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Names in Latin

I'm wondering about how people would say their names in Latin. Throughout the course, we get to know Stephanus and Marcus (latinized versions of Stephan and Mark). I also came across Davids calling themselves Davidus in Latin. Apparently, this declension thing is very important in Latin.

Having said that, and since I'm Moroccan with a Moroccan name "Mehdi" (this is a male name by the way). How may I introduce myself in Latin? "Mehdius"? (It doesn't sound bad to me anyways) If no, then would keeping the name "Mehdi" intact all over the cases be alright?

Thanks everyone! Gratia vobis!

April 7, 2020



Personally, if I were in charge of figuring out how to decline your name, I'd probably use the third declension ( https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/Appendix:Latin_third_declension ), as "Mehdi" seems to be a better fit there.

Here's what I'd suggest:

  • Nominative (and Vocative): Mehdi
  • Accusative: Mehdem
  • Genitive: Mehdis
  • Dative: Mehdi
  • Ablative: Mehde

Example sentences:

  • Salve, Mehdi! (Hello, Mehdi!)
  • Psittaci ebrii Mehdem pulsant. (The drunk parrots hit Mehdi.)
  • Mustelae Mehdis psittacos captant. (Mehdi's weasels try to catch the parrots.)
  • Gratia Mehdi, psittacum placidum habeo. (Thanks to Mehdi, I have a calm parrot.)
  • Cum Mehde, ambulo cotidie. (I walk daily with Mehdi.)

Note that the nominative and the dative (and the vocative) forms are the same, but overlapping forms like that are quite common in Latin.

But if you wanted to go with the second declension (the one whose nominative form often ends in -us), then the name Mehdius would be a good choice.

In the end, it's up to you which name to choose, but it's best to have a name that declines (in order to be understood in Classical Latin).

I hope this helps!

P.S. You didn't ask about Esperanto, but in case you're interested, your name in Esperanto would be:

  • Regular: Mehdi (optionally: Mehdio)
  • Accusative: Mehdion (alternatively spelled Mehdi-on)


I agree with using the third declension. For one, it is able to decline any extraneous nominative endings, like rex (king) or origo (source) so I can see how Mehdi fits in with them.


Thanks a lot for your comment. It could not be better elaborated and exemplified. I am definitely opting for your suggestion as it does not make my name look very different from the original.

As for Esperanto, it is definitely on my list of languages to learn. However, I'm surprised there is an accusative case since I have always thought it was a case-free language.


This makes me wonder if there are any latinised names of persons that are plural in Latin, like some cities are. Anyone knows?


I get your point considering you have a moroccan name, however many of us who have European, or Hebrew (by way of the bible) names, usually have latinised equivalents.

For instance my name: Jakob (Danish, Northern European rendition) Comes from Biblical name: Ya'qob /Ya'qov Romans latinized it into: Iacobus

Many of us would be able to follow a similar etymological trajectory to latinise our names.

[deactivated user]

    Yes, I would like a Latin name too! I'll have to think about it....


    I have no idea for your name, but it certainly cannot be kept invariant. (have a look at this wikipedia article https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Latinisation_of_names)

    Anyway, regarding Marcus, though, Mark derived from the Latin name Marcus and not the other way around. And Stephanus existed in ancient Rome, its origin is Greek.


    A Latin proper noun could be indeclinable. That's pretty common in the Vulgate, for example. Admittedly, it's probably not ideal for classical Latin.

    [deactivated user]

      Thanks - I'll have a look at that! :)


      Here is an easy way to change your name into Latin. You can simply add "-us" to the end of a male name, no matter the ending (Yes, Jesus becomes Jesusus) and add "-a" to female names and change the "-y" (if any) at the end of your original name to "i". Look at https://www.theclassroom.com/how-to-convert-an-english-first-name-into-latin-12081777.html to learn more. I learned also that a few letters change to from school: k=c, j=i, x=cs, y=i, and z=ds (or ts). So my first name, Mikel, becomes Micelus. (or maybe just Michael, since my name is a form of it in English.) Last names usually stay the same. My last name, Kratzer, obviously does (without the K) because of names like Julius Caesar. I would recommend the website https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/Appendix:Latin_forms_of_English_given_names for most names.


      "Jesus" already is a latin name, the -us is already there so adding another one is not necessary. The name was Aramaic "Yehoushua" (or something along those lines) which was hellenised into "JESOS" and latinised into "Iesus".

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