CHARACTERS (placeholder)

Okay, there are way too many characters in Arslan to deal with (and way too many possible “groupings”), there is NO way they’re all gonna fit on a single page if I ever decide to do much more with this than a simple listing. I haven’t yet decided how to organize this information in the long term, but I thought it was probably about time for me to start a reference list/share the notes I’ve collected over the years — especially since it gives y’all a head start on thinking about name issues if that’s the sort of thing you’re into.

I’ll try to keep things as spoiler free as possible in this list (much of it snagged from J-wiki), but if you’re spoiler-sensitive, stay away from this page for now.

Also, asterisks indicate “uncertain” names.


Legendary Figures

Hero King Kai Khosrow, Ruknabad (a sword in Arslan-verse but a river IRL), Rakhsh (technically “Rakhshna” in Japanese; that consonant cluster though)

Sage King Jamshid

Serpent King Zahhak

Pirate King ***Ahabakk (アハーバック; possibly drawn from Habakkuk, but it’s kind of a stretch. Maybe the Biblical Ahab -> Captain Ahab connection? Although Captain Ahab was translated as エイハブ… Or “agabek“?)

Arslan’s faction (primary — i.e. SPOILERS)

Arslan

Dariun (presumably extrapolated from Darius [Dariush/Daryush], but see comment for alternate interpretation)

Narses (Narseh would be more “accurate”, but the Japanese pronunciation points to “Narses” [to be precise, Tanaka explains that he tweaked “Narsah” to “Narsas”])

Elam

Giv

Farangis (see also: comment)

Afarid (See notes for spelling explanation. At least three female names in the Shahnameh use the Afarid/Afrid ending, most notably Gordafarid. Apparently it’s still used as a girl’s name now; see comments.)

*Merlane (メルレイン, 99% positive that it’s short for Tamerlane, compare Mirlan/Merlan)

Jimsa (seems reasonable for a Turanian name, more info here)

Tus (Tous)

Esfan (Esfandiyar, haven’t settled on spelling yet [Isfan vs. Esfan])

*Zaravant (ザラーヴァント, place name, but I suspect a variation on Zarivand from Nizami’s Sikandar Nama.)

Jaswant (an actual name)

Gorazeh (Shahnameh character, also spelled Gurazeh)

***Parahuda (パラフーダ, this name is an alias, stands for the nickname White Demon, 白鬼. not sure if some weird reference to this, although iirc the context suggests something different and slightly spoilery. Another suggestion here. [Barkhudar, Berhudar, etc.])

Qobad

Keshvad (also spelled Kishwad)

animal companions: Shabrang (Dariun’s horse, not named until book 7), Azrael (falcon), Sorush (falcon), Kayvan (wolf), Baharam (wolf)

Parsians
(themes: Shahnameh, Avesta, Assyria, Parthian/Arsacid Empire, Sassanian Empire, tiny bit of Achaemenid Empire, but also a lot of miscellaneous stuff)

Royal Family HERE

Tahmineh

Vahriz

other Marzbans: SaamShapur, Garshasp, Qaran, Manuchehr, Bahman, Khwarshed (technically Khshaeta, but that looks terrible in English), ***Kurup (クルプ, maybe from “Kurrupans“), *Hayir (ハイル)

Kayumars

Shaghad (there are two characters by this name)

Roham (there are also two characters by this name; I may differentiate with the spelling “Ruhham” for one of them)

*Barhai (バルハイ)

*Shahrooz (シェーロエス, shares an ending with “Osroes”)

Muhtesip

Parazata (an epithet of Hushang)

Banipal (shortened Ashurbanipal)

***Battsani (バッツァーニ, no clue, but character is originally from Badakhshan)

*Banu (バーヌ, common female name, but the character is presumably male; shows up in a side story about Dariun’s Serican adventures,  maybe Bhanu instead?)

*Muluk (ムルク, another character from the Dariun side story, maybe this, though he’s technically not Parsian so this is another option)

Makan (also from Dariun side story)

Roshan (a name)

Patius (shortened Phriapatius)

Husrav (from Avestan Husravah, spelling variation on Khosrau)

Pelagius

Firdaus

*Qasem (カーセム)

Falakul

Hojir (Shahnameh character, also spelled Hedjir, Hejir. Also see comment.)

Theos (originally translated this as Teos)

Munzir (Arab king in the Shahnameh, also spelled Monzer)

*Kermine (ケルマイン)

Namard

*Haltash (ヘイルターシュ, another Zott name, possibly shortened Humbanhaltash, could be Hirtash?)

*Patna (パトナ, Banipal’s daughter)

*Kura (クーラ, another Banipal daughter)

*Yulin (ユーリン, third Banipal daughter, the three names seem to be river-themed?)

Layla (a name)

Parizad (a name)

Aghriras

Aisha (a name)

Yovhannes (classical Armenian John [this character is half-Maryamian])

Harim (a name)

Yasaman (Jasmine)

***Katorneus (カトルネアス, from Badakhshan)

***Khoja, Balawar, Benasca, Horam (コージャ, バラワー, ベナスカー, ホーラム)

Nasrin (a name)

Ayyar

***Ohrul (オフルール, female character. Ukhrul?)

***Elubru (エルーブルー, female character, tempting to relate this to Alborz somehow, but I don’t know what to make of the first elongated “lu” sound. Not sure if this name shows up outside of the Reader’s Guide anyway, and Reader’s Guide is full of typos/editorial goofs.)

*Okuz (オクズ, henpecked male character)

Mani

spoiler-free Hirmiz faction

Hirmiz (Hormuz, notes on spelling elsewhere [spoilers for book 1])

Zandeh (originally discussed here [spoilers for book 2], but see comment)

Zahhak faction

Gurgin (variation on “Gorgin” from the Shahnameh)

Ghundi (variation on “Ghandi”, a demon in the Shahnameh)

Gazhdaham

Arzhang

Sanjeh (listed with “Bid” as a demon from the Shahnameh)

Pulad (Persian for “steel”, son of Ghundi in the Shahnameh)

Beed (less strange in English than Bid)

Lusitanians
(Yo, my European language/history knowledge sucks. Mostly medieval Latin-based names.)

Innocentius VII (see: many Pope Innocents)

Guiscard

Jean Bodin

*Hildiger (ヒルディゴ, sigh probably this)

Baudouin

Monferrat (see also this)

*Baracaud (バラカード, because of this; see also this, but seems oddly obscure)

*Van Cagliero (ファン・カリエロ, I couldn’t decide if this was a weird language mix [Dutch “van”] or literally short for Giovanni, have decided to assume the latter…)

*Zeljko (ゼリコ, pretty sure this character was originally from Maryam)

*Leuthold (ルトルド, a name, tracked this down via a William Tell character… maybe from Leuthold von Seven?)

***Barcacion (バルカシオン, possible connection with Kosljun [Cassione])

Clemence

*Prejean (プレージアン, “Jean” is usually ジャン though)

*Pedraos (ペデラウス, very likely a variation on Petros/Bedros?)

Orgaz

Estelle de la Fano/Etoile

Olaberria (appears to be a Basque surname)

Bramante

Organo

Giacomo (a name)

Montesecco

Gonzaga

*Fora (フォーラ)

de Morra (probably…)

Don Ricardo (a name…)

Belasco

Ermengau

Castellio

*Gerthomas (ゲルトマー, Kerthomas? may be from a Breton ballad about Marie de Keroulas, “Pennherez Keroulaz”)

Sforza

*DiBlanc (ディブラン, written differently from de Morra above)

*Bonorio (ボノリオ, probably this?)

Sindhurans

(themes: Chola Empire, Chalukya DynastyGujarat/western India, place names…?)

Kulothunga

Rajendra II (a name, specifically this guy)

*Gadhavi (ガーデーヴィ, I thiiiiink this)

Karikala II

Mahendra

***Pradharata (プラダーラタ)

Govind

Tara

Pulakesin

*Daravada (ダラバーダ, likely from bhan-daravada, though the use of バ over ヴァ bothers me)

*Kunthavai (クンタヴァー, probably related to this although a female name)

*Parajiya (プラージヤ, probably)

Aravalli

*Paru (パルー)

Parbhani

Nawada

*Natapur (ナタプール, yet another place name?)

Asanga

Baripada

Bahadur

Salima

Maryamians
(themes: vaguely Slavic but also with some random Greek influence not obvious from this list; the Lusitanian characters have an obvious Spanish/Portuguese theme)

Irina (a name)

Militsa

Eleanor (a name, Jelena/Yelena may be more consistent, but the ending syllable…)

Nikolaos (a name)

Jovana (a name)

*Corriente (コリエンテ, I wonder if named after Federico Corriente… Not Tanaka’s usual style, but…)

*Lancello (ランチェロ, variation on Lancellotti?)

Huesca

Alicante

Castelo

from Misr (Misrites?)
(fantasy Egypt. these names are the worst. Some more Assyrian influence and I assume Arabic, ancient north Africa, and who knows what else.)

Hossain III (a name)

Salih

Masinissa

*Karamandes (カラマンデス)

*Ghuriy (グーリイ, if not a typo, the last syllable is peculiar and indicates a second “ee” sound, i.e. Guu-ri-i???)

*Qorein (クオレイン, maybe Qurain)

*Kalabek (カラベク)

***Bipros (ビプロス)

Tunip

Zaid (a name, though I may spell it Zayd, not sure)

*Hramantas (フラマンタス, from hramanatar?)

Edris (old/alternate spelling of Arabic name Idris [“Enoch”], seen for example in the Bibliotheque orientale)

Razzaq

Sabiuk

Lavan

Fitna (female character; almost certainly referencing Fetna [2]/Fitna)

***Unita (ウニタ)

*Shakaba (シャカパ, actually Shakapa… but p/b is a common typo/misread?)

Esarhad (shortened Esarhaddon)

Nungano (described as a black man from Nabatae, seems to be a Tanzanian name, presumably Swahili?)

***Gilhaneh (ギルハーネ, female character)

Mirza

Turks
(themes: historical Pakistan/north India, very slight Timurid/Turko-Mongol)

Kalhana

Kadphises

Durrani

Sikandar

Prayag

*Ghorab (ゴラーブ, Gurab? Gorab?)

Singh (a Sikh name)

Deo (this probably)

***Yipam (イパム, maybe Apam?)

*Zahhar (ザッハル)

Jalair

Baysun (but probably short for Baysunghur)

***Bisarisk (ビサリスク)

*Chamand (チャマンド, maybe this)

Dogra

Turanians
(themes: Turkic, Mongolian, Central Asian)

Tokhtamysh

Ilterish

Karluk

Tarkhan (Tarxan)

Boila

Dizaboulos (1, 2, 3)

Basmyl

Burhan (see comment for alternate interpretation)

*Doruk (ドルグ)

Qutalmish

Baraq

***Atuka (アトゥカ)

Sericans
(fantasy China [probably Tang/Song], note that Tanaka approximates modern Mandarin pronunciations for terms/names rather than going for Middle Chinese :P)

Consort Lan (藍妃, “Lan Fei”, compare Yang Guifei)

Princess Xingliang (星涼公主)

General Blossom Helm (花冠将軍)

General Brass Tiger (銅虎将軍)

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33 thoughts on “CHARACTERS (placeholder)

  1. M.A.KH says:

    hello there
    Some suggestions:
    Zaravant : this likely zarvan (a gods name in late Sassanid period)
    Mohtaseb : is actually name of official post (low rank religious police in Islamic feudal era were known as such)
    Namard : is actually a verb in Farsi (http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=namard)
    Yohannes : ithink it is equal to yunnes(arabic name by the way , name of acient prophet)
    ayar : a sect of robin hood like people(عیاران)
    good luck

    • T. E. Waters says:

      Oh that’s perfect for Namard then. Zarvan I will look into, thanks!

      (I think so too on Yohannes, but the Japanese transcription is still weird… I’ll have to think about it when I see the character in context.)

      • T. E. Waters says:

        Hmm, just so you know, I checked, and it may not be Zarvan because the god is actually named in the later books as “Zurvan Akarana” using a different transcription. I’ll keep digging though.

  2. M.A.KH says:

    mohtaseb : محتسب (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Muhtesip)
    Esfan : well this is actually come from Zoroastrian Amesha Spenta(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amesha_Spenta)
    Shaeroes : Well it maybe Shahrooz(شهروز)
    afarid: at least in modern Farsi it is a actual Female name.
    Roushan : Well if the character is female roshanak will sound more appropriate
    ayar : (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ayy%C4%81r)
    Gurgan : i think it is Gurgin (somewhat similar to George)
    Pulad : Farsi word for Iron
    That For Now Have Fun

    • T. E. Waters says:

      Oh! Thanks for Muhtesip and Ayyar and the note on Pulad.

      And I’ll probably go with Shahrooz unless something else comes up! Will stick with Afarid for now too.

      Roushan should be a male character. I’m not sure what the most accepted spelling is though. Roushan, Roshan, Rushan?

      You could be right about Gurgin — I’ll think about it some more. Have to think about the Esfan suggestion too, but I’ll keep it in mind.

    • T. E. Waters says:

      Your tip on Gurgin ended up unlocking the rest of the Zahhak faction. Thanks! 😀

      • M.A.KH says:

        Hello
        Conflagration on your discovery.
        There were two thing on my previous comments:
        Misrian : Well The “ian(یان)” is generally used to imply ones affiliation to group or nationality.

        Maryamians : after reading the afterword i think maryam is more likely to be Armenia.

        that’s it for now
        good luck

    • Masist Karen says:

      Pulad Means Steel(not Iron) in Persian (and not Farsi, there is no such a word in english)
      Steel = Pulad
      Iron = Ahan

  3. M.A.KH says:

    Adris : maybe Edris?
    Fun Fact:
    Arslan : is actually a Turkish name.
    Timurlane : well in reality it is Timur the lame (تیمور لنگ) he became famous by this name because of leg injury that made him unable to walk properly

    • T. E. Waters says:

      Hmmm yes on Edris, that seems very likely!

      Timur: yeah, that’s what had me uncertain… but the Japanese transcriptions of the latinized “Tamerlane” spelling are too close to ignore. (タメルラン ta-me-ru-ra-n is most common, and some less common variations I found are タマレイン ta-ma-re-i-n and タマレーン ta-ma-reh-n. The transcription Tanaka uses is me-ru-re-i-n, so a combination of the first two.) Since there’s also a character named Tokhtamysh, who was a historical rival of Timur, I think this is probably what he was going for.

  4. ereyiz says:

    For Irterysh it’s probably this : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ilterish_Qaghan

  5. Claudia says:

    I’ve studied Linguistics at university. Mainly English, but I also studied other Latin languages and was exposed through the sheer number of overlap in the French language. I’ve also done a lot of translation over the years so I think I can offer some hints that might be helpful. I’m also a nerd as you may already know so I’m glad to entertain myself this way, too.
    In any case, when I really thought the names were French, I made notes for you. Hope this helps. The first one should make you happy I think because the links were absent in the English Wikipedia ; )

    1-Baudouin, Guiscard and Montferrat: I think I found the link between all these names here. https://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ad%C3%A9la%C3%AFde_de_Montferrat It’s in French but you will find the English links on the left side. That must be what Tanaka-sensei studied or looked at! What the English link doesn’t tell you in Guiscard’s Wiki and in the English version of Adélaïde de Montferrat is that first she was married to a French Norman (Roger de Hauteville – conqueror of Sicily where he became count and may have inherited de Montferrat name. Or he already had it from France). His brother was Robert Guiscard, therefore her brother-in-law. You got the right guy in your wiki link already.
    Two years after Hauteville dies, she remarries to Baudouin de Boulogne, King of Jerusalem (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Baldwin_I_of_Jerusalem) (Can’t believe his English name is so different but back then, Old French may not have sounded like today’s or they changed his name to fit the local dialect better). He promised her son Roger II would ascent his throne upon his death. But to marry her, he had to first deny his first wedding which did not sit well with the Saint-Siège (literally the Holy Chair – the Pope basically sits on the Holy chair) so the Pope cancelled that second marriage in 1117 like any Catholic would do since divorce is not an option. So Roger II was denied his kingdom while his mom Adelaide was sent back home to Sicily.
    Though Montferrat may refer to Italy, it is also a French name in 3 communes (administrative regions of France from the Empire days 18th century). Mont means mount so they are always situated near a mountain or mount. The Latin root is the same in Italy since Montferrat is also an important mountain there. But it would be spelled with a finally o. Mont in Italian may be spelled “mont”, “mount”, “monte” as well.

    I have more but don’t want to post here. E-mail me if you want the rest, wouldn’t want to overwhelm this section more than that O_O

  6. The Pointman says:

    Year and years ago, I picked up The Legend of Arslan artbook. I had never seen the anime, but the artwork was so pretty I bought the book.

    This book lists the names in english. They have a slightly different spelling for some of them:

    Darun, Narcasse, Eram, Guibu, Farangis, Hirumes, Jaswant, Ester, Alfreed, Guiscard, …

    there are more but well…

    • T. E. Waters says:

      Hm, was this a licensed artbook or an import? Because I know the original translations (some of which I recognize from your list) were made with the assumption that they were all madeup fantasy names — the Japanese publisher iirc was actually annoyed enough that for the last few OVAs they demanded tht the names just be transcribed (frex Arufuriido instead of Alfreed).

  7. Masist Karen says:

    “Farangis”
    Originally in Shahname the name was Farigis which was actually “Gisfari”. We found the most correct one in middle Persian texts.
    The name was “Vispan Friya” or “Wispan Friya” which means “Beloved by All”.
    Wispan = all
    Friya = Beloved& lovely
    Friya was also a common name in ancient Iran

  8. ereyiz says:

    For the name of Dorug it can be ”Doruk” which means ”peak” in Turkish. It also an in use male name in Turkey.

    Historical base for Dizaboulos (stembis dizaboulos) is İstemi Yabgu (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ist%C3%A4mi) Dizaboulos is how greeks called him.
    Good luck for translations!

  9. Ebrar says:

    I think Atuka can be Atilla but normally in japanese Atilla pronounces as Attira(アッティラ) so I’m not sure about this.

    • T. E. Waters says:

      Yeah, that’s a decent guess, but Tanaka seems to be pretty careful about using precise/accurate transcriptions for the most part (unlike, for example, video game writers who just pull names from random sources). Maybe it’ll be more obvious what’s intended in context if/when I ever reach that part of the story!

  10. As regards Dariun’s name: though it may sound very like Darius/Daryush (“wealthy one”),the famous Achaemenid king’s name, its form and meaning seem much closer to farsi word “darun” – “inside”, “inward”, “the inner self/soul”, also used for “something personally dear” or “close friend” (Dariun is indeed the first and closest friend to Prince Arslan). Darun and its dialectal form Darin are actually used as male names in many Middle-Eastern and Turkic languages.
    Also, as a literary character, Dariun seems to be based not on king Darius, but on other historical figure from Iran: the famous late 6th century spahbed Bahram Chobin (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bahr%C4%81m_Ch%C5%8Dbin), especially in the first half of his military career. Even the physical appearance of these two warriors is almost the same (Bahram is described in historical sources as having dark complexion, black hair, great physical strength and height), not to mention the details of their victories over Gokturk invaders/Triple Alliance and their following disgrace.

    • T. E. Waters says:

      Thanks! I’ll add a note when I have time. I remember making the Darius name assumption originally because Arslan himself (as king) is apparently inspired partly by Cyrus the Great, but I don’t remember my source on that at the moment. Your argument makes sense too.

  11. Thank you so very much for your answer and the interest you’ve taken in my comment. I wish you good luck and success in your translation work!
    There are my suggestions and guesses regarding the names in Arslan Senki ( some may seem a bit far-fetched, but…)
    Narses: just one more link to a possible character prototype (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mihr_Narseh), a powerful wuzurg framadar under 4 Sasanian kings! By the way, Andragoras and Narses could be each other’s namesakes, because the Greek name Andragoras (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Andragoras_(Seleucid_satrap) ) is considered as a loan-translation of Persian name Narseh (Neriosang, Narisanka), and their meanings as “orator addressing men”/”heavenly messenger” seem very close.
    Teos: the name is almost surely a reference to this Seleucid king (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Antiochus_II_Theos ), because the historical Andragoras has been his satrap in Parthia. Not to mention this Anitoch’s problems with his wives and heirs, and how he was murdered…
    Zandeh: it’s an actual Iranian male name, still in use (http://www.cais-soas.com/CAIS/Personal_Names/boys_names.htm), and also a part of compound names such as Zandehjan or Zandehmard. The meaning is “living” or “alive”, like in Shah-i-Zinda (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shah-i-Zinda ) or Zayanderud (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zayanderud )
    Burhan: if the exact kana spelling of the name is somewhat like Bulahan/Burahan, then it could be derived not from Arabic word برهان‎‎, meaning “proof”, but from Parsian (Iranian) root var-/gor-/gur- (“wolf”), the same as in the name of Gurgin the sorcerer. Borrowed by Turanians, this root could have turned into buri-/bur, pronounced “byureh” in their (Turkic) language,. There are several actual Turkic male names beginning with Bur- (they were ritual ones in old times, mostly given to babies born with teeth), such as Buri (“wolf”), Burikai (“little wolf”), Burzhan/Burkan (“wolf’+” soul”), Buribey (“wolf’+”master”) , Buresh/Burysh (“wolf” + ”friend”, “offspring”). In Jimsa’s brother’s case the combination may be buri + khan/kagan (“wolf” + “khan”,”ruler”).
    Farhadin/Fakhr-al-din (Esfan’s epithet or nickname): it is translated in the text as “raised by wolves” but its meaning in Arabic is “glory of faith”. There is a possibility that it is based on the name of medieval Persian poet Fakhruddin Asad Gurgani (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fakhruddin_As%27ad_Gurgani ), a native of Gorgan (Varkana, Hyrcania – “the land of wolves”) (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gorgan ). Also, it may be in some relation with Farvardin – the name of Iranian calendar month ( more info here: http://www.iranchamber.com/calendar/articles/iranian_months.php ), in the same way as Esfan’s first name is with the month Esphand.
    Tahir (Keshvad’s epithet or title): it may also have one more spelling, slightly different from “Tahir”: (An-Nasr Al-)Tair ( meaning “Flying Eagle” in Arabiс), like the star Altair in the constellation of the Eagle. It seems rather fitting for Keshvad as an owner and trainer of birds of prey.
    Yurin: since all three sisters have ‘river names”, this one may refer to Yulin river flowing through famous Yulin Caves in Gansu, China (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yulin_Caves ) .
    Barcacion: I’m not sure, but the name makes me think of Kosljun island in Adriatic Sea, situated in the bay called Val di Cassione in Italian (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ko%C5%A1ljun It.: https://it.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cassione ).Because there is an ancient monastery possessing a rich library, and Etoile’s guardian has been a Royal Librarian and a peaceful man…
    Kunthava/Kunthavai: the only possible reference I’ve found are the names of Chola princesses, elder sisters of Rajaraja Chola I and Rajendra Chola (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kundavai , https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kundavai_Pir%C4%81ttiy%C4%81r )

    • T. E. Waters says:

      Oh, thanks again! I really appreciate your suggestions. I wish more people would chime in, actually, because this isn’t my area of expertise at all. XD

      Theos: You’re probably correct on this, I vaguely remember being unable to decide whether or not it was a reference — I think I settled on spelling it as Teos because I wasn’t comfortable enough making any assumptions about historical references at the time and never went back to rethink that one. Since you brought it up, I’ll go back and tweak it!

      I’m really happy to see the confirmation for Zandeh too! That one gave me a lot of headaches. I eventually did hit on the connection with Zayanderud at least, but still wasn’t sure. Didn’t know it was an actual name still in use, makes me glad I stuck with this choice.

      Your suggestions for Burhan are interesting, I’ll have to look into it. That was actually one of the names that seemed so obvious from the kana that I didn’t put any thought into it (don’t have time to check right now, but iirc it was bu-ru-haan), but your explanation would make more sense in context.

      Farhadin: Ooh, thanks for the analysis. I don’t think I put up this nickname on this page yet, but it’s actually in my notes — I put down a tentative “Vahrkadin” for reasons I no longer remember, so I was definitely looking into the Varkana etymology at some point (this was before I realized Tanaka was fudging the translations for names/titles sometimes). Had no idea about the other connections though, so that’s really helpful.

      Nice catch on the river names, can’t believe I didn’t think of that, lol.

      I’ll look into Cassione & Kundavai when I have time, those seem pretty promising. At the very least, those are options I haven’t explored yet, and I don’t think I had any idea where to even start with those, so thank you!!

      • More name catches from me, hope these could be useful to you in some way:
        Pedraos: seems to be a compromise between the two pronunciations of the same name (Peter) in Armenian, Petros/Bedros (http://www.behindthename.com/name/bedros)
        Merlane: Merlan/Mirlan is an existing name actually used in Kyrgyz and Kazakh languages (examples: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mirlan_Murzaev , http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0008333/ ). May be a shortening of Tamerlane, as well as a combination of (A)mir (a reduced persian form of “the one giving orders”,”lord”, “chieftain” in Arabic) and uhlan/oghlan (“son” in Turkic). Merlane is the elder son of the Zott Clan Chief,after all. I’m sorry, but my sources for this interpretation of his name are only in Russian, that’s why I don’t give any links here…
        Jimsa: his name is based on Jimsar county in Xinjiang, China, This geographical name in Uyghur language may be derived from the Yulishi (郁立師國) Principality that existed there in the times of Western Han Empire. Its local name, transcribed as Yulishi in ancient Chinese, could have sounded somewhat like Itripsar/Yutripsar, coming from an ancient root ytar/yatar, meaning “road” or “way”. I’ve found this information in an article by some Bulgarian researcher, but, unfortunately, it was very badly translated in Russian, so there’s no link this time, too.
        Ahabak: I believe that it may be in some relation with the title “agabek” or “agabey”, used in Turkish language out of respect for someone elder and higher in position.

  12. Maybe, these links would be of some help to unlock the meanings and references behind the characters’ names:

    Parahuda/Parafuda: the spelling seems to me somewhat like this Iranian/Armenian/Turkish male name: http://www.wordsense.eu/%D8%A8%D8%B1%D8%AE%D9%88%D8%B1%D8%AF%D8%A7%D8%B1/
    Hayir: it may be a word borrowed from Arabic (خَيْر “kayr” – “goodness”, “prosperity”, “charity”, https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/%D8%AE%D9%8A%D8%B1#Arabic ), used as a male name in Turkey and other Middle East countries (https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/Hay%C4%B1r). It is pronounced in Persian as “kheyr”.

    • T. E. Waters says:

      Thanks as always! 😀

      re: Parahuda — the other possible transcription is Palahuda/fuda btw, I don’t know if those might lead in other directions. Your take on it is the closest I’ve seen so far, but it still kinda bugs me, knowing Tanaka I feel like it should be referencing *something* specific. Sigh.

      If I remember correctly, the main alternative I was considering for Hayir was “Ha’il” and variations on that. Since we don’t know anything about the character I was kind of nervous about that one. I’ll add a link to the etymology, thanks!

  13. Sorry, I’ve mixed up the divs’ names in my previous post, no Akvan, just Div-i-Sepid.

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