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Alex, yes you are right about the name-overlap not being discovered.

About the reasons of keeping them unique... I secretly wish it had been as
glamorous as the Book of Evildoers .. haha.. but unfortunately it's not. I
guess, it is just one of my petty obsessions, that I am passing on to the
people in the conculture. Though, retrospectively, I can cook up some good
reasons for it :

   - The idea of distinct names, as you suggested, must have been put forth
   by the record-keeping-bureaucrats, who wanted to simplify their job. The
   idea picked up among the people and they took it in happily. However, soon
   the bureaucrats realised that it is not foolproof (reasons of which are
   described later in this mail). They started keeping records using a
   combination of village-name and birth-number.
   - But by then, people had fallen in love with the idea of new & unique
   names, coz it became a fun ritual during bridal showers. Also, it fanned
   their pride in individuality.
   - Teenagers developed a tendency to keep changing their name every year
   to suit their ever-changing personality. But use of existing meaningful
   words as names was looked down upon, so they combined syllables from names
   of animals or objects or people they like, with a dash of sound-symbolism.
   - Incidentally, this seeped so deep into the culture, that now, sharing
   a name co-incidentally is slightly embarrassing, but excusable, may be even
   rectifiable by mutual consent. But purposefully copying someone's name is
   considered impersonation ! The parent or kid (whoever is responsible) is
   considered to have no individuality or self-respect. (Sorry, this is just
   their conculture, not a comment on real people in our world, chill ! )
   - Adults who are intimate (emotionally and physically) may decide to
   modify their names such that they overlap maximum syllables, but still have
   audible distinction.

Now the problem of record keeping. Of course bureaucrats cannot keep track
of every name change. They use a combination of village-name and
birth-number to identify people distinctly. Reasons for giving up on names
in records :

   - Names may change, as described above.
   - Names may overlap, even in the same village. This may happen if people
   move across villages or if parents are too careless while naming the kid.
   - Names may have exotic phonemes or complicated clusters. They may be
   mispronounced / misheard, and hence, misspelled by the record-keeper.

Hufff.. that's all I can cook up right now. Thanks for the question anyways
!



On Fri, Nov 20, 2015 at 7:24 AM, Alex Fink <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

> On Thu, 19 Nov 2015 12:07:12 +0530, Decremental Bug <
> [log in to unmask]> wrote:
>
> >Thanks everyone ! This was very interesting :)
> >
> >Pravic system's unique names (minus the computer) is pretty close to what
> I
> >was imagining for my conculture. But then without a computer, there are
> >chances of overlaps across villages. That is where Fithian system solves
> >that problem, using hierarchically arranged names, pretty systematic ! I
> >hope I'll be able to copy parts of it into my system. The Lajik one is a
> >genius, but unfortunately my conculture avoids lineage records, so I won't
> >be able to pick this.
>
> The thing is -- supposing you didn't use a hierarchical strategy -- in a
> conculture without communication technology almost as good as the computer,
> it would be a very difficult task even to *discover* that two people in
> villages far from each other had the same name.  A fortiori, such
> duplications couldn't be any practical problem to the speakers.
>
> Why do the members of your conculture value this uniqueness?  Is it
> because, despite their avoidance of genealogy, they do keep a lot of other
> centralised records by name, and it would be bureaucratic trouble (or a
> thorn in the side of the ruling class or ...) to have someone else share
> your name in the records?  Or is it, like, some sort of religious
> imperative -- if your name is recorded in the great celestial Book of
> Evildoers then you'll be subject to eternal torture in the next age, and so
> you're damn well going to make sure a nàmesake doesn't get your name in the
> book?  Or...?
>
> Alex
>