Ghanaian name

Ghanaian names (or personal names in Ghana) consist of several given names and surnames based on the language of ethnic groups in Ghana: including Akan, Mole-Dagombas, Ga, Ewe and Nzema. Frequently, children are given a "day name" which corresponds to the day in the week when they were born. These day names have further meanings concerning the soul and character of the person. Middle names have considerably more variety and can refer to their birth order, twin status, or an ancestor's middle name. These names are also used among Ghanaians living abroad and among Africans living in the diaspora who wish to identify with their ancestral homeland. During the 18th and 19th centuries, the enslaved people from modern day Ghana in the Caribbean were referred to as Coromantees. Most day names among the Mole-Dagombas are usually given to the females, and few are given to both sexes.

Most Ghanaians have at least one name from this system, even if they also have an Arabic or western name. Notable figures with day names include Ghana's first president Kwame Nkrumah and former United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan.

Examples of Ghanaian day names (mainly in the southern part)Edit

Gender Male Female
Sunday Akwasi, Kwasi, Kwesi, Akwesi, Sisi, Kacely, Koshi, Kosi Koshiwa, Kosiwa, Kwasiwa, Akosua, Akasi, Akos, Esi, Awesi, Awan
Monday Kojo, Kwadwo, Jojo, Joojo, Kujoe, Kwadzo, Kodzo Adzo, Adwoa, Adjoa, Adzoa, Adwoma, Adwoba
Tuesday Kobla, Kwabena, Ebo, Komla, Kwabla, Kabenla, Kobe, Kobi, Kobby, Kobina Abla, Abena, Abenayo, Ablema, Araba
Wednesday Kaku, Kwaku, Abeiku, Kuuku, Kweku, Keku, Koku Akua, Aku, Kukua, Akuma, Akusea
Thursday Yaw, Kwaw, Ekow, Yao Yawo, Yaa, Yawa, Awo, Yaba
Friday Kofi, Fifi, Fiifi, Yoofi, Kwoi Afua, Afia, Afi, Efua, Afmaba
Saturday Kwame, Kwami, Kwafica, Kwamina, Komi Ama, Ami amica/africa


Examples of Ghanaian day names (mainly in the northern part)Edit

(See Naming customs of the Dagomba people.)

Gender Male Female Both sexes
Sunday - Lahari -
Monday - Tani -
Tuesday - Talaata -
Wednesday - Lariba
Thursday - - Lamisi or Laamihi
Friday Azindoo Azima -
Saturday Sibidoo Sibiri -

ReferencesEdit

  • Johan Degen, Traditional Ghanaian Names at the Wayback Machine (archived September 30, 2007)
  • Kropp Dakubu M.E. (2000). Personal Names of the Dagombas. p. 57. Michigan State University.
  • Oppong, Joseph R.; Oppong, Esther D. (2003). Ghana. New York City: Infobase Publishing. pp. 53–57. ISBN 1438105053. Retrieved 26 September 2015.
  • Levy, Patricia; Wong, Winnie (2010). Ghana (2nd ed.). Singapore: Marshall Cavendish. p. 99. ISBN 0761448470. Retrieved 26 September 2015.
  • Utley, Ian (2010). Ghana - Culture Smart!: The Essential Guide to Customs & Culture (Rev. [ed.], 3rd printing. ed.). London: Kuperard. ISBN 1857336046.