American Name Society


53rd Annual


Ehrensperger Report











A Publication of the American Name Society

Michael F. McGoff, Editor






This document marks the 53rd year since the introduction of this annual review of scholarship in onomastic studies to the membership of the American Name Society by Edward C. Ehrensperger.  As usual, it is a partial view of the research and other activity going on in the world of onomastics.  In a report of this kind, the editor must make use of what comes in, often resulting in unevenness.  Some of the entries are very short; some extensive, especially from those who are reporting not just for themselves but also for the activity of a group of people.  In all cases, I have assumed the prerogative of an editor and have abridged, clarified, and changed the voice of many of the submissions.

I have encouraged the submission of reports by email or electronically, since it is much more efficient to edit text already typed than to type the text myself.  There is some danger, however, in depending on electronic copy: sometimes diacritical marks or other formatting matters may not have come through correctly.  For those not using email, I strongly encourage sending me written copy. 

Again this year, you will notice an important change in the format of the report.  Because this report is to be posted on the World-Wide Web, I have not included addresses and telephone numbers as part of the entry.  Current members of ANS who would like to correspond with one or more of the respondents should make a request to me at or at the address you will find below.

In keeping with the spirit of the original Ehrensperger Report, I have reported on research and publications under a person’s name.  In the individual entries, I have listed the surnames of contributors entirely in capitals.  When you see a name or topic in capital letters and underlined in the body of an entry you should expect to find a main entry for it in its proper alphabetical order.

For the web version that can be found at, I have made use of hypertext.  Many of the entries in underlined capital letters are also hyperlinks.  On the website version, simply clicking on them will bring you to a reference in the text.  Most people’s names are hyperlinks as well.  In the main entry for a person if the name as heading is highlighted and underlined, putting your cursor on it will produce that person’s email address.  Clicking on it will produce an email addressed to them.  In the cross references, clicking on a person’s name will bring you to his or her main entry.  In some cases, clicking on a hyperlink will launch your browser and bring you to the website of that organization, much as what happened if you clicked on the American Name Society hyperlink above.  I hope that by again using hypertext in this year’s web version of The Ehrensperger Report, I have made it easier and more efficient to use.  If you have any comments or suggestions I would very much like to hear them.


Other Resources

§        Dr. Frank Nuessel is the incoming editor of the official journal of the American Name Society, Names: a Journal of Onomastics.

§        Michael McGoff maintains the ANS Electronic Discussion Group called ANS-L.  If you wish to take part in the interesting discussions that often start up on this listserve, send an email message to the following address:  No “Subject” is necessary, and the message must contain only one line:

               sub ans-l yourfirstname yourlastname

§        The system will add your name and email address to the list and you will receive all notices that are posted.  You will also be able to send notices (You must join the list to do this).

§        Dr. McGoff also maintains the home pages for the American Name Society (ANS) and Who Was Who in North American Name Study of ANS.


The Ehrensperger Report

Michael F. McGoff, Vice Provost

Office of the Provost

Binghamton University

State University of New York

Binghamton, New York 13902-6000


© American Name Society 2006.

53rd Annual

Ehrensperger Report

December 2007




Frank ABATE reports that he will deliver a paper entitled: “Cincinnati Names and Naming: From Settlement to Today” at the annual meeting of the American Name Society in Chicago, January 2008.  He will cover the placenames in the Cincinnati region and how they reflect settlement history, “starting with names reflective of Native American heritage, through early white pioneers (from 1788), then blacks, and finally the huge influx of immigrants to the city and the surrounding tri-state area (Northern Kentucky and Southeastern Indiana) from Germany.”  He states that: “the legacy of all these influences can be seen in the names and in the character of the region.”

Mr. Abate served this year as a consultant on a legal case involving a surname and employment discrimination.  His other work includes general-language and specialized dictionary projects.  He notes that “while largely lexical, dictionary projects almost always involve some onomastic aspects.”


Ernest L. ABEL, a Professor at the C.S. Mott Center for Human Growth & Development of Wayne State University, published:

§        Abel EL, Kruger ML.  “Nicknames Increase Longevity.”  OMEGA: The Journal of Death and Dying, 53:243-248, 2006. 

§        Abel EL, Kruger, ML.  “Symbolic Significance of Initials on Longevity.” Perceptual and Motor Skills, 104:179-182, 2007. 

§        Abel EL, Kruger ML.  “The Healthy Worker Effect in Professional Football.”  Research in Sports Medicine, 14:240-243, 2006. 

§        Abel EL, Kruger ML.  “The Healthy Worker Effect in Major League Baseball Revisited.”  Research in Sports Medicine, 14:83-87, 2006. 

§        Abel EL, Kruger ML.  “Stereotypic Gender Naming Practices for American and Australian Dogs and Cats.” Names: A Journal of Onomastics. 55(1):53-64, 2007.

§        Abel EL, Kruger ML.  “Gender-related Naming Practices: Similarities and Differences between People and their Dogs.” Sex Roles, (in press).

§        Abel EL.  “Birds are not More Human than Dogs: Evidence from Naming.”  Names: A Journal of Onomastics, (Submitted).

Dr. Abel’s other research interests are related to factors affecting longevity.  A bibliography of his work not related to names: 

§        Abel EL, Hendrix, SO, McNeeley, SG, O’Leary ES, Mossavar-Rahmani Y, Johnson, SR, Kruger, M. “Use of Electric Blankets and Association with Prevalence of Endometrial cancer, European Journal on Cancer Prevention, (in press).

§        Abel, EL, Hendrix, SO, McNeeley SG, Johnson, KC, Rosenberg CA, Mossavar-Rahmani Y, Vitolins M, Kruger, M.  “Daily Coffee Consumption and Prevalence of Non-melanoma Skin Cancer in Caucasian Women.”  European Journal on Cancer Prevention, (in press).

§        Abel EL, Kruger ML.  “Heaping in Anniversary Reaction Studies: A Cautionary Note.” OMEGA: The Journal of Death and Dying, 54(1):59-65, 2007.

§        Abel EL.  “Football Increases the Risk for ‘Lou Gehrig’s Disease,’ Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS).”  Perceptual and Motor Skills, 104:1251-1254, 2007.

§        Abel EL, Kruger ML. “Mortality Salience in the Major Leagues.” Death Studies, (in press).

§        Abel EL, Kruger, ML.  “Seasonality of Birth in the Majors, 1880-1999.”  Social Biology, 52(1-2):47-55, 2005, (appearing in 2007).

§        Abel EL, Kruger ML.  “Age Heterogamy and Longevity: Evidence from Jewish and Christian Cemeteries.” Social Biology, (in press).

§        Abel EL, Kruger ML. “Lefties are Still a Little Shorter.”  Perceptual and Motor Skills, 104:405-406, 2007.

§        Abel EL, Kruger ML.  “Precocity Predicts Shorter Life for Major League Baseball Players: Confirmation of McCann’s precocity-longevity hypothesis.” Death Studies, (in press).

Another of Professor Abel’s interests is mythology.  On this subject, he published a book in 2006, Encyclopedia of Intoxication in Myth.  McFarland & Company, Inc. Publishers, Jefferson, NC, 2006.


Derek H. ALDERMAN responded with thanks to the American Name Society for the society’s co-sponsorship of his International Placename Workshop held at East Carolina University in October 2007.  Sponsorship by ANS was made possible through contributions to the Kelsie B. Harder Memorial Fund which is used in support of education and scholarship in the field of onomastics.  Professor Alderman provided the following report:

Naming Places, Placing Names: An International Workshop


Derek H. Alderman, Department of Geography, East Carolina University

Reuben Rose-Redwood, Department of Geography, Texas A & M University

Maoz Azaryahu, Department of Geography, Haifa University


The study of placenaming has undergone a significant reappraisal and renaissance as of late, resulting in the emergence of a critical literature that explores the social context and ideological dimensions of geographical naming.  Scholars in the social sciences and humanities are increasingly interested in examining the ways in which placenames are linked to specific discourses of national, local, and racial/ethnic identity, to the commodification or selling of place, to the cultural formation and administrative shaping of space and the politics of collective memory through the construction of commemorative landscapes.  Responding to this ‘critical turn’ in the field of toponymy, Derek Alderman (East Carolina University), Reuben Rose-Redwood (Texas A&M University), and Maoz Azaryahu (Haifa University) recently organized an international workshop dedicated to the state-of-the-art study of placenames, street-names, and related practices of spatial inscription.  One of the chief aims of the workshop was to foster interdisciplinary dialogue among scholars who work in a variety of geographical settings and historical contexts, while also critically assessing the different theoretical traditions that have inspired contemporary placename scholarship and identifying areas for future innovation and collaboration. 

The workshop, titled Naming Places, Placing Names, was hosted by the Department of Geography at East Carolina University, October 13-16, 2007.  Workshop activities took place at the university as well as at the conference facilities of a local hotel in Greenville, North Carolina.  Terri Moreau and E. Arnold Modlin, Jr., two graduate students at East Carolina University, provided valuable logistical support to conference organizers.  Funding for participants’ hotel accommodations, meals, in-town transportation, and registration materials was provided by several workshop sponsors—including the American Name Society, the U.S. Placename Research Center at the University of Alabama, the Department of Geography at Texas A&M University, and East Carolina University’s Department of Geography, Thomas Harriot College of Arts & Sciences, and Division of Research and Graduate Studies.  Roger PAYNE, Executive Secretary Emeritus of the U.S. Board on Geographic Names (USGS), delivered the workshop’s keynote address.  Roger discussed the naming activities of the U.S. federal government, the importance of standardization in placenaming, and the GNIS (Geographic Names Information System), which he has worked to develop over the past several years.  Other special workshop guests were Paul Carter, author of the influential book The Road to Botany Bay: an Essay in Spatial History, and Linda Watson, a nationally recognized figure in geographic names information research. 

Seventeen experts from across the United States as well as from Australia, Finland, Israel, Slovenia, and Canada presented papers at the workshop.  The workshop brought together established and distinguished scholars as well as young researchers just beginning their academic careers.  Participants represented the fields of geography, linguistics, history, sociology, art, planning, and political science.  Presented papers included theoretical contributions and place-specific case studies as well as a consideration of applied toponymy, methodological issues, and data sources.  Participants presented the following papers at the workshop:

§        “Virtual Place Naming, Internet Domains, and the Politics of Misdirection: The Case of” by Derek H. Alderman, East Carolina University.

§        Odonymic Confusion, Odonymic Reform: A Semiotic Analysis and Two Berlin Case Studies” by Maoz Azaryahu, Haifa University.

§        “The Ontological Politics of Not-Naming” by Lawrence Berg, University of British Columbia.

§        “Poetic Geographies: Community Renewal in Northern Victoria, Australia” by Paul Carter, University of Melbourne.

§        “‘It’s just a sign:’ Honorary Naming as a Mobilization Strategy” by Deidre Ferron, University of Chicago.

§        “Congressional Earmarks, Political Stature, and Place Names” by Joshua Hagen, Marshall University.

§        “A Trans-continental Street-naming Project: The United Daughters of the Confederacy and the Jefferson Davis Highway, 1913-1944” by Euan Hague, DePaul University, Chicago.

§        “Misnomer and Manifest Destiny: Indian Place Names in America” by R.D.K Herman, National Museum of the American Indian, Smithsonian Institute, Washington DC.

§        “Space and People: Politics of Street Naming” by Emilia Palonen, University of Jyväskylä/Collegium Helsinki.

§        “Applied Toponymy” by Roger Payne, U.S. Board of Geographic Names.

§        “The Naming of Gaming in Nevada” by Pauliina Raento, University of Helsinki.

§        “Sixth Avenue is Now a Memory”: Street Numbering, Spatial Inscription, and the Limits of the Official City-Text” by Reuben Rose-Redwood, Texas A&M University.

§        “Place Names in Slovenia: A Contact or Separation between Political Power and Local Identity” by Mimi Urbanc and Matej Gabrovec, Geographical Institute of Slovenian Academy of Sciences and Arts.

§        Approaching Place Names: On Linguistic Onomastics, Toponymic Geographies, and Prospects for Interdisciplinary Theorizations” by Jani Vuolteenaho, University of Helsinki and Terhi Ainiala, Research Institute for Languages of Finland.

§        “Toponymic Bibliometrics: An Overview for United States Geographic Names” by Linda Watson, Placename Research Center, University of Alabama.


At the conclusion of the workshop, participants agreed that it would be worthwhile to continue the interdisciplinary and international dialogue started at East Carolina University.  There was discussion of holding another placename workshop in the future, perhaps outside the United States.  The workshop format should remain small and rigorous in nature, while not ruling out the possibility of larger meetings.  Participants were also interested in pursuing publication opportunities, such as the organization of special journal issues and edited books that focus on the cultural and political dynamics of placenaming.  Participants also agreed that there was a need to develop an electronic discussion network that would provide a forum to disseminate research findings, teaching innovations, examples of community/public engagement, news of conferences, calls for papers, and general intellectual discussion.  As a result of discussions that took place at the Naming Places, Placing Names workshop, Reuben Rose-Redwood and Derek Alderman have organized a special panel session on New Perspectives on Critical Place-Name Studies” at the Annual Meeting of the Association of American Geographers in Boston, Massachusetts, April 15-19, 2008.


Ibrahim AKSU of Canakkale Onsekiz Mart University reports that he has been preoccupied with other projects this year but continues to compile material on Turkish surnames for future publication.  Meanwhile, he says, “onomastics (adbilim) activity in Turkey continues at a quiet pace with an average of 2-3 papers published each year by dedicated individuals, usually faculty members in departments of Turkish Language and Literature.”  Some studies to emerge recently are as follows (in Turkish unless otherwise stated):


§        Dr. Mustafa Senel from Kafkas University in Kars, together with Dr. Nadir Ilhan from Elazig University, presented a paper on the connection between animals and personal names (Hayvanlarinin Kisi Adlarina Yansimasi: Adbilim Acisindan Bu Yansimanin Turk Kulturundeki Yeri) for an international symposium on Hunting in Turkish Culture at Marmara University in Istanbul on 15-16 November 2006.

§        A well-researched study of town and village names on the Gallipoli Peninsula based on written and oral sources (Yazili ve Sozlu Kaynaklardan Hareketle Gelibolu Yarimadasi Koy Adlari Uzerine Bir Inceleme) was published by Dr. Aktan Muge Ercan (now at Kirikkale University) in the Autumn 2002 issue of Haci Bektas Veli Research Journal, Gazi University, Ankara. The paper (available online) concludes that most Turkish village names come from geographical features and surroundings, while others stretch back into antiquity and have been reshaped over the years.

§        Dr. Ali Acikel at Tokat Gaziosmanpasa University has two studies to his credit, both about the district of Artukabad (Artova) in the province of Tokat, based on archival records.  One is “Turkish Personal Names in the District Of Artukabad 1455-1520” (Artukabad Kazasinda Turk Kisi Adlari), published in the Journal of Social Sciences of Firat University in Elazig (2003).  The second is “Place Names in the District of Artukabad 1455-1600” (Artukabad Kazasi Yer Adlari), in the Faculty of Literature Journal of Hacettepe University in Ankara (2003).  The latter examines a total of 200 settlement names in Artukabad in terms of word pattern and origin.

§        A “more questioning study” is that of Dr. Serafettin Zeyrek at Onsekiz Mart University in Canakkale concerning government policies to change village names during the Republican era (1923 onwards) (Turkiye’de Koy Adlari Degistirme Politikasi), published in the Faculty of Education Journal of Cukurova University in 2006.  The article relates how widespread name-changing took place throughout the 1930s, usually but not always to “Turkicize” old names, and, supported by legislative measures, continued from 1940 until the 1970s, with a confirmed total of 36% out of 35,917 villages across the country having adopted a new name by 1978.  The author stresses that although the changes were generally welcomed by the villagers, frequent re-naming (some villages changed more than once) caused problems for local authorities dealing with official documents and sometimes villagers resisted the change and later reverted to the old familiar name.

§        Professor Dr. Klaus Kreiser, chair of Turkish Language, History, and Culture at the University of Bamberg in Germany and involved in Ottoman era research for many years in the Istanbul Department of the German Archaeological Institute, has a long-term interest in Turkish surnames and is currently preparing a “handbook” on this subject, based on research among Turks in Germany.

§        Mary Neuburger, Assistant Professor, Department of History, University of Texas at Austin, published “The Orient Within: Muslim Minorities and the Negotiation of Nationhood in Modern Bulgaria.” (Ithaca: Cornell University Press. 2004) which includes a chapter on names, mostly name-changes of Turks in Bulgaria.

§        Professor Shamsiddin S. Kamoliddin, Leading Researcher at the Institute of History of the Academy of Sciences in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, published in 2006 what is claimed to be the first book in Russian on ancient Turkic place-names in Central Asia:  Drevnetyurkskaya toponimiya Sredney Azii, (Ancient Turkic Place-names of Central Asia), Sharq Publishing House, Tashkent, Uzbekistan, 192 pp.  The book is based on early medieval Turkic and Sogdian sources (VII-VIII c. AD), as well as medieval Arabic, Persian and Turkic sources of IX-early XIII c. AD, showing that Turkic placenames formed a great part of the placenames of that period and that “in the early medieval period the Turks formed a great part of the local population of Central Asia and settled along the whole of its territory from the Yetti-suw region to Khurasan.”

Professor Aksu also reports that some “recent trends may also be noted:” (1) An increase in the number of academic studies devoted to tracing the succession of settlement names through Greek, Roman, Byzantine, and Ottoman times up to the present, which will especially benefit archaeologists trying to identify ancient sites. (2) The resurgence of a periodic trend to persuade commercial enterprises by means of campaigns or regulations to remove “foreign” (usually French or English) names in favor of Turkish ones.  Impetus for the latest campaign comes from an initiative by Prof. Sukru Haluk Akalin, head of the influential Turkish Language Board (TDK) since 2001 and faculty member at Hacettepe University in Ankara, who has a long string of papers on aspects of Turkish culture to his name.  Following a noticeable increase in the use of non-Turkish names by businesses, shopping centers, housing estates, hotels and shops, even city districts, Prof. Akalin spearheaded a TDK campaign in 2006 to award “plaques of honor” to companies and business premises that changed their name to Turkish.  This trend actually commenced in some towns and cities in the late 1990s, reinforced by municipality by-laws obligating the use of Turkish names.  Thus, the Formula-1 track in Istanbul which was going to be called “Otodrom,” then “Istanbul Speed Park,” is now, modestly, “Istanbul Park,” while the “Istanbul Gosteri ve Kongre Merkezi” entertainment complex had previously been slated to open as Myshowland.” (3) A surprising new development is the occasional use of surnames in daily speech when referring to colleagues in large organizations, presumably to avoid errors of identification.  Normally in Turkey, surnames are left unmentioned in favor of honorifics or job-related appellations; using a person’s surname is considered cold, even impolite.  On official documents, however, surnames are always used, and in capital letters (like the Ehrensperger Report). (4) Also regarding surnames, and most likely in response to the adoption of EC standards, a slight loosening-up has been detected in the insistence on Turkish surnames when applying for ID cards (following births or marriages), whereas previously, foreign names would most likely have been rejected by the civil registration office.


John ALGEO is preparing the sixth edition of Origins and Development of the English Language and the accompanying Problems.  He plans to “add something more to them on the history of English names, both surnames and given names.”  He is also working on a review of Willy van Langendonck's Theory and Typology of Proper Names for the LSA journal, Language.

Dr. Algeo also reports that he is “a Harry Potter fan,” so he “has been doing some talks and articles on those books, mainly as archetypal stories.”  He does, however, “work in some literary onomastics, such as why Tom Riddle is appropriately named; why Voldemort means “flight from death,” and why the “Deathly Hallows” are rightly so called.


María BARROS writes that she has not produced any onomastic material this year but, perhaps, next year she will be able to devote more time.


Herbert BARRY III, Professor Emeritus at the University of Pittsburgh, presented a paper “Fictional Namesakes of Author, Father, & Mother in the Novels of Charles Dickens” on 5 January 2007 at the annual meeting of the American Name Society, in Anaheim, California.  Part of the information has subsequently been published as an article “Characters Named Charles or Charley in Novels by Charles Dickens” in Psychological Reports (2007) vol. 101, pp. 497-500.  Dr. Barry reviewed for Names: A Journal of Onomastics, (2007, vol. 55, pp.173-175) “the excellent book The Great Big Book of Baby Names: A Complete Guide from A to Z by Cleveland Kent EVANS (2006: Publications International, Lincolnwood, Illinois).”  In addition, Dr. Barry has also contributed an article for a forthcoming volume of the international publication Onoma, “Family Members as Sources of First Names in Jane Austen's Novels.”  He has recently been reading novels by Charlotte Bronte and Ernest Hemingway for future reports on choices of first names by famous novelists.

A chapter by Professor Barry and Aylene S. Harper,  “The Majority of Female First Names Ended in A or E Throughout the Twentieth Century” (2005), may be found in the book, Gender Roles edited by Janice W. Lee, and published by Nova Biomedical Books (pp. 117-143).  The same publisher has reprinted this chapter as pages 91-116 in a book Gender Identity, Psychology and Lifestyle (2006) edited by Alan J. Lauber.  Dr. Barry and Dr. Harper are currently analyzing attributes of popular names given to African American and white males and females in Pennsylvania in 1990, 1995, and 2000.  “The most conspicuous finding is that diversity of names increased during the span of ten years and was greatest for African American females, least for white males.”


C. Richard BEAM is “still collecting Pennsylvania German placenames,” He directs The Center for Pennsylvania German Studies.


Susan J. BEHRENS, an Associate Professor of Communications Sciences and Disorders at Marymount Manhattan College, produced:

§        Behrens, S.J. and Sarowitz, T.  “A Linguistic Examination of Forms of Address on the television series Star Trek.”  Names: a Journal of Onomastics. (Submitted).

§        Behrens, S.J. June 2007. “Apex Hides the Hurt:” Book Review. Names: a Journal of Onomastics, 55 (2), 175-178.

§        Behrens, S. and Mercer, C. “The Role of the Universal Translator on Star Trek.”  Popular Culture Association,” 2008, San Francisco.  (Abstract Submitted.)

Professor Behrens also presented:

§        Behrens, S. and Sarowitz, T.  “Naming Practices on Star Trek.” Popular Culture Association National Conference, Boston, 2007.

§        Behrens, S. “Linguistic Analysis of Forms of Address in the Television Series Star Trek.” 46th Annual Names Institute, Baruch College, 2007.


Thomas L. BERNARD, Emeritus Professor of Education and Psychology, responds that he taught a Spring Semester course (2007) at Springfield College (Mass.) entitled, “Onomastics: The Origins, Meanings and Significance of Family Names.”  He also published an article entitled “Where Welsh Once Dwelled” in the North American Welsh Newspaper, NINNAU (July 2007).

Dr. Bernhard’s recently published book, The Twelve Days of Christmas: the Mystery and the Meaning “has resulted in considerable interest and requests for speaking engagements.  The hypothesis is that it was an esoteric placename code for Jerusalem-bound pilgrims.”


Jim BERNHARD replies that the University of Missouri Press is publishing his book, Porcupine, Picayune, & Post: How Newspapers get their Names.  It is an account of the history and etymology of English-language newspaper names, and “the reasons -- historical, political, philosophical, personal, or sometimes merely whimsical -- that they were adopted.”  The book includes about 250 names, from familiar titles such as Times, Dispatch, Gazette, HeraldJournal, and Post, to peculiar ones like Acantha, Bazoo, Bee, Bunyip, Hot Blast, Jimplecute, Porcupine, Picayune, Solid MuldoonUnterrified Democrat and Zephyr.  More information is available at the University of Missouri Press website:


Ana BOULLÓN, a member of the Facultade de Filoloxia of Universidade de Santiago de Compostela, writes that she produced:  “Antroponimia e territorio: sobre a difusión dos apelidos en Galicia”, en R. Álvarez, F. Dubert, X. Sousa (eds.): Lingua e territorio. Santiago de Compostela: ILG.  Consello da Cultura Galega, 2006, 235-255.  ISBN 84-96530-20-5.  It is available on the web:

Furthermore she responds that “we are working on a web page that shows the territorial distribution of surnames in Galicia (North West of Spain), in percentage and in number.”  Data are provided from the Instituto NacNacional de Estadística (Madrid), corresponding to the population of Galicia in 2002.  The project was designed at the Instituto da Lingua Galega (Universidade de Santiago de Compostela) and the Real Academia Galega. The address is:


Bruce L. BROWN, Professor of Psychology at Brigham Young University, presented the following papers related to names during the period:

§        Jenkins, M., Roney, T., Scott, J. H., Koenen, L., Kehl, B., Wuehler, J., Irvine, S., Lonsdale, D. W., Spackman, M. P., and Brown, B. L. (March, 2007).  “A Cross-cultural Comparison of Four Generations of American, Brazilian, French, and German Male and Female First Names Categorized According to Gender, Decade of Birth and Geo-location of Birth.”  Paper presented at the Sixth Annual Workshop on Technology for Family History and Genealogical Research, Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah.

§        Scott, J. H., Wuehler, J., Larsen, C., and Brown, B. L. (January 2007). “American Given Name Markers of Decade of Birth, Geo-location, and Gender: A Comparison over the Past Century and a Half.” Paper presented at the Annual Meetings of the American Name Society, Anaheim, California.

§        Koenen, L., Jenkins, M., Decker, J., Irvine, S., and Brown, B. L. (January 2007).  “Decade of Birth, Geo-location, and Gender: A Cross Cultural Comparison of Accuracy of Identification for French, German, and Brazilian Given Names since 1835.”  Paper presented at the Annual Meetings of the American Name Society, Anaheim, California.

§        Brown, B. L., Lonsdale, D. W., Spackman, M. P., Farahnakian, M., Farahnakian, M., and Gardner, D. (January 2007). “Segmental Phonemes Compared to Acoustical Supra-segmental Properties as Mediators of Dialectal Differences in the Pronunciation of Farsi Names.” Paper presented at the Annual Meetings of the American Name Society, Anaheim, California.


Ronald R. BUTTERS responds that, “as of September 1, 2007,” he retired after 40 years on the faculty as Professor of English and Cultural Anthropology and Chair of the Linguistic Program at Duke University.  He reports, during this period, his editorial experience was:

1996 - 2007, General Editor, American Dialect Society Publications and Editor of Publication of the American Dialect Society (PADS, the monograph series);

1999 - , Editorial Advisory Board member, New Oxford American Dictionary;

2007 - , Co-editor, The International Journal of Speech, Language and the Law.

He also serves as Vice President, International Association of Forensic Linguists, 20079.

His publications for the period are:

§        “Sociolinguistic Variation and the Law,” chapter 12 in Sociolinguistic Variation: Theories, Methods and Applications, ed. by Robert Bayley and Ceil Lucas (Cambridge: Cambridge Univ. Press, 2007);

§        “Changing Linguistic Issues in U.S. Trademark Litigation,” in Proceedings of the Second European IAFFL Conference on Forensic Linguistics/Language and the Law, ed. by M. Teresa Turell, Jordi Cicres, and Maria Spassova (Barcelona: Publicacions de l'IULA, No. 19; expected in 2007), 2942;

§        “Trademarks,” Chapter 16 in Dimensions of Forensic Linguistics, ed. by John Gibbons and M. Teresa Turell (Benjamins, expected 2008);

§        “Evidence in American Trademark Disputes,” Evaluating the Evidence: Studies in Language and the Law, ed. by Krzysztof Kredens and Stanislaw Gozdz-Roszkowski. Cambridge Scholars Press (expected 2008);

§        “A Linguistic Look at Trademark Dilution,” to appear in Santa Clara Computer & High Technology Law Journal (vol. 24, 2008);

§        Review of Edward Finegan and John R. Rickford, eds. Language in the USA: Themes for the Twenty-first Century. Cambridge University Press, 2005; to appear in Language (2007);

§        Review of Roger W. Shuy, Linguistics in the Courtroom: A Practical Guide. Oxford University Press, 2006. To appear in Language in Society (2007).

In addition, Dr. Butters presented:

§        “Forensic Linguistics and American Trademark Law,” Department of Linguistics, Georgetown University, Washington, DC, April 10, 2007. [Invited 90-minute lecture]; and

§        “A Linguistic Look at Trademark Dilution.” Conference on Trademark Dilution: Theoretical and Empirical Inquiries, High Tech Law Institute, Santa Clara University School of Law, Santa Clara, California, October 5, 2007. [Invited presenter].


Edward CALLARY remained active in onomastics in 2007.  He wrote the Onomastics section for The Year’s Work in English Studies, published annually by Oxford University Press, and guest edited the December (special) issue of Names: a Festschrift in Honor of Edwin D. Lawson.  Professor Callary’s book, Surnames, Nicknames, Placenames and Epithets in America, a collection of essays from Names: a Journal of Onomastics, was published in December, 2006 by the Edwin Mellen Press, and his Place Names of Illinois will be published in 2008 by the University of Illinois Press.


Mike CAMPBELL continued work on his website (, “adding about 850 new names to the site.”  He also “added native Devanagari spellings for the Indian names on the site, and kanji/Chinese character spellings for the Japanese, Chinese, and Korean names.”  He “had invaluable assistance with the Japanese names from Claudia Segger.”


Clive CHEESMAN is Rouge Dragon Pursuivant at the College of Arms in London.  He published, “Names and Naming systems,” in The Edinburgh Companion to Ancient Greece and Rome, edited by E. Bispham, T. Harrison and B. Sparkes (Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2006), pp. 465-470.  He also continues to work on his book Personal Names and Naming in the Roman World for the publisher Duckworth.  It is to be published in 2008/2009.  At the moment he is “specifically working on slave names (including certain cross-cultural aspects of slave naming, or rather the assumptions that historians of different periods have made about slave naming).” 


Shawn CLANKIE is an Associate Professor of Applied Linguistics at the Otaru University of Commerce in Otaru, Japan.  Within onomastics, most of his work continues to be on brand names, although he has “recently become involved in the naming of several new residential developments and businesses in the Niseko ski resort area of Hokkaido.”  Dr. Clankie recently participated in a Japanese government white paper on the branding potential of Niseko and the Niseko region.  Outside of the study of names, most of his work now involves the writing of textbooks and self-study materials for English language learners.  In 2007, he published several books:

§        Talking About My Life. (with T. Kobayashi) Tokyo: Goken.

§        Expressing What You See, Hear, Smell, Taste, Touch, Think and Want in English.  (with T. Kobayashi) Tokyo: Sanshusha.

§        Speaking English in a Snap. (with T. Kobayashi) Tokyo: Goken

§        Our Sacred Health and Environment. (with T.Kobayashi) Tokyo: Seibido

§        Grammar Rules of Spoken English. (with T.Kobayashi) Seoul: System Books.

§        Eye on America: Japanese and American Views of American Culture. (with T. Kobayashi) Tokyo: Sanshusha.

Dr. Clankie’s website may be found at:  


Richard COATES has “moved from the University of Sussex to the University of the West of England, Bristol” where he is Professor of Linguistics and Onomastics.  His interests continue to center on placenames in the British Isles, especially England, and on name theory.  He is Director of the Survey of English Place-Names and general editor of the publications of the English Place-Name Society.  He also continues to be Secretary of ICOS.

During the period he attended the 14th Conference on Nordic Onomastics, Borgarnes, Iceland, 11-14 August 2007 where he offered some observations on the Scandinavian toponymy of Lincolnshire.

Publications for this period include:

§        “Names.” In Richard M. Hogg and David Denison, eds, A History of the English Language. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 312-51.

§        “Stour and Blyth as English River-names.” English Language and Linguistics 10.1, 23-9.

§        “Properhood.” Language 82.2, 356-82.

§        “Latin and Irish Place-names in England and Wales.” In Eva Brylla and Mats Wahlberg, with Lars-Erik Edlund, eds, Proceedings of the 21st International Congress of Onomastic Sciences, Uppsala, August 19-24 2002, vol 2. Uppsala: SOFI, 63-74.

§        “Maiden Castle, Geoffrey of Monmouth and Hārūn al-Rašīd.” Nomina 29, 5-60.

§        “Ludgate.” Nomina 29, 129-32.

§        “A New Early Source of Basque: the Willughby Glossary of 1664.” (With R.L. Trask) Transactions of the Philological Society 104.3, 331-93.

§        “The Pre-English Name of Dorchester-on-Thames. Studia Celtica 40, 51-62.

§        “Lichfield and Lytchett: a Philological Problem Involving Brittonic */e: / Resolved.” Studia Celtica 40, 173-4.

§        “A Brittonic Solution of the Second Element in Presteigne and Kinsham. Cambrian Medieval Celtic Studies 52, 49-64.

§        “Afon Ystwyth and Onomastic Sound-change.” In Joseba A. Lakarra and José Ignacio Hualde, eds,  Studies in Basque and historical linguistics in memory of R.L. Trask. Special number of Anuario del Seminario de Filología Vasca „Julio de Urquijo” 40.1/2, 265-71. [R.L Trasken oroitzapenetan ikerketak euskalaritzaz eta hizkuntzalaritza historikoaz. Anuario del Seminario de Filología Vasca Julio de Urquijo" 40.1/2.]

§        “Chesterblade, Somerset, with a reflection on the element chester.” Journal of the English Place-Name Society 38, 5-12.

§        “Some Observations on Blore, Staffordshire.”  Journal of the English Place-Name Society 38, 13-16.

§        “Behind the Dictionary-forms of Scandinavian Elements in England.”  Journal of the English Place-Name Society 38, 43-61.

§        “Report of the Honorary Director, Survey of English Place-Names (2005-6).”  Journal of the English Place-Name Society 38, 100-1.

§        “Foreword” [as Chair of the Editorial Board], Onoma 39 (2004).

§        “Timeline Maps.” Journal of the English Place-Name Society 38, 92. (Review).

§        “Names in Shakespeare” (with Seongsook Choi) online


§        The place-names of Hayling Island, Hampshire. Web-publication:


§        “Two Bristolian Hill-names and what can be done with Place-name Evidence: Penpole Point and Spaniorum Hill.” The Regional Historian 18 (Winter), 26-9.

§        “The Name Bedwyn.” Wiltshire Archaeological and Natural History Magazine 100, 198-9.

§        “Goldhwite: an Unrecognized Middle English Bird-name?” Transactions of the Philological Society 105.2, 188-91.

§        “Invisible Britons: the View from Linguistics.” In N.J. Higham, ed., Britons in Anglo-Saxon England. Woodbridge: The Boydell Press (Publications of the Manchester Centre for Anglo-Saxon Studies 7), 172-91.

§        “Yell.”  Journal of Scottish Name Studies 1, 1-12.

§        “Bordastubble, a Standing-stone in Unst, Shetland, and Some Implications for English Toponymy.”  Journal of Scottish Name Studies 1, 137-9.

§        “The Genealogy of eagre ‘tidal surge in the river Trent’.” English Language and Linguistics 11.3, 507-23.

§        Microdialectological Investigations in the English South-east.” Locus focus: forum of the Sussex Place-Names Net 7.1/2, 62-80.

§        “N7.1.1, the Paradox of Pett.”  Locus focus: forum of the Sussex Place-Names Net 7.1/2, 27.

§        “N7.1.2, Some Medieval Minor Names in Herstmonceux.” (with Lana Dabboussy) Locus focus: forum of the Sussex Place-Names Net 7.1/2, 27-8.

§        “N7.1.9, Crangon Cottages, East Dean, East Sussex.” Locus focus: forum of the Sussex Place-Names Net 7.1/2, 31.

§        “In search of Caldeburgh.”  (With Christopher Whittick and Mark Gardiner) Locus focus: forum of the Sussex Place-Names Net 7.1/2, 43-6.

§        “Ash-ealer, Sometimes ash-yealer, as an Occupational Term.” (with Christopher Whittick) Locus focus: forum of the Sussex Place-Names Net 7.1/2, 102-3.

§        “Azure Mouse, Bloater Hill, Goose Puddings, and One Land called the Cow: Continuity and Conundrums in Lincolnshire Minor Names. Working paper LxWP 21/07, Dept of English, University of Sussex. Web publication: 51 pp.

In addition, Professor Coates reviewed:

§        Word origins ... and How We Know Them. By Anatoly Liberman, Oxford, etc.: Oxford University Press (2005). Modern Language Review 102.3, 832-3.

§        The Syntax of Old Norse. By Jan Terje Faarlund, Oxford, etc.: Oxford University Press (2004). Journal of Pragmatics 39.11, 2093-4.


Gerald L. COHEN, a Professor at the University of Missouri-Rolla, continues his widely respected work with the publication Comments on Etymology.  He reports the following works in that publication for the period:

§        Gerald Cohen (presenting information compiled by Pinkfreud-ga -- Internet moniker on Google-answers website): “Tina ‘Crystal Meth’ and Related Matters.” Oct.-Nov. 2006, pp. 20-25.

§        Gerald Cohen (presenting information from John Bradbury and Marc Picard): “Nagogami ‘Sandy Lake’ in Algonquian” Oct.-Nov. 2006, pp. 25-26.

§        Barry Popik and Gerald Cohen: “‘The Big Easy’ As a Nickname for New Orleans is Recent; Pre-1960's Attestations Of ‘The Big Easy’ Exist, But Their Original Meaning Is Unclear.” Oct.-Nov. 2006, pp. 30-33.

§        Barry Popik: “‘Show-Me’ Attestations from 1894.” Oct.-Nov. 2006, pp. 43-45.

§        Gerald Cohen:  “‘Pooty-Poo’ As George W. Bush's Nickname for Vladimir Putin.” Oct.-Nov. 2006, p. 46.

§        Gerald Cohen (compiler): “‘Spud’ as a Nickname -- Information from Jonathan Lighter and Lynn Murphy.” Oct.-Nov. 2006, p. 47.

§        Fred Shapiro: “Pre-1876 Evidence for Chicago's Nickname ‘The Windy City’.” Dec. '06 - Jan. '07, pp. 30-31.

§        Barry Popik: “‘Show-me’ Expression: Recently Spotted 1894 Attestations Point to Omaha, Nebraska as Playing a Key Role in its Origin.” Feb.-March 2007, pp. 2-4.

§        Bill Mullins: “Antedating ‘Yegg’ by Two Years (1903 to 1901) and a Compilation of Yegg Parlance Based on 1901 and 1904 Material.” Feb.-March 2007, pp. 11-17.

§        Gerald Cohen (compiler): “Origin of Gang-Name ‘Crips’ -- Clarification from Wilson Gray.”  Feb.-March 2007, pp. 20-21.

§        Barry Popik and Gerald Cohen: “‘The Big Apple' Revisited; Towards a Compilation, #1.” Feb.-March 2007, pp. 22-53.  #2: April-May 2007, pp. 13-33.

§        Gerald Cohen: “Origin of NYC’s Nickname ‘The Big Apple’: Latest Research On This Topic.” Paper presented at the biennial meeting of the Dictionary Society of North America, June 14, 2007. Chicago.


Rella Israly COHN writes to say that the project that she “has been occupied with for over 30 years is finally going to appear as a book!”  Entitled Yiddish Given Names: A Lexicon, it will be published by Scarecrow Press.  She says that it actually began with a paper for her Master’s degree in 1973, “Patterns and Correlations in Hebrew and English Names: A Preliminary Study.”


Aaron DEMSKY, the Director of The Project for the Study of Jewish Names at Bar-Ilan University in Israel writes that, “This past year has seen significant developments in establishing Jewish onomastics as an academic discipline.”  He reports that the 8th International Conference on Jewish Onomastics was held on June 21, 2007 at Bar-Ilan University Ramat –Gan, Israel.  It was organized in his honor by colleagues and friends.  Twenty-eight lectures delivered in Hebrew or English reflecting research on given names, surnames, and toponyms from the biblical through the modern periods from the historic, linguistic, sociological and literary approaches.  Those interested in the booklet of abstracts may receive it from Professor Demsky either as an attachment or in hard copy.  Contact him at

The conference program included:

§        Anat Gueta – “The World View of Rabbi Menahem Azariah Emanuel ben Isaac Berechiah da Fano (הרמ"ע) as Reflected in the Names he gave his Children.”

§        Tzvia Koren-Loeb – “The Frankfurt-am-Main Memorbuch of Names, 18th Century.”

§        Yitzchak Kerem – “Italian-Jewish Names of Greek Jewry.”

§        David Cassuto – “Possible Origin of the Name Cassuto.”

§        David Golinkin – “Why is Rabban Gamliel called Baal Hahotem.”

§        Meir Bar-Ilan – “People who are named after their Places.”

§        Chaim Ben David – “The Toponymy of Eretz Israel – A Regional Analysis.”

§        Avi Sasson – “Phonetic Site Identification by Nineteenth Century Rabbis: Schwartz and Goldhar.”

§        Abraham Ofir Shemesh – “Names of New Agricultural Crops in Rabbinic Literature of 16-20th Centuries.”

§        Aharon Gaimani – “Names of Yemenite Jews From the Ledger of the Rabbinic Emissary R. Shlomo Nadaf.”

§        Menashe Anzi – “Family Nicknames in Sanaa: Consolidation, Distinction and Tension in the Community in the Twentieth Century.”

§        Yossef Charvit – “Rabbi Maurice Eisenbeth (1928-1958) as Researcher of the Jewish Name in North Africa.”

§        Victor Hayoun – “First and Last Names in the Jewish community of Nabeul in Tunisia.”

§        Gila Hadar – “Bienvenida (Welcome) and Azebuena (Making Good): Patterns of Girls’ Given Names in the Sephardic Diaspora.”

§        Ziva Feldman – “From Yoseph to Yossi and Yoske as Signs of the Times and of Ideology.”

§        Michal Rom – “’We are four girls at home, the name seems to get lost:’ Israeli Women’s Choice of a Family Name Upon Marriage and Its Implications on the Effort to Preserve Jewish Names.”

§        Orna Baziz – “Names in Work of David Shahar.”

§        Zehava Kor – “Smiling at my Hungarian Names.”

§        Tsuguya (Tsvi) Sasaki  - "What Are the ‘International’ Forms of Biblical Hebrew Personal Names Supposed to Be? Ways of Adopting and Adapting Them in the International Planned Language Esperanto.”

§        Manuel John Kaamugisha Muranga – "Theophoric Biblical Names and Their Impact on the Personal Naming System of Selected East African Peoples.”

§        Chaim Cohen – "Biblical Hebrew Personal Names and the Moshe Held Method for Comparative Semitic Philology.”

§        Michael Avioz – “’The shameful thing has devoured all for which our ancestors had laboured’ (Jer. 3:14): On the Names Mephibosheth and Ishbosheth.”

§        Itzhaq Shai – “Understanding the Migration of the Philistines: City Names and Their Implications.”

§        Talia Ditchi-Barak – “The Epithets of the God of Israel in Biblical Hebrew.”

§        Moshe Garsiel – “Puns on Names as a Literary Device in the Book of Judges.”

§        Amnon Shapira – “Names in the Bible – between ‘Allegory’ and ‘Allegoristic’.”

§        Yair Zakovitch – “Making a Name Meaningful: Between Literary and Textual Criticism.”

Professor Demsky also participated in the international conference: Topographic Aspects of Jewish Family Names among Sephardic Jewry, The Bar-Ilan Conference: In the Footsteps of the Marranos and Jewish Exiles, held in Lisbon, Portugal and Barcelona, Spain, January 29-February 5, 2007.

The Steering committee of ICOS 23 (Toronto, August, 2008) has asked Professor Demsky to organize a section on Jewish onomastics.  In answer to the Call for Papers, he has received twenty proposals that are now being reviewed.

He continues to give popular lectures on Jewish names as an aspect of Jewish heritage and family genealogy in elementary and high schools as well as to adult education study groups.

Dr. Demsky’s recent research projects and publications include:

§        The result of his ongoing research into biblical names and ancient Hebrew inscriptions (epigraphy) is the publication of his paper on the so-called MPQD (Census) inscription dating from the 7th century BCE in the Bulletin of the Association of the Society of Oriental Research (BASOR), 345 (2007), pp 1-6.

§        Another popular article “Jewish Women’s Names: A Historical Perspective” will appear shortly in JOFA Journal.

§        He is presently editing papers (in Hebrew and English) for the forthcoming fifth volume of These Are the Names -Studies in Jewish Onomastics (Ramat-Gan).  The articles reflect the interdisciplinary nature of the subject.  Anyone interested in purchasing this series of four volumes or a single volume should contact

§        Under the project’s sponsorship, Dr. Yigal Levin is preparing a monograph on Biblical Genealogies.  Both publications have been financed by a donor.

§        In addition, Dr. Demsky is editing a new series in English focusing on specific communal themes of Jewish onomastics.  The first volume is a collection of eleven studies on Jewish Names in the Sephardi Diaspora (1492-the Present).  This series will be published by the University of Maryland Press.

During this past academic year, Professor Demsky presented a BA seminar on “Jewish Onomastics in Antiquity” in the Department of Jewish History at Bar-Ilan University.  There were fifteen students among whom were several graduate students wanting to enhance their own respective research.  Also during this period, he received his first doctoral student in Jewish onomastics.  The student will be researching Surnames among Rumanian Jewry.

Lastly, Dr. Demsky reports that, Dr. Tsuguya (Tsvi) Sasaki of the Department of Hebrew and Semitic languages at Bar-Ilan University offered a course on onomastics from a linguistic point of view.  Please consult his website for more information:  “It is noteworthy that two courses on onomastics were given at the same university from two academic perspectives.”


Christine DE VINNE, Professor and Dean of Arts and Sciences at Ursuline College, published “Papal Self-Naming: Genesis of a Tradition” in Onomastica Canadiana 88 (2006): 41-58.  She also reports that she and Dorothy Dodge-Robbins “enjoyed collaborative guest-editing of the September 2007 issue of Names: A Journal of Onomastics on the theme of women’s onomastics.”  She adds that they would like to “thank their submitters for the abundance of topical manuscripts that made final selections very difficult.”  Dr. DeVinne looks forward to presenting “Renaming and Gender-unmarking: U. S. Women’s Colleges in Transition” at the January 2008 ANS conference in Chicago.

She continues to serve as book review editor of Names: A Journal of Onomastics and she invites authors and publishers to contact her to secure reviews of recently published work.  Name Scholars interested in reviewing for the journal are welcome to contact Professor DeVinne “with information about which area(s) of specialization they would like to cover.”  See also, Dorothy D. ROBBINS.


Wendi DUNLAP writes to say that she is “currently in the Humanities MA program (History concentration) at California State University/Dominguez Hills.”  She is “fascinated by the formation of surnames in the Middle English period, and is interested in researching names in the Wakefield Manor Court Rolls from the West Riding of Yorkshire.”  Currently she is categorizing all of the surnames in the 1274-5 and 1350-52 Wakefield Rolls, and comparing the types of names that appeared in each period.


Sheila EMBLETON, Vice President, Academic at York University in Toronto, reports that her work in onomastics for the period included:

§        Member – of Editorial Board – Onomastica Canadiana.

§        Correspondent – International correspondent for Canada, Rivista Italiana di Onomastica.

§        Member of the Honorary Committee of the RIOn [Rivista Italiana di Onomastica] International Series/Quaderni Internazionali di RIOn.

§        Chair of organizing committee – 23rd International Congress of Onomastic Sciences, York University, Toronto, August 17 – August 22, 2008.

§        Vice-President, International Council of Onomastic Sciences (ICOS), 2005-2008.

§        Referee – ANS Annual Meeting Anaheim 2007, Chicago 2008.

In addition, Dr. Embleton, an incredibly productive scholar, was active in non-onomastic activities:

§        “Data Capture and Presentation in the Romanian Online Dialect Atlas.” in Papers from the Methods in Dialectology XII Conference, Université de Moncton, 2007, (to appear in Linguistica Atlantica Volume l 27-28).  Conference proceedings article – (with Dorin Uritescu and Eric Wheeler).

§        “Romanian Online Dialect Atlas: Data Capture and Presentation”, in Viribus Quantitatis: Festschrift for Gabriel Altmann, ed. Peter Grzybek and Reinhard Köhler, Berlin/New York: de Gruyter, 2006, pages 87-96. Book chapter – (with Dorin Uritescu and Eric Wheeler).

§        Native American Place Names of the United States by William Bright, Language (to appear). Book review.

§        Contributions to the Science of Text and Language: Word Length Studies and Related Issues, Peter Grzybek (ed.), Word (to appear). Book review.

§        Language Classification by Numbers, by April McMahon and Robert McMahon, Language (to appear). Book review.

§        “Defining User Access to the Romanian Online Dialect Atlas,” Dialectologia e Geolinguistica, Volume 16, 2008 (to appear). Notice of Research Project – (with Dorin Uritescu and Eric Wheeler).

§        “York University Welcomes Indian Students,” India Abroad Supplement on Education, page 10, June 2007. Newspaper article.

§        “Defining User Access to the Romanian Online Dialect Atlas,” Fifth Congress of Dialectology and Geolinguistics, Universidade do Minho, Braga, Portugal, September 4 – 8, 2006.  Conference presentation – (with Dorin Uritescu & Eric Wheeler).

§        “Introduction: Workshop on Quantitative Approaches to Comparative Linguistics,” International Conference on Historical Linguistics, Montreal, August 6, 2007. Conference presentation (and day-long workshop organized with Joe Salmons).

§        “Digitalized Dialect Studies: North-Western Romanian,” Romanian Academy, Bucharest, Romania, June 28, 2007. Invited presentation – (with Dorin Uritescu and Eric Wheeler).

§        “Destination India”, “Canada – India: A synergy in education,” Canada-India Business Council, Brampton, Ontario, July 19, 2007.  Panel presenter.

§        “Enhancing Student Experience through Cross-Border Initiatives: Panel on “Experiences in Cross-Border Education,” 3rd International Transatlantic Degree Programs Workshop (organized by Deutscher Akademischer Austausch Dienst/German Academic Exchange Service and Freie Universität Berlin), Toronto, September 29, 2007.  Panel presenter.

§        “Accommodation of Students with Disabilities,” National Vice-Presidents Academic Conference (NATVAC), University of New Brunswick, Fredericton, October 11-12, 2006.  Panel organizer – (with Barbara Roberts).

§        Member-of-executive – International Linguistic Association.

§        President – International Quantitative Linguistics Association.

§        Member – Board of Directors, Shastri Indo-Canadian Institute; member of 40th anniversary committee.

§        Member – Executive, SWAAC [Senior Women Academic Administrators of Canada] to 2007.

§        Member of organizing committee – SWAAC [Senior Women Academic Administrators of Canada] Annual Conference, Toronto, May 2007.

§        Chair – Ontario Council of Academic Vice-Presidents, 2004-2008.

§        Chair – National Association of Vice-Presidents Academic, 2007-2008.

§        Member – Abstract Selection Committee, Linguistic Association of Canada and the United States (LACUS) Annual Meeting, Eastern Kentucky University, 2007.

§        Member – Program Committee, Association for Computational Linguistics Workshop on Computational Research in Historical Phonology, Prague, June 28-29, 2007.

§        President – Canadian Friends of Finland Education Foundation

§        Representative – from the Canadian Society for the Study of Names to Women’s Issues Network, Humanities and Social Sciences Federation of Canada.

§        Review editor – and member of Editorial Board – Word.

§        Review editor – and member of the Editorial Board – Journal of Finnish Studies.

§        Associate editor – Diachronica.

§        Associate editor – Journal of Quantitative Linguistics.

§        Member – of Editorial Board – Musikometrika.

§        Member – of Editorial Board – Quantitative Linguistics, book series.

§        Member – of Advisory Editorial Board – Amsterdam Classics in Linguistics, book series.

§        Member – of Advisory Editorial Board – Current Issues in Linguistic Theory, book series.

§        Referee – Journal of Quantitative Linguistics.

§        Member of Editorial Advisory Board, Edinburgh Historical Linguistics monograph series.

§        Referee/Assessor – merit or promotion cases (2 universities); (Austria) Fonds zur Förderung der wissenschaftlichen Forschung; (France) Agence Nationale de la Recherche; proposed MA in Linguistics (University of Western Ontario).


Cleveland Kent EVANS, is immediate past President of the American Name Society,  For those interested, he passes on the URL of the Social Security website:  (


Gillian FELLOWS-JENSEN, writes that her publications for the period are:

§        Runes and their Secrets: Studies in Runology, edited by Marie Stoklund, Michael Lerche Nielsen, Bente Holmberg & Gillian Fellows-Jensen, Copenhagen, 2006, 461 pp.

§        “Nordic and English in East Anglia in the Viking period”, Nowele 50/51, 2007, 93-108.

§        “The Scandinavian Element gata Outside the Urbanised Settlements of the Danelaw”, West over Sea. Studies in Scandinavian sea-borne expansion and settlement before 1300, edited by Beverley Ballin Smith, Simon Taylor and Gareth Williams, Leiden-Boston, 2007, 445-459.

Dr. Fellows-Jensen also responds that, “together with Peter Springborg,” she is busy “editing the proceedings of the tenth seminar of Care and Conservations of Manuscripts that was held in October 2006.”  The book will appear in April 2008.

She has been invited to deliver the Toller Memorial Lecture at the University of Manchester on 3rd March 2008.  She plans to talk about “Danes and the Danish Language in England: an Anthroponymic Point of View”.


Wayne H. FINKE, Deputy Chair of Modern Languages and Comparative Literature and Professor of Spanish at Baruch College, City University of New York, continues to organize the annual Names Institute which occurs on the first Saturday of May each year.  The 46th Names Institute was held this past on May 5, 2007.  Professor Finke and Baruch also hosted the American Society of Geolinguistics in September 2007.  The conference focused on “The Geolinguistics of Minority Languages.”  Professor Finke is editor of the journal Geolinguistics.


Douglas GALBI is a Senior Economist with the Federal Communications Commission.  His website is available at


Thomas J. GASQUE, Professor Emeritus of English, University of South Dakota, continues as secretary of the American Name Society.  His review of Edward Callary’s Surnames, Nicknames, and Epithets in America appeared in the March issue of Names: A Journal of Onomastics, and a review of Home Ground, edited by Barry Lopez, will appear in the March 2008 issue.  He has also written a biographical/bibliographical introduction to the Festschrift for Edwin Lawson, which will appear as the December 2007 issue of Names.  Although he has retired to South Carolina, he continuing to work on his dictionary of South Dakota placenames, and he spent a month in that state this summer moving toward the completion of this long-term project. 


Cynthia L. HALLEN, a Professor in the Department of Linguistics and English Language at Brigham Young University reports:

§        “Fabrics of Faith in Emily Dickinson’s Proper Names.”  Emily Dickinson International Society Conference in Kyoto, Japan.  August 3-5.    August 3, 2007.

§        “Emily Dickinson’s Place Names.”  (With Nielson, Malina M.); Names: A Journal of Onomastics.  54:1 (March 2006) 5-21.

§        “The ‘Malachi’ Given Name Pattern in a Swedish Village, 1500-1800.”  Names: A Journal of Onomastics. 55:4 (December 2007) 397-406.


Stephen P. HALUTIAK-HALLICK writes that he has “nothing to report” for this period.


Aylene S. HARPER.  See BARRY


Denis HUSCHKA, accepted a new and “very demanding” position during this period, so he was not able to devote time to his interest in name studies but he promises to “continue soon” in his onomastic work.


Derek M. JONES has been studying the identifiers (names) that occur in the source code of software.


Bob JULYAN continues to chair the New Mexico Geographic Names Committee, and in that role he represented the state at the COGNA conference in Lexington, Kentucky.  In addition, this year he became involved in the USGS stewardship program for GNIS.  In that capacity, he has hired a contractor to do editing and maintenance of the GNIS database for New Mexico.  Mr. Julyan’s also continues to write about geographic names.  He published an article in the Explorers Journal, the magazine of the Explorers Club, about names created by explorers; the article appeared late in 2006.


Helen KERFOOT, continues as an Emeritus Scientist at Natural Resources Canada in Ottawa.  She has “undertaken activities as: Chair of the United Nations Group of Experts on Geographical Names (UNGEGN); as Past President of the Canadian Society for the Study of Names (CSSN); and as Chair of the Ontario Geographic Names Board (OGNB).

Ms. Kerfoot has been involved in toponymic and associated activities in various areas: 


§        Chaired the 24th Session of the United Nations Group of Experts on Geographical Names (UNGEGN) in New York in August 2007;

§        Elected as President of the Ninth United Nations Conference on the Standardization of Geographical Names, New York, August 2007;

§        Participated in meetings of UNGEGN working groups: Evaluation and Implementation in Honolulu, January 2007; Toponymic Data Files and Gazetteers (as well as a EuroGeoNames meeting) in Madrid in March 2007; Exonyms in Prague, May 2007;

§        Participated in the UNGEGN divisional meeting for the Arabic Division in Tunis in April 2007 and the East Central and South-East Europe Division in Prague in May 2007;

§        Helped with the instruction at UNGEGN training courses in applied toponymy in Maputo (Mozambique) in September 2006 and in Tunis in April 2007;

§        Completed the coordination of contributors’ materials and liaison with production staff at the United Nations for:

-   Technical Reference Manual for the Standardization of Geographical Names (including Romanization systems, toponymic data text encoding standards, and country names in the languages and scripts of the country) published in 2007, and;

-   The brochure Geographical Names as Vital Keys for Accessing Information in our Globalized and Digital World.   (Can be downloaded from the UNGEGN website: ).

§        Efforts over the coming years will particularly be directed at working with countries of Africa to develop authorities for the national standardization of geographical names.  Technical sessions on geographical names are being organized at the 31st International Geographical Congress in Tunis, 12-15 August 2008.


§        Prepared material for the update of the UNGEGN website (

§        The Report of the Ninth Conference on the Standardization of Geographical Names, UNGEGN documents and activities are detailed on the UNGEGN website

Canadian Society for the Study of Names (CSSN):

§        Presentation at the CSSN 2006 meeting: UNGEGN – current issues and available materials;

§        The CSSN website is available in English ( and in French (;

§        The 2008 CSSN annual meeting will be held in conjunction with the International Congress of Onomastic Sciences (ICOS) being held at York University, Toronto, 17-23 August 2008.  Contact: Sheila EMBLETON ( Website:

§        Future meetings will be held in Ottawa – 2009, Montreal – 2010, New Brunswick – 2111.

Ontario Geographic Names Board (OGNB):

§        The Board, under the auspices of the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources (based in Peterborough, Ontario), has met four times during the past year, primarily to address names submitted to the Board for decision.  The Secretariat of the OGNB can be contacted through Jeff Ball (

Lastly, Ms. Kerfoot says, she continues “to be particularly interested in the United Nations training courses in toponymy for developing countries, and the toponymy of Northern Canada, as well as that of Tristan da Cunha and other small islands of the world.


William J. KIRWIN of Memorial University of Newfoundland edited : Regional Language Studies: Newfoundland 19 (Memorial University of Newfoundland, 2006).  Professor Kirwin offers that “a copy will be sent to any interested person who requests one.”  The contents of the book includes: W. Gordon Handcock, “Exploring the Toponym Saltons in Bonavista Bay, Newfoundland;” Bryan A. Greene, “Toponymy from the Mina Benson Hubbard Expedition to Labrador, 1905;” William J. Kirwin, “Standardization of Spelling in the Editing of the Dictionary of Newfoundland English [1982;1990];” Becky Childs, “First Year on the Rock: A Sociolinguist reflects on Language and Life in Newfoundland;” William J. Kirwin, “Regional Language in Undersea Names [Screech, Scruncheon, Touten and Dipper Seamounts];” “Corrections, Acquisitions, Recent Publications.” 

Dr. Kirwin further reports that “topics investigated during the year include: toponymy with the word Devil; the regional word tickle in placenames; and detailed collection of newfy and newfy-derived words within Newfoundland.”  He continues to assemble materials for a digitized dialect atlas of Newfoundland and he responded to “numbers of queries about Newfoundland vocabulary from many quarters.”


James KOENIG reports that during the period he continued his research into the structure and typology of personal names - and where applicable, family names - in the non-Western world.


Laura KOSTANSKI, of the University of Ballarat, Australia, is studying Attachment and Interference in Placename Based Identity.  Her work has been funded through an Australian Research Council grant, supported by the Office of the Surveyor-General, Victoria.  She continues to investigate the meaning of toponyms to people who are faced with a change in their local placenames.  She is currently convening a toponymy conference in Ballarat.


Éamon LANKFORD is the Director of the Cork and Kerry Place Names Survey in Cork City, Ireland.  Dr. Lankford provided a synopsis of where the Cork and Kerry Microtoponymy Project in Southern Ireland stands:

Ireland’s entry to the European Union in 1972 brought about huge economic, demographic, social and cultural changes.  Migration to cities, urbanization, major infrastructural development, changes in agricultural and fishing practices along with the explosion of a mass media culture have altered forever Irish people’s relationship with their place.  These changes along with the further decline of the Irish language as an everyday medium and the breakup of the hitherto very close traditional interaction of the older and younger generations have greatly impacted on the knowledge, use and survival of native placenames in both rural and urban Ireland.

The principal administrative unit in Ireland since the thirteenth century has been the County of which there are thirty two.  Each county is divided into smaller units called Baronies which in turn are subdivided into Parishes which in their turn are subdivided into Townlands.  The Townland is the smallest administrative division in the country, all other territorial divisions -- counties, baronies and parishes being collections of townlands.  In County Cork, situated in the Southern part of Ireland there are over 5,600 townlands which can vary in size from around 20 to 700 acres.  The neighboring county of Kerry has some 3,800 townland units.  Every townland, particularly in rural areas may have its territory divided into several hundred fields, each having its own boundary and specific minor name.  Like any other county in Ireland hundreds of thousands of minor placenames await collection and mapping.  The well thought out methodology for the collection and mapping of microtoponymy underway in Southern Ireland is as follows.

Dr. Éamon Lankford who had since the early 1970s been collecting and mapping minor placenames throughout County Cork established the Cork and Kerry Placenames Survey in 1996.  The objective of this initiative is to collect, research, collate and map from both oral and literary sources the minor placenames of two counties in the  South of Ireland and  establish by 2009 a County Placenames Archive in each county to house the collection.  The Archive will function within the established Local Government Library network.  A small committee of talented young university graduates was brought together in 1996 to help organise and spread the survey methodology to every corner of the designated survey area.  An advisory council of experts drawn from university, library, local government, educational and other interests provided expertise.

The organizing of the survey involved contacting community leaders, school authorities and enlisting the support of hundreds of people who were known to be good carriers of local placenames.  By means of public appeals, visits to schools, lectures, articles, radio, television and press interviews the Placenames Survey received very favorable media coverage and consequent widespread public support.  Once a local structure has been put in place to get a survey underway in an area, a public meeting attended by the Survey Director and members of the Survey Team is arranged where details of the operation of the survey are given.  Survey Maps are distributed to teachers, community groups and a timescale is set for the conduct of the survey in each area.  During the survey period the Survey Team continues to communicate with fieldworkers, school authorities and other participants. On the completion of a survey in a particular area Survey Maps are returned to a central office in Cork City where the work of collating the data and presenting it in a user friendly format for consultation by the public takes place.  A sample of how the collated data is being presented in the Placenames Archive can be viewed at  The information provided in the survey compilation includes references to Parish and Townland names gleaned from both manuscript and published sources.  This is followed in chronological order by a listing of minor names in each townland which have been collected from oral and literary sources.  The information on each name includes the placename itself and the number given to it by the Survey Team on the Townland Map in which it is situated.  The name and address of the Supplier and Collector of names, the date of collection, variations of the name, information regarding derivation, descriptions of the place or feature named, reference to any written sources for the name  and any other relevant information are recorded.  Names are tape recorded wherever possible.

The Irish Government’s National Training Authority (FÁS), was approached in 1998 to fund a training scheme for young university graduates who would pursue a practical course in the methodology of systematically collecting and mapping from both oral and literary sources, the minor placename heritage of an entire county.  The survey group now has on contract twenty fulltime staff, as well as ten other part-time fieldworkers, funding for which is provided by two Irish Government agencies as well as two Local Authorities and a number of corporate interests.  The school authority in over 450 Primary and Post primary schools along with teachers and their students are helping to organize local surveys in co-operation with some 60 community organizations.  Many others are volunteer fieldworkers who have been participating in this unique Placenames Survey initiative which has for ten years spearheaded the methodology for collecting and mapping Irish placename heritage on a very large scale.

As the primary objective of the project is the collection and mapping of placenames, the Survey Team is unable to engage in research or answer questions about Irish placenames for others until the Placenames Archive has been established at the close of 2008.  Meanwhile, academic, technical and institutional support towards the establishment of Ireland’s first County Placenames Archive will be welcome.


André LAPIERRE is Vice-Dean and Secretary of the Faculty of Arts at the University of Ottawa as well as a Professor in the Department of Linguistics.  He has been recently appointed Chair of the Ontario Geographic Names Board and continues to be active in several Working Groups and Divisions of the United Nations Group of Experts in Geographical Names.  He is a member of the Organizing Committee of the XXIIIrd International Congress of Onomastic Sciences, to be held at York University, August 17-22, 2008.  During the past year, Dr. Lapierre’s presentations include:

§        La Nouvelle-France en Floride? Mais voyons-donc! Remarques sur la toponymie des Huguenots au XVIe siècle. Commission de toponymie, Québec, February 2007.

§        Nova Francia, Francescane, Nova Gallia. Genèse du NP Nouvelle-France selon les sources huguenotes au XVIe siècle.  Français de France – Français du Canada Conference, Universität Trier, Germany April 2007.

§        L’énigme du NP Cap Francoys et le journal de René de Laudonnière. Annual Meeting of the Canadian Society for the Study of Names. University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, May 2007.

§        New Evidence vs Local Usage : The Conundrum of Name Reconsideration. Council of Geographical Names Authorities Conference, Lexington KY, October 2007.

More information about Professor Lapierre is available at his website:


Edwin D. LAWSON, Professor Emeritus, State University at Fredonia, responds that the following two works are “in press:”

§        “Russian Naming Patterns, 1874-1990.”  Congress Acts. 21st International Congress of Onomastic Sciences, Uppsala, August 19-24, 2002.  With Irene Glushkovskaya and Richard F. Sheil.

§        “The Mountain (Gorskij) Jews of Azerbaijan - Their 20th Century Naming Patterns.” In Aaron Demsky (ed.) These Are the Names- Studies in Jewish Onomastics.  Ramat Gan: Bar-Ilan University Press. With Farid Alakbarli and R.F.Sheil.

Dr. Lawson also presented:  “Azeri names: Meaning and Pronunciation on the Web.”  American Name Society, January 6, 2007.  With Farid Alakbarli and R.F.Sheil.

During this period, Professor Lawson developed the following website:

§        “B-29 Bomber Names in the Pacific,”

He is currently researching: West Siberian Turkic Naming Patterns, and is preparing an Estonian names website.  All of Professor Lawson’s websites may be accessed via:


Margaret LEE, a Professor of English and Linguistics at Hampton University, published an article, “African American Naming Patterns” in the Language Volume (Vol. 5) of The New Encyclopedia of Southern Culture, Eds., Michael Montgomery and Ellen Johnson, August 2007.  The article is an historical perspective on African American names and naming practices in the United States. 

Dr. Lee also presented a paper and a video presentation on, “Black Southern Church Language” at the annual meeting of the Southeastern Conference on Linguistics (SECOL) in Natchitoches, LA, April 2007.


Jesse LEVITT, Professor Emeritus of Foreign Languages at the University of Bridgeport spoke in May 2007 at the Names Institute at Baruch College (CUNY) on “Names in Samuel Beckett’s plays Endgame and All that Fall.”  In September 2007 he delivered an address at the American Society of Geolinguistics on “English in Israel.”


Stanley LIEBERSON, who is Abbott Lawrence Lowell Research Professor in the Department of Sociology at Harvard University, published:

§        “The Changing Role of Nicknames: A Study of Politicians” (with Cathy Kenny). Names: A Journal of Onomastics, December 2007.

§        “Globalization and First Names” (with Christopher A. Bail, and Mark Pachucki). Presented at the annual meetings of the Social Science History Association, November 2007, Chicago.

In 2007, Professor Lieberson was recognized with the following honors:

§        Co-recipient, Paul F. Lazarsfeld Award for Contributions to Methodology, Methodology Section, American Sociological Association, 2007.

§        Elected a Member of the American Philosophical Society,  2007.

§        Elected Honorary Member of Phi Beta Kappa, Alpha Iota Chapter, Harvard College, 2007.


Donna L. LILLIAN of East Carolina University has “continued to gather and analyze data from my online survey about women’s surnames and the use of Ms. as a courtesy title.”  To date, she has approximately 3000 respondents, but “these do not include sufficient numbers of representatives of all demographic groups” she is interested in, so “the survey process continues.”  In a parallel track of her research, she continues to engage in and write critical discourse analyses of political discourse, in particular discourses of the (far) right in Canada and the U.S.A.  She currently chairs doctoral dissertation committees for two students, “one working on the discourse of sermons and the second on discourses about Africa in humanities textbooks.”  In addition, she serves on doctoral committees for students studying discourses of video gaming, discourses about domestic violence in African-American churches in the U.S. South, and institutional discourses.  Her recent work related to onomastics includes:

§        Ms. as a Courtesy Title:  Variation through Time and Space.”  LACUS FORUM 33: Variation, ed. Peter Reich, William J. Sullivan & Arle R. Lommel.Houston, TX: Linguistic Association of Canada and the United States. pp. 211-218. 2007.

§        “‘Ms.-taken’ Identities?: Changes in Women’s Courtesy Titles.”  SHEL-5 (Studies in the History of the English Language); Athens, GA, Oct. 4-6, 2007.

§        “Social and Regional Variation in Women’s Marital Surname Choices.”  Linguistic Association of Canada and the United States; Richmond, Kentucky, July 25-28, 2007.

§        Age, Sex, and Ethnicity in Choice of Courtesy Titles for Women.”  Canadian Society for the Study of Names; Saskatoon, Canada May 26-27, 2007.

§        “The Politics of Courtesy Titles:  Traditionalists versus Abolitionists.”  Canadian Society for the Study of Rhetoric; Saskatoon, Canada, May. 27-29, 2007.

§        “Token Resistance:  Ms. through Three Decades of Feminist Struggle.”  Georgetown University Round Table; Washington, DC, March 8-11, 2007.

§        “Changing the Rules:  The Struggle over Women’s Surnames and Courtesy Titles.”  American Name Society; Anaheim, CA, Jan. 4-7, 2007.

Other recent work by Dr. Lillian includes:

§        “A Thorn by Any Other Name: Sexist Discourse as Hate Speech”.  Discourse & Society 18(6), Nov. 2007.

§        “From Time to Time, ‘Girl’ May Be Appropriate: Narrative Voice and the Backlash Against Feminist Linguistic Innovations.”  American, British and Canadian Studies 8: 254-262, June 2007.

§        “A Thorn by Any Other Name:  Sexist Discourse as Hate Speech.”  South Atlantic Modern Languages Association, Charlotte, NC.  Nov. 10–12, 2006.

§        “Racism, Ethnicism, ‘Linguism’:  Anti-French and Anti-Spanish Discourse in Canada and the U.S.A.”  Linguistic Association of the Southwest, Laredo, TX.  Sept. 29–Oct. 1, 2006.

§        “Approaching Hysteria Approaching the Qur’an: The Debate in and about Chapel Hill 2002”, joint paper with Elizabeth Kearney.  Linguistic Association of the Southwest, Laredo, TX.  Sept. 29 – Oct. 1, 2006.


Myra LINDEN reports that, though the year has been a trying one for her due to poor health, she did finish 6th Grade Thinking through Grammar which she had been working on with her late husband.  She also wrote a journal article entitled “The Harvardization of Rhetoric: From Rhetoric to Literature-Based Composition.”


Dorothy LITT has very much enjoyed reading Names: a Journal of Onomastics.  She has nothing to report for the period but wishes her colleagues well.


Carol LOMBARD, a graduate student at the University of South Africa, is currently working on her Master’s Degree dissertation research project entitled: Kitsiitsinihka'siminnoonistsi ‘our real names’: An Ethnolinguistic Study of Niitsitapi Personal Names.  She is “pleased to say that much progress has been made in this regard since my last submission to the Ehrensperger Report.”  The overall objective of her research is to provide an ethnographically-based account of the role played by personal names and naming practices in Niitsitapi (Blackfoot) culture, through an investigation of the apparently complex and multi-faceted relationships between naming phenomena and other aspects of traditional Niitsitapi socioculture.  She hopes to have the dissertation ready for examination by the spring of 2008.

Ms. Lombard’s research interests focus on sociolinguistics, cognitive linguistics, and Native American studies.

During this period she published “Conceptual Metaphors in Computer Networking Terminology” in Southern African Linguistics and Applied Language Studies 2005, 23(2):177-185.  


Emma Woo LOUIE is “in the process of updating”  her collection of Chinese American surnames in her computer files “in preparation for revisiting cemeteries to look for more different spellings for the surnames” she has on file.  In addition, she will be looking as well for “additional Chinese family names.”

MacFarland & Co., publisher of her book Chinese American Names, will be issuing a reprint in soft cover at a lower price than the hardcover book sometime next year.


Mark MANDEL is the Research Administrator for a Biomedical Information Extraction project at the University of Pennsylvania.  Dr. Mandel’s professional home page, which he says “is much in need of updating,” may be found at  His personal home page can be found at


Philip W. MATTHEWS of Lower Hutt, New Zealand, co-authored two papers with Peeter Päll:  “Some Linguistic Aspects of Exonyms,” and “Māori Names for Countries - Endonyms or Exonyms?”   These papers were published in: Peter Jordan, Milan Orožen Adamič and Paul Woodman (eds), 2007, Exonyms and the International Standardization of Geographical Names: Approaches towards the Resolution of an Apparent Contradiction, Wiener Osteuropa Studien 24, Vienna, LIT Verlag GmbH & Co.

Mr. Matthews continues work on New Zealanders’ personal and surnames and is preparing two papers for consideration by the selection panel for the ICOS 2008 conference.


Lewis L. MCARTHUR forwarded his report from Oregon:

§        Renaming Squaw names.  The Oregon Geographic Names Board (OGNB) is assisting in the changing of some 150 “squaw” names in Oregon in cooperation with federal agencies, Native American Tribes, and interested individuals.  Some 35 have been changed, and work is continuing.  The difficult part will be finding suitable replacements for numerous minor features with no agency sponsorship and no funding.

§        COGNA.  Champ Vaughan, President of the OGNB, was our only representative at the COGNA Conference in Lexington.  Lewis McArthur has serious eye problems and cannot fly alone.  Neither Mary MCARTHUR nor Cindy Gardiner could attend this year, so he was “homebound.”  Schedules next year should permit their attendance.

§        Oregon Geographic Names.  Lewis and Mary MCARTHUR are doing preliminary work on the 8th edition of Oregon Geographic Names.  The current 7th edition runs to almost 1,200 pages and is too thick for easy reference.  Toponyms of geographic features make up some three fifths of the entries, and administrative place names two-fifths.  The current thinking is two volumes, one of geographic names and one of placenames with some duplication of major important names.




Michael F. McGOFF is editor of The Ehrensperger Report and Vice Provost at Binghamton University (SUNY).  Dr. McGoff serves as Treasurer of ANS and oversees the websites of the American Name Society as well as the ANS listserve, both of which are resident on the Binghamton University (State University of New York) computer system.  The listserve, an active forum for the discussion of onomastic issues, typically has about 200 members. 

Dr. McGoff also serves on the Editorial Board for Names: a Journal of Onomastics.


Erin MCKEAN, the Editor of Verbatim, says that, two articles about names by Robert RENNICK were published during this period.  She adds that Verbatim “remains interested in onomastic writing for the layperson, preferably humorous,” and that queries and submissions should be directed to the editor at, or to PO Box 597302, Chicago IL 60659


Edmund MILLER of Long Island University published:

§        “With What Trivial Weapon Came to Hand: Samson Agonistes in the Wars of Criticism.” Northeast CCL 2006 Conference Proceedings. Brooklyn: St. Francis College, 2007.

§        “What's She Talking About?: Post-Feminist Notes on Sexist Grammar.” Belinda Kremer and Richard McNabb, eds. Collide: Styles, Structures, and Ideas in Disciplinary Writing. 2nd Edition.  Dubuque: Kendall, 2007.

§        “Summer Haiku,” “Fall Haiku,” “Winter Haiku,” and “Spring Haiku.” Long Island Sounds: 2007: An Anthology of Poetry from Maspeth to Montauk and Beyond. Eds. Tammy Nuzzo-Morgan, Lynn E. Cohen, and J. R. Turek. Southampton: North Sea Poetry Scene, 2007. 248-49.

§        “Merry Christmas Haiku Sequence.” PPA Literary Review. 11 (2007): [62].


Mary Rita Miller focused during the period on literature. 


Lucie A. MÖLLER  See Peter E. RAPER.


Christian MORARU, Professor of American Literature and Critical Theory at the University of North Carolina, Greensboro Department of English responds that he is “trying to finish up a book” and reports that he published:  “The Other, the Namesake: Cosmopolitan Onomastics in Chang-rae Lee’s A Gesture Life” in Names: A Journal of Onomastics,  55.1 (March 2007): 17-36.

Dr. Moraru’s website is:


Jennifer MOSS completed her book The One-In-A-Million Baby Names Book, which will be published in July 2008 by Perigee Press, an imprint of Penguin Group.  In the past year, Ms. Moss, founder and CEO of, has been interviewed by the CBS Early Show, KPNX Phoenix, the BBC, ESPN and ABC News on the subject of name trends and name consulting.  Ms. Moss also launched a column on, where she answers questions on names and the naming process. is the top most visited website on names, receiving over 1.2 million visitors a month.


Michael Dean MURPHY is Professor of Anthropology at the University of Alabama; his website can be accessed at: 


Tim NAU presented the after-dinner talk at the annual meeting of Toronto's St. George’s Society last February.  It was about how first names have changed in Toronto since the Society was founded about 170 years ago.  Entitled “First Names in Toronto since the Early Nineteenth Century, as Evidenced by the Names of the Members of the St. George’s Society” it referenced some of his previously published material in addition to his recent analysis of the patterns evident in the first names of the earliest members of the Society.

Mr. Nau also wrote a book review about the onomastic implications of Stephen Oppenheimer's Origins of the British (New York: Carroll and Graf, 2006) that was published in Onomastica Canadiana, Vol. 89, No. 1 (June 2007).

Lastly, he assisted in the editing of two issues of Onomastica Canadiana, i.e., Vol. 88, No. 2 and Vol. 80, No. 1. 


Bertie NEETHLING is a Senior Professor in the Xhosa Department at the University of the Western Cape in Bellville, South Africa.  During this period he produced:  Names as a Vehicle for Transformation in the South African Wine Industry,” in Lavric, E; Kuhn, J et al.: Language, Products and Professions: From Code Choice to Onomastics. (Publisher: Peter Lang).

Professor Neethling has also submitted the following for publication; most will appear in 2008:

§        “The term ‘Bantu:’ A Reappraisal.” (for Language Matters)

§        “Contemporary Xhosa Anthroponymy: Shifting Trends.” (for Acta Academica)

§        “Name Giving Strategies in Andre P. Brink’s Duiwelskloof/Devil’s Valley.” (for Onoma)

§        “A Drink at Kwamaliyam?  Names of Informal Businesses in the Cape Peninsula.” (for Nomina Africana)

§        “Xhosa First Names: A Dual Identity in Harmony or in Conflict?” (for Names)

§        “Names, Registration Plates, and Identity” (for Names)


Joel NEVIS presented a paper entitled “On Grassland Place-Names, Dialect, Regionalisms, and Diffusion” at the 46th Names Institute, Baruch College, May 5, 2007. The paper may be found at:  Mr. Nevis states that, “Place-name generics referring to open grassy areas (basin, meadow, prairie, flats, bottom, plain, glade, plateau, barrens, mesa, opening, savanna, clearing) tell us much about regionalisms and historical fads, and surprisingly little about dialect boundaries.”  In his study he shows how Spanish- and French-derived savanna, prairie and plateau diffused well beyond their original cultural regions, though mesa did not.  Due to some complementary distribution he suggests a model of lexical competition.


W.F.H. NICOLAISEN, Distinguished Professor Emeritus of English and Folklore at the State University of New York at Binghamton and currently Honorary Professor of English in the School of Language and Literature at the University of Aberdeen (Scotland), as the result of two very successful cataract operations has returned to reading and writing again.  Most of the products of this activity seem to be still in the hands of editors and publishers.  Among his publications are several contributions to the Encyclopedia of American Folklife, 2006, seven reviews (some of these in Names: A Journal of Onomastics) and three articles: “They Come and They Go: Random Thoughts on the Precarious Life of a Folk-Narrative Genre” (in: Basis  3 [2006] 137-144; “Teaching Names: A Personal Account” (in: Onoma 39 [2004-7] 19-28; and “Gaelic sliabh Revisited” (in: A Grey Eye Looks Back, eds. K. Hollo and S. Arbuthnott, Clann Tuirc, 2007, 175-186.  Professor Nicolaisen also contributed lectures on name-studies to an audio-visual course of the University of the Highlands and Islands.


Alleen NILSEN, and Don NILSEN, Professors of English at the University of Arizona, and Co-Presidents of the American Name Society, say that their  “biggest project this year was finishing our book and getting it published by the Scarecrow Press, which specializes in books of interest to librarians.  The title is Names and Naming in Young Adult Literature.”  They begin the book by explaining that “teenagers are especially interested in names and naming because they are vitally involved in developing their own identities as they say goodbye to who they were as children and hello to who they will be as adults.”  They then show how many of the most respected authors of books marketed to the teenage audience make full use of names and naming for literary purposes.  They “begin with one of the most obvious uses, which is to create humor.”  In following chapters the Nilsens show how authors use names to establish tone and mode, to help develop an historical time frame, to establish realistic settings, to establish imagined settings, to reveal ethnic values, to build a dual audience of both adults and young readers, and to create memory hooks.  Material in three of the chapters was developed directly from presentations they had prepared for the annual meetings of the American Name Society.  


Frank NUESSEL, Professor of Linguistics at the University of Louisville and incoming editor of Names: a Journal of Onomastics continues to be a very active and productive scholar.  His publications for the period include:

§        Medical Interpreting and Cross-cultural Communication. C. V. Angelelli. Cambridge: Cambridge UP. Lingua 117: 317-321.

§        “Interlinguistics.” In: Polimetrica: The Language of Science. Ed. by Giandomenica Sica. Milano. Online Encyclopedia.

§        “Strategies for Developing Listening Skills in AP Italian.” AP Central. On line article.

§        Current Trends in the Pragmatics of Spanish. Edited by R. Márquez Reiter and M. E. Placencia. Amsterdam: Benjamins. Lingua 117: 727-732.

§        “Virtual Augusto Ponzio.” In: S. Petrilli (ed.). Philosophy of language as the art of teaching. Bari: Edizioni del Sud. pp. 205-211.

§        “Five Ideas for the Spanish Classroom.” Hispania 90: 131-133.

§        “Thomas A. Sebeok and Applied Semiotics.”  International Journal of Applied Semiotics 5: 13-19.

§        “The ‘Nuessel-Stewart Ageism Rating Instrument’: Literature Review, Format, Implementation, Recommendations for Usage.” In: W. H. Miller (Ed.) Advances in Communications and Media Research. New York: Nova Science Publishers. Pp. 29-51.

§        “Collecting: A Semiotic Perspective.” In: S. Monahan, B. Smith and T. Prewitt (eds.), Semiotics 2004/2005. Ottawa: Legas. Pp. 218-232.

§        “I nomi e i cognomi italiani: sitologia per i docenti.” Cultura e comunicazione 1: 36, 60.  New journal published by Guerra in Italy. Features articles by Danesi, A. Ponti, A. Vitti, and other well-known Italian scholars.

§        “Spanish Phonology and Morphology.” David Eddington. Amsterdam: Benjamins. Lingua 117: 1821-1825.

§        “Gesture and Language.” Semiotica 166: 463-476.

§        “The Workbook in Elementary Italian Programs.” Italica 84: 42-58. (with Enza Antenos-Conforti).

§        Bad Language. Edwin L. Battistella. Oxford: Oxford UP. Language Problems and Language Planning 31: 67-71

§        Cultural and Linguistic Policy Abroad: The Italian Experience. Maria Totaro-Genevois. Clevedon: Multilingual Matters. Language Problems and Language Planning 31: 76-79.

§        Spanish Pragmatics. Rosina Márquez Reiter and María Elena Placencia. Bastingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. Language Problems and Language Planning 31: 91-94.

§        Language and Aging in Multicultural Contexts. Kees de Bot and Sinfree Makoni. Clevedon: Multilingual Matters. Language Problems and Language Planning 31: 100-103.

§        Adesso. M. Danesi. Boston: Thomson Heinle. The Modern Language Journal 91: 316-317.

§        Spanish Pronouns and Prepositions. Hauppauge, NY: Barrons.

§        Spanish for the Health Care Providers. Hauppauge, NY: Barrons.

During this period Professor Nuessel also presented the following papers:

§        “The Study of Names: Past Research and Future Projects.”  American Name Society. Anaheim, CA. January 2007.

§        “The New AP Italian Language and Culture Course and Exam.” Kentucky Foreign Language Conference. April 20, 2007. Lexington, KY.

§        “Results of the First AP Italian Language and Culture Exam, and How to Prepare for the Next One.” American Association for Italian Studies. Colorado Springs, CO. May 4, 2007.

§        “Risultati del primo esame AP Italiano: Feedback e consigli.” American Association for Italian Studies. Colorado Springs, CO. May 4, 2007.

§        “The Integration of Songs and Music into the Spanish Curriculum.” AATSP Convention. San Diego, CA. August 2007 (With April Marshall).

§        “Meet the Development Committee.” National AP Conference, Las Vegas, NC, July 13, 2007 (with Elissa Tognozzi and Rosa Bellino-Giordano).

§        “Internet Resources for AP Italian.” National AP Conference, Las Vegas, NV, July 13, 2007. 

§        “Word Games: A Semiotic Perspective.”  Semiotic Society of America Conference. October 5, 2007.

§        “Results of the Second AP Italian Exam.” American Association of Teachers of Italian Conference. Washington, DC. October 13, 2007.

§        “Establishing AP Italian Exam Validity Using College Professors' Grading Standards.” ACTFL, November 17, 2007, San Antonio, TX. (with David Baum, ETS). 

§        “The AP Language and Culture Exam – Year 2.”  ACTFL-AATI Meeting, November 17, 2007. San Antonio, TX.

§        “A Selective Review of Research on Spanish in the United States.”  MLA. Chicago, IL.  December 29, 2007.

Dr. Nuessel’s outstanding scholarship and contributions to his profession were recognized by the University of Louisville during the period:

§        Recipient of the University Award for Distinguished Service to the Profession; and,

§        Recipient of College of Arts and Sciences Distinguished Service Award for “Service to the Profession.” 


Priscilla A. ORD, who, in “pre-retirement,” teaches as an adjunct lecturer in English at McDaniel College, the former Western Maryland College, in Westminster, MD, is the current first vice president of the American Name Society.  The duties of her office, which involve planning the annual meeting, “leave her little time to follow her own interests,” but for the past two years, she has involved her students in a project entitled Naming the Halls of Ivy.  The assignment requires them to research and report on the history behind the names of the buildings on the McDaniel campus, including brief biographies of the people for whom the buildings were named.  In addition, the final paper is designed to exhibit at least six of the forms of expository writing they have studied during the semester, such as the process involved in naming a campus building, a classification and division of the campus buildings based on their function, a comparison of the patterns of naming buildings on campus, an exemplification of how their designated building was named, a detailed description of their building, and a narration of the life of the person after whom their building has been named.


Roger L. PAYNE, Executive Secretary (1993-2006), U.S. Board on Geographic Names; Manager, Geographic Names Information System (GNIS) (1979-2006), reported last year that he “retired from active service in the Federal Government on May 31, 2006.”  He was asked, however, to continue as a rehired annuitant (consultant) to assist during office transition and realignment, and is still performing this function.  Specifically, he monitors the websites of the Geographic Names Information System (GNIS) and the U.S. Board on Geographic Names responding to inquiries and analyzing notifications of errors and new data submitted.  He also continues to direct and participate in the PAIGH (Pan American Institute of Geography and History) course on geographic names on behalf of the U.S. Geological Survey.  Mr. Payne has been asked to serve as the recording secretary for the Board’s Advisory Committee on Antarctic Names (ACAN).

Mr. Payne also reports that “all copies of Place Names of the Outer Banks have been sold (except for a handful of hardbound copies), and even though the publisher has asked for a revision, there has been little progress because of various other activities and projects.”  He also provided seven book reviews (not toponymic), on Earth Science and Geography, five of which were children’s series. 

The 19th course in applied toponymy offered by the Pan American Institute of Geography and History (PAIGH) was held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, May 7 - 18, 2007.  There were 31 students, “and thus far, more than 500 students have participated in the courses where they receive lectures in various methods and procedures for standardizing geographic names as well as participating in a field exercise for collecting data, and an automation workshop.”  Mr. Payne organized the course and served as principal instructor.

He also attended officially and participated in the annual conference of the Council of Geographic Names Authorities (COGNA) 2007, October 2-6, 2007 in Lexington, Kentucky where numerous policy issues were discussed and debated.  Mr. Payne also attended officially and participated in the annual conference of the Council of Geographic Names Authorities (COGNA) 2006, October 17- 21, 2006 in Boulder, Colorado.

Lastly, Mr. Payne attended Naming Places / Placing Names: An International Workshop held October 13-16 at East Carolina University in Greenville, North Carolina.  He says that he “was honored to be the invited speaker [he is an alumnus of the Graduate School in the Department of Geography] at the conference banquet where he discussed the nature and function of the U.S. Board on Geographic Names as well as presenting a paper on applied toponymy to the conference.


Charles PFUKWA is the Coordinator of the Communication Skills Centre at Midlands State University in Gweru, Zimbabwe.  He has just completed his doctoral thesis entitled the Function and Significance of War Names in the Zimbabwean Armed Conflict (1966-1979).  In his research Dr. Pfukwa investigates the onomastic patterns and processes that influenced the creation of war names in the Zimbabwean conflict.  He brings theoretical insights from identity studies to bear on his analysis of the data.  He writes that:  “Professor Edwin LAWSON has greatly influenced” his work and he “is eternally grateful for his support over the years.”  In addition to onomastics Dr. Pfukwa is interested in sociolinguistic issues in a multicultural and multilingual environment and how these influence TESOL/ESP/EAP in African universities.  He also hopes to “contribute to growth of African studies on the American continent.” He hopes “to attend ANS annual conferences, do post doctoral work on nicknames (especially war names) in other parts of the world and represent his country in UNGEGN.”

His recent publications include:

§        “Negotiating Identities: Zimbabwe’s noms de guerre in Zimbabwe’s Liberation war.”  Paper presented to Colloquia Linguistica : Unisa 5 November 2004.

§        “Ndiwe Ani Iwe!” (Who goes there?) Identities in Zimbabwean noms de guerre.”  Paper presented to the Linguistics Society Seminar: University of Zimbabwe. 17 March 2005.

§        “From Nyaronga to Penhalonga – Portuguese influence on Zimbabwean Onomastics.”  Paper presented to the first Linguistics Society conference at University of Zimbabwe, 17 May, 2005.

§        “Creating and Concealing Identities in Zimbabwean War Names.”  Paper presented to Colloquia Linguistica. University of South Africa, 15 September  2005.

§        With L.A. Barnes: “Breaker of Dogs and Other Species: The Animal Name in Guerrilla Nicknames.”  Paper presented to LSSA/SAALA Conference: 5-7 July: Durban 2006.

§        “Exploring Memories through Names: An analysis of Thomas Bvuma’s Every Stone That Turns.”  Paper presented to the Department of English and Communication, Midlands State University, Gweru, 12 September 2007.

Dr. Pfukwa’s works in progress are:

§        “Ethnic Slurs as War Names in the Zimbabwean Conflict (1966-79).” (With L.A. Barnes),  Names:  A Journal of Onomastics.  (Submitted).

§        “A Name for Every Season: Shona Perception and Description of Time.” Namibian Journal of Language and Communication (Nawa); (Submitted).

§        “The Martial Name in Zimbabwean War Names.”  Language Matters.  (Submitted).

§        “Unwritten Ethics And Moral Values: The Human Face of Zimbabwe’s Liberation War.”  Chapter In Vambe, M. T. (Ed) Orality and Cultural Identities In Zimbabwe. Mambo Press, Gweru.  2002.

§         “Zimbabwean noms de guerre: Corruption of Language or Onomastic Innovation?” in Language Matters 34: 2003.

§        “The Role of the Zimbabwe Open University in Open and Distance Learning in Zimbabwe.” (with J. Matipano);  In Progress Volume 28 (1 & 2) 2006.

§        “Their Own Godparents:  Guerrilla Nicknames.”  In Zimbabwean Review.  Vol. 4, No 3, 1998.


Barry POPIK notes that he “moved from New York City to Austin, Texas in late September” and that he has “added a Texas Dictionary section to his website (  It now contains “about 900 entries on quotations, food terms, slang, nicknames, slogans, etc.”  He also posted to the American Name Society Listserve (ANS-L), his discovery of the origin of the city name Marfa (TX), which is now part of the Marfa, TX Wikipedia page.  More work by Mr. Popik may be found in Comments on Etymology and daily on the American Dialect Society web site,, in the archives.  See Also, Gerald L. COHEN.


Terrence M. POTTER of the Department of Arabic and Islamic Studies at Georgetown University published “USMA Nicknames: Naming by the Rules” in the Festschrift in honor of Edwin D. Lawson, Names: A Journal of Onomastics. December 2007. Dr. Potter says that, “selected nicknames or new names that cadets have assigned are described. These names follow linguistic rules but when deployed their use serves to bend other rules that cadets follow.”

Professor Potter also completed a review of Native American Placenames of the United States by William Bright. His ongoing work includes preparation of a paper for the annual conference of the American Name Society in Chicago.  His analysis seeks to describe Iraqi personal Arabic names and compare them with other first names.


Margaret S. POWELL is Government Information Librarian Emerita, The College of Wooster Libraries.  She responds that “although there is very little new or different to report this year,” she continues to “build a database of the published literature on geographic names in the United States and Canada.”  This covers works appearing since 1982 when the third edition of the Bibliography of Place Name Literature was published and represents a project which has been continued in her family since 1938.  A supplement in Names: A Journal of Onomastics covering 1980-1988, a north central regional list, and an author list for Donald Orth have been prepared and published since the third edition.  Although she says that she is “still using old software,” she is “exploring conversion of the database to another “live” program or medium, to insure computer search-ability of its contents.

Ms. Powell’s other major scholarly project is “also between software programs.”  She continues to transfer to a computer database the massive WPA imprint records for Missouri, which will cover the publication history of the state beginning with the first printing press in 1808 through 1876.


Richard R. RANDALL says that while he was not “active in research or teaching for the past year,” he was involved with various programs.  He especially “took interest in a conference on geography sponsored by the Association of American Geographers and the Pan American Institute on Geography and History (PAIGH) in Chile in May.”  Dr. Randall’s interest was related to the fact that in 1987 he had initiated a series of annual classes to teach principles of names standardization to Latin-American member nations of the Pan American Institute of Geography and History.  (“They have been sponsored by PAIGH and successor agencies of the US Defense Mapping Agency since then; the 20th class took place in Brazil this year.”)  Accordingly, he reports, he “provided materials to the conference for two reasons.  First, to describe the names courses so participants could understand the importance of accurate names; and second, to foster an interest by the two organizations to initiate joint efforts to work with names.”  The Secretary General of PAIGH, Santiago Borrero, will publish an article Dr. Randall prepared on this topic in Revista Cartografica.  For a few days in August, he attended the 9th UN Conference on the Standardization of Geographical Names in New York.  He “was there to provide information about an exhibit of four panels featuring Dr. Meredith Burrill, a major voice in founding UN programs on names, as well as the Executive Secretary of the UN Board on Geographic Names from 1943 to 1973 and, of course, perhaps the world’s foremost expert in toponymy.”  The display was mounted near the conference room and featured text which Dr. Randall prepared as well as pictures of Dr. Burrill at various sessions.  In addition, he “enjoyed seeing many colleagues from other countries” with whom he had worked over the years.”  One of these colleagues “was a geographer from South Korea” who invited him “to attend a seminar his government later sponsored in Washington that related to the dispute between the Republic of Korea and Japan over the name of the body of water between the two countries (East Sea preferred by the ROK and Sea of Japan preferred by Japan).”


Peter E. RAPER, former chairman of the United Nations Group of Experts on Geographical Names (UNGEGN), along with Lucie A. MÖLLER, send their usual excellent report from South Africa:

Research into Bushman roots of ‘Bantu’ place-names

Peter E. Raper has been appointed Research Associate attached to the Unit for Language Management of the University of the Free State in Bloemfontein, South Africa.  In this capacity he presented a paper on United Nations Resolutions pertaining to the names of seas and oceans at the 13th International Seminar on the Names of Seas and Oceans held at the University of Vienna, Austria, from 26 to 28 April 2007.  A paper by him has been accepted for presentation at the conference on Trends in Toponymy: Indigenous Identity and Theoretical Developments in Place-names Research which is to be held from 26 to 30 November 2007 at the University of Ballarat in Victoria, Australia.

Dr. Raper is currently engaged in research into Bushman influence on place-names deemed to be derived from African (‘Bantu’) languages, and presented a paper on Khoisan influence on Zulu Place-names at the 14th Congress of the Names Society of Southern Africa held at the Ithala Game Reserve in KwaZulu-Natal from 26 to 29 November 2006.  The Bushmen inhabited the southern portion of Africa for many thousands of years.  African or Bantu peoples who migrated southwards from Central Africa took over many of these names, adapting them to their respective phonological systems.  Initial results reveal that numerous names hitherto considered to be Sotho, Tsonga, Swazi, Venda, Zulu, and so forth, are in fact adapted Bushman names.  These include some ‘African’ names that have replaced former names of cities and towns, such as Tshwane (Pretoria), Lephalale (Ellisras), Modimolle (Nylstroom), Mogwadi (Dendron) and Metsimadiba (Waterval Bo), as well as African-language allonyms such as Mangaung (Bloemfontein), uKhahlamba (Drakensberg), Mzinyathi (Wakkerstroom), Ncome (Blood River), and Tlokwe (Mooi River, Potchefstroom).  Investigation into the Bushman origin of names deemed to be from African languages, and ‘corrected’ in accordance with current orthographic rules of these languages, reveals that the names as first recorded and used were correct and the ‘corrected’ versions incorrect.  Thus Kurrichane, recorded in the 1820s, is closer to the cognate Bushman name than Kaditshwene, recorded for the first time in 1937; Marico (and the Afrikaans form Mariko) is closer to the underlying Bushman words mari and koe than the Tswana adaptation Madikwe, Pudimoe closer to the Bushman components pudi and moe than the Tswana replacement Pudumong, and so forth.

Drs. Raper and Möller also report the death of Mr. Luis Abrahamo of Maputo, Mozambique.  He passed away on 3 October 2007 after an illness that hospitalized him in New York.  Mr Abrahamo was Vice-President of the Names Society of Southern Africa (NSA) and Chairman of the Africa South Division of the United Nations Group of Experts on Geographical Names (UNGEGN), a Division which comprises Angola, Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, Swaziland, Zambia and Zimbabwe.  He initiated the establishment of a Portuguese-speaking Division of the UNGEGN.  As the Mozambican expert to the United Nations Group of Experts on Geographical Names (UNGEGN), Luis had been active in UNGEGN meetings and United Nations Conferences on the Standardization of Geographical Names in New York, Geneva, Berlin and Vienna.  He was a participant in United Nations training courses on geographical names in Southern Africa since 1992, and arranged two training courses in Maputo, in 2004 and 2006, involving participants from Brazil, Egypt and Tanzania, as well as from the member countries of the Africa South Division.  He was in the process of arranging a UNGEGN training course in Angola in 2008.  In collaboration with Professor Adrian KOOPMAN, current President of the Names Society of Southern Africa (NSA), he arranged the 13th Congress of the NSA in Maputo in 2004.  In 2006 Luis was co-founder of the Names Society of Mozambique, which is intended to involve the participation of academics and researchers to support the activities of the National Geographical Names Council of Mozambique, established in pursuance with Resolution 4 of the First United Nations Conference on the Standardization of Geographical Names.  Mr. Abrahamo’s dynamic leadership and initiatives will be sorely missed at the national and international level in the important work on the standardization of geographical names.

Lastly, Dr. Raper and Dr. Möller each presented a paper at a conference on Standardization of Geographic Names which was held in Seoul, Korea, on 6 and 7 December 2007.  Dr. Möller spoke on “Dual names of Maritime Features -With Special Reference to the Involvement of the Working Group on Evaluation and Implementation of the UNGEGN in this Regard,” and Dr. Raper on “Extended United Nations Resolution of Names of Maritime Features.”


Henry A. RAUP continues his work on the placenames of Mount Desert Island, Maine and is now preparing a final draft. 


Alan RAYBURN attended the annual meeting of the Canadian Society for the Study of Names, held at the University of Saskatchewan, in Saskatoon, May 26-27.  He delivered a paper entitled “Naming Airports After Canadian Politicians.”  Mr. Rayburn attended the Council of Geographic Names Authorities (COGNA) in Lexington, Kentucky, October 10-15.  He reports the sessions and the trip through the Bluegrass Region and to Frankfort, the state’s capital “were excellent.”  Mr. Rayburn is planning to attend the annual American Name Society (ANS) meeting in January, 2008 in Chicago.  In October he updated the ANS Bylaws.

Mr. Rayburn also reports that the homepage for biographies of deceased specialists in the Who Was Who in North American Name Study ( remains active.  The biography of Kelsie Harder was added to the Name Study in October.  “Kelsie may have been the greatest contributor to the ANS.  He edited and produced the journal NAMES for more than 20 years.”


Robert M. RENNICK writes that “within the past year” he has published articles on Knox County, Bell County and Pulaski County, Kentucky post offices in several issues of LaPosta (The Journal of Postal History).  Another article on Kentucky mill names appeared in The Millstone which is published by the Kentucky Old Mill Association.  Kentucky Explorer features articles by Mr. Rennick on Kentucky’s named rocks in several of its issues. 

In addition to his publications, Mr. Rennick continues his “involvement with Kentucky’s Phase Two” of their GNIS contract and he recently served as the co-chair of the 2007 COGNA conference.


Dorothy Dodge ROBBINS of the English Department of Louisiana Tech University, with Christine DEVINNE, co-edited a special topics issue of Names: a Journal of Onomastics on “Women's Names and Naming Practices.”  Dr. Robbins also wrote the introduction for that issue (September 2007).  During the period, Professor Robbins presented “Mapping the Heartland: Upper Plains Place Names in Jon Hassler's North of Hope” at the 2007 American Name Society Conference in Anaheim, CA.

Three of her articles appeared in Magill's Survey of American Literature and six articles appeared in Masterplots II: Christian Literature.  In addition, she has “two articles on names in process and some release time this spring to work on them.”  


Adrian ROOM responds that “2006 saw the publication of Nicknames of Places and 2007 that of The Pronunciation of Placenames.  He is currently working on a new and enlarged edition of African Placenames, due for publication in 2008.  Also in 2008, he will embark on Alternate Names of Places, which is due for publication in 2009.  All of these titles are or will be published by McFarland off Jefferson, North Carolina.


Jennifer RUNYON continues to serve as Senior Researcher in the Geographic Names Office at the U.S. Geological Survey in Reston, Virginia, and as Deputy to the Executive Secretary, U.S. Board on Geographic Names/Domestic Names Committee (DNC).  She is responsible for researching all toponymic issues prior to their consideration by the DNC.  She also answers toponymic inquiries from Federal, Tribal, State, and local agencies and the general public, and provides support for the maintenance of the Geographic Names Information System (GNIS).  In October 2007, Ms. Runyon attended the annual conference of the Council of Geographic Names Authorities (COGNA) in Lexington, Kentucky, where she participated in the monthly meeting of the DNC and in the annual State-Federal Roundtable.


Maggie SCOTT, Senior Editor of Scottish Language Dictionaries, responds that her “research interests include lexicography and Scots and English historical linguistics.”  Her publications for the period are:

Previck and Lickprivick: Onomastic connections in South-west Scotland,” Nomina 29, pp. 115-28. (2006).

Skandinavisch-Schottische Sprachbeziehungen im Mittelalter.  Kries, Suzanne. Review Article. (University Press of Southern Denmark, Denmark: 2003), Journal of Scottish Name Studies, 1, pp. 175-179. (2007).

Dr. Scott is also “involved in other work in progress, including acting as Editorial Adviser for Professor NICOLAISEN’s forthcoming Dictionary of Scottish Place-Names.  The website for Scottish Language Dictionaries is:


Jack SHREVE states that his “research interests are surnames and placenames (Italian, English, Spanish and German primarily), genealogy (my own, of the U.S. Presidents, and of others), critiquing contemporary historical interpretations of past events in American history (Civil War, colonial history, abolitionism), and the theory of translation of poetry (from all languages, including Chinese).”  Professor Shreve, who recently retired, is the author of 500 book reviews of varying lengths that have appeared over the years in Hispania, Choice, Library Journal and the Maryland Historical Magazine.  He will deliver a paper at the annual meeting of the American Name Society in Chicago in January 2008.


Ralph SLOVENKO, Professor Law and Psychiatry at the Wayne State University Law School replies that he has “an abiding, though casual interest in names” but that he is “not actively engaged in any ‘name work’.”  During this period Professor Slovenko published “Nonsexist Language: Empowering Women, Dethroning Men” in the Journal of Psychiatry & Law 35. (Spring 2007): 77-104.


Grant SMITH, Professor of English and Coordinator of Humanities at Eastern Washington University, reports that his publications for the period are:

§        “What do We Want to Know about Place Names?” In: Surnames, nicknames, placenames and epithets in America: Essays in the Theory of names, ed. Edward Callary, Lewiston, New York: The Mellen Press, 213-224.

§        “Teaching Onomastics in the United States.”  Onoma 39. Appeared 2006.

§        “The Influence of Name Sounds in the Congressional Elections of 2006.” Names: A Journal of Onomastics, December 2007.

§        “Names as Art: An Introduction to Essays in English.”  Onoma 40.  2007.

Dr. Smith’s presentations included:

§        “The Influence of Name Sounds in the Congressional Elections of 2006.” LSA/ANS, Ontario, CA. (January 2007).

§        “Current Trends in Literary Onomastics.” MLA, Philadelphia, PA. (December 2006).

§        “Language, Literature, and the Teaching of Onomastics.” Canadian Society for the Study of Names, Toronto, Ont. (May 2006).

He served professional societies in the following capacities:

§        Assistant Program Chair of the 23rd International Congress of Onomastic Sciences in Toronto.

§        Guest-editor, ONOMA 40 -- editing completed June, 2007.

§        Member, Washington State Board of Geographic Names 1988-present. (State Dept. of Natural Resources).  (He is one of three citizen members appointed by the Commissioner of Public Lands and is the longest serving member). 

Professor Smith’s other recent activities include:  Dissertation Research Advisor for Harumi Kuroda, Department of English, Mukogawa Women’s University, Nishinomiya, Japan; Research Grant for Compiling a Bibliography on Shakespeare’s Naming; and, in August of 2007, Dr. Smith served as an expert witness for Winstead PC in Dallas, TX.


Paul SORVO says that he has continued doing translation work for his church, Laestadian Lutheran Church, headquartered outside of Minneapolis, in Loretto, MN.  In addition to the religious and historical translation from Finnish into English that he has done, he has begun to develop a glossary of biblical terns translated from Finnish into English with idioms from scripture, where possible.  He continues his interest in placenames. 


Ted STEVENS responded to say that his area of research interest is the “As His Name is so is He” phenomenon.


Alexandra SUPERANSKAYA published six new articles and republished her books: General Theory of Proper Names, 368 pp; Name - Through Lands and Ages, 192 pp.; Theory and Methodology of Onomastic Studies, 256 pp., in collaboration; General Terminology, Parts 1-2, 248 pp.; and 288 pp., in collaboration.; On Russian Names, 304 pp., in collaboration.  In addition, her Dictionary of Russian Personal Names was reprinted (Moscow, 2006).


Ken TUCKER wrote a paper with Pablo Mateos on the “Distribution of Spanish Names.”  It is presently being reviewed for Names: A Journal of Onomastics along with another of his contributions, “U.S. Given Name Distribution Trends in the Twentieth and Twenty-first Centuries.”  Nomina 2007 will include Dr. Tucker’s paper “Surname and Given Name Distribution Prints for Several Countries including U.S., Canada, and UK,” and Nomina 2008 will publish his paper presenting an analysis of the recent Reaney & Wilson work.

Professor Tucker has begun the initial support work for Patrick Hanks for a possible United Kingdom Surname Dictionary.

Lastly, Dr. Tucker as a member of an Ad hoc committee appointed by the Executive Council, lead the successful effort to move the administration of the membership of the American Name Society and the publication of Names: A Journal of Onomastics to Maney Publishing.


Willy VAN LANGENDONCK of the Department of Linguistics, Instituut voor Naamkunde & Dialectologie at the University of Leuven (Leuven, Belgium) writes to say that he published the following:

§        Theory and Typology of Proper Names (Trends in Linguistics. Studies and Monographs 168). Berlin/New York: Mouton de Gruyter, 2007; xvi-378 pp.

§        “Proper Names and Forms of Iconicity.” In: Willems, Klaas, ed., Special issue ‘Syntactic Categories and Parts of Speech’ of Logos and Language. Journal of General Linguistics and Language Theory 5/2, 2004 (Tübingen: G. Narr), p. 15-30.

§        “Taalfilosofie en linguïstiek als complementaire benaderingen van taal.” Review article of: W.A. de Pater & P. Swiggers, Taal en teken. Een historisch-systematische inleiding in de taalfilosofie (Wijsgerige Verkenningen 21). Leuven: Universitaire Pers / Assen: Van Gorcum, 2000. Leuvense Bijdragen 92, 2003 [2005], 1-16.

§        “Proper Names and Proprial Lemmas.” Proceedings of the XXIst International Congress of Onomastic Sciences (Uppsala 2002), ed. by Eva Brylla and Mats Wahlberg, vol. I, p. 315-323. Uppsala: SOFI. 2005.

§        Paper read for Prof. em. Dr Karel Roelandts as his successor in the Koninklijke Academie voor Nederlandse Taal- en Letterkunde [Royal Academy for Dutch Linguistics and Literature (in Belgium)] (2005).

§        “Semantic Considerations in Recent Onomastic Research: a Survey.” In: History of the Language Sciences. An International Handbook on the Evolution of the Study of Languages from the Beginnings to the Present (Handbooks of Linguistics and Communication Science). Ed. by S. Auroux, K. Koerner, H.-J. Niederehe & K. Versteegh. Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter, 2006, art. 234, p. 2229-2234.

The following works are in the process and will be published:

§        “Proper Names as the Prototypical Nominal Category.” Keynote address at the 13th International Congress of the Names Society of Southern Africa (Maputo 2004).

§        “Not Common Nouns but Proper Names are the Prototypical Nouns.” Paper read at the 22nd International Congress of Onomastic Sciences (Pisa 2005).

§        Lectures in Prague (2005), Riga and Vilnius on the theory of proper names (2006).

§        “The Classification of Foundling Names vs. Ordinary Surnames.” Paper read at the 14th International Congress of the Names Society of Southern Africa (KwaZulu, Ithala 2006).

§        “Are Proper Names Pronouns with Fixed Reference?” (with Mark Van de Velde) Review article of: Anderson, John M. 2007. The Grammar of Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press. To appear in Studies in Language.

Non-onomastic contributions and communications are:

§        “The Dependency Concept and its Foundations.” In: Dependency and Valency. An International Handbook of Contemporary Research, vol. I, p. 170-187 (Handbooks of Linguistics and Communication Science). In: V. Agel, L.M. Eichinger, H.-W. Eroms, P. Hellwig, H.J. Heringer, H. Lobin, eds. Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter, 2003.

§        “Tipología lingüística: proposiciones para la elaboración del concepto de ‘relacionante’.” (with Pierre Swiggers & Mark Van de Velde) In: Actas del VI Congreso de Lingüística General (Santiago de Compostela 2004). Arco/Libros, S.L., 2007, p. 1379-1387.

§        “De nominale constituent in het Nederlands en het Frans. Een contra stieve analyse.”  [The noun phrase in Dutch and French. A contrastive analysis]. To appear in a contrastive Dutch-French volume. ca. 35 p.

§        “Iconicity.” To appear as Part 1. Basic Concepts: Chapter 14. In: Handbook of Cognitive Linguistics. Ed. by D. Geeraerts & H. Cuyckens. Oxford University Press.


Ren VASILIEV, Associate Professor and Chair of the Department of Geography at State University of New York College at Geneseo, is a member of the New York State Committee on Geographic Names.  With the December issue, Dr. Vasiliev is stepping down as the editor of Names: A Journal of Onomastics.


David WADE, a biochemist, presented a talk entitled, “Acoustic energy as the basis for name preferences” at the 46th International Names Institute, Baruch College, CUNY, New York City, N.Y., in May 2007.  In the talk he reported an acoustic, or sound, energy analysis of 228 male and female given names taken from the United States Social Security Administration’s list of the most popular names for the period of 2000-2005.  The results indicated that while there are differences between the acoustic energies of names when they are compared individually, there is no significant difference in energies when names are compared as groups (e.g., 57 most popular vs. 57 least popular names, in both the male and female categories).  The report concluded that acoustic energy probably is not the basis for the preferences in given names.  The work was later expanded to groups of 100 names (400 names total), and the results have been published as noted below).  Dr. Wade also published six onomastic-related articles during the period of mid-February to late August 2007.  Four articles concerned proposals for biochemical studies of names, based on the name-to-peptide concept invented by Wade in 2003 (see, and two concerned the acoustic analyses of given names mentioned above.  All articles were published in Wade Research Foundation Reports, and all are available at website,

Biochemical studies of names:


§        Wade Res. Found. Rep. (2007) 4 (1): 1-16. (

§        Wade, D.  The tetragrammaton peptides, YHWH and YHVH. Wade Res. Found. Rep. (2007) 4 (2): 1-6. (

§        Wade, D.  The PRINCETON peptide.  Wade Res. Found. Rep. (2007) 4 (4): 1-8. (

§        Wade, D.  The KAROLINSKA peptide. Wade Res. Found. Rep. (2007) 4 (5): 1-7. (

Acoustic analyses of names:

§        Wade, D.  Determining the energies of names (revised version). Wade Res. Found. Rep. (2007) 4 (3): 1-14. (

§        Wade, D.  Acoustic energy as the basis for given name preferences. Wade Res. Found. Rep. (2007) 4 (6): 1-29. (

Dr. Wade also continues his non-onomastic work in the area of novel antibiotics development.  He coauthored one article during 2006 on anti-anthrax agents:

Montville, T.J., De Siano, T., Nock, A., Padhi, S., and Wade, D.  “Inhibition of Bacillus anthracis and potential surrogate bacilli growth from spore inocula by nisin and other antimicrobial peptides.”  Journal of Food Protection (2006) 69: 2529-2533.

Dr. Wade’s non-onomastic work currently focuses on a group of 92 peptides (small proteins), designated the T/V-like peptides, that are found in the skins of frogs and the venoms of insects, and which have antibiotic and anticancer properties.


Kemp WILLIAMS writes that his work focuses on improving the personal name matching capabilities of IBM’s Global Name Recognition software suite.  In the past year, he has worked primarily on two projects: (1) improving the automated cultural classification of a name, and (2) name matching based on similarities in sound rather than in spelling.  Automated name classification involves analyzing the orthographic patterns found in names from around the world and evaluating the names against an archive of data collected from around the world containing nearly one billion names.  Improving name matching to relate names that sound alike but are spelled differently involves the analysis of culturally specific orthographic patterns and reducing those patterns to canonical forms.  This regularization allows a potentially large number of spelling possibilities to be reduced to a few, which makes relating the names much easier.  Both of these software improvements have resulted in patent filings during the past year.


Lionel WYLD reports that he is “still compiling photographs and comments on store names that are curious or different.  Most are New England shop names.”  Dr. Wyld’s Erie Canal Bibliography has been reprinted and is available at New York American Studies, P.O. Box 7171, Cumberland, RI 02864.


Zinchie ZAVYALOFF has three articles in press, “The Place of Nicknames in the Paradigm of Proper Names;” “On the Problem of Motives and the Emotional Component of Nicknames in Modern English,” (On the basis of an internet survey); and “The Role of Language in the Process of Self Identification on the Internet.”

Her current work and interests include:

§        Tatar naming practices:  linguistic, cultural and social aspects.

§        The problems of self-identification on the internet:  linguistic, philosophical, and social aspects.

§        Types of naming practice in Russian and in English. Comparative aspects.

§        The nicknaming process, the giver and the nicknamed:  linguistic and psychological aspects.

§        Casual nicknames in Russian:  Motives and morphology.


Arnold ZWICKY, Visiting Professor of Linguistics at Stanford University and Distinguished University Professor Emeritus, the Ohio State University, reports the following postings on Language Log for the period:

§        8/30/06: By any other name:

§        9/2/06: What’s the name of your university?:

§        9/3/06: University name bulletins:

§        9/5/06: The “The” in The Ohio State University:

§        9/5/06: Manchester mouse born from mountain:

§        9/7/06: Orphan initialisms:

§        9/9/06: Abbreviatory oddities:

§        9/13/06: The tyranny of the majority, and other reasons for choosing a variant:


§        4/21/07: Automotive naming (and more):








Questions about the Ehrensperger Report should be directed to:


Dr. Michael F. McGoff, Vice Provost

Office of the Provost

State University of New York at Binghamton

Binghamton, New York 13902-6000