Names in the Xanarian Empire
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Author:  Grettir [ Mon Feb 04, 2008 8:03 pm ]
Post subject:  Names in the Xanarian Empire

Names play a major part in establishing atmosphere. This is especially true for the Xanarians, who have very unique naming conventions.

Every male Xanarian has three names, a formula called Trianomina (literally “three names”). In ancient time, when Xanarian citizenship was a privilege, the trianomina was of grave importance, signifying the citizenship itself; today the trianomina is nothing but a word for “full name” – a Xanarian civil servant might ask for the trianomina as a modern one asks for first name and surname.

The first part of the trianomina is the Praenomen (first name), the given, individual name. Xanarians have frighteningly few of those, with a complete list being given below.

The second and most important part is the Genomen (tribal name), the name shared by an enitre clan. It has been well over a millennium that clans had any function at all in the Xanarian society, today only their names remain, and two people of the same genomen don’t feel any closer to each other than other people. A peculiarity of this part of the trianomina is that it always and invariably ends with –ius.

The final part of the Trianomina is the Cognomen (surname), a callname that once distinguished the various branches of a clan. It is the youngest part of the trianomina and often evolved out of a nickname, like “Redbeard” or “Fisherman” or “Bigears”. It is equally hereditary as the genomen, but long since liable to being changed by its owner. The cognomen has become something of a means to express one’s achievements by changing it, something only ever done by Honestiores, as they are the only ones with notable achievements. In this way, the cognomen of most Honestiores has become quite long; while Humiliores only ever have a cognomen consiting of a single word, it is rare to find a Honestioris with less than two names as cognomen, and four or more are not at all uncommon. A long cognomen is viewed as a sign of distinction, not so much out of a person’s own achievements but due to his ancestors, the most notable of which are commemorated with the various part of the cognomen. People who are known to have no notable ancestors and still use a very long cognomen are sneered at.

Praenomen (an exhaustive list):
Acilius, Ammius, Annius, Appius, Arrius, Aulus, Cassius, Datius, Decius, Dexter, Donatus, Faustus, Firmus, Flavius, Fulvius, Gavius, Iustus, Magnus, Manius, Marius, Nestor, Nonius, Nummius, Orfitus, Primus, Priscus, Sator, Tettius, Tiberius, Titus.

Acyndius, Adelfius, Agathius, Aginantius, Aginatius, Agorius, Ambrosius, Ammonius, Anastasius, Anicius, Anthemius, Aponius, Arcadius, Areobindius, Aristanetius, Arnobius, Aspasius, Athanasius, Aurelius, Ausonius, Baburius, Basilius, Bonosius, Calypius, Carausius, Cupressenius, Cyprius, Damasius, Datius, Delmatius, Desiderius, Dionysius, Eleutherius, Eligius, Elipidius, Ennodius, Eraclius, Euagrius, Eugenius, Eugippius, Eumenius, Eunapius, Eusebius, Euthymius, Eutropius, Eutychius, Florentius, Formosius, Framarius, Fravitius, Galerius, Gelasius, Gervasius, Gordius, Hannibalius, Hermetius, Hermogenius, Hilarius, Himerius, Hippolytius, Honorius, Hyginius, Hypatius, Iotapius, Iustinius, Lactantius, Lampadius, Lampridius, Lepontius, Libanius, Liberius, Licinius, Limenius, Lydinius, Macrobius, Maiorinius, Magnentius, Manilius, Marulinius, Marullius, Melanius, Menapius, Naevius, Namatius, Nemesius, Nemogenius, Nigrinius, Norbanius, Novatius, Novellius, Olybrius, Olympius, Optatius, Oribasius, Orius, Orosius, Ovinius, Palladius, Paterius, Pelagius, Philomatius, Pisidius, Placidius, Populonius, Possidius, Praxedius, Primanius, Priscilius, Priscillius, Probinius, Procopius, Prudentius, Quintinius, Ragonius, Rufinius, Sabinius, Salmasius, Salvius, Saturnius, Scorpidius, Servatius, Sidonius, Silvanius, Siricius, Sosius, Superius, Syagrius, Symmachius, Synesius, Tatius, Teresius, Themistius, Timasius, Trigetius, Trocundius, Tyconius, Umbrius, Uranius, Urius, Valentinius, Valentius, Valesius, Varronius, Vegetius, Velduianius, Venantius, Venustius, Vetranius, Vinitharius, Virius, Vitalinius, Vitalius, Volusius, Xanarius, Xenius, Xyrius, Zenobius, Zosimius,

Adelfis, Adulis, Aeliodorus, Agapetus, Agens, Aginatis, Aginatus, Agrippa, Alauda, Alba, Albanus, Allectis, Allectus, Amandis, Amandus, Amans, Ambrosus, Andronicus, Anthemus, Anullinus, Aper, Appiodoris, Areobindus, Areus, Aristanetus, Arvandis, Arvandus, Arvina, Asparis, Atrox, Attis, Aureliodoris, Avienus, Barbula, Basiliodoris, Bionis, Bonosus, Bosforis, Bubulcus, Capella, Cassiodoris, Celenderis, Cervix, Clemens, Clupea, Constans, Cres, Crintera, Cytheris, Daia, Damasus, Datus, Decens, Delmatus, Dialis, Didymus, Dionysus, Diophantis, Duro, Elipidis, Enitor, Ephesis, Erigonis, Erigonus, Eugenis, Euromes, Eutychus, Ferox, Fidelis, Flaviodoris, Florens, Firmans, Firmitor, Fontinalis, Foris, Formosus, Fravitus, Freno, Fulgens, Galates, Galba, Galerus, Gelasus, Geminus, Geta, Gordus, Gorgis, Gyrtonis, Hannibalus, Helenis, Hermetis, Hermogenis, Hilarus, Hippolytus, Honorus, Hyginus, Hypatus, Idomenis, Ilva, Ingenis, Insidior, Ioannes, Iotapus, Ismaris, Ismarus, Iustinus, Lampadis, Lampadus, Lampridis, Lector, Lepontis, Lepontus, Libanus, Liberans, Licinus, Limenus, Liparus, Longinus, Lydis, Lydus, Lydinus, Maiorinus, Mamercus, Manis, Marcellinus, Marides, Marinus, Marulinus, Marullus, Mavortinus, Maximillis, Maximillus, Memor, Menapus, Miltiadus, Naeviodoris, Namatus, Narses, Nemogenis, Nemogenus, Nevita, Nigrinus, Nonna, Norbanis, Norbanus, Novatus, Novellus, Oclides, Opiter, Optatis, Optatus, Orbianus, Orestis, Orosus, Pagita, Palma, Pateris, Paterus, Pelagus, Pertinax, Philomatus, Philostorgis, Phylax, Pinianis, Pinianus, Placidus, Pollio, Populonis, Populonus, Posca, Praetextatus, Praxedis, Primanis, Primanus, Primodoris, Priscillus, Probinus, Procis, Procus, Promotis, Promotus, Prudentus, Prusa, Querces, Quintinus, Ragonis, Ragonus, Rapax, Renatus, Ripa, Rufinus, Rumoridus, Sabinus, Sacerdes, Safrax, Salia, Saloninus, Salvis, Salvus, Saturninus, Saturnis, Scapula, Scorpio, Servatis, Servatus, Sidonis, Silbannacus, Silvanus, Sosipater, Sozomenis, Superior, Superus, Symmachus, Synesis, Taveris, Themistus, Thrax, Tiberiosoris, Timasis, Timasus, Trigetis, Trigetus, Trocundis, Trocundus, Uranis, Valens, Valentinus, Valentis, Valentus, Varro, Velduianis, Velduianus, Vegetis, Vegetus, Venustus, Viator, Victor, Victorinus, Vincomalis, Vitalinus, Vitalus, Volero, Xanaris, Xanarus, Xeno, Xyrilla, Xystis, Zeno, Zosimus.

To construct a Xanarian name, chose a (single!) praenomen, add a (single!) genomen and then one (for a Humilioris) to several (for a Honestioris) names form the list of cognomen. For example:

Flavius Lactantius Novellus Promotis
Sator Umbrius Delmatis Xanarus

The next installement will take a look on how women were named, on the naming conventions of slaves and by what names Xanarians wpuld be called by people of various familiarity.

Author:  Grettir [ Mon Feb 04, 2008 9:57 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Names in the Xanarian Empire

The naming conventions for women in the Seat of the Xanarian Empire are quite different from those for men. This goes back to most ancient times when women were highly marginalized and viewed as unimportant. In those days around the founding of Xanarium, women were not given names by themselves, they were simply called by the genomen of their father, with the –ius ending turned to –ia; all daughters of Flavius Lactantius Novellus would thus be known as Lactantia. This already became impractical long befor the actual foundation of the Empire, mainly for secod and subsequent daughters. For them, additional names were added to differntiate them from their sisters. These names were initially taken from the the cognomen of the father, also with an ending on –ia. So while Flavius Lactantius Novellus’ first daughter was named Lactantia, a second one might be known as Lactantia Novellia and a third one simply as Novellia. But even this did not proove sufficient, and so the modern naming conventions evolved.

Today, every Xanarian woman has two names. The first name is still her fathers’ genomen with the female ending –ia, but the second name can vary widely. Most common is one of her mothers’ two names or one of her fathers’ cognomen, again with an ending on –ia, but using a cognomen of any relative living or deceased the parents want to honour, commemorate or flatter is quit common. In naming a female Xanarian character, much leeway does therefore exist. The first name derives from the father’s genomen and has thus to be taken from the list of genomen, but the second one can come from either this list or the one of cognomen; the endign of both has of course to be turned into –ia.

Two more concerns need to be addressed, the names of freed slaves and of adoptees. Slaves go by just a single, often quite colourful name. When they are freed and receive full citizenship, this name become their (sole) cognomen. For a genomen, they automatically assume the one of their former master; the liberation is thought to make them part of his “clan”. The choice of praenomen is entirely up to the freed slave, though the liberator’s name will customariy be chosen in about half the cases. So if Flavius Lactantius Novellus Promotis frees his slave Charides, the new Imperial citizen will be called (praenomen of choice, probably Flavius) Lactantius Charides.
The conventions for freed female slaves are that they keep their former slave name as second part of their new citizen name, but add the genomen of their former owner as first of the two names, of course with the ending changed into –ia, as the second name. If Flavius Lactantius Novellus Promotis frees his slavewoman Cassandra, her new name as a free citizen will be Lactantia Cassandra.
Should the freeing person be a woman, the first part of her two names is used in place of a master’s. So when a certain Optatia Hermogenia frees the above slave Charides, he becomes (praenomen of choice) Optatius Charides; when she frees her slavewoman Cassandra, the latter becomes Optatia Cassandra.

Finally, when a man is adopted by another one, this changes both his genomen cognomen, the idea behind this being that by the adoption he leaves behind his old family and clan and becomes part of a new one. The old name is not lost completely, though, a remnat of its very core, the genomen, is retained as a reminder; its –ius ending is changed into an –ianus ending and it is added to the very back of the cognomen assumed from the adopter as a new part of it. So if Flavius Lactantius Novellus Promotis is adopted by Sator Umbrius Delmatis Xanarus, he becomes Flavius Umbrius Delmatis Xanarus Lactanianus.
When wome are adopted, their names are not changed in the least.

So how does a Xanarian introduce himself, with all those names around? The answer is simple: In all but the most informal of circumstances he will always give his entire trianomina, praenomen, genomen and cognomen. This is a remainder of the trianomina once being the very sign of Xanarian citizenship and thus a high honour. A Xanarian will thus always give all three of his names, as a kind of proof of him being a citizen, however pointless this may be by now, and he will be gravely offended should he be introduced by somebody else without the use of the full trianomina.
But that doesn’t mean that an individual with many names in his cognomen will give all of them; instead the first wo parts are stated, provided that there are at least two parts. The first part establishes the trianomina, the second part prooves the named person to be an individual of substance, worthy of a long cognomen. Giving more than two parts of the cognomen is rare and only done if somebody wishes to establish himself as a person of grave importance, either truthfully or due to an overinflated ego.

A Flavius Lactantius Novellus Promotis would therefore invariably introduce himself as “Flavius Lactantius Novellus Promotis”. Should he have an additional, third cognomen and be named for instance Flavius Lactantius Novellus Promotis Xanarus, he would still introduce himself as “Flavius Lactantius Novellus Promotis”; using his full name would be a claim to great importance and a hint at an even longer cognomen – and in the case of a person of a name this length most probably the sign of either a fool or a con man.

So once it is established what a Xanarian’s name is, how is he addressed by others? This depends entirely on the familiarity of the involved people.
The most formal kind of address, short of using a title instead of the name, is by the full trianomina, but invariably only ever using the very first name of the cognomen, no matter how of how many parts it might consist. So even Flavius Lactantius Novellus Promotis Xanarus from the above example would only be called “Flavius Lactantius Novellus”. This form of address is only ever used in very formal occassions, between people who are not close to each at all, and even then only if the person addressed thus is either somehow of higher rank or if the speaker wants to express a very high level of respect.
A less formal kind of address is used when the speakers are also not close to each other but of ranks that don’t differ too greatly. In this case, only the praenomen and the genomen is used, without any trace of the cognomen. Aforementioned Flavius Lactantius Novellus Promotis Xanarus would therefore be simply called “Flavius Lactantius”. This is a quite common form of address, being used amongst individuals of at least roughly similar standing who don’t associate in private; it is the address for acquaintances.
Friends, relatives and other close associates use an even more informal kind of address made up of the praenomen followed directly by the first (and no other) part of the cognomen. Flavius Lactantius Novellus Promotis Xanarus from the example would therefore be called “Flavius Novellus”. This is also the form of address used by children of the Honestiores for their fathers, as a sign of filial respect. Players are well advised to choose Xanarian names that sound good to them in this combination, as it will be the form of address most likely used by the other PCs.
The most intimate form of address is of course by the praenomen alone. This is almost exclusively reserved for spouses, lovers, children and siblings.

For a woman, it is easier due to the fewer names. To them, being addressed with both names is what being addressed with either the full trianomina or the praenomen and genomen is for men. Friends and family use only one of the names, whichever the woman prefers to be called.

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