"summer traveler" dilemma

I’ve been infatuated with the name Somereld for years. It’s an anglicization of the Icelandic Sumarliði, the name of a Norse Viking, and it means “summer traveler” or “summer sailor”. I love the sound of it and my husband is very fond of it too, but I would only use it as a middle name because it doesn’t sound great as the first name with the surname our future kids would have.

The problem is whether to use Somereld or Somerled. Both are legitimate anglicizations of Sumarliði, and both are pretty unusual (I live in [name_f]Canada[/name_f]), so people might be so unfamiliar with them that it might not matter. The points in favour of Somerled are mostly that I suspect it might be more familiar to people - I’ve seen a street called Somerled; Somerled comes up more in Google searches; and I suspect that Somerled would be more intuitive for people to pronounce (“summer + led”). Also I think it might sound marginally better with the surname (which has three syllables and ends in “-ald”) but I’m not 100% sure about that. The only point I have in favour of Somereld is that I simply love it more. What would you do?

I think it’s a nice neat name! I like it!! I like the spelling you have better, Somereld.

I love Sumarliði! And Veturliði for that matter. I never knew Sumarliði had an anglicised version, but I’m inclined to like them!

I agree with you that Somereld sounds nicer, but it also sounds more corrupted, like a mistake happened somewhere along the way - looks more like summer fire (sumareldur) than summer traveller. Somerled looks more genuine, closer to the original and probably works better with your surname from what you say.

I think neither will be particularly intuitive - I mean they are both equally easy to pronounce I think but both will be unexpected so might cause some mistakes just because people will be surprised by them. But on a middle name that hardly matters. I think I would choose Somerled on balance, because I suspect that Somereld arose as a misspelling and that doesn’t appeal to me.

That name is So. Cool. I love nordic names!

Maybe wait until you have a first name you like to make the final decision as to which you think sounds better. I personally kind of think Somereld is more exotic but if it is too close to other Icelandic words like the pp says, then part of me thinks it loses its authentic coolness.

What a great, interesting name… After reading jackal’s response and that your last name ends in -ald I’m leaning towards the Somerled spelling.

Thanks for all your feedback, and jackal, I’m so glad to have an Icelandic perspective! Misspellings drive me nuts, so if Somereld likely evolved as a misspelling, that does knock it down a bit in terms of appeal.

Well, I don’t know anything for sure. I also found that Summaldur is the Faroese version (link), so maybe it is just more from Faroese than Icelandic! Faroese is a really funny language for Icelandic speakers because it just looks like Icelandic with a load of mistakes in it (they probably think the same about Icelandic, though). So this could be like an extension of that!

[name_f]Do[/name_f] you have any connection with the Western Icelanders, by the way? I just thought maybe, since you are in [name_f]Canada[/name_f], just curious.

Interesting! I’ll try to learn more about the “-eld” vs “-led” endings. Maybe by the time I ever need it, should that day come, someone will have researched it really extensively. As it stands I think I’ve pretty much exhausted basic Googling.

No, no connection with Iceland at all (except that I have a vague plan to go there sometime because people rave about it and it isn’t that far from eastern [name_f]Canada[/name_f]). I fell down some name nerd rabbit hole years ago and Somereld just kind of grabbed me.

I prefer Somereld personally, but that’s just me - in terms of pronunciation, Somerled makes more sense, though. Either way, I think it’s nice, and because you’re using it in the middle spot I honestly don’t think you have to worry too much. Go with whichever one you love best, I think, and you’ll be fine. :slight_smile:

I think all around, Somerled would be better and more familiar to people.

I like Summerled a lot more because I think Somereld is very akward to say and hard to pronounce.