23 October 2007

A rose by any other name . . .

I've been thinking about names a lot recently. More specifically, my name - for various and sundry reasons - and what it means.

KATHARINE is the German and English variant of Katherine, which has a debated etymology. Most often you read that it is a derivative from the Greek word katharos, meaning "Pure". However, it the debated root words have the following alternate meanings:
"Each of the Two"
"Torture"
"My consecration of your name"
"Far off" (From the goddess Hecate, associated with witchcraft, tombs, demons and the underworld).

ELLEN is the Medieval English or Dutch variant of Helen, which also has Greek origins. The Greek word helene means "torch" or "corposant". (Corposant meaning either: "Holy body" or refers to the phoenomenon of St. Elmo's Fire).

My last name stems from the Hebrew word meaning "God is my judge".

So...string them all together, and you get "Pure Torch God is my Judge" or "Torture Torch God is my judge" or "Far off corporsant . . ." etc. It's interesting. There's a lot of weight in some of those definitions - a lot of pressure to live up to, in some cases.


But wait! There's more . . . what about nicknames?
-Katja or Katya
-Grace (for my lack thereof)
-Katarina or Catarina

And, what about taking on attributes of character names? I've run the gamut this year!
-Madame Larina
-Little Buttercup
-Ivana Trump
-Virgin Mary

It's just interesting to think about . . . good times.

3 comments:

Rona said...

Remember our note-passing dialogue in church about what our names spell backward? Yours spell "Ytak," and mine spells "Masterful Lover."

math jedi said...

interesting... says the god of wine whose name backwards means "rebelled against God."

katy said...

HAHAHA. Ytak. I forgot about that. And yes, Mr. Dionysis derivative...good stuff!