About the names
What can you tell me about
my specific name?
The maps, tables and information
presented about names on this website are derived from the analysis of large databases
of name records across the world. We do not have intimate knowledge of each name,
and as such we cannot comment on the origins or locations of specific names beyond
the information presented on this website.
What are the most popular
names in a specific area or place?
This is one of our most
frequently asked questions, and we have added a facility to create the most popular
surnames and forenames by many different areas in the world. Simply click the "Area
Search" tab at the top of the page and search for a city, a region or a country
to find out the most popular names in this areas.
How many names do you have
We hold data for approximately
300 million people in 26 countries of the world, representing a total population
of 1 billion people in those countries. In our database there are 8 million unique
surnames and 5 million unique forenames.
What countries do you have
We have data for 26 countries
in Europe, America, Asia and Oceania. A definitive list of countries that we have
data for can be found here [link].
What are the "Roots of this
The roots of the names are
derived using the OnoMap classification of names (www.onomap.org) which classifies names into groups of common cultural ethnic
and linguistic origin using surnames and forenames. For more information on this
classification see the FAQ on the onomap website:
Why do the most common forenames associated with
a particular surname mainly show masculine names?
Most of our
names data comes from telephone directories, and unfortunately since most
telephone directories are still registered under a male forename, female
forenames are hence unrepresented in our database. However, this is not the case
for the countries in which we have used electrol registers. Both telephone
directories and electrol registers present a further bias, since they only cover
adult names. As a result the latest fashion in forenaming practices are not
necessarily covered by our database.
About the maps and data tables
What data do you use to
create the name maps?
All our names and location
data are derived from publicly available telephone directories or national electoral
registers, sourced for the period 2000-2005.
How do you create the scores
used for the maps and the data tables?
We always use the relative
frequency of a name compared to the overall population in an area. This is expressed
as a 'Frequency Per Million' people living in an area, and is abbreviated on the
website as FPM.
What are the areas shown
by on the maps?
We have chosen a series
of administrative geographic boundaries for mapping the names data on our website.
These are broadly divided into three levels of geography:
- Country level, as shown
in the initial World Map
- Region level, which divides
countries in coarse administrative regions
- Locality level, which
subdivides the above regions into finer administrative localities
A detailed list of the different
geographical areas shown for each country can be found here.