & Roman names
Given names most popular with Ceannic people of Steppes (including Iuilic) descent: Fruits
Steppes diaspora surnames: Fruits but in Russian
Hyacinth: Fruits would’ve been expensive in the desert, so I guess early immigrants figured they sounded fancy and exotic? And Iuilic nicknames are all cute animal stuff. Kitten, duckie, grasshopper, chickadee, honeybear . . .
Hedge: Stage names to sound “less Iuilic” were a big thing back in my day. Grassie called me “Nance,” but to everyone else, I was “Hedge.”
Wait, Lady Stanczia? Is this how she looked before being turned vampire? Why do I have the feeling I already saw her like this but can’t find it in archive …
Looks like a mistag, per caption that’s definitely Alfhild.
Mistag, yes. Fixed now!
I did a double take at the “Merdhuile” surname because I initially parsed it as “merde huile” (“shit oil”), when in fact it’s “mer d’huile” (oil sea, meaning a very calm and still sea untroubled by winds).
Dubois, Dupont, Dumas and Laval are relatively common French surnames, but I’ve never seen Merdhuile, and I’m sure kids with that surname would not have a fun time in school.
In fact, I don’t think I know any French surnames relating to the sea, which is weird since we have a long coastline.
Heh, that was for the character who was a reference to Lin-Manuel Miranda. Going for a similar-sounding name that fit the Ceannic pattern, I ended up with Lynwood Merdhuile.
Maybe the potential for awkward puns on “mer” is why it doesn’t show up in IRL French last names a lot…
Oh yeah, I remember assuming way back when that UI naming was centered on Latinate takes on virtue names – in English names like Patience, Charity, etc. I guessed Hermosa was UI because of it, not knowing about the rose varietal. It’s pretty cool to see all the standard naming conventions laid out like this!
I’m definitely curious what kinds of names the Iuilic diaspora may have latched onto in other countries. And as for other countries generally… Tamaputian names are Pacific islands-adjacent, right? Hawaiian, Maori, etc?
Correct on Tamaputian names! Another one of these is coming up soon…
So cool! I love this kind of worldbuilding!