officials nix change to grandiose personal name

(Another story from my backlog.)

The application of a thirty-something woman in Taiwan’s Nantou County to change her name to “Hóng Cáishén Xuántiān Zǒngtǒng” (Hong Occult God of Wealth President) was rejected by local authorities because it contained the word zongtong (“president”).

“She did not tell us why she wanted to change her name,” Lin Chih-chun, an official from Tsaotun Household Registration Office, told Deutsche Presse-Agentur.

“We rejected her application because it contains the word ‘president’. We told her that the name is not suitable but she can appeal our rejection,” he said.

Under Taiwanese law, a citizen’s name must use Chinese characters listed in standard dictionaries. A citizen can change his or her name twice in a lifetime.

The Tsaotun Household Registration Office receives an average two to three applications to change names every day. Most of the applicants want to change their names to improve their fortune, usually at fortune-tellers’ advice.

This is quite true: Many people in Taiwan have changed their name because they think a special new name would bring them better luck.

source: Taiwan bars woman from changing name to ‘president’, Deutsche Presse-Agentur.

abbreviated source: Lofty name nixed

Here’s another version of the same story:

“Hóng Cáishén Xuántiān Zǒngtǒng”, zhème yī cháng chuàn de zìyǎn, jìngrán yǒurén yào bǎ tā nálái dàngzuò míngzi, hùzhèng rényuán tóuyī cì yùdào zhèyàng de zhuàngkuàng, fānbiàn fǎlìng yòu méiyǒu xiāngguān guīdìng, juéde hěn tóudà, zhǐhǎo dǎchéng gōngwén wǎng Nèizhèngbù chéngbào.

Cǎotún [Nántóu Xiàn] hùzhèng shìwùsuǒ rényuán: “Xìngmíng tiáolì yǒu gǎimíng cìshù xiànzhì, wǒmen jīyú shànyì gēn mínzhòng zuò quàndǎo.”

Nèizhèngbù huífù de gōngwén, rènwéi “zǒngtǒng” zhè liǎng ge zì shì zhíchēng, bìng méiyǒu hézhǔn, hùzhèng rényuán zhǐhǎo guīquàn zhè míng miàolíng nǚzǐ, dǎxiāo gǎimíng niàntou, érqiě qǔ míngwéi “Hóng Cáishén Xuántiān Zǒngtǒng”, bùzhǐ hùzhèng rényuán juéde bùtuǒ, jiù lián yībān mínzhòng yě juéde qíguài. Mínzhòng: “Rénjia jiào nǐ ‘cáishén,’ rúguǒ yào gěi nǐ bàibai, bù shì hěn qíguài ma?”

Zuìhòu nǚzǐ méiyǒu gǎimíng chénggōng, bùguò zhèige tèshū de gǎimíng ànlì, ràng hùzhèng rényuán duì zhè míng nǚzǐ liúxià shēnkè yìnxiàng.

source: Jiào wǒ “zǒngtǒng”! Miàolíng nǚ gǎimíng chéng qùwén, TVBS, November 7, 2005.

2 thoughts on “officials nix change to grandiose personal name

  1. All I know is that “Hong Occult God of Wealth President” is the coolest name ever and since she can’t use it I’m tempted to snap it up myself.

    Michael Occult God of Wealth President
    Or
    Occult God of Wealth President Farris
    or maybe
    Michael Occult God of Wealth President Farris

  2. Pingback: Pinyin news » Taiwan personal names: a frequency list

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