Vol. 71 No. 4 (2023): NAMES: A Journal of Onomastics

Romanian-Ukrainian Anthroponymic Contact on the Interstate Border along the Tisza River

Adelina Emilia Mihali
Department of Onomastics of “Sextil Pușcariu” Institute of Linguistics and Literary History of the Romanian Academy, Cluj-Napoca, Romania

Published 2023-12-20


  • Ukraine,
  • Romania,
  • anthroponyms,
  • language contact,
  • first names,
  • family names,
  • ethnic identity
  • ...More


The area between Romania and Ukraine has been the site of frequent language contact for many centuries. This contact has impacted the onomastic store of both nations. This study analyzes anthroponyms (family and first names) in the border area between Ukraine and Romania, along the Tisza River. This study investigates the frequency and etymological origin of family names in the Ukrainian/Romanian communities on both sides of the Tisza. It explores the factors that may have facilitated the spread of Ukrainian/Romanian names beyond their linguistic communities of origin; and it discusses the cultural identity of the two minorities as expressed by their anthroponymic trends. Based on the results of a corpus of historical data gathered between 2000 and 2021, the findings of this research show how language contact, migration, fashion, and tradition can influence anthroponymic choices and reflect ethnic identity.


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