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flyingzone View Drop Down
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    Posted: 09-Feb-2006 at 20:12

This is what I heard: Koreans used to have non-Chinese trisyllabic names, like jumong, eulji, paso, toru, jiru. But the pro-Tang Shilla's Kyongduk king decided to adopt "Sinitic" names to eliminate Paekche and Koguryo names and also to facilitate "recording" (because of the Chinese writing system used in ancient Korea).

However, I also heard that "authentic" Korean names is on the rise in S. Korea now, partially as a result of having too many Kim's, Lee's, and Park's. Is that true? Could the Korean forumers here give some examples of "authentic" Korean names and their meaning?

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Gubook Janggoon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09-Feb-2006 at 20:53
There is a growing trend to use native words in place of Sino-Korean words in naming kids.  For instance, I have a cousin named Haneul, which is the native Korean word for "sky". 

Other than that, I'm not sure about authentic Korean names.

There were some interesting names around during the Korean 3 Kingdoms period though.  Here are some off of the top of my head.

Sadaham-Shilla
Misaheun-Shilla
Bak Hyeokgose-Shilla
Ijinashi-Gaya
Buyeo Geunchogo-Baekje
Heukji Sangji-Baekje
Eulji Mundeok-Goguryeo
Yeon Gaesomun-Goguryeo
Haemosu-Buyeo

Not to say that there weren't any Sino style Korean names at the time though.  Names like Goguryeo's Yang Mancheon and Shilla's own Kim Yushin show us that there was also a strong Chinese style tradition in naming.

Hope that helps a bit.


Edited by Gubook Janggoon
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote flyingzone Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09-Feb-2006 at 21:02
They sound really nice!!!! (Not that it means "Sinitic" names don't sound nice.) And it actually makes a lot of sense especially nowadays more and more Koreans are using hangul instead of hanja to write their names, right?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote King Kang of Lemuria Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09-Feb-2006 at 22:40

My favorite is Sadaham; doesn't it sound so Saddam?  Well, let's not go there, although I did enjoy reading about Tangri and Garimto.

I think Sadaham was one of the great Hwarang from Shilla?  I should look it up.

Hwarangs were great; young, worrior, poet, gentleman, scholar, athlete, leader type.  It should be an aim for all the young people.  

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote jamesse Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10-Feb-2006 at 13:31
Hey, but we should take note that those names were recorded with Chinese Characters and Sino-Korean words might have changed over time.

We don't even know if the Chinese words were compatible with Korean phonetics, so there's a high probability that those names are not how it sounded back then.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote King Kang of Lemuria Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10-Feb-2006 at 19:27

I agree but I live in Stone Age overhere and my laptop doesn't have such capability.  

As far as those names, I do think most of them had to be written in Chinese charactors since most of the historic records were written in Chinese.  That is not to say those names aren't neccesarily authentic Korean.  Also many upper class Koreans used literary/scholastic nicknames in their writings, many of them becoming more famous for their literary name than their given name.

And the phonetic comparasion, well I can read very little Chinese and still pretty fluent in Korean, if some one showed me both pronunciation same Chinese letters, more often than not I will find some similarity.  But I haven't heard any science behind how you can tranform one phonetic to theother. 

For example, if I saw 'Beijing' written in Chinese letters, I would know it means 'Northern Capitol' just by looking at it, but I would say, 'Book Ghyoung' in Korean pronunciation.  Oh, I can see the similarity but if I say 'Book ghyoung' to a Chinese guy, I don't think he would understand what I'm talking about.

Actually, is 'Beijing' an authentic pronunciation or Anglroidfied?  I've heard 'Peking' also, is 'Beijing' a Mandarin, 'Peking' a Cantonese?  Just wondering.

 

 

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Gubook Janggoon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10-Feb-2006 at 21:24
Originally posted by jamesse jamesse wrote:

Hey, but we should take note that those names were recorded with Chinese Characters and Sino-Korean words might have changed over time.

We don't even know if the Chinese words were compatible with Korean phonetics, so there's a high probability that those names are not how it sounded back then.


That's true. Phonetics change over time, so there's a great chance that what we read as say "Sadaham" wasn't actually pronounced as "Sadaham"

All three kingdoms had Idu style systems where different Chinese characters were used to portray syllables.  Kind of like Japan's syllabary.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote flyingzone Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10-Feb-2006 at 23:02

Originally posted by jamesse jamesse wrote:

We don't even know if the Chinese words were compatible with Korean phonetics, so there's a high probability that those names are not how it sounded back then.

Chinese words are definitely NOT compatible with Korean phonetics. Chinese and Korean belong to two entirely language families - Chinese belongs to the Sino-Tibetan family whereas Korean, a so-called language "isolate", probably belongs to the Altaic family. To use Chinese characters to represent Korean phonetics is as difficult as using Chinese characters to represent English phonetics.

 

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote I/eye Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11-Feb-2006 at 05:19

they probably did sound different from how they were written

i.e. Japanese records write "YunGaeSoMun" as "Irigasumi" and it's probably closer to the actual Korean pronounciation..



Edited by I/eye
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote flyingzone Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18-Feb-2006 at 11:48

I have some interesting information on Ryukyu names too. (I know if I start a new thread on "Ryukyu names" I will probably get no reply at all since it is such an "unhot" topic.   That's why I am putting it here.)

I got this from Wikipedia, but even there, the information is very sketchy.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talk:Japanese_name

"The Ryukyans, being vassals of the Chinese empire and influenced more by Chinese culture than by Japanese, had names similar in form to those of the Chinese."

"(T)here are many unique, strange names in Okinawa" e.g. "names like Sho Ei are highly Chinese-influenced"

However, "(s)urnames in present-day Okinawa often follow Japanese patterns, even when they're recognizably different. A typical pattern is the same two-kanji pattern of Japan. Variants exist, as in Japan. Readings might be on-yomi or kun-yomi, just as in Japan. Higa, Shimabukuro, etc. Historical readings (as in Kiyan ϲ) are more typical of Japanese than of Chinese. Modern given names in Okinawa seem to follow Japanese examples."

Unfortunately, we do not have enough Japanese-speaking or Okinawan forumers here to verify or to comment on this

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Originally posted by King Kang of Lemuria King Kang of Lemuria wrote:

For example, if I saw 'Beijing' written in Chinese letters, I would know it means 'Northern Capitol' just by looking at it, but I would say, 'Book Ghyoung' in Korean pronunciation. 

Actually, is 'Beijing' an authentic pronunciation or Anglroidfied?  I've heard 'Peking' also, is 'Beijing' a Mandarin, 'Peking' a Cantonese?  Just wondering.

"Beijing" is quite authentic & official romanized, from the Putonghua/Mandarin pronunciation of [bei] [jing].

Modern Cantonese is [bAk] [ging], similar to English "buck" "ging" (hard 'g' as in girl)... well actually it's not anything like English or [g] but an unaspirated Spanish/French/Italian

& [k].

"Peking" could have been transcribed from any old dialect, but most probably a southern one, Cantonese or Hokkien, since it's [king] & not [jing]

Actually, even in early Mandarin, the [ki-] had not been palatalized into a [dji] sound yet, looking at old Portuguese/Chinese dictionaries, so "Peking" might just even be a transcription of an older Mandarin pronunciation.

 



Edited by johannes
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote johannes Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21-Feb-2006 at 09:18
Originally posted by flyingzone flyingzone wrote:

I have some interesting information on Ryukyu names too. (I know if I start a new thread on "Ryukyu names" I will probably get no reply at all since it is such an "unhot" topic.   That's why I am putting it here.)

Just put it on.   Oh yeah, & that wikipedia is VERY sketchy.  Here's some info from... more reliable sites.

http://www.csse.monash.edu.au/%7Ejwb/afaq/japanesenames.html

http://www.geocities.com/nobukaze23/namae.htm  <---EDIT: Just read this site through, interesting bits, but it's written by a dilettant.  Please take it with a grain of seasalt..

Quote However, "(s)urnames in present-day Okinawa often follow Japanese patterns, even when they're recognizably different. A typical pattern is the same two-kanji pattern of Japan. Variants exist, as in Japan. Readings might be on-yomi or kun-yomi, just as in Japan. Higa, Shimabukuro, etc. Historical readings (as in Kiyan ϲ΁E are more typical of Japanese than of Chinese. Modern given names in Okinawa seem to follow Japanese examples."

Unfortunately, we do not have enough Japanese-speaking or Okinawan forumers here to verify or to comment on this

A lot of Okinawans are actually immigrants from the main Japanese islands nowadays, or their ancestors had adopted more mainland Japanese names to avoid discrimination & harassment.  But there are still a lot of exotic-sounding, original Okinawan/Ryukyu clan names around. 



Edited by johannes
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote flyingzone Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21-Feb-2006 at 12:55

Johannes, the second site you recommended  is not currently available.

I came across an interesting information that maybe you could verify (it seems you have training in linguistics). On the Wikipedia link on Ryuku names, it's mentioned that the name "Kaneshiro" (the family name of the half-Japanese half-Taiwanese lead actor of the film "House of Flying Daggers") may in fact be of CHINESE origin. I know there are a few bisyllabic Chinese surnames, but is "Kaneshiro" (in its Chinese form of course) one of them?

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote johannes Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21-Feb-2006 at 15:50

Nope.  Not ancient or modern Chinese. 

& Kaneshiro Takeshi's father is Japanese.

But it might be a Ryukyuan Chinese last name...  like a clan of Chinese which took the Japanese/Ryukuan name as their clan name...    sort of like how ethnic Koreans in Japan who were named Kim decided to take Kimura & Kimoto etc. as their Japanized clan names...

i know that there are Chinese & Ryukyuan records that stated many families from Hokkien moved to Okinawa during the Ming & became prominent families there.

 

There is a GREAT (& academically ACCURATE) site on Japanese naming tradition, both archaic & modern, written by a historical role-player (what do you call them?  Re-enactors or something..) but i can't find it yet

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote johannes Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21-Feb-2006 at 16:00

It's interesting to note that 90% of Koreans & Vietnamese now have CHINESE-style given names, and what's more astonishing is that 90% have CHINESE Last names.

Of course there are more Kims & Parks in Korea, & Nguyens & Phams in Vietnam, but those last names exist among the Chinese as well.

And sure enough, there are Lees everywhere, because everyone in the Chinese cultural sphere during the Tang wanted to have the royal family's last name~!! 

i have a Korean friend whose name is kkotnim.  As in Miss (honorable)Flower.  Yeah, pretty wicked.  And another whose name was Ara.  Her last name was Cho.  Together, it sounded like CHO(h)ARA. "Good!"

Maybe a revival of native names are happening in both countries for given names.  i think that's pretty cool, but i don't think any family would start a counter-cultural-revolutionary & throw away centuries of Chinese cultural conditioning & start calling themselves with a pure Vietnamese or Korean clan name!

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Killabee Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21-Feb-2006 at 16:39
I was wondering how to pronounce the Last name "Lee" in Korean properly.  I know it was pronounced as "Yi" in the ancient time. Why it shifted to "Lee" all of the sudden?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote johannes Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21-Feb-2006 at 17:37

Um, i think it's the other way around....

It's LEE/ LI/ LY in Chinese/Vietnamese,

is realized as [r] at the start of a syllable in Korean, so Lee/Li is sometimes romanized as Rhee/Ri/Ree as well.

but the Korean language also drops the [r] sound in front of or it becomes [y] before [eo] [e]  [o] vowels, while it turns into [n] before the [a] & [ae] vowels, so LEE is now pronounced as YEE/ YI in modern Korean.  

Chinese [LONG] "dragon" --> Korean [YONG] 

Chinese surname [LIU] "willow" --> [YU]

i think some Korean dialects, i forgot, either far up north in North Korea or down south near Cheju, retain the intial [r]



Edited by johannes
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Gubook Janggoon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21-Feb-2006 at 18:58
Originally posted by Killabee Killabee wrote:

I was wondering how to pronounce the Last name "Lee" in Korean properly.  I know it was pronounced as "Yi" in the ancient time. Why it shifted to "Lee" all of the sudden?


Lee, Yi, and Rhee are different ways to write the same surname.  The New Korean Romanizaton writes it as "I".  It's just different attempts to romanize the name.

The correct way to pronounce it is, "ee". 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote flyingzone Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21-Feb-2006 at 21:56
Originally posted by johannes johannes wrote:

i know that there are Chinese & Ryukyuan records that stated many families from Hokkien moved to Okinawa during the Ming & became prominent families there.

Do you have any sources that we can refer to?

Originally posted by johannes johannes wrote:

There is a GREAT (& academically ACCURATE) site on Japanese naming tradition, both archaic & modern, written by a historical role-player (what do you call them?  Re-enactors or something..) but i can't find it yet

What a shame!

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Killabee Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22-Feb-2006 at 12:37

Originally posted by flyingzone flyingzone wrote:

Do you have any sources that we can refer to?

Yes. It is mentioned in the okinawan history. It is known as the "36 Families" emigrated from China.

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