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Old 25.11.2011, 14:45
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Re: A list of "approved" swiss names?

A friend of mine (who now lives here) went to school with "Moon" Zappa (as she preferred to be called at the time).

And it's "Dweezil", not "Dweezle"!

Tom
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  #62  
Old 25.11.2011, 14:50
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Re: A list of "approved" swiss names?

A friend of mine is a nurse in the UK and it's a running joke among her and her colleagues when a parent names their daughter *Malena (a name growing in popularity in the UK)




*Malena = bloody stools.
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  #63  
Old 25.11.2011, 14:59
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Re: A list of "approved" swiss names?

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Fixed that for you.
Rules regarding first names exist in at least the following countries Germany, Sweden, Norway, Iceland, Denmark, Austria, Italy, Malaysia, Argentina, New Zealand, China, Japan, Portugal, France etc.
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Old 25.11.2011, 15:14
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Re: A list of "approved" swiss names?

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Rules regarding first names exist in at least the following countries Germany, Sweden, Norway, Iceland, Denmark, Austria, Italy, Malaysia, Argentina, New Zealand, China, Japan, Portugal, France etc.
And Belgium. There you have to provide 2 valid source or websites to prove that the name exists.
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  #65  
Old 25.11.2011, 15:38
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Re: A list of "approved" swiss names?

I think Jura is lovely too. Will you pronounce it Yura or Djura? Or the French way which I can't write phonetically... zhura?

Don't think anyone mentioned that it is also a word in French though - elle jura = she swore (in the sense of promise rather than curse, I think). Worth knowing in case they point it out, then you can say you already know. Apparently it means amber in Lithuanian.
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  #66  
Old 25.11.2011, 17:05
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Re: A list of "approved" swiss names?

We will use the french pronunciation of "zhura" but our family already uses the US pronunciation of "Jer-uh." My husband and I are both US citizens so hopefully these Swiss rules don't apply to us. I guess I'll find out soon enough...
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Old 25.11.2011, 18:11
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Re: A list of "approved" swiss names?

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We will use the french pronunciation of "zhura" but our family already uses the US pronunciation of "Jer-uh." My husband and I are both US citizens so hopefully these Swiss rules don't apply to us. I guess I'll find out soon enough...
Picking out a name that works outside the realm of the anglophones can go rather horribly wrong (not that, as I mentioned, it will keep kids from teasing your kid...just that it will make it easier). My OH is Finnish and, outside of Finland, nobody can pronounce many first and a majority of last names. We ambitiously weeded out any first names that had diphthongs that would be difficult to pronounce for English speakers, then we kept culling until we narrowed it down to five names. We chose one and...due to the unforeseen collision of the name and the Massachusetts dialect, it comes out sounding like a car name, rather than a pretty little girl name. Classic. It's a bit like a popular boys name in Finland, Pekka, which in Boston is pronounced 'pecker' and has the effect of making an entire conference room filled with grown adults start to snicker. (I might also add here that Jura is a lovely island in Scotland with a distinctive range of whisky )

Since you are both American (assuming no Swiss citizenship in the mix at all) and, assuming you're planning to register the birth with the US consulate, then you shouldn't be subject to the naming conventions at all unless, of course, you choose something really wacky or offensive.
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Old 03.12.2011, 14:13
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Re: A list of "approved" swiss names?

We have just encountered a similar situation in trying to register the birth of our baby son in Bern. They have asked us to give more information about the middle name we have chosen due to their "duty to protect the interest of the child." I'm Australian and my husband is British, and I had been under the impression that that meant we didn't have to follow the Swiss naming rules, but now re-reading the sources I read before I am wondering if we get some leeway on surnames (we are giving him both our names, without a hyphen, which they've accepted) but not on first names. A few people have stated on this thread that foreigners don't have to follow Swiss naming laws, but I am wondering if anyone has an "official" link which verifies this?

We are not naming our son Adolf Hitler by the way! I don't want to give the actual name here on a public forum, but the first name is a very common and traditional boy's name (a similar sort of name to Matthew) while the middle name is an English nature word which sounds a bit like a place name or surname but isn't frequently used as either. Something along the lines of "Riverdale" maybe. While it is fairly unusual and we certainly won't be able to demonstrate that it is already used as a first name anywhere, it doesn't seem sillier or stranger to me than many unique names that friends in Australia and the US have given their children. Of course this is a deeply subjective area! We already shared the name with friends and family and anyone who thought it was too silly was too tactful to say so, but many said that they really liked it.

We are going to seek advice from our respective embassies, and if we have to change the name in the end it won't be the end of the world, but I would love to hear from more dual-foreigner couples who've had to negotiate unusual baby names with their local authorities.
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Old 03.12.2011, 15:35
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Re: A list of "approved" swiss names?

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We have just encountered a similar situation in trying to register the birth of our baby son in Bern. They have asked us to give more information about the middle name we have chosen due to their "duty to protect the interest of the child." I'm Australian and my husband is British, and I had been under the impression that that meant we didn't have to follow the Swiss naming rules, but now re-reading the sources I read before I am wondering if we get some leeway on surnames (we are giving him both our names, without a hyphen, which they've accepted) but not on first names. A few people have stated on this thread that foreigners don't have to follow Swiss naming laws, but I am wondering if anyone has an "official" link which verifies this?

We are not naming our son Adolf Hitler by the way! I don't want to give the actual name here on a public forum, but the first name is a very common and traditional boy's name (a similar sort of name to Matthew) while the middle name is an English nature word which sounds a bit like a place name or surname but isn't frequently used as either. Something along the lines of "Riverdale" maybe. While it is fairly unusual and we certainly won't be able to demonstrate that it is already used as a first name anywhere, it doesn't seem sillier or stranger to me than many unique names that friends in Australia and the US have given their children. Of course this is a deeply subjective area! We already shared the name with friends and family and anyone who thought it was too silly was too tactful to say so, but many said that they really liked it.

We are going to seek advice from our respective embassies, and if we have to change the name in the end it won't be the end of the world, but I would love to hear from more dual-foreigner couples who've had to negotiate unusual baby names with their local authorities.
Hi Wednesday, Swiss law doesn't apply, since neither paerent is Swiss, or that was the case when we went through this naming stuff eight years ago. Please check the proposed name of your child with both consolates and then go back to the Swiss authorities with your proposed name. We have two birth certificates for our twins, the first one issued by the Swiss authoraties and then the one with both the names that we wanted. Once you have your proposed name then the Swiss authorities will check with both countries and if OK issue a new birth certificate. In our case the process took two months, which was a pain since we wanted to order their passports. Good luck.
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  #70  
Old 03.12.2011, 15:47
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Re: A list of "approved" swiss names?

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Hi Wednesday, Swiss law doesn't apply, since neither paerent is Swiss, or that was the case when we went through this naming stuff eight years ago. Please check the proposed name of your child with both consolates and then go back to the Swiss authorities with your proposed name. We have two birth certificates for our twins, the first one issued by the Swiss authoraties and then the one with both the names that we wanted. Once you have your proposed name then the Swiss authorities will check with both countries and if OK issue a new birth certificate. In our case the process took two months, which was a pain since we wanted to order their passports. Good luck.
AFAIK, swiss law does apply by default.

But: For last names, foreigners can opt for the naming conventions of their country of origin.

For first names, Swiss law does apply. But if an uncommon sounding name is a more or less common name in their country of origin, chances are much higher that it will be accepted.
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Old 03.12.2011, 16:21
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Re: A list of "approved" swiss names?

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We should be good auslanders and call our kids Urs or Beat or Heidi or Gretli

Hans-Ruedi is a particular favorit of mine
Hans-Otto (Hans-Ott), Hans-Peter (Hämpel), Anne-Katrin (Anker-Nällii) or Dandilion in englisch and Säublüme in Zürich . I allways thought that Anne-Katrin-Annabelle would be cool, though the wife's not into it .

Just try it with the name and see what happens.... and don't stress sooo much.

Cheers Malcolm
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  #72  
Old 05.12.2011, 17:33
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Re: A list of "approved" swiss names?

seriously guys.. why don't you just call the bloody Zivilstandsamt and FIND OUT!?
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  #73  
Old 05.12.2011, 18:00
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Re: A list of "approved" swiss names?

Have you ever tried to get a direct answer from a (epithet deleted) Zivilstandsamt? It's quicker to post on here and a whole lot more fun reading the answers. That one doesn't necessarily get the right answer on EF doesn't matter all that much. After all, Swiss local council offices are not exactly renowned for giving innocent aliens the correct answer either.
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  #74  
Old 05.12.2011, 18:18
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Re: A list of "approved" swiss names?

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innocent aliens
Ah! by default aliens can't be innocent to swiss local councils. Please ban yourself for 30min. Thank you.
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Old 06.12.2011, 12:52
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Re: A list of "approved" swiss names?

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While it is fairly unusual and we certainly won't be able to demonstrate that it is already used as a first name anywhere, it doesn't seem sillier or stranger to me than many unique names that friends in Australia and the US have given their children.
Have you tried googling "xyz baby name meaning"? You might find it's out there somewhere on a baby names website, which should count as proof that it is a genuine name, however unusual. Obviously with your own name of choice instead of xyz. I've been surprised at the unusual names I've found on the web! Or you could try putting it into the search function on facebook.
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Old 06.12.2011, 13:05
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Re: A list of "approved" swiss names?

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Have you tried googling "xyz baby name meaning"? You might find it's out there somewhere on a baby names website, which should count as proof that it is a genuine name, however unusual. Obviously with your own name of choice instead of xyz. I've been surprised at the unusual names I've found on the web! Or you could try putting it into the search function on facebook.
Thanks, yes we've tried googling, facebooking, looking in online phone books, everything we could think of. We have actually managed to come up with a name that isn't even on the many lists of outlandish baby names on the web! (But it really isn't that crazy, I think, just a little obscure) We have written a little text about the origin and meaning of the word, complete with literary references going back to 1122 (thanks, OED!) and we will have to see whether that persuades our friendly local Zivilstandsamtbeamter (registry office clerk).
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Old 06.12.2011, 13:31
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Re: A list of "approved" swiss names?

Ah well, just thought I'd suggest it in case you hadn't thought of it, but you're way ahead of me with the phone books. I'm really curious about the name you've picked now! (But I understand not wanting to share it with strangers too!)
Hope your research in the OED pays off. There are so many English names that are based on features of the landscape, it's practically traditional to use nature words. Good luck!
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Old 09.12.2011, 16:49
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Re: A list of "approved" swiss names?

An update and a happy ending -- our local Zivilstandsamt seems to have accepted our explanation of the origins of our son's unusual middle name, as we got his birth certificate in the post today. Hurrah! (Somewhat reassuring to have them decide that we are not damaging the interests of our child ... at least it would have been quite upsetting had they decided we were!)

Our experience, at least, does suggest that foreigners can follow the laws of their home countries in choosing last names, but not first names. Talking to the Australian and British consulates and even looking up the relevant bit of the Swiss civil code online didn't really shed any extra light on the question.
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Old 22.03.2012, 22:32
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Re: A list of "approved" swiss names?

Just as an update, we went ahead and filled out all of our daughters Swiss forms using only her first and last name (left out the questionable middle name). Then, when we filled out the papers for her US passport, birth certificate, etc, we included the middle name. Everything turned out fine. The Swiss don't even know she has an "unapproved" middle name and the US didn't question us when we added the middle name on the US paperwork.

Only took us 5 months to finally get her birth registered!!... but I guess that is a whole different story.
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