Oops... spelling?

We have decided to name our next son Cierdan. That is set in stone.

However, I just realized today that the actual spelling is Cirdan (no idea how I managed to add an “e” in my mind…). He is a character in [name]Lord[/name] of the Rings so it is a pretty specific namesake.

I’ve been using the Cier spelling for months and so I’m used to it, and it seems more intuitive for the pronunciation (“keer”)… but I’m usually pretty against inventive spellings and don’t particularly relish the thought of changing Tolkien’s choice.

So basically, I thought I’d get your opinions:

Cierdan or Cirdan

What should I do?

Go with your gut =] There’s nothing wrong with something new and if you do choose the unusual spelling, the most your child will have to go through is correcting people with spelling/pronunciation, not any serious emotional scarring.

Follow your heart’s desire =]

I’ve read the [name]Lord[/name] of the Rings books through and wouldn’t have known that Cirdan was the name of a character, so perhaps it’s safe to say that it’s an obscure namesake. Certainly it’s not a common name at all, and I bet very few people would realize that Cierdan was “misspelled.” But if it makes the name seem less special to you, then go with the original.

I think it depends on how you chose the name. Did you pick it because you liked the character? Because you wanted to honour some kind of connection you and/or your husband feel to the book? Or was the book just where you came across the name and fell in love with the sound of it?

I think if the answer is yes to either of the first two questions, then stick to the original spelling. If you just like the name, then I agree Cierdan is more intuitive.

lamps –
You made very good points! Thank you for helping make the matter clearer in my mind! :slight_smile:

Yes, we love Tolkien’s works and were specifically looking for a literary name that started with C. I came across Cirdan while browsing the Silmarillion and it was a perfect fit for both criteria.

I think we will stick to the original spelling because of our connection to the books.

The only major bummer is I am an artist and draw personalized nursery art (based on the name’s meaning of course!), and I already completed one for Cirdan, spelled with the e! [name]Ah[/name] well, I will just have to scrap it and start over! :slight_smile: Not the end of the world!

No problem! :slight_smile:

[name]How[/name] frustrating about the art! I hate having to start over.

Let us know when little Cirdan joins the world! [name]Hope[/name] it all goes well. :slight_smile:

The only issue seems to be pronunciation. Perhaps an accent on the i if you drop the e? That might make things even more complicated… I like the look of Ceirdan better and it implies the pronunciation you are looking for. [name]Even[/name] though the linguistic elements of Tolkien names mean specific things, a lot of his characters’ names are slightly different than a literal translation would suggest. For example: Gloredhel instead of (g)lore+edhel, which would be (g)loreedhel if used purely. So, I think an extra e is just fine if that is what you really want. : )

I think Cirden actually makes the pronounciation more clear. When I saw Cierden, I said “Seer-den” in my mind. That being said, the name is so unique it’s not like many people would know it’s mispelled (if it even is – I bet you could find a source that lists this as one of the alternative ways to spell the name).