Newsletter 10

International Council of Onomastic Sciences




Nr. 10. March 2004


1. Presidential statement
2. Minutes of the meeting of the ICOS Board of Directors
   (Regensburg, 28-29 March 2003) - English, German, French
4. ICOS Bibliography Group
5. Conference announcements

please pay your dues, in three languages


1. Presidential statement

A long time has passed since the previous Newsletter was published, but the ICOS Board has not been inactive during 2003, as can be seen in this, for the first time, partly trilingual Newsletter - we have the ambition of producing the next Newsletter entirely trilingual in English, German and French.

An important step has been the establishment of a special Bibliography Group tasked with creating an electronic Internet bibliography. We will continue to publish thematic volumes of ONOMA with a Guest Editor for each volume; No. 38 (Names in North America) is unfortunately delayed.

We are also planning to set up a Terminology Group the first goal of which will be to produce a multilingual dictionary of a relatively small number of key terms, in the longer term possibly leading to an advisorily-prescriptive version. Knowing that onomastic terminology differs very much from one country to another this may seem impossible to attain, but even a small descriptive manual of existing usage of onomastic terminology could turn out to be very useful. But we are well aware of that it is a complicated field to venture into.

The ICOS web-site should have been transferred from Leuven to the University of Sussex in England and updated, but unfortunately the project has encountered certain difficulties. Most, but not quite all, of the problems have been resolved, and we hope to solve the rest before summer. Our intention is also to make the web-site more comprehensive.

According to the statutes, the aims of ICOS are the advancement, representation, and coordination of onomastic sciences on an international level and in an interdisciplinary context, and the promotion of World Congresses at reasonable intervals. Congresses are being held, and ONOMA is published each year, but I am not sure that ICOS engages with the other issues particularly well. In order to find out what the members would like ICOS to do, we intend to send out a questionnaire to all ICOS members.

Mats Wahlberg

2. Minutes of the meeting of the ICOS Board of Directors
   (Regensburg, 28-29 March 2003) - English, German, French

The meeting was organized by Professor Albrecht Greule.

Present: Pierre-Henri Billy, Dunja Brozovi?-Ron?evi?, Ana María Cano González, Richard Coates (Secretary), Doreen Gerritzen (ONOMA Editor), Albrecht Greule (Vice-President), Milan Harvalík, Martina Pitz (Assistant Secretary), Grant Smith (Vice-President), Karina van Dalen-Oskam (Treasurer), Mats Wahlberg (President).

1. The agenda distributed before the meeting was approved, subject to the reversal of the order of points 10. and 11.

The President had received a message from Gerrit Bloothooft containing suggestions for the future activity and development of ICOS, and this was circulated to members of the Board as a general background paper (see Appendix 1).

2. Apologies for absence were received from Alda Rossebastiano.

3. General announcements

The President announced:

(i)upcoming meetings of several national and international bodies; it was decided, where there was sufficient lead time, to announce such meetings in future in the Newsletter and on the web-site.

(ii)that the new Editor of Names was to be Ren Vasiliev.

(iii)that the annual Ehrensperger Report on research in onomastics, edited by Michael McGoff, was in preparation for the current year, and it was decided to encourage ICOS members, through the Newsletter and web-site, to contribute to the Report.

(iv)the deaths of ICOS members Victor Watts and Donald Lance.

4. Minutes of the Board meeting at Uppsala (19 August 2002)

The minutes were noted. The reference to these minutes in Newsletter 9 mentioning Ed Callary as Guest Editor of ONOMA 38 should be corrected to Tom Gasque.

5. Minutes of the General Assembly of ICOS at Uppsala (23 August 2002)

The minutes were noted.

As to point (0), it was remarked that the names of deceased members had not in fact been mentioned by the President, but that a moment of silence had been observed in memory of all those deceased since 1999.

As to point (8), it was remarked by Pierre-Henri Billy that the minutes did not mention explicitly that an uncounted vote on the movement of the seat of ICOS from Leuven to Uppsala had been taken, and this was noted by the Board. After discussion, it was decided that there was no legal obligation for ICOS's internal rules to be deposited with the authorities in Sweden in addition to the Statutes. As to who precisely the "relevant authorities" in Sweden are, the President undertook to provide the Treasurer with the details required for the purposes of her office.

As to point (9), it was remarked by Pierre-Henri Billy that the minutes did not establish that the General Assembly had in fact technically approved the new Statutes, since a two-thirds majority was required to do this, but the minutes referred to an "clear but uncounted simple majority". After thorough discussion, the Board took the view, by 10:1, that the GA had voted so overwhelmingly to approve the Statutes (nemine contradicente and no-one present having demanded a numerical record) that there was no reasonable doubt about the two-thirds majority having been obtained, and that the minutes were therefore misleading and should be altered to say that that was indeed what had happened.

The Board undertook to inform the General Assembly at Pisa what had been noted and done at the Regensburg meeting about the procedural matters in points (8) and (9) - as a courtesy to members, not in order to re-open the matter or to take another vote on the point of substance. Action: RC.

6. President's report

The President reported:
(i)that ONOMA had received financial support from Ortnamnssällskapet i Uppsala and Kungliga Gustav Adolfs akademien, Uppsala

(ii)that he had sent congratulations on behalf of ICOS to Professor Jürgen Udolph, Leipzig, on his 60th birthday

7. Treasurer's report

The Treasurer reported:
(i)that ICOS's agents Peeters had paid money owing for selling ONOMA

(ii)that the option of paying membership dues by MasterCard had been considered but rejected because of the high minimum charge imposed by this company for its transactions

(iii)that wherever possible postage costs were saved by using email

(iv)that an accountant was being sought in the Netherlands to audit ICOS business

(v)that an earning account would be opened for the deposit of ICOS dues

(vi)that a reduced membership fee of 10 euros would come into effect immediately for anyone showing evidence of current doctoral student status

8. Secretary's report

The Secretary reported:
(i)that Newsletter 9 had been distributed in January 2003

(ii)that he had received obituary material about Donald Lance from Professor Lance's brother, and that he had written back expressing ICOS's condolences

It was decided that the original trilingual form of the Newsletter should be reinstated, and that the Assistant Secretary should be responsible for the text in German and French. In future, Newsletters would be placed on the ICOS web-site and distributed wherever possible by email, to which end the Assistant Secretary was compiling a list of members' e-addresses.

9. New Editorial Board of ONOMA

Doreen Gerritzen had accepted the invitation to become Editor-in-Chief in succession to Willy van Langendonck. At her suggestion, the membership of the Editorial Board was established as follows: Board members Billy, Cano, Coates (chair), Greule, Harvalík, Smith and Wahlberg; and the Board would have the power to co-opt members, which it would ordinarily do in the case of Guest Editors who were not Board members. The possibility of corresponding members was raised but not formally proposed.

There was general discussion of how the geographical reach of the contents of ONOMA might be improved; see further points 10. and 11.

10. [circ. as 11.] ONOMA: general discussion

The Editor reported:
(i)that ONOMA 38 would be on the theme "Names in North America", guest editor Tom Gasque; a report had been received from him about the progress of this number (see Appendix 2)

(ii)that there would be an Editorial Board meeting later that day charged with reporting back to the Main Board (point 17. below)

There was general discussion of the thematic content of future volumes, with strong feeling arising against focusing on geographical areas. More favourably viewed were volumes focusing on topics, methodologies, current and new research and research methods, and relations with other disciplines; such themes would be advertised well in advance via the web-site and the Newsletter, and unrelated to those of Congresses held during the time near the date of publication.

There was general discussion of the relationship between the Editor in Chief and Guest Editors. It was affirmed that the Editor in Chief should retain final executive responsibility, whilst the Guest Editor would be responsible for exercising front-line quality control over invited submitted papers, through the use of referees where necessary. Scholars would be free to respond to topics advertised in advance by proposing a paper to the relevant Guest Editor, who would be responsible again for quality control. A proposal was made and accepted to adopt a comité de lecture system, allowing each paper to be read and criticized by two referees, ensuring that no paper was published without two positive recommendations. The Editorial Board would make the final decision whether to adopt this system.

There was discussion of practicalities, including the e-format in which contributors should submit their work to minimize conversion problems arising between authors, editors and printers. Contributors should receive firm guidance on the submission of papers. Layout costs could be minimized through the use of an editing web-site with a conversion program behind it. The desirability of obtaining sponsorship for volumes was accepted.

Professor Thorsten Andersson had written to the Secretary requesting that ONOMA should reaffirm its policy of not publishing necrologies. After some discussion, focusing on whether ONOMA was primarily a scientific journal or the organ of ICOS, it was decided that the Newsletter was a more appropriate vehicle for necrologies, and there was a vote of 9:2 against using ONOMA (seen primarily as a scientific journal) for this purpose.

11. [circ. as 10.] Onomastic Bibliography and Bibliography Group

Now that ONOMA was no longer primarily a bibliographical journal, it was fitting for ICOS to pursue its bibliographical mission in a different way. At the suggestion of the Editor, a Bibliography Group was set up consisting of Board members Brozovi?-Ron?evi?, Coates, Gerritzen (chair) and Harvalík, and Katharina Leibring (Uppsala), Enzo Caffarelli (Rome) and Leendert Brouwer (Amsterdam).

There was general discussion of the scope, format(s) and standards which might be used by an electronic bibliography, to be determined eventually by the Group after receiving advice from others. The Bibliography project would aim to publish material covering the years since 1991 (the date of the last printed ICOS bibliography) to the present day, starting with 2002 and working backwards.

12. The ICOS web presence and the web-site
Background: The Secretary had received a published article from Silvio Brendler containing suggestions useful for the future development of the web-site, and the relevant passages were read out to members of the Board as general background material for the discussion.

The Treasurer reported that three web addresses had been purchased:,,

The Secretary reported that the web-site was in the process of being transferred to a host machine at the University of Sussex.

There was discussion of how the web-site might be developed. Suggestions made included: back-numbers of ONOMA that had been prepared electronically (subject to consultation with Peeters); all issues of the Newsletter; an annuaire of members (subject to data protection requirements); links to relevant bodies' web-sites. The Secretary would collect suggestions and explore ways in which they might be actioned, to report at the next Board meeting.

13. Onomastic terminology - international manual

A strategic paper on this topic prepared by Milan Harvalík was discussed. The first step would be a descriptive catalogue of existing onomastic terminology, which at a later point could be allowed to evolve into a more prescriptive version. Some scepticism was expressed about whether such a project could be realized; in particular, it does not seem to have been established that it is possible to achieve a sufficient consensus about typological classification and methodology. However, it was judged useful to be able to characterize certain procedures as "as recommended by ICOS".

A preliminary or exploratory goal might be to produce a multilingual dictionary of a relatively small number of key terms. A working party was set up to explore the possibilities of such a project further, consisting of Board members Brozovi?-Ron?evi?, Harvalík (chair), Pitz and Wahlberg, and able to co-opt native speakers of appropriate languages when necessary.

Some practicalities were discussed, such as the possible use of doctoral students in the information-collection phase of the project, and some projects already in existence that might serve as models were drawn to the Group's attention.

14. ICOS-21: Congress acts

The President, in his capacity as an organizer of ICOS-21, reported that 219 papers had been read at Uppsala, and 174 papers had so far been received for publication. It was intended to publish the proceedings, in four conventional volumes and on CD-ROM, before ICOS-22.

15. ICOS-22, Pisa, Italy (2005)

The President and VP Greule had attended a meeting in Pisa in January 2003 with the organizing committee. The preliminary committee consisted, in addition to the President and Vice-President Greule and local professors, of Ernst Eichler, Isolde Hausner, Botolv Helleland, Dieter Kremer, Bill Nicolaisen and Rob Rentenaar. The theme of the Congress was to be "Namen in Zeit und Raum" ["Names in time and space"]. Italian would be an additional official language. A preliminary structure and timetable were presented (see Appendix 3). There would be six sections, each with two sub-sections, as well as special sessions. There was some discussion about whether it really made sense to dispense with lectures on the Monday, since Sunday is the official arrival day. It was suggested that more time could be made available for the General Assembly on the following Saturday. Finally, enquiries would be made about the possibility of poster presentations during the Congress. There would be financial support for the Congress from the University of Pisa, but other sponsorship had not been sought. There was brief discussion of the pros and cons of sponsorship deals.

16. Expenses for attending Board meetings

The Board noted that not all members had equal access to funds to support their ICOS activities, but thought that a general increase in membership fees to pay expenses across the board would be counterproductive. However, if the Board wished ICOS to aim to be more fully international, it could be worth establishing a fund to pay the expenses of Board members from poor countries; possible mechanisms were discussed.

The meeting was suspended at 1700 on 28 March and resumed at 1000 on 29 March.

17. Report of the Editorial Board of ONOMA

The Editor in Chief reported the recommendations of the Editorial Board meeting held during the Regensburg meeting on 28 March:

(i)articles in ONOMA should in future have an abstract in one official ICOS language other than the language in which they are written (to be translated from the language of the original abstract by a Board member), and in one other language if the author deemed it relevant (to be supplied where possible by the author her-/himself)

(ii)articles in ONOMA should be selected as follows: the Guest Editor to make the initial selection, and to suggest a second reader for each submitted article

(iii)themes for upcoming volumes should be as follows (with the names in brackets being those of potential Guest Editors who could be approached):

39 Name Studies and Teaching (Gerhard Koss, Botolv Helleland)

40 Literary Onomastics (Friedhelm Debus, Grant Smith)

41 Name Theory (Richard Coates)

In general, the material in these thematic volumes should not be merely descriptive, but should progress from the introductory to the theoretical (where it is relevant to do so).

These recommendations were accepted by the Board of Directors.

18. ICOS 2002-5: what do we want to achieve?

Bringing together some of the key decisions taken by the Board, the President stated the main objectives of this Board's term of office as being:

(i)the expansion of membership, with due account being taken of possible student membership (see also point 19.)
(ii)the development of ICOS's web-presence (also passim in these Minutes)
(iii)the development of the Bibliography
(iv)the development of the Terminology Project

19. Membership drive; questionnaire; new list of members

The Board agreed that a membership drive was timely. Support was expressed for a campaign targeting North America and selected other, especially non-European, countries with developed traditions in onomastic work (Peru and Mexico were mentioned), and it was noted that members of United Nations Group of Experts on Geographical Names (UNGEGN) might be useful contacts in any such campaign. VP Smith reminded the Board of the well-established American Name Society, and reported the results of a survey of what might make ICOS more attractive to its members. Many American universities have academic years which make attendance at ICOS impossible. Many Americans find the arrangements for the paying of fees difficult, and it was agreed to establish an Assistant Tresurer role for the handling of dues from North America. VP Smith volunteered himself for this role. There had been scepticism expressed about whether Europeans were really interested in North American onomastics, and the Board will have to ponder the implications of this. VP Smith attributed part of this perception to an overall difference of approach between the US and Europe, with the US weaker in linguistics but stronger in the impact of popular culture on naming. A Congress in North America would have a strong recruiting impact, and Congresses might usefully have regionally-focused sessions (though this was not being done at ICOS-22). ONOMA 38 had drawn praise.

A recruitment drive was suggested, the first move in which would be the circulation by Grant Smith of a questionnaire to find out when university-based North Americans would be most easily available for a Congress in 2008 and later ICOS years.

The Board agreed that developing ICOS's visibility between Congresses was necessary. This could be done as follows:
(i)by making the web-site and the Newsletter more informative.

(ii)by increasing knowledge about ONOMA.

(iii)by running workshops, perhaps annually, on special topics.

(iv)by encouraging local organizations to affiliate in some way to ICOS as an umbrella organization so that ICOS could be instrumental in spreading knowledge of their activities to a world audience. Some current examples of society affiliations were noted, and the Secretary undertook to bring to the next Board meeting some possible models of affiliation.

(v)by promoting ICOS as the repository of the broadest range of available expertise in onomastic matters and fostering contacts between interested parties, academic, institutional/governmental and private.

(vi)by making lists of members widely available, though this matter has legal implications which need further exploration.

20. Next Newsletter

Newsletter 10 would be trilingual (see point 8.). The Editor of ONOMA undertook to devise a questionnaire about members' needs of ICOS, to be included in NL 10.

21. Next Board meeting

Prague, March 2004, organized by Milan Harvalík.
A meeting of the Bibliography Group will take place in Amsterdam in Autumn 2003.

22. Any other business

(i) The Treasurer drew attention to a suggestion from Gerrit Bloothooft that an abstracts book should be made available in advance of ICOS-22.

(ii) Given that there are three membership lists in use - those of the Treasurer, the Secretary and the e-listing one of the Assistant Secretary, moves will be made to make one the mother-list from which the others, as necessary, can be updated. The Tresurer's will serve this function.

(iii) Recapitulation: every effort will be made to increase the use of e-media to eliminate postage costs and to develop ICOS's visibility.

The Board expressed its gratitude to Albrecht Greule for excellent arrangements.

Richard Coates

Appendices (not reproduced here)
Appendix 1: message to the President from Gerrit Bloothooft
Appendix 2: report from Tom Gasque on the progress of ONOMA 38
Appendix 3: preliminary schedule for ICOS-22 from Maria Giovanna Arcamone

| French | Deutsch |

After a decision made at the third international congress of onomastic sciences in Brussels in 1949, an International Committee of Onomastic Sciences, and an International Centre of Onomastics were set up in Louvain (Leuven, Belgium). A journal ONOMA was founded as a Bibliographical and Information Bulletin (annual onomastic bibliographies per linguistic area; articles and communications) by H.J. van de Wijer in 1950, continued by H. Draye in 1968, and taken over by Willy van Langendonck from 1982. (Willy van Langendonck had already supervised the editing of the bibliographies from 1964.)

After the reorganization of the Committee as an International Council of Onomastic Sciences at the Trier Congress in 1993, the role of ONOMA also changed: it ceased being a Bibliographical and Information Bulletin, and became a Journal or Yearbook. In 1997, the Editorial Board proposed that volumes of Onoma should have a specific theme, and that guest editors should be appointed for each thematic issue. This policy was ratified by the Board of Directors at the meeting in Santiago in 1998. From ONOMA 34 on, Willy van Langendonck was assisted as editor-in-chief by a guest editor.

At the Board Meeting in Uppsala in 2002, Willy van Langendonck resigned as a consequence of his oncoming retirement in 2003 as a full professor at the University of Leuven. The ICOS board would like to express its gratitude for his work. The successor of Willy van Langendonck is Doreen Gerritzen, who works at the Meertens Instituut in Amsterdam (; Post box 94264, NL-1090 GG Amsterdam).

At the meeting of the ICOS board in Regensburg (28th and 29th of March 2003) the new Editorial Board of ONOMA was chosen. The names are: Pierre-Henri Billy (, Ana Maria Cano González (, Richard Coates (, Albrecht Greule (, Milan Harvalík (, Grant Smith ( ) and Mats Wahlberg (

The former ICOS Board had chosen the subject for ONOMA 38 (2003), 'Names in North America', a guest editor had, however, not yet been appointed. After the ICOS congress in Uppsala (August 2002) Doreen Gerritzen approached Thomas J. Gasque to take on this task (; 3919 Dubose Drive, Columbia, SC 29204 USA). The work on volume 38 of ONOMA is of course still in progress. We hope to publish it this year.

At the meeting of the Editorial Board in Regensburg the themes and guest editors for the next three volumes of ONOMA were chosen; they are reported in the minutes above, and repeated here with the editors' full personal details.

Volume 39 (2004): Name Studies and Teaching, guest editor Botolv Helleland (; Seksjon for namnegransking, Institutt for nordistikk og litteraturvitskap, Universitetet i Oslo, Postboks 1011 Blindern, N-0315 Oslo); advisor Gerhard Koß (Söllnerstraße 3, D-92637 Weiden i. D. Opf.).

Volume 40 (2005): Literary Onomastics, guest editors Friedhelm Debus (Dorfstraße 21, D-24241 Schierensee/Kiel) and Grant Smith (; Eastern Washington University, MS-25, 250 Patterson Hall, Cheney, WA 99004-2430, USA).

Volume 41 (2006): Name Theory, guest editor Richard Coates (; Dept of Linguistics and English Language, School of Humanities, University of Sussex, Brighton BN1 9QH, UK).

3. ICOS Bibliography Group

At the meeting of the ICOS board in Regensburg a Bibliography Group was established. This group consists of Dunja Brozovi?-Ron?evi?, Richard Coates, Karina van Dalen-Oskam, Doreen Gerritzen (chair) and Milan Harvalík from the ICOS board, and Katharina Leibring (SOFI, Sweden), Enzo Caffarelli (editor of RIOn, Italy) and Leendert Brouwer (Meertens Instituut, the Netherlands).

The goal of the ICOS Bibliography Group is the creation of an onomastic bibliography which is accessible on the Internet. This bibliography can of course be consulted on every computer with access to the Internet, but it will also be possible to submit material from every such computer.

At the first meeting of the ICOS Bibliography Group (Amsterdam, 17 October 2003) the design of the database was discussed. The work on a protoype of the database can soon be started. At the second meeting of the group (Prague, 25 March 2004) the procedure for creating entries in the database will be discussed.

If you have any questions about the work of the ICOS Bibliography Group please contact Doreen Gerritzen (; Post box 94264, NL-1090 GG Amsterdam).

4. Conference announcements


First Circular

International Onomastic Symposium

"Naming the World:
From Common Nouns to Proper Names"

September, 2-4, 2004
University of Zadar
Zadar, Croatia

Adriatic Onomastic Research Center, University of Zadar, Croatia,
The Institute of Croatian Language and Linguistics, Zagreb, Croatia
Rivista Italiana di Onomastica, Rome, Italy

With the collaboration of:
Centro di Toponomastica della Società Filologica Friulana, Udine, Italy
Instituto da Lingua Galega, Universidade de Santiago de Compostela, Santiago, Spain
Laboratorio di onomastica della Facolta di Lettere dell'Universita di Craiova, Romania
Linguistic Research Institute of the Croatian Academy of Sciences and Arts, Zagreb, Croatia
Latvian Language Institut University of Latvia, Riga, Latvia
Meertens Instituut, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
SOFI, Institute for Dialectology, Onomastics and Folklore Research, Uppsala, Sweden
Ústav pro jazyk ?eský Akademie v?d ?eské republiky, Úsek onomastiky, Prague, Czech Republic

Organizing committee:
Dunja Brozovi? Ron?evi? (Zagreb, Croatia)
Enzo Caffarelli (Rome, Italy)
Doreen Gerritzen (editor-in-chief of Onoma; Amsterdam, The Netherlands)
Milan Harvalík (Prague, Czech Republic)Vladimir Skra?i? (Zadar, Croatia)
Mats Wahlberg (president of ICOS, Uppsala, Sweden)

For further information:

Dr Vladimir Skra?i?
University of Zadar
Obala kralja P.Kre?imira IV, 2
HR-23000 Zadar, Croatia

Phone +385-23-200 587;
Fax +385-23-316 882

Dr Dunja Brozovi? Ron?evi?
Institut of Croatian Language and Linguistics
Strossmayerov trg 2
HR-10000 Zagreb, Croatia

Phone +385-1-4816 215;
Fax +385-1-4816 216;


Dear colleagues,

The Adriatic Onomastic Research Center (University of Zadar, Croatia),
The Institute of Croatian Language and Linguistics (Zagreb, Croatia)
and Rivista Italiana di Onomastica (Rome, Italy)

are organizing the International Symposium entitled

"Naming the World:
From Common Nouns to Proper Names"


The Symposium will be held at the University of Zadar from September 2nd to 4th 2004.

Objectives: The international symposium will address the onomastic problem of the onymization of the appellatives or common nouns. This approach will make it possible to deepen two principal aspects of onomastic studies: the etymological aspect on one hand and the motivational perspective on the other. At the same time, the analysis of the models in which speakers are using the lexicon in order to form proper names, represents one of the modalities that can be used to evaluate the interdisciplinary nature of onomastics, and its relations to other sciences.

We take this opportunity to invite you to contribute a paper and enrich the symposium with your expertise and valued participation.

Papers involving a comparative approach between languages are strongly encouraged.

An abstract in English (of max. 100 words) should briefly indicate the paper's aim, perspective and findings, and must be submitted to the organizers of the symposium (preferably by e-mail) before March 15, 2004.

The organizing committee will evaluate abstracts.
English will be the official language of the symposium, but papers in French, Italian, Spanish and German are also welcome.

There is no registration fee for participants.

The proceedings with the full-accepted papers will be published soon after the symposium in RIOn (Rivista Italiana di Onomastica).

The Symposium will be followed by the one week International Workshop in cross-cultural onomastics. Workshop enrollment is limited to 18 persons.




Peterhouse, Cambridge, 26th-29th March 2004


The above conference, kindly organised by Dr Oliver Padel, is expected to include the following papers:

Rosemary Horrox (Cambridge) on medieval Cambridge

Stella Pratt (Glasgow) on English place-names in south Scotland

Alan James (Derbyshire) «Why Cymri and Cumbria?»

Davyth Hicks (Edinburgh) on Celtic place-names in south Scotland

Beth Fos (Cambridge) on Brythonic place-names in the eastern Borders

Kay Muhr (Belfast) on Irish and Scottish surnames from saints' names

David Dumville (Cambridge) on a topic to be announced

Joan Greatrex (Cambridge) «Who were the monks of Ely?»

Maire Ni Mhaonaigh (Cambridge) «Loch Lann, an Irish literary place-name»

A talk on lay subsidies.

It is hoped to visit the Parker Library, Corpus Christi College, and to have a trip on the Sunday to Sutton Hoo, led by Dr Simon Keynes.

SNSBI members will receive fuller details and a booking form within the next couple of weeks. Non-members who are interested in attending should contact:

Miss Jennifer Scherr
Hon. Secretary SNSBI
c/o Medical Library
School of Medical Sciences
University of Bristol
University Walk
Bristol, BS8 1TD


| Back to TOP |
Nr. 8 April 2002


1. Meeting of the Board of Directors (BoD) at Vienna
2. Remark on Statutes
3. ICOS XXI, Uppsala : Names in Language and Society
4. Registration of ICOS
5. General Assembly of ICOS 2002
        Nomination form
        Agenda of the General Assembly, Uppsala
6. Minutes of the General Assembly of ICOS 1999 (Santiago de Compostela)
7. ICOS Homepage – http.//
8. Next BoD meeting
9. E-mail addresses (respectively postal address) of the members of the present BoD
Adresses of ICOS members
10.Application form / Mitgliedsantrag / Demande d'Adhésion

Editorial: Inge Bily, Pierre-Henri Billy, Isolde Hausner. - Sächsische Akademie der Wissenschaften zu Leipzig, PF 100440, D-04004 Leipzig, e-mail: – 27, rue des Sœurs, F-31250 Revel, e-mail : – Österreichische Akademie der Wissenschaften, Institut für Österreichische Dialekt- und Namenlexika, Postgasse 7-9/Stg. 2, A-1010 Wien, e-mail: - The aim of the newsletter is to improve communication between the members of ICOS. It is issued at least once a year.
1. Meeting of the Board of Directors (BoD) at Vienna
From 14th – 17th May, 2002 a regular meeting of the ICOS Board took place at Österreichische Akademie der Wissenschaften, Vienna, organized by I. Hausner.
The main topics to be discussed focussed on the preparation of ICOS congress in Uppsala, the General Assembly, the preparations for the election of a new ICOS Board and the publication of ONOMA 36 and 37.
The organizers of ICOS XXI informed about the state of preparation, the program and the number of papers in the various sections.
In the meeting of the Editorial board the guest-editors of ONOMA 36, 37 gave informations about the contents of the volumes and V. Kohlheim (chair of the Editorial board) sent drafts in written form (style sheet, list of collaborators, list of topics) for an international bibliography.

2. Remark on Statutes of ICOS
at the advice of a lawyer : insertion in article 12 :
Article 12 - Arbitration
In case of conflict between two individual members or an individual member and ICOS, each member may appoint a referee and the two referees will appoint a third referee to arbitrate the conflict. In case of deadlock the third referee will be appointed by the ICOS Board. Referees need not be members of ICOS.

3. ICOS XXI, Uppsala : Names in Language and Society
The 21st International Congress of Onomastic Sciences will be held from 19th – 24th August, 2002 at Uppsala (Sweden). It is arranged by : the Institute for Dialectology, Onomastics and Folklore Research, the Department of Scandinavian Languages at Uppsala University and the Royal Gustavus Adolphus Academy for Swedish Folk Culture.
The organizing committee is constituted of the following persons : Th. Andersson, L. Elmevik, B. Lindquist, S. Strandberg, E. Brylla, M. Wahlberg.

4. Registration of ICOS
Since December, 4th 2001 ICOS is registrated in Sweden.
The address of the ICOS seat will be the following :
Sprak- och folkminnesinstitutet, Box 135, SE-751 04 Uppsala, Sweden

5. General Assembly of ICOS 2002
The next General Assembly of ICOS will be held at Uppsala on Friday, 23rd August 2002, 6 p.m.. The preliminary Agenda is sent along with this Newsletter together with the Minutes of the last General Assembly, held at Santiago de Compostela on Saturday, 25th September 1999, at 4.30 p.m.
Only members paid up by 31st March 2002 are allowed to participate and vote in the General Assembly.
Proxy votes
According to Article 8.2 of the Statutes of ICOS (published in Newsletter No. 7, January 2002) a maximum of three proxy votes per member is allowed. Proxy votes must be submitted in written form with signature (not e-mail) by the latest on the first evening of the congress to the president of ICOS, Dr. Isolde Hausner (Institut für Österreichische Dialekt- und Namenlexika, A-1010 Wien, Postgasse 7, 2. Stock; Fax +43 1 515 81 3495). A written authorisation with signature (not e-mail) from the person represented is required.
Election of the Board of Directors (BoD)
According to Article 9 of the Statutes of ICOS (published in Newsletter 7, January 2002) the BoD consists of the following persons : President, 2 Vice-Presidents, Secretary, Treasurer, Assistant Secretary (ex-officio members) and six non-ex-officio members.
The nomination of candidates for a function as one of the ex-officio members as well as one of the six non-ex-officio members has to be signed by the candidate and by at least one ICOS member supporting the nomination (the nominator). No nominations by e-mail can be accepted. No later than June 20th, 2002 the nominations should be sent to the Chair of the Election Committee, Inge Bily, Sächsische Akademie der Wissenschaften zu Leipzig, PF 100 440, D-04004 Leipzig, Fax : ++ 341/711 53 44. Consequently nominations cannot be accepted during the congress.
If the candidate is proposed for a specific function it should be stated whether he or she is proposed for the function only or, if not elected, is also nominated as one of the six non-ex-officio members.
Due to administrative reasons all candidates and all nominators must be paid-up members of ICOS before March 31, 2002.
In the nomination of candidates the members of ICOS should take into consideration that the BoD should cover a wide range of disciplines and countries.
The list of the candidates for a function as one of the ex-officio members and their nominators as well as the list of the candidates for a post as one of the six non-ex-officio members and their nominators will be announced on the second day of the congress.
At the General Assembly the candidates for a function as ex-officio member will briefly (2 minutes maximum) introduce themselves. The candidates for a post as one of the six non-ex-officio members will be present in alphabetic order with the name of the country.
The ex-officio members will be elected first. After the votes have been counted, the election of the six non-ex-officio members will be carried out.
Download form Nomination (pdf-document)
General Assembly of ICOS, Uppsala,
Friday, 23rd of August 2002, 6 p.m.
Approval of the agenda.
Designation of the minute-taker.
Confirmation of new members.
(4) Minutes of the General Assembly, Santiago de Compostela, 1999.
(5) President´s report.
(6) Secretary-Treasurer´s report.
(7) Report of the Editorial Board.
(8) Registration of ICOS.
(9) Approval of the Statutes.
(10) Election of the Board of Directors.
(11) Membership fee.
(12) ICOS XXII (2005).
(13) Other business.

6. Minutes of the General Assembly of ICOS 1999



The Second General Assembly of ICOS took place at Santiago de Compostela, on Saturday 25 September 1999, at 4.30pm.
1. The Agenda for the Meeting, previously circulated, was issued and approved without amendment.
2. The President, Prof. Rob Rentenaar, welcomed 91 members or their representatives to the Second General Assembly of the International Council of Onomastic Sciences (ICOS). He asked members present to confirm the admission of 28 new members since the meeting of the General Assembly in 1996, in accordance with Article 4(b) of the Statutes. These new members were duly confirmed.
3. The Minutes of the Meeting of the First General Assembly, held at Aberdeen on 10 August 1996, were approved and Dr Doreen Waugh was thanked for her excellent record of the occasion. There were no matters arising from the Minutes.
4. The President, Prof. Rob Rentenaar, in presenting his Report, paid tribute to the spirit of renewal, as an open society, which had inspired the Board of Directors of ICOS for the past three years. His report could be short, thanks to the existence of the ICOS Newsletter, of which three issued had appeared so far. He invited members to use this channel to improve communication within ICOS. The ICOS web-site, based at the University of Louvain, was still in the experimental stage, but would provide bibliographical information previously published in Onoma. Onoma itself was now be a scholarly onomastic yearbook. The President also welcomed the publication of the first two volumes of the Trier proceedings (1993) and of the complete proceedings for Aberdeen (1996). He thanked the editors for their work on behalf of ICOS. He reported that the Statutes were still in a transitional phase. The present Board of Directors had formulated a set of Draft Statutes which had been circulated and would be discussed later today.
5. The Secretary-Treasurer, Willy van Langendonck, presented his last Report before remitting office. The financial report had also been checked by B. Helleland and F. Tato-Plaza. The report was approved and the President thanked W. van Langendonck for his long and invaluable association with ICOS.
6. Prof. Rentenaar reported that the membership fee was decided by the Board of Directors but was subject to ratification by the General Assembly, in accordance with Article 5. It was agreed that the fee would be paid from now on in Euros, and would be 20 Euros a year from 2000 onwards.
7. The report of the Membership Committee was presented by Prof. Rudolf Sramek. The Committee consisted of himself, Dr Vibeke Dahlberg, Prof. Maria Arcamone, Dr Ritva Pitkanen and Prof. Rob Rentenaar. There were currently 262 members, from 39 countries. A booklet giving members' names and addresses had been prepared and distributed. Prof. Sramek invited members to submit corrections and additions for an improved version. He thanked the other members of the Committee for their help in this task. Prof. Rentenaar thanked Prof. Sramek for this useful document and asked him to convey the Council's gratitude to the Marasyk University, Brno, Czech Republic for bearing the production costs of the booklet.
8. The Report of the Editorial Board, submitted by Dr Margaret Gelling, was presented by W. van Langendonck. In 1993 it had been decided to replace the bibliographical items in Onoma with onomastic reports. As these had been slow to come forward, a new policy had been adopted at a meeting of the Board in Brno in May 1997, proposing that volumes should have specific themes, and guest editors. A meeting in Santiago de Compostela in February 1998 had ratified this. Onoma 34, on personal names, edited by Prof. Zofia Kaleta, had appeared in June 1999. Onoma 35 would be edited by Dr. Isolde Hausner and would cover standardization of names. The bibliographical classification for the new web-site was still under discussion, so this material was not yet available. The new Board would appoint a Working Group to develop the site.
8. The Election of the Board of Directors (President, two Vice-presidents, Secretary, Treasurer, Assistant Secretary and six non-ex-officio members) took place. A separate record of the election process is attached. After the elections, Prof. Rentenaar congratulated the new Board of Directors, and welcomed the new President, Dr Isolde Hausner, to the chair. Ex-Board members withdrew and the new Board members assembled on the platform. Dr Hausner thanked Prof. Rentenaar and the former Board members for their contributions towards establishing the new ICOS.
Dr Hausner introduced a very thorough discussion of the new Draft Statutes. Dr Ritva Pitkänen had chaired a working group which had met twice to revise the Statutes, though in practice the whole Board of Directors had been involved. The proposed revisions had been distributed to members with Newsletter No. 3 and were put before the General Assembly now. New passages were marked in bold script; passages to be replaced were in square brackets. The proposed changes were mostly minor.
Article 4.
Dr Pitkänen explained that references to "founding members" could now be deleted. Personal and institutional members could now be admitted. There was now no need for the Membership Committee, so references to this could be deleted as well.
After a lengthy discussion from the floor relating to conditions and procedures for membership of ICOS, Dr Dahlberg reminded those present that any proposed alterations should have been submitted in writing before 31 July 1999. The President suggested that the proposals to alter Article 4 should be voted on as they stood. The proposed wording for Article 4 was therefore agreed as circulated.
Article 2.
The President explained that it was still legally preferable to have ICOS based in Belgium. Any future change of address would only be made by agreement at the General Assembly, and not by the Board of Directors. In answer to queries from Dr Lapierre, Prof. Embleton, and others, she explained that registration was likely before the end of the year, provided that this was in accordance with Belgian law, and with the permission of the University of Louvain. Willy van Langendonk clarified the legal advice received, which was that ICOS could be registered in Belgium provided we had at least one ICOS member from Belgium (that is, not necessarily a member of the Board of Directors).
A number of members expressed their concern over the implications of the proposed changes in Article 2, the legal status of the current Statutes, and the omission of any statement in the Draft Statutes to the effect that any change of address would now have to be agreed by the General Assembly (amongst other matters). After various proposals from the floor of different ways to take these concerns forward, the President asked for the General Assembly’s approval to submit the Draft Statutes for registration, after further work by the Board of Directors, which would take all these comments into account. This was agreed.
Prof. Thorsten Andersson led a delegation from Sweden to invite ICOS to Uppsala for the next conference. This, ICOS XXI, would be hosted by the University of Uppsala, in association with the Institute for Dialectology, Onomastics and Folklore Research, and the Academy for Swedish Folk Culture, and would be held from 19-24 August, 2002. This inivitation was accepted with acclaim.
Dr P Raper suggested that South Africa might be considered for ICOS XXII, in 2005.
13. There being no other business, the President closed the meeting at 8.30pm, with thanks to the members for their participation and their commitment for the next three years.


There were 75 ratified members present, together with 18 proxy votes received on behalf of members unable to be present.
In accordance with Articles 7 and 11 of the Statutes, the membership present at the General Assembly proceeded to vote, by secret ballot.
The nominated candidates introduced themselves as follows:
President : Dr Isolde Hausner (Austria)
Vice-president : Prof Ernst Eichler (Germany) (withdrawn)
Dr Ritva Pitkänen (Finland) (withdrawn)
Prof Maria Arcamone (Italy)
Prof Sheila Embleton (Canada)
Botolv Helleland (Norway)
Dr Mats Wahlberg (Sweden)
Secretary : Dr Inge Bily (Germany)
Dr Mats Wahlberg (Sweden)
Treasurer : Prof Zofia Kaleta (Poland)
Assistant Secretary : Dr Pierre-Henri Billy (France)
It was agreed that Prof Dieter Kremer, Dr Vibeke Dahlberg and Prof Rudolf Sramek, assisted by three ordinary members from Spain present (Ana Boullon Agrello, Raquel Aira Gonzales and Maria Carmen Garcia Ares) would count the votes.
President : 91 votes received, 88 in favour of Dr Isolde Hausner.
Vice-President : 91 votes for four candidates for two positions: the top scorers were Mats Wahlberg (50) and Botolv Helleland (48), who were thus declared elected.
Secretary : In accepting the Vice-Presidency, Mats Wahlberg withdrew, leaving only one candidate. There were 91 votes, 84 in favour of Dr Inge Bily.
Treasurer : 91 votes, 77 in favour of Zofia Kaleta, the only candidate.
Assistant Secretary : 89 votes, 82 in favour of Pierre-Henri Billy, the only candidate.
Non-ex-officio members :
Nominations (apart from those now elected ex-officio) as follows:
Prof. Peter Anreiter (Austria)
Prof. Maria Arcamone (Italy)
Dr Laimute Balode (Latvia)
Ana Maria Cano Gonzales (Spain)
Prof. Richard Coates (England)
Prof. Ernst Eichler (Germany)
Prof. Sheila Embleton (Canada)
Dr Volker Kohlheim (Germany)
Prof. André Lapierre (Canada)
Dr Ritva Pitkänen (Finland)
Prof. Grant Smith (USA)
90 votes were cast for each candidate. The top scorers were Balode (55) Cano and Pitkänen (52 each) Arcamone (48), Smith (46) and Kohlheim and Lapierre (both with 45). The Assembly proceeded to a further vote on Kohlheim and Lapierre. At this stage there were 82 votes, of which 43 were in favour of Kohlheim. The non-ex-officio members elected were therefore as follows:
Prof. Maria Arcamone
Dr Laimute Balode
Ana Maria Cano Gonzales
Dr Volker Kolheim
Dr Ritva Pitkänen
Prof. Grant Smith
Prof. Rentenaar read out the results and the Assembly acclaimed the new Board of Directors.
                                                                                                                                                                JENNIFER SCHERR

University of Bristol, 30 October 2000

7. ICOS Homepage – http.//
contains informations on :
– the history of ICOS, the aims and the statutes ;
– list of congresses ;
– the latest Newsletter ;
– list of the members of the present BoD ;
– application form for membership with the ability to download the application form ;
– links to affiliated or related institutions ;
– link to UNGEGN.

8. Next BoD meeting
Uppsala : 19th August 2002 .

9. E-mail addresses
(respectively postal address) of the members of the present BoD:
M. G. Arcamone:
L. Balode:
P.-H. Billy:
I. Bily:
A. M. Cano-González:
I. Hausner:
B. Helleland:
Z. Kaleta:
V. Kohlheim:
R.-L. Pitkänen:
G. W. Smith:
M. Wahlberg:;
Schloßhof Birken 11, D-95 447 Bayreuth;

We ask all ICOS members to control their adresses (phone-, fax- and e-mail-numbers) in the ICOS membership list which was distributed at Santiago de Compostela and in case of mistakes to send a correction to Inge Bily, Sächsische Akademie der Wissenschaften zu Leipzig, PF 100 440, D-04004 Leipzig : Fax : 0341/ 7 11 53 44, e-mail:

Please, send your e-mail address to :

10. Application form

International Council of Onomastic Sciences (ICOS)


Application for membership
ICOS (International Council of Onomastic Sciences) is the international organization for all scholars active in the field of onomastics, including place-names, personal names and other proper names. Its aims are the advancement, the representation and the coordination of onomastic sciences on an international level and in an interdisciplinary context. The headquarters of the organisation is at the International Centre of Onomastics, Blijde-Inkomststraat 21, P.O.B. 33, B-3000 Leuven (BELGIUM).
Membership of ICOS is open to all scholars who are actively involved in onomastic research. The annual fee for membership of ICOS is 20 EUR.
Payment of the ICOS membership fee can be made in 3 ways, though the first possibility is to be prefered :
1. 20 EUR to be paid into : PCA (postal cheque account) 000-0557913-66 ICOS, Leuven (Belgium) :
2. By International Postal Money Order at your Post Office 000-0557913-66 ICOS, Leuven (Beglium) ;
3. By credit card : VISA, EUROCARD/MASTERCARD.
Members of ICOS receive a free copy of the organization’s yearbook ONOMA, containing overviews of current work in the various areas of onomastic research. They have the opportunity to gather at the meeting of the General Assembly, which will normally be held during a World Congress on Onomastics, sponsored by ICOS and organized by one of its members.
Applications for membership should be sent to ICOS, International Centre of Onomastics, P.O.Box 33, Blijde-Inkomststraat 21, B-3000 Leuven (Belgium).

Download application-form



ICOS (International Council of Onomastic Sciences) ist die internationale Organisation aller Forscher, die sich mit Namen (Ortsnamen, Personennamen und sonstigen Eigennamen) beschäftigen. Ziel der Organisation ist die Förderung, die Vertretung und die Koordination der Namenforschung auf internationaler Ebene und im interdisziplinären Zusammenhang. Der Sitz des ICOS ist am International Centre of Onomastics, Postfach 33, Blijde-Inkomststraat 21, B-3000 Leuven (Belgien).
Jeder Forscher, der sich aktiv mit Namenforschung beschäftigt, kann Mitglied des ICOS werden.
Der Jahresmitgliedsbeitrag beträgt 20 EUR.
Die Zahlung des Jahresmitgliedsbeitrages des ICOS kann auf 3 Weisen geleistet werden, wobei die erste Möglichkeit vorzuziehen ist :
1. 20 EUR einzahlen auf : PSK (Postscheckkonto) 000-0557913-66 ICOS, Leuven (Belgien) ;
2. Mit Auslandspostanweisung in Ihrem Postamt 000-0557913-66 ICOS, Leuven (Belgien) ;
Mitglieder des ICOS erhalten ein Gratisexemplar von ONOMA, dem offiziellen Jahrbuch der Organisation. Es enthält aktuelle Forschungsberichte aus den verschiedenen Bereichen der Namenkunde. Sie nehmen an der Generalversammlung teil, die gewöhnlich in Verbindung mit dem Weltkongreß für Namenforschung stattfindet, der vom ICOS unterstützt und von einem seiner Mitglieder organisiert wird.
Anträge auf Mitgliedschaft sind zu richten an ICOS, International Centre of Onomastics, Postfach 33, Blijde-Inkomststraat 21, B-3000 Leuven (BELGIEN).


Download Formular Mitgliedsantrag

Demande d' adhésion

ICOS (International Council of Onomastic Sciences) est l’organisation de tous les chercheurs travaillant activement en onomastique (noms de lieux, de personnes et autres noms propres). Le but de cette organisation est de promouvoir, de représenter et de coordonner les sciences onomastiques au niveau international et dans un contexte interdisciplinaire. Le siège de l’organisation se trouve au Centre International d’Onomastique, B.P. 33, Blijde-Inkomststraat 21, B-3000 Leuven (Belgique).
Tous les onomasticiens actifs peuvent devenir membre de l’ICOS. Les cotisations annuelles de l’ICOS s’élèvent à 20 EUR.
Le paiement des cotisations de l’ICOS peut se faire de 3 façons, bien que la première modalité soit préférable :
1. 20 EUR à virer au : CCP (compte chèque postal) 000-0557913-66 ICOS, Leuven (Belgique) ;
2. Mandat postal international à votre Poste 000-0557913-66 ICOS, Leuven (Belgique) ;
Les membres d’ICOS reçoivent un exemplaire gratuit d’ONOMA, l’annuaire officiel de l’organisation. Cette revue contiendra des rapports actualisés des différents secteurs des études onomastiques. L’assemblée générale a lieu généralement à l’occasion du congrès mondial des sciences onomastiques, qui est soutenu par l’ICOS et organisé par un de ses membres.
Veuillez adresser votre demande d’adhésion à l’ICOS, International Centre of Onomastics, P.O.B. 33, B-3000 Leuven (Belgique).

à télécharger: formulaire de demande d'adhésion