|Annotated Name Book List|
Articles > Names
Annotated Name Book List
by Jaelle of Armida, Argent Snail Heraldcopyright 2000 Judith Gerjuoy
The purpose of this article is to acquaint you with a number of books on names and naming practices. This is by no means every book available on the subject, not even every good one. I have deliberately, to save space, left out some esoteric name books that would not be useful to the average herald. I have left some books in, even if they were not very good for several reasons. Firstly, they may be the only, or one of the only, books that we are aware of on names of that particular culture. Or, secondly, as a warning NOT to use them. There are, unfortunately, many poor books out on names, especially the ones of the "Name Your Baby" school. I have not, however, mentioned many of the poor books; space prevents this. A good rule of thumb is that if it doesn't have dates and citations, it probably isn't a reliable source. If in doubt, ask your principal herald or look at the list of bad name books at the Laurel web site (http://www.sca.org/heraldry/laurel). However, if you use a name from one of the recommended books, and the name is dated as to being pre 1600, it will not be returned for being out of period. It might get returned for other reasons (conflict, presumptuous, a mistake having been made by the author etc.), but not for being out of period.
There are many good name books that are not suitable for SCA use, since they were not written for the SCA. Name books are written for many differing reasons - very few are written to provide earliest usage of a name, and variant spellings. Therefore, many scholarly name books are useless for SCA purposes. There are also many name books written for people who want to have interesting names for their children. These books are also useless for our purposes.
Not all of the books listed here are in print. And even the ones that are can be quite expensive. However they have all been printed or reprinted recently enough, or distributed widely if they are out of print, that if your local library does not have them, they should be easily accessible on inter-library loan.
The recommendations are for the herald with little skill/knowledge of onomastics. If you are experienced, you may wish to take some of my not recommended with a grain of salt - read why I have downgraded the book. Some of the books also contain warnings about the book, which if used carefully, can still be an excellent source.
This list is constantly growing. More books are being printed; we find out about more books. This is, however, a reasonably exhaustive list of what is available: anyone with any additions, please, please contact me.
Ackerman, Robert W. An Index of Arthurian Names in Middle English. AMS Press: New York, 1867. An index of Middle English names of people, places, giants, and things. Some of it is useful, but it needs care in using. Recommended for the expert only.
Al-Ja'fari, Fatima Suzan. Muslim Names. American Trust Publications: Maryland, 1982. Unfortunately, this, like Qazi's What's in a Muslim Name, is not very good. It too just has lists of names without documentation. Not recommended.
Bćcklund, Astrid. Personal Names in Medieval Velikiji Novgorod. Almqvist & Wiksell. Stockholm:1959. this book not only has dates names, but information on Medieval Russian names. However, for most people, Wickenden’s book on Russian names is more useful. Recommended.
Bahlow, Hans. Deutsches Namenlexikon. Germany, 1967. A book on German names all in German. Some dates. Recommended.
Bahlow, Hans. Dictionary of German Names (translated by Edda Gentry). University of Wisconsin, Madison, Wisconsin; 1993. A translation of Bahlow’s Deutsches Namenlexikon. Recommended.
Bahlow, Hans. Deutschlands Geographische Namenwelt. Vittorio Klostermann: Frankfurt am Main, 1965. A book of German place names (in German) with a few dates. However, many of his etymologies are questionable, and a few are wrong. Use with care Recommended for the advanced user only.
Bahlow, Hans. Mittelhochdeutsches Namenbuch. Neustadt an der Aisch, 1975. This book is full of dates and variant spellings. Its one drawback is that the book does not have an alphabetical listing of every name; instead it is only sometimes alphabetical within sections, and then by the modern form. Recommended.
Bahlow, Hams. Pommersche Familiennamen. Verglag Degener & Co. Neustadt, Germany: 1982. German bynames in alphabetical order, with dates and variant spellings. Recommended.
Bahlow, Hans. Unsere Vornamen im Wandel der Jahrhunderte. C.A. Stark Verlag: Limberg, 1965. A general book on names, with dates, although a lot of the dates are from after our period. Written all in German, it is useful if you can read German. Recommended.
Bailey, D. R. Shackleton. Two Studies in Roman Nomenclature. The American Philological Association, 1976. A scholarly work on Roman names. Until the SCA has an official start date, books on Roman names will be needed. Recommended for the expert only.
Bain, Robert. Clans & Tartans of Scotland. William Collins & Co.: London, 1968. This book has three sections. Firstly, a section on Clan and Family names. Secondly, a section on personal names in English and Gaelic. Finally a section which is a Gaelic glossary of Scottish place names. There are better books on Scots names. Not recommended.
Barber, Rev. Henry. British Family Names. Elliot Stock: London, 1903. Alphabetical listings of both first names and surnames used in Britain from Scandinavian, Frisian, Anglo-Saxon and Norman sources. While not every name included here is from our period, most are. This book is not as useful as many of the other books available. A lot of the etymologies are suspect. Not recommended.
Bardsley., Charles W. Curiosities of Puritan Nomenclature. Genealogical Publishing: Baltimore, MD: 1996. A good source for late period names. Recommended.
Bardsley, Charles Wareing. Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames. Heraldry Today, Wiltshire, England: 1988. Lots of names with dates, and variant spellings. While Reaney and Wilson’s A Dictionary of English Surnames is in general a better book, this has some dated examples that they don’t show. However, while his etymologies were well done for the time, they are not necessarily correct. Recommended.
Bardsley, Charles Wareing. English Surnames. Charles E. Tuttle Co.: Rutland, VT: 1968. This useful book lists names by categories instead of alphabetically. It does have a complete index in the back. The only problem with it is that not all names are dated, although many are. Not as useful as Reaney & Wilson’s Dictionary of English Surnames, but still useful. Basically an earlier version of Reaney’s Origin. Recommended.
Barker, William. Everyone in the Bible. Fleming H. Revell Company: Old Tappan, NJ, 1966. This listing of every name used by people in the Bible is of limited use. It is certainly not terribly useful for the average herald, but can be useful for senior heralds. Recommended for the expert only.
Bartrum, P.C. Early Welsh Genealogical Tracts. Cardiff: University of Wales Press, 1966. The index can be used as a listing of period Welsh names. Some care must be used since legendary names are also included. Note: the index uses the normalized spellings; however you can find the manuscript forms in the text. Recommended if used with care.
Beele, Wilfried. Studie van de Ieperse Persoonsnamen uit de Stads-en Baljuwsrekeningen 1250-1400. Uitgeverij Familia et Patria, 1975. This is a book on Dutch names, in Dutch. While few dates are given internally, the title makes it clear when the names are from. This book includes both given and surnames. Recommended.
Beider, Alexander. A Dictionary of Jewish Surnames from the Russian Empire. Avotaynu, Inc., Teaneck, NJ. 1993. Unfortunately this interesting and well researched book is of little use for medieval name research, since the names are not dated and the focus of the book is from after our period. Not recommended.
Beider, Alexander. Jewish Surnames from the Kingdom of Poland. Avotaynu, Inc., Teaneck, NJ. 1996. Unfortunately this interesting and well researched book is of little use for medieval name research, since the names are not dated and the focus of the book is from after our period. Not recommended.
Beider, Alexander. Jewish Surnames in Prague (15th-18th Centuries). Avotaynu, Inc.: Teaneck, NJ., 1995. While not every name in this book is from our period, a great many are. Recommended.
Bell, Robert. The Book of Ulster Surnames. The Blackstaff Press: Belfast, 1988. A reasonable book with dates, but there is very little in it that isn't in Black. Only recommended for an expert, or if Black is not available.
van Berkel, Gerald & Kees Samplonius. Nederlandse plaatsnamen. Prisma: Utrecht, Netherlands: 1995. This book deals with place names for the Netherlands, with variant spellings and dates. Its only drawback is that it is in Dutch. Recommended.
Bjerke, Robert. A Contrastive Study of Old German and Old Norwegian Kinship Terms. Waverly Press: Baltimore, 1969. A study of kinship terms used in Old German and Old Norwegian. Not useful for most SCA research, although interesting. Only recommended for the expert.
Black, George F. The Surnames of Scotland. The New York Public Library: New York, 1946. This large (almost 1,000 page) book is the best book around for Scottish last names. It not only dates the names, it gives original and variant forms of the names. However, he was a bit careless with his transcriptions, and doesn’t always make it clear when he’s giving a manuscript form versus a modern form. Highly recommended.
Boehler, Maria. Die altenglischen Frauennamen. Nendlen, Liechtenstein: Krauss Reprint, 1967. An excellent book on Anglo-Saxon women's names in German. Recommended.
Borrow, George. Romano Lavo-Lil: A Book of the Gypsy. Alan Sutton: Great Britain, 1982. This book, which is about Gypsies in general has a short chapter on Gypsy names. Not terribly useful, but better than nothing for a starting point. Recommended under limited circumstances.
Bosanac, Milan. Prosvjetin Imenoslov. Prosvjeta, 1984. A book on Serbo-Croatian names, in Serbo-Croatian. It has an alphabetical listing of first names, sorted by gender. It is the only book that I know of on the subject. It is a “name your baby book”. Recommended only until something better is found.
Brechenmacher, Josef Karlmann. Etmologisches Wörterbuch der Deutschen Familiennamen. Limburg a. d. Lahn: C.A. Starke-Verlag, 1957-60. An exhaustive list of German last names, complete with dates and variant spellings. Written in German. Highly recommended.
Calvocoressi, Peter. Who's Who in the Bible. Viking; New York, 1987. A listing of names used in the Bible. Of limited use to most SCA heralds.
Cameron, Kenneth. English Place Names. B.T. Batsford, Ltd: London, 1961. An excellent book, which contains dates, for anyone wanting an English locative name. This was reprinted in the 90’s and additional material was added. Recommended.
Carlsson, Stig. Studies on Middle English Local Bynames in East Anglia. Lund Studies in English #79, Lund University Press: Sweden, 1989. Most of what can be found in this book can be found elsewhere. However, for anyone interested in onomastics, this book can be a lot of fun. Of limited use to most SCA heralds, but recommended.
Central Intelligence Agency. Chinese Personal Names. CIA, WDC, 1961. This is a pamphlet on Chinese personal names that the CIA put together in the early 60's. It is not very useful, except in a general sense. It is one of only three books I have been able to find on the subject. Not recommended.
Central Intelligence Agency. Mongolian Personal Names. CIA, WDC, 1966. This is a pamphlet on Mongolian personal names that the CIA put together in the mid 60's. It is not very useful, except in a general sense. It does have a list of various titles, although many are not relevant to the SCA (Minister of Industry, Section Chief of the Central Committee of the Party, Inspection Officer, etc.). It is the only book I have been able to find on the subject. Not recommended.
Chambers, Frank M. Proper Names in the Lyrics of the Troubadours. Studies in the Romance Languages and Literatures. This is a listing of not only people, but places and things, as well as magical people who are not human. Interesting for someone who knows the field, but not for the beginner. Recommended for experts only.
Cieślikowa. Staropolskie Odapelatywne Nazwy Osoboew. Warsaw: 1990. Polish bynames with variant form and dates. Arranged alphabetically with information on Polish names (in Polish) in the back. Recommended.
Coghlan, Ronan. Book of Irish Names. Sterling Publishing Co: New York, 1989. This book contains Irish First Name by Ronan Coghlan, Irish Family Names by Ida Grehan, and Irish Place Names by P.W. Joyce. The book on family names isn't very good: MacLysaght is better. The book on first names is not very useful because it mixes period, modern, Irish and Anglicized names with little indication as to which is which Not recommended.
Coghlan, Ronan. Irish Christian Names. Johnston and Bacon: London, 1979. This alphabetical listing of Irish names does not always provide dates, and so it can be misleading. Not recommended.
Coghlan, Ronan. Irish First Names. Appletree Press: Ireland, 1985. This book is quite similar to Irish Christian Names, with many of its faults. Not recommended.
Danmarks gamle personnavne. I Fornavne (2 parts). G.E.C. Gads Forlag, Křbenhavn, Denmark 1936-40. THE book on Danish medieval first names. Has a large variety of period forms and dates for each form. Highly recommended, elementary knowledge of Danish (or Norwegian or Swedish) will help, but not necessary for an expert.
Danmarks gamle personnavne. II Tilnavne (2 parts). G.E.C. Gads Forlag, Křbenhavn, Denmark 1949-53. THE book on Danish medieval bynames. Has a large variety of period spellings and dates for each. Highly recommended, good knowledge of Danish (or Norwegian or Swedish) is necessary for the understanding of the names’ meaning.
Darton, Mike. The Dictionary of Scottish Place Names. Lochar Publishing: Moffat, Scotland, 1990. A comprehensive listing of Scottish place names, without dates. Recommended if nothing better is available.
Dauzat, Albert. Dictionnaire Étymologique des Noms de Famille et des Prénoms de France. Larousse: Paris, 1987. This is a book of French personal and surnames. It is written in French, with some dates. Very useful if you can read French; useful even if you can't. Recommended.
Dauzat, Albert. La Toponymie Française. Payot, Paris. 1946. A book, in French, on French place-names. It has dates and variant forms as well as an index. Recommended if you can understand French.
Dauzat, Albert. Les Noms de Famille en France. This is a French version, in French, of Reaney's Origin. While there is an index, the book is virtually useless to anyone who does not read French. If you can read French, it is a wonderful book. Recommended for experts only.
Dauzat, Albert and Rostaign. Dictionnaire Étymologique des Noms de Lieux de la France. Paris, 1963. An excellent book on French place names with variant spellings. It is written in French. Very useful if you can read French; useful even if you can't. Recommended.
Dauzat, Albert. Dictionnaire Étymologique des Noms de Rivičres et de Montagnes en France. Klincksieck, Paris: 1978. The names of French rivers and mountains, in French, with variant forms and dates. Recommended.
Davies, Dewi. Welsh Place-Names and Their Meanings. The Cambrian News: Wales, undated. This is a collection complete with a pronunciation guide, of about 2,500 Welsh place names, such as: bank of stream, a small wood, place of bees, bridge of the blessed ones, etc. Recommended.
Davies, Elwyn. A Gazetteer of Welsh Place-Names. University of Wales Press: Cardiff, 1958. A listing of Welsh place names and place name elements. Recommended.
Davies, Trefor Rendall. A Book of Welsh Names. Sheppard Press, London: 1952. Welsh given names with some dates. Many modern names and names of non-humans are listed. Some dates. Recommended for the dated names only.
Debrabandere, F. Kortrijkse Naamkunde 1200-1300. This book on Dutch names includes variant spellings and internal dating. Recommended.
Dexter, T.F.G. Cornish Names. D. Bradford Barton, Ltd: Cornwall, 1968. A useful book on Cornish last names, with information on how they are constructed. Recommended.
Divanach, Marcel. 5000 Patronymes Bretons Francises. An alphabetical listing, in French, of 5000 Breton last names, with a one or two word meaning. Not terribly useful for SCA purposes. Not recommended.
Dodge, Baynard. The Fihrist of al-Nadim. Columbia University Press: New York, 1970. Pages 931 - 1135, of volume II are a biographical index of important 10th century Arabs. This then gives us many period exemplars of correct Arab naming practices, as well as Arab names. Highly recommended.
Dolan, J.R. English Ancestral Names. Clarkson N. Potter, Inc.: New York, 1972. This book groups last names by occupation. For instance, under the heading "Spinners" the names Spinester, Spinster, Spinner, Spynner, Twiner & Winder are listed. There are 189 different categories of occupational surnames. The only problem with this book is that no dates are given. However, a name could be selected from this book, and then dated through Reaney & Wilson’s Dictionary of English Surnames. Recommended if used carefully.
Doward, David. Scotland's Place-Names. The Mercat Press: Edinburgh, 1979. A short book on Scottish place names, with an index. There are better books around. Not recommended.
Doward, David. Scottish Surnames. The Mercat Press: Edinburgh, 1978. A short book on Scottish surnames, with an index. There are better books around. Not recommended.
Drosdowski, von Günther. Lexikon der Vornamen. Duden, Mannheim, Germany: 1974. A book of German given names with some dates. Recommended.
Dunkling, Leslie Alan. Scottish Christian Names. Johnston and Bacon: Scotland, 1988. This alphabetical listing of Scottish names does not always provide dates, and so it must be used with care. Not recommended.
Dunkling, Leslie & Gosling, William. The New American Dictionary of First Names. This, like most Name-Your-Baby books, is not a good source. However, it can point to good sources in some cases. It can be used to show a name is not period, such as the citation under Dorian shows that the name first came into use in the 19th century. It also gives information as to where some names come from, so this can be used as a starting point for research. Recommended as a negative source only - not for documentation purposes.
Ekwall, Eilert. The Concise Oxford Dictionary of English Place-names. Clarendon Press: Oxford, 1989. The most comprehensive and authoritative book on the etymology of English place names. Contains many early forms. Highly recommended.
Ekwall, Eilert. Early London Personal Names. Lund: 1947. A survey of names used in London for about two centuries after the conquest. Most names contained in this book can be found elsewhere. It is extremely authoritative, and useful for people who want to learn more about British onomastics. Of limited use to most SCA heralds. Recommended for the expert only.
Ekwall, Eilert. Street Names of the City of London. Oxford at the Claredon Press. Oxford, 1965. Street names of London with variant forms and dates. While interesting, of little use for most SCA usage. Recommended for the expert only.
Evans, D. Ellis. Gaulish Personal Names. Clarendon Press: Oxford, 1967. A study of continental Celtic formations of name. Dates, and a lot of technical commentary. Too technical for most people to use. Recommended for the expert only.
Ewen, C. L'Estrange. A History of Surnames of the British Isles. Kegan Paul, Trench: London, 1931. Since this is a history and not a dictionary, it is not of a lot of use for general SCA purposes. However, there is a lot of useful information available in this book. However, some of his conclusions were based on insufficient data. Recommended if you can’t get anything better.
Farmer, David Hugh. The Oxford Dictionary of Saints. Oxford University Press: New York, 1982. An alphabetical listing of saints who were English, died in England, or have or had an extensive following in England. With each saint's entry there are birth and death dates, so this book is an source for documenting names from our period. Not all saints listed here lived in our period, but the vast majority did. However, it must be used with care since the names have often been normalized. Recommended if used carefully.
Feilitzen, Olof von. The Pre-Conquest Personal Names of Domesday Book. Uppsala: Private Printing, 1937. By definition any name in the book is in our period. Well done, with many alternative spellings. Recommended.
Fekula, Anna A. The Russian Orthodox Baptismal Names. The Svit: Wilkes-Barre, PA, 1949. A listing of Russian personal names in Russian and English, with English diminutives. No dates. Not recommended.
de Felice, Emidio. dizionario dei cognomi italiani. Arnoldo Mondadori: Milan, 1978. A book in Italian on Italian last names. Some dates. Useful even if you don't read Italian. Recommended.
de Felice, Emidio. dizionario dei nomi italiani. Arnoldo Mondadori: Milan, 1986. A book in Italian on Italian first names. Some dates. Useful even if you don't read Italian. Recommended.
Fellows Jensen, Gillian. Scandinavian Personal Names in Lincolnshire and Yorkshire. Copenhagen, 1968. An interesting book on given names from a limited subsection of our period. Recommended.
Fellows Jenson, Gillian. Scandinavian Settlement Names in Yorkshire. Copenhagen, 1972. An interesting book on place names from a limited subsection of our period. Too esoteric for most SCA heralds, but a fun book that can be useful.
Fellows Jenson, Gillian. Scandinavian Settlement Names in the East Midlands. Copenhagen, 1978. An interesting book on place names from a limited subsection of our period. Too esoteric for most SCA heralds, but a fun book that can be useful.
Field, John. Place Names of Great Britain and Ireland. David & Charles, London: 1980. Place names with variant forms and dates. Recommended.
Flanagan, Deirdre & Laurence Flanagan. Irish Place Names. Gill & MacMillan. Dublin: 1994. Irish place names in both English and Gaelic with the meanings of the names, as well as a lot of general information on Irish place names. Some dates. Recommended.
Flutre, Louis-Fernand. Table des Noms Propres avec toutes leurs Variantees Figurant dans les Romans du Moyen Ages Écrits en Français ou en Provençal et Actuellement Publiés ou Analysés. Centre D’Études Supérieures de Civilisation Médiévale. Poitiers, France: 1962. A list of names found in French and Provencal novels of the middle ages. Variants spellings and dates. However, not all names are usable, since not all are of humans. Use with caution. Recommended if used cautiously.
Forssner, Thorvald. Continental-Germanic Personal Names in England in Old and Middle English Times. Uppsala Press: 1916. An excellent book on early Continental Germanic names. Recommended.
Fransson, Gustav. Middle English Surnames of Occupation 1100-1350. Lund. The title tells it all. English bynames from our period. Recommended.
Fucilla, Joseph G. Our Italian Surnames. Chandler's Inc.: Evanston, IL., 1949. This book divides the names by category: botanical names, pet names, animal names, topographical names, etc., with an index to all of the names in the back. While not all of the names have dates, a lot of them do, and even ones that do not can be used since they are descriptive names. Useful, but needs some thought while being used. Recommended.
Geirr Bassi Haraldsson. The Old Norse Name. Private Press - Professor G. Fleck, 18801 Rolling Acres Way, Olney, MD 20832, 1977. A truly excellent book on Norse names, this book explains Norse naming practices, lists Norse names in alphabetical order, and gives many nicknames/descriptive names. Additionally there is information on pronunciation of Norse names. Any name listed here is documentable as a period Norse name, and citing Geirr Bassi as the source along with the page number is sufficient documentation. The most likely problem you could have using Geirr Bassi is conflict, by choosing a name used by a famous Norse person, or a name already registered to someone in the SCA. Highly recommended.
Gillespie, George T. A Catalogue of Persons Named in German Heroic Literature (700-1600). Oxford at the Claredon Press: Oxford, 1993. This includes the names of people, but also the names of animals, objects and magical people who are not human. While useful for someone who knows a lot about the field, it is not for the beginner. Recommended for experts only.
Gillis, I. V. & Pai Ping-Ch'i. Japanese Personal Names. A comprehensive listing of Japanese personal names. No other information given except the name. Solveig is a much better source. Not recommended.
Gillis, I. V. & Pai Ping-Ch'i. Japanese Surnames. A comprehensive listing of Japanese surnames. No other information given except the name. Solveig is a much better source. Not recommended.
Gorr, Shmuel. Jewish Personal Names. Avotaynu Press: Bergenfield, NJ, 1992. Jewish names with variant forms. While undated, this could be useful for someone who already knows and understands at least something about Jewish names. Recommended for the knowledgeable only.
Gosnell, Charles F. Spanish Personal Names. The H.W. Willson Company: New York, 1938. This is a book on Spanish last names, designed for people who have to catalogue or do bibliographic work. There is a lot of information as to how Spanish names are formed, and some names with dates. It is not as useful as we want, but it is better than nothing. Recommended, but use with care.
Grehan, Ida. Irish Family Names. Appletree Press: Ireland, 1985. A small pocket sized book on Irish surnames. It has contain some dates. MacLysaght is the author of choice, but this is better than nothing if dated forms are used. Not Recommended.
Gross, David. C. Jewish First Names. Hippocrene Books: NY, 1999. No dates are given and modern Jewish names are intermingled with Biblical ones. Not recommended.
Gruffudd, Heini. Welsh Personal Names. Y Lolfa Cyf: Wales, 1987. Also published under the name Welsh Names for Children. An inexpensive book on Welsh names, in both Welsh and English. Its main drawback is that not all names are dated, and some names listed here are names of gods, and were not used by mortals during our period. If possible, first names in here should be checked against Morgan & Morgan's Welsh Surnames. Recommended, but use with care.
Guđrún Kvaran and Sigurđur Jónsson frá Arnarvatni. Nöfn Íslendinga. Heimskringla, Reyjavík, Iceland, 1991. The best (and only?) complete name book published in Icelandic on Icelandic names today. Has dates, inflectional patterns and sometimes also spelling variants and older spellings. The bibliography is also a good source of articles on Scandinavian names. Recommended, but requires a basic knowledge of Icelandic or Old Norse.
Hamid, Azieza. The Book of Muslim Names. MELS: London, 1985. A book on Muslim names in English, without dates. Not recommended.
Hank, Patrick & Flavia Hodges. A Dictionary of First Names. Oxford University Press: New York, 1990. A book with names from all over the world. Its one drawback is that most names are not dated. It is all right to use if you use only dated entries, or if it is used to prove a name is not period. Not recommended.
Hank, Patrick & Flavia Hodges. A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford University Press: New York, 1988. This book contains over 800 pages of last names from throughout the world, with many variant spellings. Its main drawback is that most of the names aren't dated. It is all right to use if you use only dated entries. Not recommended.
Hitching, F.K. & S. References to English Surnames 1601. A listing of English surnames dated from the year 1601 in English records. There have been occasions when this was the only source to document a variant spelling. Recommended.
Hjertstedt, Ingrid. Middle English Nicknames in the Lay Subsidy Rolls for Warwickshire. Uppsala, 1987. Many variant forms and dates. Recommended.
Hoffman, William F. & George W. Helton. First Names of the Polish Commonwealth. Polish Genealogical Society of American. Chicago: 1998. Unfortunately this well researched book has few dates from our period. Still, it can give you an idea as to where to start looking. Recommended if used with care.
Hoffman, William F. Polish Surname: Origins and Meanings. Polish Genealogical Society of American. Chicago: 1997. Unfortunately this well researched book has few dates from our period. Still, it can give you an idea as to where to start looking. Recommended if used with care.
Holmes, Julyan. 1,000 Cornish Pace-Names Explained. Truran Publications, Kernow, Cornwall: 1983. Cornish place names in English and Cornish, without dates. Recommended.
Hutson, Arthur. British Personal Names in the Historia Regum Britanniae. University of California: Berkeley, 1940. A discussion of names used in Geoffrey of Monmouth's Historia Regum Britanniae. Very interesting, but there are many other books around that discuss these names and others. Of limited use. Not recommended.
Jacobsson, Harry. Études D’Anthroponymie Lorraine: Les Bans de Tréfonds de Metz (1267-1298). Lund, 1958. Dated French names with variant forms. Recommended.
Johnston, James B. Place-Names of Scotland. John Murray: London, 1934. An excellent book on Scottish place names, with discussions, and dates. While the etymologies are not necessarily correct, the citations are. Highly recommended.
Johnson, James. Place Names of England and Wales. Bracken Books: London, 1994. This excellent book of place names has variant forms and dates. While the etymologies are not necessarily correct, the citations are. Recommended.
Johnstone, Fiona. Place Names. Spurbooks: Scotland, 1982. A listing of Scottish place names, plus information of how Scottish place names and surnames are formed. Recommended.
Jönsjo, Jan. Middle English Nicknames: I. Compounds. Lund Studies in English 55: Sweden, 1979. While this book is esoteric, and not needed in most situations, it can be a lot of fun for anyone interested in onomastics. Recommended and a lot of fun.
Joyce, P.W. Irish Local Names Explained. Roberts Wholesale Books: Dublin, Ireland, 1996. A number of Irish place names in English with their Gaelic forms as well. Some dates. Recommended.
Kaganoff, Benzion C. A Dictionary of Jewish Names and Their History. Schocken Books: New York, 1977. This book is only of marginal use in the SCA. There are not many dates, and there are too many sweeping generalities. Furthermore, it deals more with last names than with given names, and the last names it deals with are frequently from after our period. Recommended only if you already understand Jewish naming practices.
Kálmán, Bela. The World of Names: A Study in Hungarian Onomatology. Akedemiai Kiado: Budapest, Hungary, 1978. This excellent book is on Hungarian first and last names. It is full of dates, and information on Hungarian naming practices. Recommended.
Kázmér, Miklós. Régi Magyar családnevek szótára. XIV-XVII. század. Magyar Nyelvtudományi Társaság, Budapest, Hungary, 1993. A book of Hungarian surnames, dated, has older spellings. Recommended.
Kinney, Arthur F. Titled Elizabethans. Archon Books, 1973. Names and information about a number of titles Elizabethans, who are by definition all in our period. Recommended for the expert only.
Kneen, J.J. Personal Names from the Isle of Man. Oxford University Press: London, 1937. An excellent book, complete with dates, for both given names and surnames. Of course, not many people want a name from the Isle of Man, but it contains many names that are just considered "English". Recommended.
Kristensson, Gillis. Studies on Middle English Topographical Terms. Lund, 1970. A book on Middle English place names and place name elements. Recommended.
Kruken, Kristoffer. Norsk personnamnleksikon. Det Norske Samlaget, Oslo, 1995. A book on Norwegian first names. Dated, some of the entries also include older spellings, but unfortunately not all of them. Gives you a good idea on whether a name was used in period in Norway and the bibliography gives more pointers. Recommended, needs a basic knowledge of Norwegian (or Danish or Swedish).
Kvaran Guđrún, see Guđrún Kvaran and Sigurđur Jónsson frá Arnarvatni.
Lagerqvist, Lars O. and Ĺberg, Nils: Öknamn och tillnamn pĺ nordiska sstormän och kungligheter. Vincent Förlag, Boda kyrkby, Sweden 1997. A book on bynames of the Scandinavian nobles and royalty. Although published by a small and obscure publisher, the contents are ok and give both the currently used Swedish forms and the more or less original forms of the names. Some crosschecking might be necessary when using this book. Recommended as a starting point, might not be enough alone; needs good knowledge of Swedish (Danish or Norwegian + dictionary should do, too).
Lamb, Gregor. Orkney Surnames. Paul Harris Publishing: Edinburgh, 1981. A book, complete with dates of names surnames from the Orkney’s. Of course, every name in here is found in Black's Surnames of Scotland, but this book is a help for people who want their surname to be from the Orkney's. Recommended.
Lebel, Paul. Les Noms de Personnes en France. Presses Universitaires de France: Paris, 1968. A book about the history of French personal names written in French. There are some dates, but no index, which makes the book very difficult to use if you don't read French. Not recommended unless you can read French.
Lemmen, Loren. Names from the Netherlands. 1986. While this is the only book I have found on Dutch names that is in English, it is not, unfortunately, very useful, since no dates are given. Not recommended.
Lind, E. H. Norsk-Isländska Dopnamn ock Fingerade Namm frĺn Medeltiden. Uppsala: 1905- 1915. An excellent book on Norse/Icelandic given names. Its only drawback is that it is not written in English, so it can sometimes be difficult to use. Recommended.
Lind, E. H. Norsk-Isländska Dopnamn ock Fingerade Namm frĺn Medeltiden. Supplement. Oslo: Norske Videnskaps-Akedemi, 1931. An excellent book on Norse/Icelandic given names. Its only drawback is that it is not written in English, so it can sometimes be difficult to use. Recommended.
Lind, E. H. Norsk-Isländska Personbinamn frĺn Medeltiden. Uppsala: 1920-21. An excellent book on Norse/Icelandic bynames names. Its only drawback is that it is not written in English, so it can sometimes be difficult to use. Recommended.
Linnartz, Kasper. Unsere Familiennamen, Band 1 & 2. Bonn: Ferd, Dümmlers Verlag, 1958. This alphabetical listing of German names does not contain many dates. Volume 1 is surnames, volume 2 is given names. Both books are written in German. Recommended only if nothing better is available.
Lloyd, Annie. Welsh Surnames and Given Names. Self published, 1966. There are no dates given, and modern and period names are intermixed. Not recommended.
Löfvenberg, Mattias T. Studies on Middle English Local Surnames. Kraus Reprint: Nedeln/Liechtenstein, 1968. An interesting study on Middle English local surnames. Good explanations as to how they are formed as well as dated references. Recommended.
de Love, Francisca Arana. Nombres Propios Espańoles. Editorial Vosgos: Barcelona, 1982. A book on Spanish names in Spanish. It has very few dates. It is of more use if you read Spanish, but of some use if you don't. Not recommended.
Mac Giolla-Domnhaigh, Padriag. Some Anglicised Surnames in Ireland. The Gael Cooperative Society, Ltd., Dublin: 1929. A listing of Anglicised names and their Gaelic forms. No dates. Recommended only for people who already understand Gaelic names.
MacLean, Charles. The Clan Almanac. Lochlar Publishing: Scotland, 1990. There is very little in this book that cannot be gotten elsewhere, and with a lot more information. The one thing this book has which is useful is that it gives the clan names and the principal branches. Since you cannot be clan name of that principal branch (e.g. you cannot be Cameron of Lochiel) it is useful to have a place to look up this information. Recommended for above purposes only.
MacLysaght, Edward. A Guide to Irish Surnames. Irish Academic Press: Dublin, 1964. An earlier version of The Surnames of Ireland, which since it is an earlier version is not as complete, but is still very good. Recommended.
MacLysaght, Edward. Irish Families. Crown Publishers: New York, 1972. This excellent book does not cover as many families as A Guide to Irish Surnames or The Surnames of Ireland. However, it has a lot of information about the formation of Irish surnames. Recommended.
MacLysaght, Edward. More Irish Families. A companion volume to Irish Families, with all the pros and cons of it. Recommended.
MacLysaght, Edward. The Surnames of Ireland. Irish Academic Press: Dublin, 1980. An excellent book full of dated references, and variant spellings.. MacLysaght is the reference on Anglicized Irish surnames. Highly recommended.
Maduell, Jr, Charles R. The Romance of Spanish Surnames. 1967. This book lacks dates and lacks much information necessary for a good SCA name book. Not recommended.
Matthews, C.M. English Surnames. Charles Scribner's Sons: New York, 1967. The names in this book are grouped by classification, not alphabetically. There is an index in the back. While exact dates are not always given, when and how they were used is. If you cannot get Reaney & Wilson’s A Dictionary of English Surnames, this book is a good one to have. Recommended.
McKinley, Richard. Norfolk and Suffolk Surnames in the Middle Ages. Phillimore: London, 1975. A fascinating book about how hereditary surnames were formed and surnames were used in the middle ages in Norfolk and Suffolk. It has tables and breakdowns of various sorts. Very interesting, but not of use to most SCA heralds.
McKinley, Richard. The Surnames of Lancaster. Leopard's Head Press, Ltd.: London, 1981. A fascinating book about how hereditary surnames were formed and surnames were used in the middle ages in Lancaster. Very interesting, but not of use to most SCA heralds.
McKinley, Richard. The Surnames of Oxfordshire. Leopard's Head Press, Ltd.: London, 1977. A fascinating book about how hereditary surnames were formed and surnames were used in the middle ages in Oxfordshire. Very interesting, but not of use to most SCA heralds.
McKinley, Richard. The Surnames of Sussex. Leopard's Head Press, Ltd.: London, 1988. A fascinating book about how hereditary surnames were formed and surnames were used in the middle ages in Sussex. Very interesting, but not of use to most SCA heralds.
Mikkonen, Pirjo and Paikkala, Sirkka. Sukunimet. Otava, Helsinki, 1992. A lexicon of Finnish surnames, many names are dated and older spellings are included. Surnames on the whole are a late period phenomenon in Finnish so this book will not help very many. Recommended, but needs an understanding of written Finnish.
Melcón, R. P. Gonzalo Díez. Apellidos Castellano-Leoneses. Universidad de Granada; Spain, 1957. An excellent book on Spanish last names from IX to XIII centuries. Its main drawback is that it is all in Spanish. Highly Recommended.
Mills, A.D. A Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford University Press, Oxford: 1991. Modern form with at least one early form. Recommended.
Morgan, Peadar. Ainmean Chloinne: Scottish Gaelic Names for Children. Taigh na Teud Music Publishers: Scotland, 1989. An alphabetic listing of Gaelic names, sorted by gender. Includes some dates, some variant spellings. Recommended if used carefully.
Morgan, T.J., & Morgan, Prys. Welsh Surnames. Cardiff: University of Wales Press, 1985. An excellent book full of dated references. It has over 30 pages of general information about Welsh naming practices as well as an extensive listing of Welsh Surnames, complete with dates. Since Welsh surnames are frequently formed from given names, it can also be used to document given names. Highly recommended.
Morlet, Marie-Thérčse. Dictionnaire Étymologique des Noms de France. Perrin: Paris, 1991. This is a book of French personal and surnames. It is written in French, with some dates. It is an update of Dauzat’s book on French names. Very useful if you can read French; useful even if you can't. Recommended.
Morlet, Marie-Thérčse. Étude d’Anthroponymie Picarde. Les Presses du Palais Royal. Paris. 1967. this excellent book deals with given and bynames from Picardy from the 13th through the 15th Centuries. While the names are broken out by type, there is a complete index. Highly recommended.
Morlet, Marie-Thérčse. Les Noms de Personne sur le Territoire de L'Ancienne Gaule du VIe au XIIe Sičcle. Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique: Paris, 1968, 1972, 1985. This book is in three volumes. The first being forenames of Germanic origins, the second is forenames of Latin origins, and the third forenames from Germanic and Latin origin that are found in placenames. All of the books are in French. They are complete with dates, derivations, and much commentary. Very, very useful if you read French, useful even if you don't. Highly recommended.
Morris, Lewis. Celtic Remains. J. Parker: London, 1872. This book deals with Welsh personal names, surnames and place names. Unfortunately, like a lot of Victorian scholarship, it is flawed. Not recommended.
Mulch, Roland. Arnsburger Personennamen: Untersuchungen zum Namenmaterial aus Arnsburger Urkunden vom 13. – 16. Jahrhundert. Quellen und Forschungen zur Hessischen Geschichte 29. Darmstadt: Hessischen Historischen Kommission Darmstadt und der Historischen Kommission für Hessen, 1974. The title makes it clear that these are all names from our period. Unfortunately, this book is written in German, is only arranged in alphabetical order within sections (and by modern form), and there is no index. Recommended for the advanced user only.
Närhi, Eeva Maria. Suomalaista sukunimikäytäntöä. Edita, Helsinki, Finland 1996. On Finnish surnames, the first part has some information on the medieval usage. Probably not worth getting. Recommended, but in Finnish and only a small part applies to our period.
Nance, R. Morton. A Guide to Cornish Place-Names. Cornish Language Board: Cornwall, undated. A listing of Cornish place names, with information on how they are formed. Recommended.
Neeson, Eoin. The Book of Irish Saints. The Mercier Press, Cork, Ireland: 1967. Irish saints name’s in English and Gaelic, with dates. Recommended.
Norman, Teresa. Names Through the Ages. Berkeley Books, NY. 1999. This book contains lists of names which claim to be from specific times periods/culture. However, the lists are not accurate and contain names that are inappropriate to the cultures they claim to represent as well as, in some cases, including names of non-Humans. Not recommended.
O'Connell, James. The Meaning of Irish Place Names. Blackstaff Press: Ireland. Irish place names, without any dates. Recommended.
Ó Corráin, Donnchadh & Maguire, Fidelma. Irish Names. The Lilliput Press: Dublin, 1990 An excellent book on Gaelic (actually early Irish) names, with variant spellings. The one problem with this book is that they include names from legend that were not used by humans during our period, and therefore can not be used. It does include dates and pronunciation information. Note: this was originally printed under the title Gaelic Personal Names. Highly recommended, but be cautious.
Olsen, Magnus. Farms and Fanes of Ancient Norway. The place-names of a country discussed in their bearings on social and religious history. Instituttet for sammenlignende kulturforskning. Oslo, Norway, 1926. Originally lectures, published first in Norwegian and translated into English later. Seems like a good introduction to the Norwegian farm names and the culture that created them, but should be treated with caution as it is so old. Recommended, but at least the etymologies should be cross checked.
O'Neill, P.G. Japanese Names. John Weatherhill, Inc.: New York, 1972. This is a comprehensive listing of Japanese names which includes personal names, surnames and place names. It was the standard source in the CoA for Japanese names, but has been superseded by Solveig’s Name Construction in Medićval Japan. Not recommended.
Padel, O.J. Cornish Place-Names. Alison Hodge. Penzance, Cornwall: 1988. This has explanatory material on Cornish place names as well as variant forms and dates. Highly recommended.
Pamp, Bengt. Ortnamnen i Sverige. Studentlitteratur, Lund, Sweden, 1988. A “Swedish place-names 101” written for use at the Swedish-language universities. Serves as a good introduction to period Swedish place-name endings and the types of words that go with them, but doesn’t have very many period spellings. Recommended, but ability to understand written Swedish is necessary.
Perouas, Louis Bernadette Barričre, Jean Boutier, Jean-Claude Peyronnet, Jean Tricard, et le groupe Rencontre des historiens du Limousin Léonard, Marie, Jean et les Autres. Les Prénoms en Limousin Depuis un Millénaire. Éditions du Cenre National de la Recherche Scientifique: Paris, 1984. A book about French personal names, over the last 1,000 years, written in French. There is an index, and some dates, but it is not very useful unless you read French. The names are normalized, so the book doesn’t give necessarily give you period forms. Not recommended.
Pollock, Saul. Spanish and Mexican Given Names. Committee for Social Research: Los Angeles, 1942. This is an alphabetical listing of Spanish names, complete with derivatives and English equivalents. It does not have any dates, and includes many modern names and usages. Not recommended.
Postles, David. The Surnames of Devon. Leopard's Head Press, Ltd.: London, 1995. A fascinating book about how hereditary surnames were formed and surnames were used in the middle ages in Devon. Very interesting, but not of use to most SCA heralds.
Qazi, M. A. What's in a Muslim Name. 1978. This is a listing of Muslim names in Arabic and English, without any documentation. Not a very good source. They are much better off using Dodge's The Fihrist of al-Nadim. Not recommended.
Quilliam, Leslie. Surnames of the Manx. Cashtal Books: Isle of Man, 1989. A book on Manx names, with dates and variant spellings. Very little is unique to this book; most names can be found in other books of British Isles names. Still, it can be useful for someone who wants an actual Manx name. Recommended.
Rajandi, Edgar. Raamat nimedest. Eesti Raamat, Tallinn, Estonia, 1966. A book on Estonian first names, has a few dates and some spelling variants, but probably not very good. Might not be worth the while, needs a basic knowledge of Estonian or fairly good Finnish.
Reaney, P.H. and R. M. Wilson. A Dictionary of English Surnames. Routledge & Kegan Paul: New York, 1991. This was originally published as A Dictionary of British Surnames. The best book English on surnames. It includes many variants of each name, as well as copious amounts of documentation of dates the names were used. The only problem with this book is that it is limited to British surnames--it doesn't even include Welsh/Scottish/Irish surnames unless they were used in England. Reaney is a CoA standard when it comes to surnames. If you can only get one name book, get this, as it can be used not only for surnames, but to document given names as well, since the entries include given names as well as surnames. Highly recommended.
Reaney, P. H. The Origin of English Place-Names. Routledge and Kegan Paul: London. This excellent book deals with the origins of English Place names. Recommended.
Reaney, P. H. The Origin of English Surnames. Routledge and Kegan Paul: London, 1967. This excellent book deals with the origins of English surnames, and does not have as many entries as A Dictionary of English Surnames. Still, if the other is not available, this book can be quite useful. Recommended.
Redin, Mats. Studies on Uncompounded Personal Names in Old English. Uppsala, 1919. Variant forms and dates. Recommended.
Registrum Ecclesiae Aboensis Eller Ĺbo Domkyrkas Svartbok. The Black Book of Abo Cathedral. Facsimile version of the 1890 edition with a new introduction and translation of the original preface and the register of documents with brief introductions. Published by the National Archives of Finland 1996. Known also as “Svartboken”, this book contains transcribed original documents concerning Finland (especially the cathedral of Turku) during the Middle Ages. Most of the documents are in medieval Swedish, some are written in Latin. Excellent primary source for medieval Swedish names, although some of the names appear in their Latin form in the documents written in Latin; knowledge of Swedish not necessary. Highly recommended for expert use.
Richards, Melville. Welsh Administrative and Territorial Units. University of Wales Press: Cardiff, 1969. Everything you ever wanted to know about Welsh place names, both medieval and modern. Recommended.
Rivet, A. L. F. & Colin Smith. The Place-Names of Roman Britain. B.T. Batsford, Ltd. London, 1981. Variant forms with dates. Recommended.
Room, Adrian. A Dictionary of Irish Place-Names. Appletree Press: Ireland, 1988. This book deals with Irish place names, using both English and Irish Gaelic names. While there are very few dates, most of the place names are of the type that don't, per se, need dates (e.g. Carnes, which means cairn of victory: or Greyabbey, which means the grey monastery). However you cannot assume that the place names in either Gaelic or English would have been used in period. Recommended if used carefully.
Room, Adrian. Dictionary of Place-Names in the British Isles. Bloomsbury: London, 1988. A good book with a few variant spellings and dates. While Ekwall or Smith is better, this is not a bad book, and it is in print in paperback (as of Spring 1994). Recommended.
Room, Adrian. The Street Names of England. Paul Watkins, Stamford, England: 1992. While interesting there are few dates, and most, though not all names have been regularized. Of limited use to most SCA heralds.
Rymut, Kazimierz. Nazwiska Polaków. Warsaw: 1991. Polish bynames with variant forms and dates. Arranged alphabetically. Recommended.
Rosenkrantz, Linda & Pamela Redmond Satran. Beyond Shannon & Sean. St. Martin’s Press., NY: 1992. This book contains no useful dates, and doubtful etymologies. Not recommended.
Sakamaki, Shunzo. Ryukyuan Names. East-West Center Press: Honolulu, 1964. Monographs on and list of personal and place names in the Ryukyus. Recommended for specialist only.
Sandens, Jřrn and Stemshaug, Ola. Norsk stadnamnleksikon. Det norske samlaget, Oslo, 1997. A Norwegian place-name lexicon made for the common Norwegian. In some entries older spellings and dates are given. Probably the only existing over-all lexicon of Norwegian place-names, the bibliography gives pointers to where to search for more information on individual names. Recommended, reasonable knowledge of Norwegian (or Danish or Swedish) necessary.
Schimmel, Annemarie. Islamic Names. Edinburgh University Press, Scotland, 1989. A comprehensive and wide-ranging survey of Islamic names. Some dates. Recommended for experts only.
Schlimpert, Gerhard. Slawische Personnennamen in Mittelalterlichen Quellen Zur Deutschen Geschichte. Akademie-Verlag: Berlin, 1978. This is a book of and about Slavic names (both first and last) from German sources from the Middle Ages. Useful for people who know a fair bit about onomastics, or can read German.
Schwartz, Ernst. Sudetendeutsche Familiennamen aus Vorhussitischer Zeit. Böhlau Verlag Köln Graz, 1957. An alphabetical listing of German last names, with dates and variant spellings. Note: these names are from Sudetenland, and so the usages are correct for that part of Germany, and not necessarily any other parts. Recommended.
Searle, William George. Onomasticon Anglo-Saxonicum. Cambridge University Press: Cambridge, 1897. This is an alphabetical listing, complete with dates and alternate spelling, of Anglo-Saxon proper names from the time of Bede through King John. However, a number of the names have been regularized, and some never existed, so this needs to be used with care. Recommended only for people who know something about Old English names.
Seltén, Bo. The Anglo-Saxon Heritage in Middle English Personal Names, Volumes 1 & 2. Royal Society of Letters at Lund: Sweden, 1979. This two volume work deals with names in East Anglia from 1100-1399. The first volume is a general work on naming practices and name elements. The second volume is a listing of names, complete with dates. Recommended.
Seror, Simon. Les Noms des Juifs de France au Moyen Âge. Éditions du Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique. Paris: 1989. A book in French on Jewish names in France in the middle ages. Dates and variant forms. Recommended.
Shan, Lin. How to Name Your Baby in Chinese. Heian International: Union City, CA, 1988. An alphabetical listing of many Chinese names, complete with the character, translation(s), and transliteration. There is also a little bit of information on how Chinese names are formed. The main problem with this book is that it is modern. There is no information about how period Chinese names were formed. Not recommended.
Shanta, M.A. A Handbook of Hindu Names. Arnica International: India, 1969. A listing of Hindu names, complete with translation and gender. This book also has a page on how Hindu names are formed. No dates are given in this book, so it should be used only to start forming a Hindu name: after that history texts would be needed for period documentation. Still, it is a place to start. Recommended only as a start, not as an ultimate source.
Side, Smadar Shir. The Complete Book of Hebrew Baby Names. Harper & Row: New York, 1989. A through listing of Hebrew names grouped by gender. Modern as well as period Hebrew names are used, and it is difficult for someone who does not understand Hebrew names to distinguish between them. Recommended, but should be used with care, or better still by someone who understands Jewish naming practices.
Sierra, Judy. Celtic Baby Names. Folkprint: Eugene, OR, 1997. This book is almost useful. Unfortunately, while some of the names are correct for our period, a lot are not, and her etymologies are frequently incorrect. Not recommended.
Sims, Clifford Stanley. The Origin and Significance of Scottish Surnames. Avenel Books: New York, 1969. A small book of Scottish names. Very few dates and many errors. Not very useful. Not recommended.
Smith, A.H. English Place-Name Elements (Volumes I & II). Cambridge University Press: Cambridge, 1956. A fascinating book on how English place names are formed. Probably too esoteric for most SCA heralds. Recommended only for specialists.
Smith, Antar Ibn-Stanford Ibn-Edward Ibn-George. Muslim Names and Birth-Rites. The Qur'anic Civilization Association, Inc: Jackson, Michigan, 1985. A book on Muslim names in English without dates. However, most if not all of them are from period Recommended if you can’t get something better.
Smith, Eldon. Personal Names, A Bibliography. The New York Public Library: New York, 1952. Not a book on names, but an annotated bibliography of every book and article he could track down. The book is cross referenced by a number of subjects, including country. If you are looking to document a name and know what culture it comes from, this book could help find sources for documentation. Recommended for people seriously interested in names and naming practices.
Socin, Adolf. Mittelhochdeutsches Namenbuch. Georg Olms Verlagsbuchhandlung: Hildesheim, 1966. This book is written in German, and is on German first and last names. It does, however, have an index. All names have dates; all are from our period. Highly recommended.
Solin, Heikki, and Olli Salonies. Reportorium nominum gentilium et cognominum Latinorum. Olms-Wiedmann, Hildesheim, Germany: 1988. A very complete book on attested Latin gens names and cognomens, written in German. Recommended.
Solveig Throndardottir. Name Construction in Medićvel Japan. The Outlaw Press, 1994. Carlsbad, NM. This book, written primarily for use within the SCA, explains how to properly construct a Japanese name as well as lists of dated Japanese names. Highly recommended but needs to be read carefully as it can be confusing.
Stark, Franz. Die Kosenamen der Germanen. Wiesbaden, 1967. This book, written in German, contains variant spellings and dates for German diminutives and other “pet” forms of names. While not in alphabetical order, there is an index. Recommended.
Stokes, Francis Griffin. A Dictionary of the Proper Names in the Works of Shakespeare. Dover, NY: 1970. Some of the names here are from our period, some are not. If used, it needs to be used with caution. Not recommended.
Stokes, H. G. English Place Names. B. T. Batsford, Ltd.: New York, 1948. An excellent book, which contains dates, for anyone wanting an English locative name. Recommended.
Ström, Hilmer. Old English Names in Bede's History. Williams & Norgate, Ltd: London, 1939. A good book on old English names with plenty of dates. Very useful for someone who wants to understand the naming practices of the time. Recommended.
Sveriges medeltida personnamn. Kungl. Vitterhets Historie och Antikvitets Akademien, Stockholm, 1967-. A series on Swedish medieval names still being published (in summer 2000 published through “Holmger”). This is THE book on the Swedish medieval names. Highly recommended.
Taszycki, Witold. Slownick Staropolskich Nazw Osobowych. Warsaw: 1965-67. A seven volume series of Polish bynames in alphabetical order with variant forms and dates. Recommended.
Tatiana Nikolaevna Tumanova. The Complete Russian Name Book. Free Trumpet Press, 1988. This book of Russian names contains many, many Russian names from several different books, grouped by type (e.g. first name, last, etc.). It has been superseded by Paul Wickenden's excellent Dictionary of Russian Names. Not recommended.
Tavernier-Vereecken, C. Gentse Naamkunde van ca. 1000 tot 1253. Beligisch Interuniversitair Centrum voor Neerlandistiek. Belgium: 1968. Given names, bynames and placenames from the low countries with variant spellings and dates. Recommended.
Tengvik, G. Old English Bynames. Uppsala, 1938. An excellent book on Old English bynames, with dates and variant forms. Some of his conclusions are suspect, but his data is fine. Recommended.
Thuresson, Bertil. Middle English Occupational Terms. Lund: Sweden, 1968. Most of the names found in this book can be found elsewhere. However, this book is a lot of fun for anyone interested in onomastics. Recommended.
Tibón, Gutierre. Diccionario Etimológico Comparado de Nombres Propios de Persona. Union Tipografica Editorial Hispano Americana: Mexico. A listing of a number of names, with variant forms and dates in Spanish. Recommended for advanced name people only.
Unbegaun, B.O. Russian Surnames. Clarendon Press: Oxford, 1972. This excellent book on Russian surnames is full of dates and information as to how Russian surnames are formed. It is broken out by type, but there is a full index in the back. Recommended.
Unknown. Arabic First Names. Hippocrene Books. NY: 1999. A list of Arabic names with some dates. Recommended for dated forms only.
Unknown. French First Names. Hippocrene Books. NY: 1999. A list of French names without dates and doubtful etymologies. Not recommended.
Unknown. Names for the Cornish. Cornwall: 1970. A listing of 300 Cornish first names, with information as to where the name comes from, as well as some dates. Warning, some of the first names listed here are not suitable for SCA use, as they are names from legends or are modern forms. Recommended, but use with care.
United States Department of Justice. Foreign Versions & Diminutives of English Names. US Government Printing Office: Washington, DC, 1973. An alphabetical listing of names with the equivalent in 17 other languages. There are no dates or documentation attached to any of the names as it is simply a listing of names. Not recommended.
Van der Schaar, J., and O. Leys. Vlaamse Vrouwennamen en Hollandse Naamgeving in de Middeleeuwen. Onomastica Neerlandic: Leuven, 1959. This is a book with two articles on Dutch names, the first one deals with dated Dutch female given names in Dutch, with variant spellings, the second is primarily on bynames. Recommended.
Vilkuna, Kustaa. Etunimet. A lexicon of Finnish First Names. Otava, Helsinki, Finland 1990. Has some spelling variations and etymology, but unfortunately no dates. Can be used as a starting point, but needs some kind of knowledge of Finnish (or a really expert onomastics).
Watson, William J. The History of the Celtic Placenames of Scotland. Anthony Rowe, Ltd. Dublin: 1986. The best book around on Gaelic placenames in Scotland. Recommended.
White, G. Pawley. Cornish Surnames. Dyllansow Truran: Cornwall, 1981. An alphabetical listing of common Cornish surnames, with some dates. Recommended.
Whyte, Donald. Scottish Surnames and Families. Berlinn: Edinburgh. 1996. Basically an abbreviated version of Black’s Surnames of Scotland. Not as many names as in Black, but for the names that are covered, variant forms and dates are provided. Recommended if you can’t get access to Black.
Wickenden of Thanet, Paul. A Dictionary of Period Russian Names. Free Trumpet Press West, Normal, Il. 2000. Written for the SCA, this book has dated Russian given and bynames as well as information on how to properly construct a Russian name. Highly recommended.
Withycombe, E.G. Oxford Dictionary of Christian Names. Oxford University Press: New York, 1977. If you can get only one name book, this is the one to get. It gives dates, variant spellings, and lots of useful information on names. Its one disadvantage for SCA heralds is that it only covers names from England. It is, alas, as of June 2000, out of print. Highly recommended.
Woolf, Henry Bosley. The Old Germanic Principles of Name-Giving. The John Hopkins Press: Baltimore, 1939. This book is a study of names and naming practices among the Old Germanic tribes. It covers the three main branches of Germanic naming, Old English, Scandinavian, and Continental. It is more detailed and technical than most people will need. It does however have dates, and if your local library has it, it is worth using. Recommended for people who already understand Old Germanic naming.
Woulfe, Patrick. Irish Names for Children. Gill and MacMillan: Dublin, 1967. This book's one flaw is the lack of dates. Recommended only when a better book on Irish names is not available.
Woulfe, Patrick. Sloinnte Gaedheal is Gall: Irish Names and Surnames. Irish Genealogical Foundation, Box 7575, Kansas City, MO 64116. A comprehensive listing of Irish names and surnames. Very useful for putting names into the genitive form. Highly recommended.
Yonge, Charlotte M. History of Christian Names. Gale Research Company: Detroit, 1968. Unlike Withycombe's Oxford Dictionary of Christian Names, this book covers names from most cultures. It doesn't always give dates. However, Yonge can often be used to start researching in. Find a first name in Yonge, determine the culture, then look up the name in name books specific to that language/culture. Use with care; there are large sections where the scholarship is done incorrectly. Not recommended.
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