We’ve gotten a bit sidetracked from our original plan of looking at multi-generational data to see what sorts of clues we could obtain about how people chose names for children by doing cross-products of Germanic name elements instead; but over the weekend we picked up a new source roughly contemporary to the Irminon polyptyque which has similar sorts of data. This source is a listing of tenant farmers in lands held by the Abbey of St. Victor, in Marseille, compiled in 814, and contains not only the names of parents and children, but often, also (fascinatingly!) their ages!
We have only just started transcribing the data from this source (which is not nearly as extensive as the other one, sadly), and already the data we have transcribed shows some interesting differences from the Paris data. The most significant difference is the significantly higher percentage of names of Romance or Christian (i.e., names of saints) origin, compared to the predominantly Germanic-origin names found in the Irminon polytyqe.
One consequence of this is that the patterns we see in Paris, with the dithematic Germanic names of the parents being recombined in the names of the children, are much less in evidence in the Marseille data. In fact, 6 pages in (albeit this is not very much data yet!), we haven’t found any evidence of such a trend.
We have, however, found a number of listings of complete families whose names are so lovely and fascinating, we’re simply going to share them even if we don’t have any nice scholarly conclusions to draw!
The parents are listed first, and then their children with their ages. Some of the children are noted as “baccalarius” or “baccalaria”. This is the root of English “bachelor”, and to be honest, we’re not entirely sure what sort of status it signalled in the 9th C. Judging from the ages of children that are given explicitly, in comparison with the children who are noted as being “bachelors”, a baccalarius/baccalaria seems, in this context, to be an older son or daughter who is too old to count as a child but not yet living independently in their own homestead.
Stephanus + Dara, and their children:
Martinus + Dominica, and their children:
Valerianus + Desiderada, and their children:
Fulcomares + Vuteria, and their children:
Dominicus + Stephana, and their children:
Ulmisis (“ad scholia”)
Elpericus + (wife not mentioned), and his child:
Stabilia + (husband not named; he’s “extraneus”, i.e., a stranger), and her children:
unnamed infant, 6
Betolenus + Desideria, and their children:
Pelagis + Rooberta, and their children:
unnamed infant, 3
Dignoaldus + Pascasia, and their children:
Gairefredus + Vuoldefreda, and their children:
Dominica, a widow, and her children:
Bertefredus + Florentina, and their children:
Incaladius + Aridia, and their children:
Paulus + Castellana, and their children:
Joannes + Marta, and their children:
Dominicus + Licinia, and their children:
Aridius + Paulesinda, and their children:
We could probably keep typing these up all night, but we’ll end here! Hope you enjoyed these.