Finnish and Karelian Ancestry (English)

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Finnish and Karelian Naming Conventions

See: Finland and Karelia project - General naming standard

  • Main principle: It is important that a standard name is used at least in one language page of the profile, because Geni is a common family tree database. Otherwise there is a risk that later we have to merge enormous "shadow trees". The standard names vary typically by region and by religion-cultural background of a person.
    • About standard names: the spelling of Finnish or Karelian first names is standardized as carefully as possible to their Finnish and Karelian general form. Such a procedure brings benefits: avoiding false guesses about popular forms of names, and avoiding formation of double profiles in Geni, and facilitating the creation and use of directories and Geni database. More about this subject (in Finnish): Sirkka Paikkala: Etunimet sukututkimuksessa. Sukutieto 1997:1, s. 19-24. Standard names by region and by religion-cultural background for the Finland and Karelia project are developed by project Finland and Karelia - Normalized first names by region. It is of outmost importance to note that the standard names are different from straightforward "translation to Finnish" of a name. It is also important to note that Swedish-language baptismal names for Swedish-speaking persons have a standard name in Swedish.
    • Use of language pages of a profile: There two schools of though among the Finnish genealogists: some would like the names to be standardized into Finnish, and some would like them to stay as in the baptismal records. We use a solution, where both schools are taken into account: the names are added in both ways, using Geni's profile language pages. This solution also prevents the creation of double profile branches ("shadow trees").
    • Known name: If the name used by a person is known, this name is used instead of the standard name.
    • Different spoken language w.r.t. the baptismal record language: If the person spoke Finnish or Karelian, and the baptismal record is in Swedish or Russian: Insert the name in the Finnish or Finnish-Karelian standard form on the English and/or Finnish and/or Karelian language page. Insert the name in Swedish or Russian on the Swedish or Russian language page (the Russian name with Cyrillic alphabet)
    • The language used by a person is not known: If the language used by a person is not known, and he/she is clearly from a region where two or more different languages are very likely to be spoken languages (especially the Ostrobothnian coast), the baptismal name for the Swedish or Russian language is primarily recorded according to the church book language.
    • Surnames: The last surname used is entered in the upper surname field. The birth surname and previous surnames are entered separated by commas in the lower surname field. For women, only birth surnames are written - they kept their original names from their birth to the end of their lives. There are two exceptions to this: (1) women whose surnames are changed to their husbands' surnames (this habit became more common in upper class of the society in the 1800's), and (2) women who died after the beginning of 20th century (and especially after the surname legislation).
    • Other name forms: Other name forms, such as different name forms present in the church books, can be added to "Known also as" field. The old Finnish female names ending with -tar or -tär can be written here.
    • No slashes: It is not recommended that different name forms are combined with slash (e.g. Valborg/Valpuri/Wappu/Walborg Kinnunen/Kinnutar/Kinnu) -- this only increases the work load of people carrying out merges in the tree.
    • Patronyms: Patronym (or matronym in the case of children born outside of marriage) is written normally only to persons who were born before year 1900.
    • Names in Olonets, White Sea, Tver, Tikhvin and Valdai Karelia: If the person in question was born or lived in Olonets, White Sea, Tver, Tikhvin or Valdai Karelia, the name is in the format: Firstname Patronym Finnish-Karelian surname-Russian surname. For example, "Arhippa Ivaninpoika Maaninen-Manijev" to the Finnish language page, and "Архип Иванов Маниев" to the Russian language page. In the Russian patronyms, the form used before the Russian Revolution is used, like Ivanov, Ivanova (Иванов, Иванова), not Ivanovitš, Ivanovna (Иванович, Ивановна).
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