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How Does Your Character View Names?

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As the title states, how do your character view names? 



Eorzea's various cultures have quite a few naming conventions, and certainly, some people's names act more like titles. (I'm going to use the Tia vs Nunh as an example here). 


So....how do your character handle this? Is there a name they would pick for themselves? If introduced, do they give their full name, or only a part? Nicknames?


In such a social game, it's interesting to think that we all just accept whatever name is presented to us.



To Start:


Franz sees names more as temporary references that can change. Perhaps because of his own memory loss, or maybe he actually believes such a concept. When first introduced, he didn't have a name at all, and was simple the "Unnamed Mercenary". Later, because that really wasn't a name  to go by, he shortened it to "Merc" (hard C sound), which he felt got the job done. It was short, simple, and for him, at least unique enough. After his run-in with an oddly-named Duskwight Elezen (Frhanz'ir Kirche, man of probably the most eccentric Ishgardian parents I will never describe), he took on part of that name, following a more Garlean naming standard of having a middle name rank/position and surname title/position, identifying as Franz nil Renatus. 



Still though, very few people would ever know his name to be more than just "Franz". He doesn't speak of the "nil Renatus", unless he trusts the person is not going to reveal it. In the common, every day setting, Franz gets by without more than a given name.



On the topic of nicknames, we have 'porkchop', the ever-dreaded nickname Natalie keeps calling him, much to his despair. Try as he might, she rarely calls him anything else when it's not a life and death situation. I supposed "Twleve-Damned Garlean Mercenary" and its variants would be another, but Franz tends to just laugh at that now.



Should he recover enough of his past to remember his own name, there is a likely chance he may switch back to using it, at least with some people.




So! How does your character treat names?

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For Averill, names are a mutable thing. As one who abandoned his first surname upon leaving home, adopting the last name Rooks in honour of his saviour on the road, he considers them to be at least partially decided by the wearer of that name. 

That said, he always introduces himself with his full name, and refers to other people by their first.


He isn't averse to nicknames, despite not employing them. He normally responds to Av, or in the case of his most recent companion, Mister Avs.

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Sastra will accept that people are sometimes called odd things, but if they're something that clearly sounds like a nickname or not the persons actual name, she can get a little suspicious of that characters intents - if they do not want to give away their name it may suggest they do not want to be identified, which could mean all sorts of trouble like about-to-get-stabbed or secretly-running-away-from-people-with-knives. Of course it could also not mean any trouble at all, but in her mind it's better to be a little too cautious than a little too dead.


Also, if someone has a complicated name (So, a whole lot of them roes) she may give them nicknames of herself, even though she just met them. It makes it easier for herself to remember who they are, and occasionally provides for some laughs and interesting situations.


Herself, Sastra isn't her true name - but not out of her own will, she was put in an orphanage before she could yet say her own name properly, and so they named her Sastra. It's only within the past six months that she has managed to reconnect with siblings and thus figured out her birthname. Though she still introduces herself as Sastra, when anyone asks, meaning that only people who know her well and her siblings call her by her original name. It may change in time, it may not ^^

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L'yhta feels names are quite important since she was trained by the Wizards' Choir; names and what they represent (how people see you, a tether to a previous life, a representation of who you truly are) factor strongly into the mythology of the Ivory Tower. There's a whole ceremony for Naming wherein a prospective Wizard declares a new name for themselves (their Illuminated name) as a way of asserting their new life as a Wizard and rejecting the control of those who gave them their "mundane name." The symbolism is that, by taking a new name of your choice, you declare yourself as an independent, free being, capable of making your own choices and asserting your will upon the world. The Illuminated name is traditionally kept secret except from other Wizards, as revealing it is a sign of trust (as a name, written, is a geometry, and there was fear in the Tower's history that such things could be used through arcanima as a means of attack or control). In general, L'yhta only gives her full formal name ("Master Yhta Mahre, Thaumaturge, Arcanist, Conjurer; by Aether illuminated, Seeker of Destinies") in formal meetings of the Tower. Less formally in meetings, she'll accept being called Master Yhta or Master L'yhta, but she strongly dislikes being called Master Mahre, because she feels that minimizes her in favor of her old family.


Outside of the Tower, L'yhta typically uses a simplified version of her name, Lyta, around non-miqo'te since she got tired of them butchering her actual name. She prefers other miqo'te use her real name, and she usually introduces herself with her real name first. Like other Seekers, she'll drop her tribe prefix around very close friends and go by Yhta.


With regards to other people, she tries not to make assumptions about people based on their names, since she's met a lot of people with "weird" names for their race, clan, and gender. She'll call people by whatever they'd like to be called, but she eschews titles unless she feels the person has earned it (in her estimation). Those who claim nobility often find that the only time she'll use "lord" or "lady" is with a sarcastic sneer. Beyond that, when she gets very close to someone, she'll also often come up with a nickname for them as an inside joke.

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This is a bit of a touchy subject. Lorraine sees most names as being rather useless. A name can be changed and are used little more then what to call someone. She's more apt to learn someones name if they commission her for work or bother to get to know her first. Meeting someone once or twice probably means she isn't bothering to remember the name.


Most who ask her for her real name after figuring that Salvius isn't exactly a female name are likely to get a response that names are pretty but worthless as she blows off answering the question. 


As far as anyone else's name goes.. she doesn't judge. Someone wants her to call them Mud then by all means.

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While the content of a person's character is more important, to Eva, there is a certain traditional reverence for the name.  This has been something of a recurring theme - similar to how she has what some might consider an unusual view pertaining towards opinions on matters such as family and marriage.  These are virtues that were handed down to her from her father and to which she clings pretty closely.


This being said, 'Eva' is not her born name.  I rather not give too many spoilers, but she is fairly direct and honest and would likely speak of it if the subject were somehow brought up in casual conversation.  The event(s) that triggered her decision to change her name was significant enough for her to overlook this particular tradition in this instance.  Generally speaking she does not think people should change their names willy-nilly.  She goes to certain lengths to try and pronounce names properly, even the miqo'te names which are difficult for others to pronounce - she will make that effort to try and be correct.  She views it as being honorable to the individual as well as the parents of the individual.  She used to be much worse at remembering names, but with time and a certain amount of practice she is better at it.


She very, very seldom uses nicknames for anyone.




EDIT TO APPEND:  Another note worthy of importance is that Eva took her fiancé's surname throughout most of the duration of 1.0 and was regarded by most as 'Eva Ianeira' rather than 'Eva Zelorius' - there are actually two separate reasons for this.  The first being she felt it a way to honour the departed, and she would have taken his name had they married anyway.  As time went on she realized how this was also unintentionally kind of a slight to her own family and upbringing and eventually reverted back to Zelorius to honour her father.

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Working in a the dangerous world of the Black Market and all things done dirty and cheap, Tarot knows that names are mostly aliases. While most people throw their names around like they're fireworks on Moonfire, he also knows not to question them about names unless he feels it's 'okay' by the way the person acts of behaves. More often then not, he'll likely call you a nickname anyway, since that is how he keeps tracks of the dozens upon dozens of customers he has, both legitimate and otherwise.


Depending on how he feels about you, that's how demeaning or affectionate the nickname can/will be, and it IS subject to change (though very unlikely).

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This is a fun thing to think about! Also, to a point it's great to talk about in character because someone can always react to whatever name they're being called.


Jancis' background has name as a large factor of her character reaction because she ended up choosing her own name out of a fictional book she read.


She finds nicknames or someone giving her a name a very large honor. Giving someone a name comes from an impression or feeling that person, so it comes from the heart (be it sarcastic or sincere) and that person has made an impact on them. It's a very connecting experience to Jancis.


I know this isn't exactly a name but titles also fall into it because it's kind of a given importance and attached to a name, giving it worth. Jancis is infamous for this habit, calling anyone by "Lord" and "Lady" regardless of social status. She'll change over to "Sir" "Master" sometimes depending on what she's told, but when people aren't around she'll put titles on their names. "Lady Hornet" "Sir Iono"

Considering her nomad childhood, and polite manner, it's kind of an inside secret to 'fight the machine' by making everyone as important as everyone else.

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Well, you know Kage's view!


He sees names as part of a person's identity. Kage believes that they're pretty important because they're a part of a person's character. Their life experiences. So if they decide to change it or it's different... there's a story behind it! He sees it as part of a person's definition. Sure, nicknames happen but he still thinks names are important.

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C'kayah sees names as being extremely important, and takes pains to both remember the way people like to be called, and to spend an inordinate amount of time tearing apart someone's name mentally in order to guess at the symbolism behind it. He's distrustful of aliases, in a business where so much depends on the ability to trust the people you're dealing with. He knows of Crooked Tarot, for instance, but he avoids him as untrustworthy simply because the man works with aliases so much.


That said, he calls people different things for tactical reasons. Full names, shortened names, pet names, nicknames, and taunts are all used to reflect how he feels about someone. For himself, he usually simply goes by C'kayah (Kayah to his close friends - a sure fire way to earn his ire is to use the familiar form inappropriately). Sometimes he takes the Moonkeeper form Kayah Polaali (his maternal grandmother is a Polaali). Whether "Kayah" is the shortened familiar form of C'kayah (and thus only for close friends) or the Moonkeeper form (appropriate for anyone) is a matter of context.

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Nat calls people whatever the fuck she wants. This often does not go over well.


Though she does her best to use titles in certain situations she thinks is appropriate. However if she doesn't think someone deserves a title, she won't use it.


She also loves making up nicknames for people, usually ones they don't like. To her though it's a sign of affection, since it's a name only she uses.


On the other hand she hates being called mcbeef, and greatly regrets she ever took started calling herself that back in her gladiator days. She also hates being called Ser or Lady, because she doesn't really think she's deserving of that honor.

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As Erik reads into everything, he takes note of names. Most people in the darker corners of Eorzea pick their own names, either by changing their names, or by simply using an alias. He feels that people who have done this are easier to read, and uses their names as the first clue to the person's personality.


As to his own name, he prefers Erik over Eirikir, though he does use his full name to introduce himself.

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Xheja tends to view names as being very important. For one, she's come to understand that having a well-known, influential name in Ul'dah opens a lot of doors. To that end, Xheja uses her name in the name of her business (Rajhera's Radiants) and is pretty open about giving her own name to just about anyone when the topic of business comes up. 


However, on the opposite side of the matter, she can be quite stubborn if she feels like someone is prying too much. She'll refuse to give her name, or in the best case scenario, give another name entirely. 


She is also rather fond of other Keeper names, finding them both familiar and beautiful. Though for non-miqo'te, she realizes that her own name can be difficult to pronounce. So on occasion, she'll allow people to call her Shae -- the closest hyur approximation of her name.

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In her line of work, Vivenne's learned that names are often temporary, but sometimes useful. When she actually gets around to conducting business - like making threats for information - she's found that anominyity and employing specific names is the best way to get what she wants. Is the person she's trying to get information from in debt? Throw in their moneylender's name.


In short: names are tools. Useful and pretty.


As for everything else, she introduces herself as Viv. Most people don't know her full name unless they ask. She doesn't mind nicknames, either.

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Jaques doesn't like giving out his own name. So often times it goes unsaid until someone directly asks for his. When someone gives their own name he will use that name, even if it's not a common one for their race or gender, an alias, or a nickname. He's got his own reasons for the name he gives and why he gives it, other people have theirs. So he tries to respect that.


Jaques has yet to and probably never will give out his surname. Or his clan name. Even when he has to sign official documents and things the only name he will ever give is Jaques. Which has made for some amusing little RP moments. And the odd times he's -had- to give a surname he's used Antain. His fiance's.


Titles he doesn't like attached to himself. 'Overland' society seems to put a lot more emphasis on titles than his clan did, though. So he tries when he remembers, usually just sticking to 'Lady' or 'Sir'. And he hates the titles 'Master', "Madame' and 'Mistress'.

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Vaughn is very careful when it comes to using proper titles with the name he's given. He will often immediately use 'Master' or 'Mistress', much to his fiance's chagrin. In regards to his own name, he used to give out first and last, but as of late just gives out first unless someone asks directly or introduces themselves with first/last. He has been known on occasion to use a more Elezen sounding name when he doesn't wish to be known.

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Kroemgarr is very proud of his own name, and of traditional Roegadyn names in general. He prefers people call him by his given name, but when he recognises someone who has trouble with the Roegan language, he'll begrudgingly allow them to call him something easier.


He'll, in kind, do his best to refer to anyone my their given (formal) name at any time, though he does have trouble with Miqo'te conventions-- he'll usually forgo the tribal prefix of Seeker names and the numerical suffix of Keeper males where he has trouble fluidly pronouncing them.

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