2019, Volume 16, Issue 4

Back to the Table of Contents

Konstantin A. Gein
Ural Federal University
Ekaterinburg, Russia

Toponymy in Focus.
Review of the book: Barandeev, A. V. (Ed.). (2018). Voprosy geografii. Sb. 146. Aktualnye problemy toponimiki [Problems of Geography. 146. Topical Issues in Toponomastics]. Moscow: Codex. 312 p.

Voprosy onomastiki, 2019, Volume 16, Issue 4, pp. 252–259 (in Russian)
DOI: 10.15826/vopr_onom.2019.16.4.056

Received 15 April 2019

Abstract: The review observes a new collection of studies devoted to the problems of Russian toponymy. Released under the authority of the Russian Geographical Society that keeps a constant focus on toponymy on the pages of its journal “Problems of Geography,” this original toponymic almanac gives full coverage of the activities of Toponymic Commission under the Moscow City Branch of the Russian Geographical Society. It includes articles on various aspects of studying toponymy, anthroponymy, literary onomastics: from theoretical inquiries to applied case analyses of individual place names, and methodological guidance for school lesson planning. The author of this review considers the articles presented in five large sections of the collection (“General Problems of Onomastics,” “Regional Toponymy,” “Urban Toponymy,” “Names of Peoples. Personal Names. Proper Names in Fiction,” “Bibliography on Toponymy (2009–2018)”), dwelling on the most important points, with priority being given to the toponymic sections of the book. The collection covers most of the pressing problems of modern onomastics: the study of different name classes, including those often overlooked in major research (anemonyms, exonyms), problems of typological delimitation, methodology of onomastic studies, and verification of research results. The reviewed volume clearly outreaches the toponymic domain, integrating place name studies to a wider context of the related onomastic fields. The book also draws the readers’ attention to the growing number of ambiguous and manifestly second-rate publications in onomastics, both at the national and the global scale. Pointing to some minor research and compilation deficiencies, the reviewer gives an overall positive evaluation of the materials and results of the searches presented in the book.

Keywords: onomastics, toponymy, history of toponyms, regional toponyms, urban names, ethnonyms, literary onomastics, anthroponymy, naming patterns, etymology.