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What's in a name?

Gacked from pepperlandgirl4:

1. Are you named after anyone? If so, explain.
Not directly, although Mum did confess that she decided on the name her daughter would be given when she was in her teens and admired the moviestar Hedy Lamarr (real name: Hedwig Kiesler) as much for her beauty as for her brain, who back in 1942, took out a patent covering the vital radio technique that we now call spread spectrum, a technology that was first developed to provide secret radio links - mostly for the military. More recently it has been used in mobile phones and wirelessly connecting PCs to networks.

My middle name, Martine, is an updated version of my father's mother's name Martijntje. She died of malnutrition following the famine that ravaged Holland during the last winter of the war, when Dad was just a boy, and he felt very strongly about honouring her in this way.

2. Do you have your children's names picked out already? If so, is there any significance?

Of course, I've thought about naming any children I might have -- what girl doesn't? Besides, I've taken an interest in names and their meaning for as long as I can remember. But even though my romantic streak briefly made me consider such names as Tristan and Essyllt (rather than Isolde or Iseult); in the end, I settled on Belle for a girl (after an 18th-century Dutch woman of letters) and Manasse for a boy. I even felt so strongly about the latter name, that rather than let it go to waste as I won't ever have children of my own, I've given it to my cat.

3. If you were born a member of the opposite sex what would your name have been?
Horatio. Seriously. Good thing I was born a girl, don't you agree? ;-)

4. If you could re-name yourself what name would you pick and why?
I wouldn't. I identify very strongly with my given name. It suits me.

5. Are there any mispronunciations/typos that people do w/ your name constantly?
All the time. 'Hedwig' is far from a common name, and seen as rather quaint and old-fashioned. People tend to mishear it as Hetty, and will sometimes misspell it as Hedwich. Additionally, many of my German acquaintances will persist in pronouncing it the German, rather than the Dutch way, and it becomes something like hayd-veek, when in fact, it's head-weech ('ch' as in Scottish loch). Drives me up the wall, that does...



Jul. 29th, 2006 12:36 pm (UTC)
my name saint is actually your fair city's patroness!
Oh, I didn't know that! *fails* I just know that there's a St.Hedwig Hospital around here. :D
And I think the pronounciation really depends on where in Germany someone comes from - there are many places where a 'g' is generally pronounced as a 'ch' and that tend not to draw out the 'e' so much, so there are probably some areas where it would be pronounced correctly. ;)

To me, there's something very seductive about the sound of it.
Yes, it just sort of... flows.
Jul. 29th, 2006 01:05 pm (UTC)
Oh, I didn't know that! *fails* I just know that there's a St.Hedwig Hospital around here. :D

Yes, and your cathedral is St. Hedwig! I believe it's the only catherdral in the world dedicated to her.

Yes, it just sort of... flows.