I started talking like a patronymic and expressed the idea that they say that only some Slavic peoples have them. And where else in the world do you meet Name, Surname and Patronymic? Do you remember?
But it turns out not so simple…
In general, in the pre-surname period, naming by name and patronymic served the purpose of more accurate identification of a person, that is, performed the same social function as modern surnames.
The use of patronymics in one form or another is characteristic of many cultures, but is most characteristic among those peoples whose surnames appeared recently, or are generally absent as a class. Today, they are widely used in Arabic, Icelandic, Mongolian, East Slavic and Bulgarian.
Among the Greeks, both the ancients and the modern, the middle name is the name of the father in the genitive case. The ancient Greeks used only an individual name in everyday life, but middle names were also used for official documents. So, the full name of Demosthenes is Demosfes Demosfenus Paianius, that is, Demosthenes is the son of Demosthenes from the phylum of Paanius.
For modern Greeks, as well as for ancient Greeks, middle name is between a name and a surname. In Greece, a married woman changes her middle name to her husband’s middle name. The Soviet Greeks had middle names on the same principle as the Bulgarians. For example, Alexander Nikos Kandaraki. In some places in Greece, the name and patronymic are pronounced together. For example, the literary name Georgios Konstantin Papadas in the domestic sphere sounds like Giorgos Costa Papadas, and the name and patronymic in a joint pronunciation like Giorgocosta.
In the Norman language, middle names in the form of “fils de Gérald” (son of Gerald) were used. From this form came many modern English surnames starting with “fitz”.
In Arabic, the particle “ibn” is used to indicate the middle name of men, meaning literally a son (ibn Muhammad = son of Muhammad). In women, the middle name is used much less often, in this case, the particle “bint”, literally the daughter, is placed in front of the name of the father.
The same principle was used by other Semitic peoples. For example, among the Jews, the patronymic was formed using the particle “ben” or “bar”, which in Hebrew and Aramaic, respectively, also means a son. For example, Shlomo ben David – Shlomo (Solomon) son of David, Shimon bar Yochai – Shimon son of Yohai.
In the Armenian language, middle names are formed by adding the suffix “i” to the name of the father. For example, if a person’s name is Armen, then the middle name of his children will be Armeni. The Armenian suffix “i” means belonging to someone or to something. The roots of many Armenian surnames came from the names of the founders of the clans, and therefore, they were once middle names.
In everyday communication, Armenian patronymics are usually not used.
In the Old Norse language and its living successor – the Icelandic language, people traditionally do not have surnames, their place is occupied by middle names. Icelandic law expressly prohibits taking surnames: “No one should take a surname in our country.”
Icelandic male patronymics are formed by adding “son” [son] (son) to the genitive case of the name, female – with the addition of “dóttir” [douttir] (daughter): for example, Jounsson and Jonesdouttir (son of Joun, daughter of Joun), Snorrason and Snorradouttir ( son of Snorri, daughter of Snorri, father’s name is Snorri).
Occasionally there is a construction of two middle names formed on behalf of the father and the name of the grandfather (the second middle name appears in the genitive case), for example, Jón урórsson Bjarnarsonar – literally Joun, son of Toura, son of Bjarni.
In the Bulgarian language, patronymics are formed by adding the suffix “ov” or “ev” to the father’s name, that is, in a way that was common in Russia. For example, Georgi Ivanov Ivanov – Georgi son of Ivan Ivanov, Ivayl Todorov Stoyanov – Ivayl daughter of Todor Stoyanov.
Among the Vainakhs (Chechens and Ingush), the middle name is preceded by a name – Khamidan Vakha, Vakha Hamidovich – that would have sounded in Russian.
The Mongolian patronymic is the name of the father in the genitive case, formed by the addition of the suffixes “yn” or “iyn”. The main identifier of a person in everyday life is a personal name, while middle name appears primarily in official documents and the media. In a letter, the middle name, and not the name, is reduced to the initial: for example, Nambaryn Enkhbayar – N. Enkhbayar. In recent years, there has been a tendency in the media, especially targeting foreign audiences, to write the father’s name without the suffixes of the genitive case and sometimes after the personal name in the manner of a Western surname, for example, Mnkh-Erdenegiyn Tөgөldөp – Mөnh-Erdene Tөgөldөr.
Türkic patronymics are formed using the words “oglu” (ula, uulu) for sons and “kizi” (gizi) for daughters (the words son and daughter in possessive form are 3 singular persons). For example, the children of an Azerbaijani Salim named Mammad and Leyla will be called Mammad Salim-oglu and Leyla Salim-kizi.
In the Netherlands, middle names existed in the past and are still unofficially used among the Frisians. Female middle names were formed using the “dochter” (daughter), male middle names were formed using the “zoon” (son), in the abbreviated form “sz” or “s”. For example, the full name of the famous composer was Jan Pieterszoon Sweelinck, Rembrandt’s full name is Rembrandt Harmenszoon van Rijn.
Persons of non-noble origin could have no surname, and in such cases, the middle name partially played the role of the surname and allowed to distinguish people. So, the famous navigator Willem Barents did not have a surname, Barents (Barents, Barentsz) or Barentszoon (Barentszoon) – middle name, meaning son of Barents.
Over time, when the entire population of Holland acquired surnames, patronymics almost went out of use.
Russian patronymics began to be used very early; the first mention of this dates back to 945. However, until the XIII century, the frequency of the use of patronymics was low.
The form of male patronymic in modern Russian with an ending in “ovich” (after the foundations for the soft consonant “evich”) goes back to the patronymic of the ancient Russian princes and nobility of Moscow Russia; vile people did not have the right to use such middle names.
Starting from the 16th century, naming with “ovich” was considered a special privilege; such a right was granted to the noble people personally by the tsar and for special merits. So, in 1610, Tsar Vasily Shuisky, in gratitude for the assistance of the Stroganov merchants in joining the Urals and Siberia to the Moscow state, ordered Maxim and Nikita Stroganov, their descendants and descendants of Semen (Ioannikievich) Stroganov to write with “Vich” and granted a special title to eminent people . In the XVII century, the Stroganovs were the only merchant surname that wore this title.
The middle names of vile, that is, noble people, in Russia were initially formed as a short form of possessive adjective on the corresponding name, for example: Ivan Petrov son or, in a later version, Ivan Petrov; Fedor Lukin’s son – Fedor Lukin. At some point, the middle name could become a hereditary surname, so the son of Ivan Petrov was called Vasily Ivan the son of Petrov, his grandson Nikolai Vasilyev the son of Petrov, etc.
However, the patronymic form for “ov” and “ev” were used only in clerical speech, in official documents. In unofficial situations, in everyday life, Russian people called each other by their first and middle names in the form that we are now accustomed to: glory of “ovich”, “evich”, “ovna”, “evna”, “ich”, “ichna”, “inichna” was not limited. Sometimes it was used even instead of a name (as sometimes now), when the speaker wanted to emphasize special respect for the person, to show a shade of disposition, love.
According to Russian rules, patronymic is always formed on the masculine behalf – on behalf of the father. However, there are several cases when a patronymic was formed on behalf of the mother: the son of Prince Galitsky Yaroslav Osmomysl (c. 1130–1187) and his mistress Nastasya were popularly nicknamed Oleg Nastasevich. He later inherited the Galician throne.
In addition, in Russia illegitimate children of male noblemen and common girls (maidservants, serfs…) often received a surname formed on behalf of their mother (Katerinenko, Mashin, Nadezhdin…) instead of surnames formed from patronymics.
Good luck in finding.