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first and second name

English translation: Note

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17:58 Jan 27, 2003
French to English translations [PRO]
Social Sciences - Linguistics / order of names
French term or phrase: first and second name
I know that in documents in France (and Belgium?) the given name normally follows the family name. I am translating a Congolese birth certificate. The person in question is called (I've changed the names) ABRAKADABRA JEANNE (the second name is recognisably a French given name) but the father is called AMELA ABRAKADABRA. Now is it possible that the father's given name becomes the daughter's family name? Or can you think of another explanation for the order?
Kajuco
United Kingdom
Local time: 15:08
English translation:Note
Explanation:
Après vérification, il s'avère qu'il n'est pas rare du tout que le prénom du père devienne le nom de famille du fils ou de la fille. D'autant plus que le nom de famille n'est devenu obligatoire que très récemment dans certains pays d'Afrique. L'alternative étant une construction du style "fille de" ou "fils de" + prénom comme le bon vieux Johnson en anglais.
Selected response from:

JCEC
Canada
Local time: 10:08
Grading comment
Fantastic! Could you tell me how you found out? Could I have found out, or was it from acquaintances of yours?

So I'll take the risk of assuming it is not a careless error.

katie
kajuco@hotmail.com
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer



Summary of answers provided
4 +1Note
JCEC
5in FRench format, last name always goes first
Jane Lamb-Ruiz
2-
Florence B
1same
Jim Collis


Discussion entries: 1





  

Answers


3 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 1/5Answerer confidence 1/5
same


Explanation:
My guess is that the same name is always the faimly name as French speakers often invert them. There must be a French-speaking Belgian out there somewhere who can help.

Jim Collis
Spain
Local time: 16:08
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
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3 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 5/5
in FRench format, last name always goes first


Explanation:
In all official thingies:

Smith, John

The French always put the last name first and usually in CAPS

So whatever is there, is the person's last name...

So just use what is there.

Jane Lamb-Ruiz
Works in field
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish, Native in PortuguesePortuguese
PRO pts in category: 24

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
neutral  Jim Collis: Almost always - have seen both
1 min
  -> No, always 99.9% of the time

agree  Thierry LOTTE: with Jim
6 mins

neutral  Florence B: all my family's (French) birth certificates have given names FIRST and family name AFTER (yes, in capitals)
10 mins

neutral  JCEC: Varies with the country
16 mins

disagree  Oceane: I found both equally
1 hr
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10 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 2/5Answerer confidence 2/5
-


Explanation:
I can't tell about Congo - but here in France the two orders exist - the normal, civil order is given name + family name - but for administrative reasons, listings, etc... the family name is often written first.
Talking to a person using family name + given name when it's not necessary for administrative reasons is rude, but heard quite often however.

Here my guess would be that both ways have been mixed but that the family name is always the same "Abracadabra".

Florence B
France
Local time: 16:08
Native speaker of: Native in FrenchFrench
PRO pts in category: 4

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
disagree  Oceane: not necessarily
58 mins
  -> not necessarily what???

agree  Jane Lamb-Ruiz: the family name starting coming first in France with computers, by the way
6 hrs
  -> thanks Jane - "sorting" tables probably helped, yes
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38 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +1
Note


Explanation:
Après vérification, il s'avère qu'il n'est pas rare du tout que le prénom du père devienne le nom de famille du fils ou de la fille. D'autant plus que le nom de famille n'est devenu obligatoire que très récemment dans certains pays d'Afrique. L'alternative étant une construction du style "fille de" ou "fils de" + prénom comme le bon vieux Johnson en anglais.

JCEC
Canada
Local time: 10:08
Native speaker of: Native in FrenchFrench
PRO pts in category: 4
Grading comment
Fantastic! Could you tell me how you found out? Could I have found out, or was it from acquaintances of yours?

So I'll take the risk of assuming it is not a careless error.

katie
kajuco@hotmail.com

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Oceane: yes, I know someone whose family name is their father's first name
30 mins
  -> Same here
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