Brill’s New Pauly

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Personal names
(4,094 words)

I. General

[German version]

A. Function

The PN is an individual, generally valid sign for naming a person. The need to use a PN exists when a  social contact group is too large to name its members after their role (e.g. mother) and exists in all historically tangible languages. The PN is a universal.

[German version]

B. Creation of names

In antiquity as also today, the PN is usually given soon after birth and kept later; y…

Cite this page
Rix, Helmut (Freiburg), García-Ramón, José Luis (Cologne), Streck, Michael P. (Munich) and Haas, Volkert (Berlin), “Personal names”, in: Brill’s New Pauly, Antiquity volumes edited by: Hubert Cancik and , Helmuth Schneider, English Edition by: Christine F. Salazar, Classical Tradition volumes edited by: Manfred Landfester, English Edition by: Francis G. Gentry. Consulted online on 01 March 2024 <>
First published online: 2006
First print edition: 9789004122598, 20110510

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