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WHAT IS YOUR FATHER’S FIRST NAME?

WHAT IS YOUR FATHER’S FIRST NAME?

Different country, different peculiarities. When it comes to Russia, wonder already comes over you when you fill in the application form: you have to give the first name of your father.

Why is this? Simple: in Russia, names traditionally consist of the birth name, the first name of the father, the so-called father’s name and the last name. For example: Wladimir Wladimirowitsch Putin or Fjodor Michajlowitsch Dostojewski. Putin’s father was thus also named Wladimir and Dostojewski’s farther Michail. Women obviously also have a father’s name, like opera singer Anna Netrebko, whose full name is Anna Jurjewna Netrebko. The father’s name is formed with the first name of the father and the suffix -owitsch or -ewitsch in the male form and -owna or -ewna in the female variant.

In Russian daily life, the first name and father’s name are used out of courtesy. The last name, contrary to the western way, does not play a large role, just like the western titles Mr. and Mrs.. This formulation, however, is increasingly used in Russian language, especially when it comes to foreign relations and foreign people. Also the Russians speak of Mr. Schneider-Ammann or Mr. Donald Trump, but they remain traditional for entries into Russia.

May 18, 2017

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