Proper Name Etymology Game

1:34 pm PHT

Let’s all have a slightly nerdy game this time. What is the longest chain of proper name etymology that you can think of? Here’s an example: One San Miguel Avenue (the building) is named after San Miguel Avenue in Ortigas, which is then named after San Miguel Corporation (whose headquarters is along the previously mentioned avenue), which is named after Archangel Michael. That makes a chain of four links.

Before we go on, here are some house rules. One, there can be no two consecutive links of the same type. This means that in the chain from Pope Benedict XVI down to Pope Benedict I, only the endpoints count. Two, no obvious links are allowed. For example, “the Japanese people are named after Japan” is invalid. Three, the etymological root must be preserved across the whole chain. This means that this chain is not acceptable: “De La Salle University is named after St. Jean-Baptiste de La Salle, who is named after St. John the Baptist.” Four, don’t delve too deep into common nouns, verbs, etc. Like, “Rotary International is named after the rotary, which comes the Middle Latin rotarius, which comes from the Latin rota (wheel).” You get the picture.

Here’s another example: One ADB Avenue (the discontinued building project) is named after ADB Avenue (in Ortigas), which is named after the Asian Development Bank, which is named after Asia, which comes from Asia Minor (the region corresponding to the present-day Anatolia in Turkey). That’s a chain of five links.

The longest chain I can think of now is this: United BF Homeowners Association, Inc. is named after BF Homes Subdivision (in Parañaque), which is named after Banco Filipino, which is named after the Philippines, which is named after King Philip II of Spain, who is named after King Philip I of Spain, who is named after Philip the Good, Duke of Burgundy, who is probably named after Philip the Apostle. That makes a chain of eight links (if you count the Apostle).

How about you? Can you beat my chain?  :)

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Comment times are in Philippine time (+0800).


On 3:36 a.m., 29 Jun 2007, urbano dela cruz wrote:


Joey Ayala should have a concert in Tower One, Ayala Triangle on Ayala Avenue next to the Ayala Commercial Center. The tower is the headquarters of Ayala Corporation currently run by Jaime Augusto and Fernando Zobel de Ayala the sons of Jaime Zobel de Ayala the Tower and the Center were built by Ayala Land (also owned by Ayala Corporation) that has Jaime “Jimmy” Ayala at the helm (no relation to the Zobel de Ayalas)


On 3:36 a.m., 29 Jun 2007, urbano dela cruz wrote:

oops. what i submitted wasn’t an etymology.


On 2:55 a.m., 1 Jul 2007, joyce wrote:

para something close to my heart.. hehe

i’m a member of a group called pinoymac (pinoy macintosh users), which gets its name from the Apple line of computers called Macintosh. The word macintosh is taken from the kind of apple called McIntosh (kasi apple computers nga). The apple kind McIntosh is taken from the name of a British guy who moved to canada and discovered a red variety of apples and gave them the name McIntosh after his own surname. ayun.


On 7:47 p.m., 1 Jul 2007, seav wrote:

@Urbano, nice try. Hehehe. You could convert it to a proper etymology: Ayala MRT Station -> Ayala Center / Ayala Avenue -> Ayala Land Inc. -> Ayala Corporation -> Ayala family. That’s five links.

@Joyce, now if you can find out where the British (specifically Scottish?) got his name from, you can extend your chain.  :D


On 5:05 p.m., 2 Jul 2007, doy wrote:

very nice exercise, this would help our historians/historiographers/"historicizers” and even creative writers to weave something… well… basta.  :P


On 9:30 p.m., 5 Jul 2007, Rick wrote:

don’t tell me you’re from BF too.


On 10:20 a.m., 6 Jul 2007, seav wrote:

@Rick, not in BF P’que but in BF Resort Las Piñas.  :)

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