Name ideas

At this point, the names listed below are intended as brainstorming fodder, with a bit of general feedback in italics. That is, they are:

  1. Very preliminary
  2. In most cases not significantly conflict-checked or subject to detailed "is it registerable?" checks
  3. Not credited - many of the early suggestions below were made way back in the 2005-2008 period
  4. Intended as a way to generate more ideas

The proposed decision process for winnowing down the list and deciding on a final name is shown here.

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Some Principles to Consider

Should a name's meaning/resonance  be fairly obvious, either by being in recognisable English or possibly very basic Latin? That doesn't mean we assume everyone has an English persona, but perhaps something that's widely understandable is better than pitching a culturally specific usage/language. The latter will, by necessity, speak to a limited number of people and require translation for the rest. Unless of course you regard it as only a label, in which case meaning ceases to matter (do you need to know what Ynys Fawr or Dunedin mean in order to refer to them?)

Should a name relate in any way to our mundane or SCA history, our geography, location, geology, weather, commerce, other ways we are described (like Godzone, Aotearoa) or even the hopes and ideals we have for ourselves (cf: Liberia)?

"...we might be missing a trick if we end up settling on a device without deciding on a name, as I think the best group devices reflect their names somehow. That's not to say that they have to, there's plenty of good examples that don't, but..."

Beware of names that are awkward to pronounce or which people tend to stumble over pronouncing. It is better to pick a name that is easy to pronounce but maybe the spelling slips occasionally, than to have a name that is spellable but people pronounce it wrong all the time.

A voice herald has strongly suggested people try cheering/shouting the various names to see how well they worked in things like:

"Long live <name>!" "<name>! <name>! <name>!" "For the glory of <name>!"

(See also the helpful "What I'm looking for in a name" criteria near the top of Dame Alys's naming notes from 2002.)

Want to suggest a name without joining the working group? Use the Feedback form.


List of random name suggestions


NB: Any translations below are approximate, in some cases being made many years after the names were originally suggested. Italicised text is a mash-up of  comments received on the working group list, at events and gatherings or via the Feedback form. None of it is definitive of course.

Generally speaking, there were several negative responses to some names perceived to be too "fantasy novel".

  • Alcyon - see the kingfisher device (3e) in the device gallery
  • Cloudy Isles - see the cloudlike devices (1a and 4) in the device gallery and some translations of "Country of Clouds" below
  • Crescentia - "crescente" is Latin for "growth" - see the crescent devices (5) in the device gallery
  • Crescent Isles
  • First Light  - see the rising sun devices (2b, c, d) in the device gallery
  • First Dawn
  • Dawn
  • Dawn's Edge
  • Dawn Isles
  • Dawnhold

This and several of the similar ones made the Pern fans perk up and start brainstorming how they could get dragons onto the kingdom arms. I'm not sure if that counts as a genuine vote in favor, though.

  • Dawn Reach
  • Last Reach - see the navigation-related devices (2e, f) in the device gallery
  • Ultimare - beyond the seas in Latin

Got read as "Ultramarine" by the Warhammer players.

  • Finisterre - last land

To throw someone *in* through a window.

  • Oceanum - southern ocean in Latin
  • Amicia - friendly
  • Concordia
  • Far Haven

The various -Havens sound like names already in use by other groups, eg., River Haven, Windhaven, Fairhaven, Ramshaven, Dawnhaven, Deer Haven, ...Dragonship Haven, Gael Haven, Hawk's Haven, Midhaven, Owlhaven, Sol Haven, Starhaven, Stonehaven.

  • Eagle Haven - see the eagle device (3a) in the device gallery
  • Eagle's Reach - as above, but for people who prefer to avoid "Haven" - plus the pun!
  • Last Haven
  • Gotmark/Gottmark - good land, god's land, borderlands of the Goths

Like this one, sounds strong. The sound is too germanic, and "Got" sounds like "God" - overall quite unpleasant associations for me.

  • Tertia Mons - third mountain
  • The Dawn
  • The Southern Marches
  • Incendia - fire

Mixed reviews.

  • Transmarina - across the sea
  • Belmarye - as in belle mare or beautiful sea
  • Oltremare - a version of Outremer or beyond the seas, a la Crusader states

I feel uncomfortable with the "Crusader Kingdom" association; made me think of "Tremere", from Vampire: the Masquerade; also, bastard child of Outlands and Trimaris.

  • Castilleon - castle of/and lions, as per Castille and Leon in Spain, NZ's exact antipodes

Seems like this would get bounced for being too close to Castille-Leon, and/or Castillon.

  • Dunalyan - Dun is hill in Scots Gaelic (cf Edinburgh, Dunedin),  alayn - perhaps noble or fair

More than one person liked this, but weren't quite sure how to pronounce it, given the uncertain spelling.

  • Wolcenland - cloudy land

Got a vote in favor, but try shouting it three times.

  • Idonea - renewal/renewed love

Somebody liked it, someone else thought it sounded too close to "Adonai" (Hebrew name for God).

  • Tir na Lir - poss. Irish for land of light where the Faery live
  • Magna Shepeg - big ? - not sheep, surely!
  • Alteron - mound (Spanish)
  • Terra viridita - green land
  • Holmland/Holmlond - island land

Appealing English names in other languages

Bird country:

  • Fuglland (Old Norse)
  • Vögelland (German)
  • Paese degli Uccelli (Italian)
  • Pays des Oiseaux (French) - here for completeness. I don't recommend this one. It sounds like "pay de wazoo"!

Country of Clouds

  • Skyland (Old Norse) -  inconveniently pronounced "Skooland"
  • Wolkenland (German) - there's Wolcenland on the list already
  • Pays des Nuages (French)
  • Paese di Nuvole (Italian)

More information

If you'd like to see the background and outcomes of a lengthy 2005-2008 discussion that led to many of the names shown above, see katherine's FAQ and also the long brainstorming list, both from that period. You may also appreciate Dame Alys' detailed notes regarding Gottmark, Belmarye and some other names suggested in an even earlier phase.

Don't miss the device gallery!

Want to suggest a name without joining the working group? Use the Feedback form.