Real and quasi heortonyms as intercultural contextualized and conceptualized names

Artur Gałkowski

Uniwersytet Łódzki


The paper develops an onomastic-cognitive study of heortonyms (feast names) as special
chrematonymic units which, functioning like ideonyms identifying socio-cultural initiatives,
transfer contextual and conceptual content related to the object of their denomination,
i.e. the semantic message encoded in them. It is proposed to classify heortonyms as
names of recurrent or occasional events commemorating or drawing attention to a specific
idea from the circle of non-material culture. Heortonyms are monorematic, or more often
polyrematic proper names used to conceptualize feasts related to religion, and similarly
qualified dedications of days in the calendar, inspired by secular or parareligious culture.
Hence, the classification categorizes the studied phenomenon into two groups: “usual/real
heortonymy”, falling within the scope of typical religious onymy, and “quasi-heortonymy”,
whose objects function in line with the communicative principle of associative evocation
based on the (para)religious formula and the pattern of social campaigns. The analysis
of these two types of heortonyms has an intercultural character, assuming that both real
and quasi-heortonyms belong simultaneously to various cultures and have the potential to
penetrate other cultural areas, depending on the context, entering religious, ideological,
social, commercial and creative-media-related discourse. The discussion and conclusions
are results of a cognitive analysis of Polish and English real and quasi-heortonymic units
derived from data recorded in religious and secular calendars of global culture, mostly
related to Western civilization. The research has an added value presenting an onomastic-
terminological opinion on the definition and the scope as well as on the correlation of
heortonyms with other structures of ideative chrematonymy or chrononymy.


heortonyms, feast names, sacred, profane, religious onymy, chrematonomastics, contextualization, conceptualization, interculturality

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Cited by

Gałkowski, A. (2020). Real and quasi heortonyms as intercultural contextualized and conceptualized names. Prace Językoznawcze, 22(3), 73–90.

Artur Gałkowski 
Uniwersytet Łódzki