Before the advent of MRI and Ultra Sound, some people prepare a set of 14 names for the forthcoming : 7 names for a boy (one for each day of the week) and 7 names for a girl (ditto).
Some prefer to have a formal naming ceremony a specified number of days after the birth of a child.
Names may have meaning and/or a historical background.
For example, “Pyke Tin” means “left on a net”. The mother of Saya Dr. Pyke Tin presumably had problems (e.g. miscarriage), so she performed a “Yadana” to catch Saya with a net.
I have a cousin aunt named “Pyke Mi” meaning “caught on a net”.
Ko Ko, Nyi Nyi, Maung Maung, Maung Gyi, Maung Lay, Ma Gyi, Ma Nge are some names based on the order of birth.
There may be name changes. For example, Bogyoke Aung San was named “Htain Lin”, but he changed him name to “Aung San” to rhyme with “Aung Than” (his elder brother).
A new name is given in some social (e.g. Coronation of a King or Queen) and religious (e.g. Higher Ordination) events.
Burma/Myanmar has a sizable number of race and ethnicity.
The following are some prefixes of my sayas, sayamas and friends.
- SAO (e.g. Saya Sao Kan Gyi, descendant of Keng Tung Sawbwa)
- SAI (e.g. Sai Kyaw Aye, broadcaster for the BBS Shan Language Program)
- SAW (e.g. Saw Edison, Karen, RIT Volleyball)
- SA (e.g. Sa Maung Maung, Joint Treasurer, EE69er HCF)
- DUWA (e.g. Duwa Zau Lai, Myitkyina)
- NAN (e.g. Nan Khin Nwe, young and energetic fund raiser)
- NANG (e.g. Nang Khaming, RIT Track and Field)
- NAW (e.g. Naw Mu Mu Aye, Professor, Textile)
- SALAI (e.g. Saya Salai Tun Than, Professor, Yezin)
In most countries, the Father’s lineage is used for the Family Name. Long ago, in some Matriarchal society, the Mother’s lineage is used for the Family Name.
For example, John Fitzgerald Kennedy (or John F. Kennedy) is the US President who proposed the Space Program to send Men to the Moon and bring them back safely to earth.
His first name (or personal name) is John. His last name (or family name) is Kennedy. The middle name is Fitzgerald. The middle initial is F. Fitz means “son of”.
President Harry Truman has no middle name. His middle initial is S.
I have no middle name. So at one company, I was registered as Hla X Min (where X presumably is a filler).
My name has only six letters, but it has been misspelled and mispronounced in six (or more) ways.