Where Do Middle Names Come From?

Why do Americans have middle names?

Today, as Wilson notes, middle names serve much the same purposes they always have: they’re a way to keep family names going and thus preserve relationships; they’re a way to try something new or “put old names out to grass” without cutting the cord entirely..

What is the purpose of a middle name?

The historical purpose of middle names is to honour some related family or person, a godparent, or even a completely unrelated person, such as a locally or nationally prominent figure.

Can you have 3 middle names?

Sure, three middles is a lot but if you’re prepared to deal with it then go for it! In this situation it’s truly what you like that goes because nobody else really has a huge say or will have to deal with it. Typically, I would say that 3 middle names is excessive.

What is middle name means in Canada?

In Canada and the United States, such names are specifically referred to as middle name; in most European countries they would simply be regarded as second, third, etc. … In some other countries, the term middle name is only used for names that are originally last names, but not part of the last name of the bearer.

What is middle name in French?

noun. 1. (= second Christian name) deuxième prénom m.

How common is two middle names?

It’s never been a common practice in the U.S. to give two middle names. With today’s digitized records, it’s become a bit of a bureaucratic mess for those who have four (or more) initials to deal with.

Where do you get middle names from?

The way middle names are constructed now first began in the Middle Ages. The modern way of constructing middle names, Reader’s Digest explained, likely began in the Middle Ages when Europeans grappled with bestowing their children with a family name or the name of a saint.

What countries have middle names?

Even so, a surprising number of the world has no concept of a middle name. Japan, Korea and China have no custom of giving middle names (with the possible exception of tiny enclaves in China).

Do middle names matter?

Does my child need a middle name? “A middle name is not legally necessary. … “It is especially important if our first and last names are common. Names in the middle position are great places to ‘personalize’ a child’s name, by giving a name that represents a person or idea important to parents,” Suzanne explained.

Is middle name my father’s name?

In the US, your middle name is not generally your father’s name or your grandfather’s name. It is an optional name, chosen by your parents, to go with your first name.

What does my middle name mean?

Your middle name is the name that comes between your first name and your surname. … You can use middle name in expressions such as ‘discretion was her middle name’ and ‘his middle name is loyalty’ to indicate that someone always behaves with a great deal of a particular quality.

What is first name and middle name?

A given name (also known as a first name or forename) is the part of a personal name that identifies a person, potentially with a middle name as well, and differentiates that person from the other members of a group (typically a family or clan) who have a common surname.

What percentage of the population has a middle name?

More parents are giving their children middle names than ever before, with their use more than doubling in a century. Eighty per cent of children are now given a middle name, compared with the 37 per cent revealed in an audit of the 1911 census. Eleven per cent of children have at least two.

Do medieval people have middle names?

Middle names began appearing in late Medieval times. In England, they were reserved for the nobility, with an old law making them illegal for the rest of the population. Since the Pilgrims and many early settlers came from England, early Americans followed the tradition of having only two names.

Why do Americans have 3 names?

The three-name structure used today began in the Middle Ages when Europeans were torn between giving their child a saint’s name or a common family name. The practice of giving three names eventually resolved the problem with a formula: given name first, baptismal name second, surname third.

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