I received an email with the definition for aptronym... i'll include it at the end of this post. the term is not in dictionary.com or websters, so i'm desperately seeking clarification: does the term "aptronym" also refer to characters in books that are named for their personalities? for example, "chillingsworth" or "dimmsdale" in the scarlet letter. or, since those names are not specific to their *professions*, is there a more apt term for such a device?
aptronym (AP-troh-NIM) noun
A name that is especially suited to the profession of its owner.
Examples: Dan Druff for a barber, Felicity Foote for a dance teacher, and James Bugg for an exterminator -- all real monikers. More famously, we have William Wordsworth, the poet; Margaret Court, the tennis champion; Sally Ride, the astronaut; Larry Speakes, the White House spokesperson, Jim Kiick, the football star; and Lorena Bobbitt ("bob it") the you-know-what-er.
Posted - 11 Jul 2007 : 16:14:01Theresa Green, Joe King, Eileen Back, Penny Pound, Ophelia Balls, and Michael Hunt who was never abbreviated to Mike.
With the exception of one, I have actually met these people, Miss O. Balls I knew only by reputation.
Is there a term which describes such alliterations, because they are not strictly alliterations are they?
Bob in Wales