Have you ever received a letter where the signature at the bottom of the page accurately reflects the profession
of the person writing? Or perhaps in a newspaper you have come across an appropriate name which matches the type of job the person has. For example an editor of the Christian Science Monitor had the name of
- Funny Name And Job
Will and Guy's Top Ten Favourite Names Which Fit The Job Perfectly
- Unusual Place Names
- Funny, Clean
Aptronyms or Aptonyms
- Nominative Determinism
- 1 Funny Name and Job
- 2 More Funny Name and Job
- 3 Here Are Will and Guy's Top Ten Favourite Names Which Fit The Job Perfectly
- 4 Funny, Clean Aptronyms or Aptonyms
- 5 Aptonyms
- 6 Here are Relatives of Aptonyms
- 7 Toponymy - The Study of Unusual Place Names
- 8 Nominative Determinism
- 9 South African Update
- 10 See more humorous names:
Guy and Will have researched some more which may make you smile. Where possible we have shown where the names come from. Sadly we cannot guarantee their accuracy:
- Bankers, Wallowa County, Oregon: Cheatham & Steele
- Chorister, Westminster Choir College, Princeton, New Jersey: Justin Tune
- Gynaecologist, New
York Hospital, New York City: Dr Zoltan Ovary
- Chairman, Tetley Tea Company, London: Tetley Ironsides Tetley Jones
- Dentist, Roslyn Heights, New York: Dr. E. Z. Filler
- Phlebotomist, St Mary's
Hospital, Portsmouth, UK:
- The national Director of Surgery at the U.S. Department of Veterans
Affairs in Washington, D.C. Dr Blades
- Plumber Worcester UK: Mr Turner-Heaton
Bank Manager, Waterlooville, UK: Mr F. Knox
- Mr. Vice, Malefactor, New Orleans, Louisiana. Arrested 890 times and convicted 421, probably a record
(International Herald Tribune)
More Funny Name and Job
- Interior decorator, Reading, UK: Derek Paynter
- Municipal Tax Collector, Brazil
(Financial Times): Cardiac Arrest da Silva
- Funeral Director, Sydney, Australia: C. D' Eath and Sons[Will once knew a Mrs Pine-Coffin from Devon,
UK but she was an owner of holiday cottages not an undertaker]
- Landscape Gardeners from Salisbury, UK called: Budd and Bush
- Silent Movie Organist, Rochester, New York: C. Sharp Minor
City, Kentucky automobile salesman: Henry Ford Carr
- Never Fail is a builder in Tulsa, Oklahoma
- Mr Robbins is a renowned ornithologist (bird
scientist and bird-bander) at a Federal wildlife research center in
Maryland, USA. He is co-author of the guidebook "Birds of North
- This one does fit in at all with the others but we couldn't
resist it: Charles Adolphe Faux-Pas Bidet, Commissaire de Police, Paris, France in the 1930's
If you know other funny name / job
combinations like these please send them into us.
An aptronym or aptonym is a name aptly suited to its owner. They can
often be hilarious, amusing and funny. Will and Guy have researched these
examples for you to enjoy.
- David Bird is an ornithologist.
- Scott Constable is, of course, a
- Helen Painter is an artist.
- Raymond Strike has to be a Trades
- Shona Shears cuts people's hair.
- Steve Adore is a dock
- Dr Joseph Babey is a paediatrician.
- Dr Djerk works as a
- Bertha de Bleus is a jazz singer [sounds suspicious to me
- And yes, Dr D'Eath is a surgeon.
Ones for luck: Roy Grout is
a bricklayer who has a mate named Morris Glaser who does the windows.
Fictional examples of aptronyms include Mr Talkative and Mr Worldly
Wiseman in John Bunyan's classic book "The Pilgrim's Progress" written in
1678. The word aptronymn itself was probably invented by United States
newspaper columnist Franklin P. Adams.
- Alan Ball, English footballer who played in England's
1966 World Cup winning team.
- Anna Smashnova, tennis player.
- Billy Drummond, American jazz drummer.
- Bob Flowerdew,
gardener and Gardeners' Question Time panellist.
- Bob Rock,
rock music producer, including Metallica and Bon Jovi.
- Brenda Song, singer.
- Cecil Fielder and his son Prince
Fielder, baseball players.
- Jaime Gold winner
of 2006 World Series of Poker
- Chuck Long, former NFL
quarterback for the Detroit Lions and the Los Angeles Rams.
- Henry Head, an English neurologist.
- Igor Judge, Lord Chief
Justice of England and Wales .
- Learned Hand, judge.
- Marc Rich, billionaire financier.
- Margaret Court, tennis player.
- Margaret Spellings, Education
Secretary under George W. Bush.
- Peter Bowler, cricketer who
was, in fact, primarily a batsman.
- Pippa Greenwood, plant
pathologist and "Gardeners' Question Time" panellist in the UK.
- Scott Free a defence attorney.
- Thomas Crapper,
manufacturer of Victorian toilets. Please note that the word
"crap" predates Mr Crapper.] .
- Tiger Woods, golfer [A wood
is a type of golf club].
- Usain Bolt, Jamaican sprinter,
Olympic Gold medalist, 100m and 200m world record holder.
- William Wordsworth, poet.
The name 'aptonym' is derived from the old English word 'apt' meaning
'exactly suitable', and the Greek 'onuma' or 'name'.
Here are Relatives of Aptonyms
- Fleatown, is an itchy place in Ohio.
- Great Cockup in Cumbria, England.
- Two Guns, famously in Arizona.
- Giggleswick in
- Toad Suck, is found in Arkansas.
- A Monkey's
Eyebrow, is based in Arizona.
- See more examples of
Nominative sounds like Latin grammar, but in this context nominative just
means name. The underpinning concept is that Asian parents apply
expectation theory to choosing their child's name, as a result their
offspring are pre-determining to get on in life. While Carl Jung
espoused this view in a paper on synchronicity, this view of selecting boys
names in particular with an eye to their role in society goes back to the
dawn of civilization.
Another variant of nominative determination comes with surnames in
Western societies. Here are examples
- Larry Speakes - Ronald Regan's Whitehouse spokesman.
- Lord Judge - Chief justice in England.
- Chris Moneymaker - Poker player.
- Stephen Rowbotham - British Olympic oarsman.
- And last but not least Usain Bolt.
In addition to aptronym, here are more synonyms for nominative
determinism apronym, aptonym, jobonymns, and namephreaks.
South African Update
There is a Zulu tradition to name children after events that occur near
their birth - fair enough. However, Will and Guy pity these poor
children who have been given these unfortunate names following the
2010 World Cup in
South Africa. Coach Sibise, Stadium Gumbi, Tickets Ngubane and Park n
Ride Khumalo. We also wonder about the father of Offside Mchunu.
Please send us your funny name
and job combinations. For example:
Amateur boxer Joe Flanagan named
his two sons Bob and Weave.