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It is not just male names I rendered in thier original language but female names too. For example, in French Margaret is generally translated as Marguerite. Germany is where I tend to be inconsistent. For example the name Louise is often spelled Luise but more often I use the English spelling. Elizabeth in both German and French is often spelled Elisabeth which I will use for German and French princesses.

Names in the Portuguese language is often very similar to the names in Spanish. One difference is the name John. In Spanish John becomes Juan but in Portuguese it becomes João. It is pronounced very close to the French version of John which is spelled Jean.

Here is a very short YouTube clip of how to pronounce João in Portuguese.


Here is where my inconsistencies come in. I mentioned yesterday that the name Mikhail Gorbachev was one of the names that inspired me to render names in thier native language. However, I ended up keeping the names of Eastern European Royalty in English.

So Mikhail remains Michael. The last Emperor of Russia in the Russian language is known as Emperor Nikolai II of Russia but I prefer the English name of Nicholas. The father of Nicholas II is Alexander III but in Russian it is Aleksandr III.

Emperor Nicholas II of Russia

Where I am inconsistent is with the son of Nicholas II. In English he is called Alexis but in Russian his name is Alexei which is the name I prefer. See! I told you I was inconsistent!

Therefore, in Eastern European Royalty such as Poland, Hungary, Bohemia, Croatia, Romania and Greece I use English to translate thier names.

For example, the late Duke of Edinburgh was Prince Philip of Greece and Denmark. In Greek the name Philip is rendered Fílippos (sometimes spelled Philippos). The former King of Greece, Constantine II, is known as Konstantínos II in Greek.

Where I run into trouble is that the father of King Constantine II is King Paul of Greece yet I often see the eldest son of King Constantine II called Crown Prince Pavlos instead.

Italy is where I am all over the place! For example, the second to last King of Italy was Victor Emmanuel III. In Italian it’s rendered Vittorio Emanuele III. To be honest I’ve used both versions. The same with the name Charles Albert. I prefer that over Carlo Alberto.

However, I prefer Carlo Felice, King of Sardinia over the English translation, Charles Felix. The last King of Italy was King Umberto II. In English Umberto is translated as Humbert. With apologies to people named Humbert I much prefer the name Umberto!

King William III of England, Scotland and Ireland, Stadtholder of the Netherlands and Prince of Orange

Lastly is the Dutch translation of the name William. In Dutch it’s Willem and that is the name I use for Dutch Princes and Kings. However, I handle the name of Willem III, Prince of Orange who became King of England, Scotland and Ireland in 1689 rather uniquely.

Prior to his succession to the thrones of England, Scotland and Ireland I refer to him as Prince Willem III of Orange, Stadtholder of the Netherlands. After he becomes King I then call him King William III of England, Scotland and Ireland.

In the next entry I will speak of how I handle titles from other languages besides English.