History · Norse · Vikings

Name Borrowing Among The Vikings

Medievalists.net today points us to a paper from The Proceedings of the Fourteenth Viking Congress in 2001 by Henrik Williams entitled Name Borrowing Among the Vikings. The author says of the subject at hand:

“…I take the term Name borrowing to denote two … phenomena. The first relates to certain names in runic inscriptions that are assumed to be borrowed from fictitious persons in contemporary or older literature. … The second kind of name borrowing deals with perfectly normal names in one Scandinavian country that some scholars believe have been imported from another.”

This is of interest to those of us who follow the pre-Christian Nordic religion for two reasons. First, because many contemporary Nordic pagans take “faith names” to honor their heritage, whether genetic or spiritual. Second, because modern pagans do have children, and the question of naming children is thus of primary import to those of us who have and raise children, and are (almost without exception) inordinately proud of that fact. 

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