Saturday, June 13, 2015

What's In A Name?


We need to be careful about our naming conventions in order that we do not misname our sources. This can become more difficult when we are dealing with foreign names, be they of a different nationality, from a different time period, or even both. This particular issue can result in a misnaming of a source over a long period of time. There are two examples I would like to cite a this point in time, one French, and the other Spanish.

The first is an author who is often referred to as "Liancour". His name is Andre Wernesson, Sieur de Liancour. Someone has taken the last part of his name and thought that this was his surname or family name, because it was the last bit of his name. Incorrect. Liancour, or Liancourt, is a geographical location. Andre Wernesson is the Lord of Liancour. So the author should be referred to in the text as "Wernesson", sometimes spelt "Vernesson".

The second author is often referred to as "Narvaez". His name is Don Luis Pacheco de Narvaez. Once again someone not knowing naming conventions has simply taken the last part of the name and used it as the surname. Once again, incorrect. Again Narvaez is a geographical location. Luis Pacheco, is from Narvaez, and has the title of Don. So the author should be referred to as Pacheco.

In our research into various martial arts and the use of the sword we need to examine the sources carefully, but we also need to look at the authors carefully to make sure that we are naming them correctly. This allows anyone who would follow our research later on to find the same sources and gain the same knowledge that we have gained. Misnaming sources by their authors can cause all sorts of issues in finding the sources for other readers and researchers. This could lead them to believe that the source does not exist and even question the research. Take care in your research, and give credit where credit is due, and to the correct author.