Appendix:Archetypal names

Definition from Wiktionary, the free dictionary
Jump to: navigation, search

This is a list of archetypal names. Archetypal names are personal names (given names or surnames) which had become designations for archetypes of certain personal traits. These names are a special kind of eponyms. Sometimes they may be used ironically.

  • Bradman (or Bradmanesque), a person who overperforms beyond his peers to an outrageous degree
  • Croesus, a notoriously rich person
  • Carmen, a beautiful and fiery tempered woman
  • Casanova,
  • Lothario, a handsome seducer
  • Don Juan, a "womanizer"
  • Don Quixote, an heroic fool, based on Miguel de Cervantes' novel
  • Edison, an inventor
  • Einstein, a genius
  • Hercules, a strong man
  • Hooligan, an Irish person, usually stereotypically loud, drunk, and rowdy. Longtime considered an ethnic slur, on par with Mick or pikey. Now used to describe a boisterous sports fan.
  • Igor, an obedient, ugly and/or immoral minion
  • Judas, and
  • Benedict Arnold, a traitor
  • Methuselah, a very old person
  • Poindexter, (US and Canada) a nerd
  • Romeo, a lover, based on Romeo and Juliet. Depending on the usage context, the term may mean "tragic lover", "young and romantic lover", or may be used in an ironical sense.
  • Scrooge, a cold-hearted, selfish man, based on A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens.
  • Sherlock Holmes, a detective who makes use of logic; sometimes used ironically
  • Shylock, (U.S. & UK Commonwealth) a loan shark, a moneylender who charges usurious interest and uses violence to collect. Originated in the UK as a general term for moneylenders, assuming their Jewishness (indeed, "the Jews" was also so used in Victorian times), but is now employed (in the U.S., at least) for any loan shark or gangster usurer, most often not Jewish. Originally from the Jewish title character in Shakespeare's The Merchant of Venice, the phrase is arguably no longer an ethnic slur, but a generic allusion like Hercules for strong man or Romeo for lover.

Archetypal names for nationalities and ethnicities[edit]

Some of the names below may also be used as ethnic slurs

Archetypal names for animals[edit]

  • dogs: Rover, Fido, Rex, Fifi (poodles)
  • cows: Buttercup, Daisy, Bossy, Bessy
  • cats: Fluffy, Tiger
  • pigs: Wilbur, Petunia, Porky