Sandum Names: a Cultural Achievement for National Identity

Di benedicaris vos.

Names are arguably the most fundamental feature in societies. When a child is brought into the world, parents name them; when a project or an organisation is established, a name often comes second to the purpose of the project or organisation (except in micronationalism, when nation-projects typically have a name first and develop a purpose much later on). How people are named, however, varies according to the convention of each culture; therefore, as Sandus is a nation advancing its culture for the pursuit of independence, let us dedicate ourselves to this fundamental feature:

Sandum names are divided into three groups, as the Romans divided them. These are praenomen (prename), nomen (name), cognomen (nicknames). Praenomina are the modern equivalent of first names or individual names; Nomina are last or family names; Cognomina are names of a broad range, often meant to describe the characteristics of an individual. Over the Republican period in Rome, cognomina became hereditary and therefore agnomina began to be used as well, although these were awarded. As Rome was founded from a tribal setting and as it began to expand, filiation and tribe were added to the name; as time went further on, the tria nomina of patronymic, tribe, and residence began to take place. By the late Republican and Imperial eras as praenomen were passed down the father’s line, the cognomen had entirely replaced the importance of the praenomen, as with Gaius Julius Caesar or with Titus Flavius Vespasianus. In Sandus, the importance of the categories can be seen with the Sôgmô’s regnal name: Gaius Sörgel Publicola.

What, then, is this Sandum name? By the late Republic, Romans began to include their tribe name (a voting jurisdiction in ancient Rome) into their full name on official documents. But Sandus will go further: Sandum names will take a multitude of cognomina, reserving agnomina for awards, derived from many personal and physical characteristics. These cognomina, in lieu of being more important than the praenomina, will instead become potential last names, should the son or daughter of one refuse the last name or if citizens, once becoming civilo citizens of Sandus, would prefer to protect their privacy by having a cognomen as a nomen instead.

The issue of inheritance thus comes up. How will names be inherited? Will they be derived from the father’s line or the mother’s? Will praenomen be passed down?
For these sorts of questions, we have many answers. Marriage has often been the battleground of inequalities between both sexes and genders, and the names derived from marriage are no different. In the West, we consider two binary genders and our names are descended through the patrilineal line; however, in many Hispanic countries of Central and South America, two last names are given, as in the case of Hugo Chávez-Frías — where Chávez is the father’s name and Frías is the mother’s name. Gender to Native Americans is not so much binary as it is a gradient. To the Navajo of the American South-west, four broad genders are considered: masculine men, feminine women, feminine men (nádleehi), and masculine women (dilbaá).

In Sandus, these functions are important considerations for our naming system. To the point of inheritance, we are indeed influenced by the Hispanic community insofar that Sandus will pursue a naming convention that honours both father and mother; to the point of gender, as Sandus is one the fore-leading cusp of accepting and respecting the transgender and transsexual community, one’s leading last name will be dependent on their gender and the cognomina they possess will all be gender-neutral so that they end with the neutral “-e” (for example, a locational cognomina such as “Anglia” for England will be “Anglié”). For example, if one’s gender is feminine, their mother’s last-name shall become leading to their father’s, and vice versa if one’s gender is masculine; all cognomina given hereafter shall be ending with “-e”.

These naming conventions are meant to achieve ultimate liberty in choice for individuals. One’s Sandum name may be entirely the same or entirely different from one’s given name outside of Sandus. For example, the Sôgmô has a name that is some-what different from his given name: William Soergel has become Gaius Sörgel Publicola in his regnal name, whereas Gaius sounds similar to “Guillaume” (the French version of William) and whereas the O and the E in Soergel are simplified into Ö. In the same way, a Sandum prename may be translated into Latin or pre-existing Latin praenomen may be chosen. Should one not to use their given family name, a cognomen can be made into a nomen. Cognomina will be dependent upon several characteristics: sex/gender; demonym or where one comes from; Sandum province one lives in; occupation, profession, or job one does; patronymic and matronymic names; ethnicity or tribe; residence derived from settlement or street names; physical or personality characteristics; and even more. Amongst these cognomina, one can choose or add one to their own accord. In all cases, though, cognomina should be gender-neutral.
Agnomina, which are cognomina that are awarded based upon merit and achievement, shall take precedence over all other cognomina.

A list of Latin praenomina for consideration:
Male: Gaius, Lucius, Marcus, Publius, Quintus, Titus, Tiberius, Sextus, Aulus, Decimus, Gnaeus, Spurius, Manius, Servius, Appius, Numerius, Vibius.
Female: Gaia, Lucia, Marca, Publia, Quinta, Tita, Tiberia, Sexta, Aula, Decima, Gnaea, Spuria, Mania, Servia, Appia, Numeria, Vibia.
Gender-Neutral: Gaie, Lucie, Marce, Publie, Quinte, Tite, Tiberie, Sexte, Aule, Decime, Gnae, Spurie, Manie, Servie, Appie, Numerie, Vibie.

We recommend to all to research the names one would like to have, in accordance with the above conventions, as according to their preference. Above all else, Sandum names shall be constructed by an individual and shall be made into Sandum names, with a list of cognomina, so that the individual can choose which name they shall use in their day-to-day lives in their micronational home of Sandus.

A report to be conducted by Veritum Sandus explains how these names will be made official through the Central People’s Government of the State of Sandus.

Sacra Flameno

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