Рамазонова Зебинисо Яшиновна
Узбекский государственный университет мировых языков
Республика Узбекистан, Ташкент


Ramazonova Zebiniso Yashinovna
Uzbekistan State World Languages University
Tashkent, Republic Uzbekistan, Teacher of the department of methodology of teaching English language, English language faculty,

This article is written in the framework of Lexicology and Linguo­culturology and it analyses structural features of anthroponyms in the English language. It provides the classification of English anthroponyms according to their structure that contributed to their diversity.

Keywords: affixation, anthroponym, aphaeresis, apocope, derivation, proper nouns, shortening, syncope


Библиографическая ссылка на статью:
Рамазонова З.Я. Structural peculiarities of anthroponyms in English // Современные научные исследования и инновации. 2020. № 2 [Электронный ресурс]. URL: https://web.snauka.ru/issues/2020/02/91549 (дата обращения: 22.01.2022).

In the fourteenth and sixteenth century complex names were rarely used in the English language, (such as JOHN WILLIAM Whytting, JOHN PHILLIPP Capel, THOMAS MARIA Wingfield and etc) while in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, this phenomenon became more common, especially among feminine names. Complex names, consisting of two or more words (names) were considered as one at that time: MARY ANNE, MARY JANE, SARAH JANE and others.

Later on, compound names formed by the combination of the two names of women came into existence and became popular within the society: ANELLA (<ANN (E) + ELLA), MARIANNE (<MARY + ANNE), SARALINDA (<SARA (H) + LINDA) and so on. This is still being considered to be one of the most productive ways of creating new names in the English language naming system as there was a desire to make names shorter and more meaningful.Gradually, such names have caused to the decline in the use of binary names, such as MARY ANNE and MARY JANE, and they are still a rare occurrence among the English and Americans.

In addition, there were optional derivational forms of names, which were made in a variety of ways. We have talked about the evolution of names in complex or compound forms used in a full form in official style. These initial (full) forms have also other derivative forms and are used mainly in informal style, such as among close friends, family members, relatives and so on. In fact, it is not possible to find the exact number of derivatives.This can be explained by the nature of their use: the creativity and imagination of people to change the initial form of the names that they use to refer to friends, loved ones, relatives and children are diverse and varied. The main methods of forming derivatives are shortening and affixation. Names formed with the help of shortening are: BEN (<BENJAMIN), DAN (DANIEL), and others; and the affixation is used to make diminutive nouns (hypocoristic names): DANNY (<DAN <DANIEL), JIMMY (<JIM <JAMES), and others [2, c. 33].

In compiling a proper noun, the reduction can be made at the beginning, middle, and end of the initial word:

• Aphaeresis – the loss of a short unaccented vowel or syllable in the beginning of a word. For example, NESS (<AGNES), TONY (<ANTHONY, ANTONY), TINA (<CHRISTINA) and so on;

• Syncope – the loss of one or more sounds or letters in the interior of a word. For example, AUSTIN (<AUGUSTIN), ALINE (<ADELINE), and etc;

• Apocope – the loss of one or more sounds or letters at the end of a word. For example, ALEC (<ALEXANDER), ALF (<ALFRED), AG (AGNES) and others.

The specificity of derivation in the English naming system is that affixation is not used as a secondary derivation without shortening. Accordingly, the structural scheme of the English derivatives can be summarized as follows: full or initial names are abbreviated, for example, DANIEL <DAN, THEODORE <TED, and diminutive names are derived from them: DANNY, TEDDY. Therefore, we can use terms like primary and secondary derivation to denote these processes [1, c. 23].

The shortened forms of names were also used in Anglo-Saxons. As early as the eighth century, it was possible to find the abbreviated names like EDA <EDWIN, SICGA <SIGEWRITH. After the Norman conquest, the use of the diminutive forms of proper names came from the old French, such as -el, -el, -in, -on, -ot, were frequent in the English naming system: HAMEL, HAMELIN, HAMELET (<HAM <HAMON(D) + -el, -el, -in, -on, -ot), BARTELOT, BARTELET (<BART <BARTHOLOMEW + -el, -et) and so on. Meanwhile, English suffixes – cock, -kin were also used widely for making secondary derivatives: ADCOCK, MALKIN and so on. These suffixes were considered to be productive in XI-XIV centuries. That’s why they are now commonly found in medieval English names: ATKIN (<AD <ADAM + -kin), BABCOCK (<BAB <BARBARA + -cock), TOMKIN (<TOM) <THOMAS + -kin) and etc.

Since the 15th century, diminutive masculine and feminine names have begun to be formed with the help of the productive suffixes -ie and -y. For example, BETTIE (<BET <ELIZABETH), JOHNNY (<JOHN), PEGGY (<PEG <MARGARET) and others. These suffixes, which were originated from Scotland, gradually shifted from proper nouns to the common nouns: birdie, doggie, granny, lassie, nightie, etc. [3, c. 11].

Currently, such derivatives are widely used even in formal style in meetings, conferences, public gatherings, the press and publications. The derivatives are gradually being used in conjunction with the words of politeness and decency and becoming legal official names: honourable (Hon.), reverend (Rev.), doctor (Dr.), mister (Mr.)andso on. For example, Dr. (doctor) Billy, Hon.(honourable) Jimmy, Rev. (reverend) Ikie and others.

Unlike common names, proper names don’t have an exact structure. This can be explained, first of all, by the diversity of anthroponyms in terms of their origin (creation). The naming system of any language includes both old and new names that were created and used by the speakers of that language. At the same time, modern names can be determined as the most relevant structures in the process of enriching anthroponymic sources and are “live” forms for new word formation. In contrast, historical names depend on the genetic characteristics of languages, which are difficult to form because their structure is divided into non-relevant, historical components.

However, the division of such anthroponyms into historical components does not always accurately reveal their morphemic segmentation. Many of these are related to the words or affixes originated from other languages. Many anthroponyms are often regarded as non-productive forms because of their components  lackingin their own intrinsic motive.All this suggests that there is a difference in the structure and classification of words in this category.

To sum up all, it should be noted that anthroponyms specific to English language and culture exhibit structurally diverse identities. Initial or full forms of proper nouns also have optional derivative forms, which are mainly made up of shortening and affixation.

  1. Кубрякова Е.С. Части речи в ономасиологическом освящении. – М., 1978.
  2. Мурзин Л.Н. Синтаксическая деривация. – Пермь, 1974.
  3. Никитевич В. О минимальной номинативной единице и предмете  ономатологии/Проблемы лексикологии. – Минск, 1973.

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