Creativity Magazine

A New Name for Romeo

By Heddigoodrich

A new name for Romeo

Romeo and Juliet by Sir Frank Dicksee

I’ve always loved the name “Elio”. It comes from the Greek Helios, meaning “sun”. For an Italian name, it’s comparatively short and rolls off the tongue with perhaps the loveliest sound in any language, “l”. In all my years in Italy I only ever ran into one person named Elio, so to me it also feels crisp and fresh, a name without history.
But now I have to ditch it. As a name in my manuscript, that is. I won’t go into a detailed explanation as to why “Elio”, the fictitious name for my lead male character, must go, but I will say rather mysteriously that it has something to do with an astrological sign, a top-hundred list and a very confident Irishman.
Darnit. The name Elio was so very well suited to the real-life “character” in my memoir: a brilliant geology student from a small town chain-smoking his way to big dreams. Of course, the actual name of this geologist would have been an even better match, encapsulating as it does his succinctness, earthiness and ties to tradition, without giving away an ounce of volatility. But the geologist has already graciously agreed to appear in my book, along with his personal emails, so I think it would be a bit too much to ask to use his real name as well. His hometown is, after all, a village of only 1,372 souls: how long do you think it would take before every man, woman and goat was whispering his name on the streets?
Over time I’ve worked my way through a mental list of Italian names, without ever finding a suitable substitute. In each potential name, I see only faults. This one’s too long, this one’s hard to say, this one – unfortunately – was the name of the Neapolitan butcher who used to hang bloodied rabbit skins in his shop window. In fact, I think you’ll agree with me that the following names, for various reasons, simply don’t work:
Too long – Alessandro, Francesco, Giovanni, Domenico
Short but dorky – Afro, Divo, Ulfo
Too aristocratic – Baldassare, Ambrosiano, Eustorgio, Fiorenziano, Ludovico, Pierluigi
Too ghetto – Peppino, Guido, Pippo, Gennaro
Too foreign – Valter, Igor, Omar, Sigfrido
Good but belonging to another character in the book – Leo, Gerardo, Luca
Too famous – Cesare, Dante, Dionisio, Napoleone, Ponzio, Socrate, Ulisse
The name’s meaning doesn’t match the character – Innocente, Modesto, Immacolato, Libero (= free), Orso (= bear), Primo (= first), Ultimo (= last)
Forever tainted for English-speaking audiences – Benito, Tito, Quasimodo, Elmo
At this point, there are only a handful of contenders towards which I feel, at best, lukewarm: Ennio, Ezio, Caio, Ivo, Manolo, Lino, Nico. I probably like this last one best, but we used to have a beautiful dog named Nico, the kind of pooch with sad eyes who, without a leash, would sit for ages waiting for you outside the supermarket, and all night long would poison the bedroom with thunderous, noxious gases. I just don’t know if I can get past this association with the name Nico.
So maybe you can help me. I’m looking for a great name for the Romeo in my manuscript, a name that will make all the girls melt like buffalo mozzarella. A name that’s somewhat traditional but doesn’t remind you of the hairy Sicilian who used to run the pizza parlor on the corner. A name that’s relatively short and easy to pronounce for an English-speaking audience. A name you would give to your own newborn son, if it weren’t for the fact that you once read a bestselling book called Lost in the Spanish Quarter, and so the name will forever remind you of that heartbreaker from a small town near Naples.
Any suggestions?

You Might Also Like :

Back to Featured Articles on Logo Paperblog

These articles might interest you :

  • 220. Iranian Director Mohammad Rasoulof’s “Lerd” (A Man of Integrity) (2017),...

    220. Iranian Director Mohammad Rasoulof’s “Lerd” Integrity) (2017), Based Original Story/script: Very Critical Philosophical Look Corruption Religious Intolerance Iran Today

    "Early on, this film introduces us to many different facets of its main character's life that barely seem to relate. Gradually and powerfully, the script... Read more

    14 hours, 37 minutes ago by   Jugu Abraham
  • Bev/Kat of Cylbourne Park

    Bev/Kat Cylbourne Park

    Been off the frequency for some time. …Obviously.  …Almost never even look at FB anymore. Mostly only to post a new obsession. A lot is happening. Private life,... Read more

    14 hours, 42 minutes ago by   Shewritesalittle
  • Pra Pra Prank, Gurgaon: It Takes Two To Tango….delightfully!

    Prank, Gurgaon: Takes Tango….delightfully!

    One would think that it would be difficult to recreate magic after Prankster but the same team headed by the Banga brothers have done it again! Read more

    15 hours, 31 minutes ago by   Indian Food Freak
  • Hot Cross Bacon Baps

    Cross Bacon Baps

    One of the things I love most about the Easter Season of eating is . . . Hot Cross Buns! Although they are generally available all year round now it seems, WE,... Read more

    16 hours, 23 minutes ago by   Mariealicerayner
  • Faustina Pace

    Faustina Pace

    After people ask me if I have been to antique row in West Palm Beach, the next logical question is,"what was your favorite store?" My answer is Faustina Pace... Read more

    18 hours, 49 minutes ago by   Cleskowitz
  • Sedo Weekly Sales Led by

    Sedo released their weekly sales and led the way at $500,000. was number two at $140,000. 43 .com sales 16 cctld sales 5 other gtld sales... Read more

    The 20 March 2018 by   Worldwide
  • 9 Types Of Men’s Bags

    Types Men’s Bags

    Here are 9 popular men’s bags that are both functional and fashionable. Here is a range to compliment both business and weekend attire. What is a man’s bag? Read more

    The 20 March 2018 by   Von Baer Uk