In addition to tree names states, Presidents, and the town or former town the street will take you to are common sources of US street names. Adam On 3/19/10, Douglas Koller <[log in to unmask]> wrote: > ----- "Philip Newton" <[log in to unmask]> wrote: >> Something I was thinking of, possibly prompted by a throwaway comment >> in the (extremely brief) section on Romansh in Lonely Planet's guide >> to Switzerland: "The main street in villages is usally called Via >> Maistra." >> >> That's true for eastern Graubünden, but in the centre, I've seen >> Via/Veia/Voia/Voa Principala, along with the occasional Stradung ("big >> road"), Mezvei ("middle of the village"? often part of a triplet >> Dinvei-Mezvei-Sumvei), Veia Granda, or Via/Voa Nova. Via Principala >> also seems to be in use in the west of the canton, along with Vitg >> ("village") in smaller places, and I've seen Via Prinzipala in the >> north-east. >> >> So the popular names seem to be "master road" and "principal road". >> >> As for natlangs, in German it'd probably be "Hauptstraße" >> (etymologically, "head road", though "Haupt-" is better translated as >> "main" in compounds, I'd say), with popular additional roads being >> "Schulstraße, Kirchstraße, Poststraße, Bahnhofstraße" indicating roads >> that contain (or, at least, did at one point...) the school, the >> church, the post office, and the railway station, respectively. >> >> In Britain, the quintessential main road is the High Street; I imagine >> that in the US, it's Main Street. >> >> What's it like in your concultures? > >> Something utilitarian like "Main/Principal Street"? Something less >> transparent like "High Street"? Or do they all name their main streets >> after the national hero, perhaps, so the main thoroughfare is "John >> Smith Avenue"? > >> Also, do you have roads whose names indicate their status ("Cantonal >> Road" is popular in parts of Switzerland for the main road where it's >> one for which the canton is responsible for maintenance, and many >> German places have a road called simply "Bundesstraße", i.e. "Federal >> Road", for similar reasons)? Or their destination ("Othercity Road" >> for the main road from here to Othercity - with the road then possibly >> being called "Firstcity Road" once you're in Othercity itself)? Any >> other common themes? > >> For that matter - do you even name your roads? Or do you instead name >> (or number) blocks, like in Japan? Or use some even more unusual >> system of addresses? (Perhaps geographical coordinates in Northings >> and Eastings for each residence, completely independent of roads or >> blocks?) > > Interesting questions which I *have* thought about for Géarthnuns, but for > which I have not, as yet, any definitive answers. The Géarthnuns equivalent > of "Hauptstraße" make me want to hurl. Naming after historical icons? > Viable, but not loving it. American streets, as an example, can also take on > names of trees and the like (Elm St., Oak St., Birch St., Blossom St.), > which at first blush can sound kind of Zen-ny (which I like), but you can > end up with things like, "Honeysuckle Lane", which is so twee as to make me > barf. Maybe like the Taiwanese system, where the main grid has names but as > you spread, you get into succursales "Alley 3", "Lane 7"? Still considering. > > Kou > -- Vote for TIM URBAN as the next American Idol!