Part 2 of the Hans Brinker repost, with the names deconstruction.
If you’re actually using this page as a resource –I decided to split the blog post in two when I suddenly realised that some people might want to do that– please comment or mail to tell me if you’d prefer the names to be ordered thematically or alphabetically instead.
Here they are in order of appearance, place names as well as personal names, but skipping quoted bits of Dutch which also need copy-editing, because my command of nineteenth-century Dutch isn’t up to scratch:
Mynheer von Stoppelnoze – “Mynheer” is probably the usual 1865 spelling, so I’ll let that pass. But “Von Stoppelnoze”? “Von” is German, as are many of the names Dodge presents as Dutch, and I can only find Stoppelnoze as a German name too.
Hans Brinker – “Brinker” is okay, “Hans” is probably okay (slightly German-flavoured) though if he’s a peasant boy the usual form would have been Hannes.
Gretel – Someone told the editor that this was a German name (like Ludwig and Carl) and Dodge added a note: “Ludwig, Gretel and Carl were named after German friends. The Dutch form would be Lodewyk, Grietje and Karel”. Greetje would perhaps be even more common than Grietje, but Hansel and Gretel are called “Hans en Grietje” in Dutch and that might have some influence. Because she’s a main character, the name Gretel quickly becomes annoying. The first Dutch translation called her “Griete”, a more modern one “Greetje”.
Dame Brinker – I don’t know the 1865 meaning of “dame”, but none of the modern ones seem to fit (“the female equivalent to a knight”? “slightly derogatory way of referring to a woman?”) I think “vrouw Brinker” or “jufvrouw Brinker” would have been better. “Dame” means “lady” in modern Dutch; as a vocative it’s distinctly lower-class now.
Raff Brinker – Raff is not even a German name; it’s probably a faux-Dutch abbreviation of Rafael.
the Veermyk sluice – Probably a misreading for Veerwijk or even Vreeswijk.
Hilda van Gleck – At least she’s Van and not Von, but Gleck is pure German. Also, Hilde is more plausible than Hilda, but as she’s rich Hilda isn’t outrageous.
Annie Bouman – Nothing whatsoever wrong with it.
Rychie Korbes – Her father is Mynheer van Korbes, which would make her “van Korbes” too. And “Rychie”? Probably Rietje (pronounced almost “reechie”), or Riekje, or Riekie. Perhaps “ie” was too daunting for American readers.
Carl Schummel – “Carl” has already been covered. “Schummel” is probably “Schimmel”.
Peter van Holp – Nothing wrong with that, though “van Holp” is a very uncommon name.
Ludwig van Holp – Already been covered. He ought to be Lodewijk, possibly spelt with y.
Jacob Poot – Nothing wrong with it.
Voostenwalbert Schimmelpenninck – Er, yes. Called “Voost” by his friends. I’d have suggested “Joost-Albert” if I’d arrived on Dodge’s doorstep by time machine.
Katrinka Flack – She’s a flighty kind of character, so it’s fitting for her to have a gypsy-like name, but it still doesn’t ring quite true. And the surname is either German or English/American (Roberta Flack!), though there may be some in the Netherlands.
Meitje Klenck – Dame Brinker’s maiden name. “Meitje” will do, though “Mietje” would be more believable. “Klenck”, again, has German spelling and is unlikely to have been a normal Dutch name at the time.
Harengracht – Misspelling of “Herengracht”. It’s spelt right later on.
Mevrouw van Stoop – Normal, though plain “Stoop” would have been even more normal.
Dr. Boekman – Normal.
Laurens Boekman – Completely normal.
Ben(jamin) Dobbs – Jacob’s English cousin, with an ordinary English name. Also, his brother Robby and sister Jenny.
Jan van Gorp – Johannes Goropius Becanus, spelt right and quoted right.
Karel van Gleck – Karel is indeed the proper form.
Kathrine – Uncommon but not unheard-of form (see Katrina below).
Hendrick – May have been an obsolete spelling even in the 1840s (when the book is set): usually “Hendrik”.
Broom – May be a misspelling of “Bram” (from Abraham).
Katy – English spelling; Dutch would be “Kaatje”.
Huygens – Patronymic surname; “Huygen” or “Huigen” are Dutch forms of “Hugo”, but Hugo itself would also be plausible.
Lucretia – Evidently named after an Italian business associate’s wife!
Wolfert – Uncommon but okay.
Diedrich – German name; Dutch is “Diederik” or “Dirk”.
Mayken – Obsolete spelling, even for the time. “Maaike” is perhaps too modern, but I can’t think of an intermediate form.
Voost – This is probably not Voostenwalbert himself. May be a misspelling of Joost.
Katrina – Uncommon but not unheard-of form. Catharina (or with K) is more usual.
Jakob Cats – Only ever -c- in “Jacob”.
Lambert van Mounen – “Lambert” is completely okay; “van Mounen” is unique to this book though it looks normal enough. “Van Manen”, for instance, is a perfectly ordinary Dutch name.
Van Tromp – Maarten Harpertszoon Tromp would have been surprised to see “van” in his name!
Gerard Douw – did spell his name with -w occasionally (and even as “Dow”), though I’d only seen “Dou” until now.
Paul Potter – Usually “Paulus”.
Kanau (Poot) – Misspelling of “Kenau” (see below under Kanau Hesselaer), and a very uncommon name in the nineteenth century.
William Beukles – Bad misspelling of “Willem Beukelszoon” (van Biervliet), who invented the process of haringkaken, gibbing (thank you, Wikipedia as a translation engine!), a way to clean fresh-caught herring that makes it easier to cure.
Breedstraat – Yes, okay, but I happen to know that it’s been called Breestraat since time immemorial.
Rood Leeuw – Ought to be “Roode”.
Huygens Kleef – Another first-name Huygens. “Kleef” is all right, but there I’d expect a Van.
the Vleit Canal – it’s “Vliet”, which already means “canal”; cognate to “Fleet” as in Fleet Street.
Bilderdyk – The -y- is probably nineteenth-century spelling; it’s usually Bilderdijk these days.
Van der Does – Spelt right. Strangely, though he appears in history as Dousa, the street in Leiden called after him is called Doezastraat. (There’s a Dousastraat in Noordwijk, about 10 kilometers from Leiden.)
Kanau Hesselaer – Misspelling of “Kenau Hasselaer” (see this women’s history page, in Dutch). Her name has some variant spellings, but Dodge’s -a- in the first syllable probably comes from her source. John Lothrop Motley used the spelling “Kanau Hasselaer” in The Rise of the Dutch Republic in 1856, which she may well have read. It’s clear that Georg Ebers (The Burgomaster’s Wife, 1882) and G.A. Henty (By Pike and Dyke, 1890) read the same book…
Lucas van Leyden, or Hugens – Thought for a moment that I’d caught a real Huygens (either Constantijn or his son Christiaan) until I looked him up by date. Anyway, neither of the Huygenses were painters. Apparently we don’t know whether Lucas van Leyden’s father was called Jacob or, indeed, Hugen. Lucas van Leyden is spelt right in spite of the -y-.
Harel de Moor – Either Karel or Carel.
Van Dyck – According to Wikipedia the name of the painter has many variant spellings, but for once here’s the most common one.
Fortunatas – From context, probably Fortunatus.
Mevrouw van Gend, Jasper van Gend – Normal, though “Gent” is more usual.
Quentin Matsys – lots of variants again: “his first name also recorded as Quinten or Kwinten and his last name as Massys, Metsys, or Matsijs (1466-1530)”. Dodge obviously picked the most familiar-looking one. He painted the Ugly Duchess.
the dockyards of Saardam – Saardam is the eighteenth-century name for what is now Zaandam.
Maurits Huis – This is one word, “Mauritshuis”.
Van Speyk – Again, the less purely-Dutch variant of the name was chosen (Van Speijk is the more Dutch one).
Geraerts (or Gerard) – Gérard, note acute accent, is actually correct, because he was a Frenchman.
Louisa de Coligny – The correct spelling is “Louise”, because she was a Frenchwoman.
Van Stoepel – The name seems to be unique to this book, though it looks very Dutch.
Schlossen Mill – Looks German to me; can’t find a reference. It could be “slotmolen” or “sluismolen”, that is, “lock mill” or “sluice mill”, referring to a windmill used for draining the polders.
Janzoon Kolp – “Janzoon” is a patronymic and can’t be used as a stand-alone name. He should have been called “Jan Janzoon Kolp” at the very least. Kolp is a rare, but existing Dutch surname.
Kate Wouters – “Kate” is the English form; Dutch would be “Kaat” or “Kaatje”. Wouters is perfectly ordinary.
Vollenhoven – Dutch noble name, usually preceded by “Van”.
Rip Donderdunck – Absolutely a made-up name, nothing Dutch about it.
Voppelploot – Ditto.
Von Choppem – German-style, but obviously made up. “Van Schoppen” comes closest.
Hoogsvliet – Plausible enough, though usually without -s-.
Jan Kamphuisen – Ditto, though usually with -z- instead of -s-.
Saint Bavon – “Bavo” is the usual form. Patron saint of Haarlem.
Gottingen – Needs an o-umlaut, Göttingen.
Gerard and Lambert Boomphoffen – The first names are okay; “Boomphoffen” is outrageous. Something like “Boomhoven” would still be strange but much less silly.
And I’m not commenting on all the English names in the penultimate chapter, which seem to have been chosen for quaintness.