List Lists: Mapuche names used in 2016

Mapuche

On this ‘List Lists’ post, we will be taking a look at some of the Mapuche (some hispanicised) names that were given to babies in Chile in 2016. For this post, I am sorting out this list by popularity.

Note 1: there may be more variations of names listed here that I haven’t included in this list (either by accident or by intention), so the number of babies being given a certain name (or its variants) may increase.
Note 2: the data contained in the first link do not contain any diacritics – some names like Aylen and Rayen can be transcribed as Aylén and Rayén to indicate that the stress is on the last syllable, a closed one, as it should be in Mapudungun (if the last syllable is open, the second to last syllable is stressed).
Note 3: when using words from Mapudungun, the Unified Alphabet is used for the sake of uniformity with the name data.
  • Aylen – Behind the Name says that this name may possibly mean either “happiness” or “clear.” However, the only word that is closer in terms of pronunciation is the noun ayḻen/ayḻeṉ (the l and aren’t underlined, by the way. They are different letters representing the phonemes /l̪/ and /n̪/ respectively) meaning “ember.”²⁴⁵
    • This name is the most popular Mapuche name, given to 451 girls. There were also 140 girls named Ayelen, 23 Ayalen, 21 Ailen, 7 Ahylen, 3 Ayilen, Aylenn and Ayllen and 1 Ahilen, Ailenn and Haylen, amounting to 654 girls in total.
    • It’s worth noting that Aylen wasn’t even in the top 100 back in 2014 – the threshold number for girls for that year would be 196. It would seem that model Aylén Milla, who is from neighbouring Argentina, may have sparked the rise.
  • Mailen – a lot of the baby name websites give the meaning of Mailen as “princess.” Though, I can’t find this in the dictionaries I’ve used, there is a similar noun malen/maḻeṉ⁵ which, in this case, means “girl”³⁴ or “young woman,”⁵ the only problem being it’s missing a ‘y.’
    • This name was given to 169 girls. There were also 109 girls names Maylen, amounting to 278 girls in total.
  • Rayen – this is derived from the noun rayen meaning “flower.”¹²³⁴
    • This name was given to 256 girls, down from 295 back in 2014, making it the most popular Mapuche name back then. There were also 3 girls names Rayhen, amounting to 259 girls in total.
  • Millaray – this is taken from nouns milla meaning “gold” and rayen (see Rayen above)²³, thus giving this name the meaning of “golden flower.”¹
    • This name was given to 181 girls, down from 272 back in 2014. There were also 2 girls names Miyarai, amounting to 183 girls in total.
  • Sayen – Behind the Name says that this name means “sweet” or “lovely,”¹ however none of my dictionaries have this word and the meanings all display different words.
    • This name was given to 151 girls. There were also 3 girls named Sayeññ, 2 Sayem and 1 Sahien, Sahienn and Sayenn, amounting to 159 girls in total.
  • Nahuel – this is derived from the noun nawel meaning “jaguar”¹²⁵ or “tiger.”⁴⁵
    • This name is the most popular Mapuche boy name, given to 141 boys. There were also 8 boys named Nawel, 3 Nawuel and 1 Nawell, amounting to 153 boys in total.
  • Eluney – this is derived from the verb elun meaning “to give,”²⁵ as in to give something as a gift or to give permission.²
    • This name is the most popular Mapuche unisex name, given to 111 girls and 30 boys. There was also 1 boy named Elunei, amounting to 142 babies in total.
  • Lautaro – this is taken¹ from adjective lef meaning “fast, quick”²³⁵ and noun traru, which refers to a caracara (a type of bird primarily found in South and Central America).²⁵
    • This name was given to 117 boys. There were also 5 boys who were given the original form Leftraru and also 1 boy each named Leftraro and Leftratru, amounting to 124 boys in total.
  • Tahiel – the only source of information I can about this name is, to the delight of few, Wikipedia, where it says it’s derived from the noun tayül. Though I can’t locate the ‘tay’ element, the ‘ül’ can come from a noun meaning “song.”⁴ The noun tayül can be reflected in another noun tayülfe⁵, which refer to women singing sacred songs during ngillatun, or a community prayer⁵. So, in other words, tayül refer to sacred songs sang during ngillatun.
    • This name was given to 57 boys and 2 girls, amounting to 59 babies in total.
  • Antu – this is derived from the noun antü meaning “sun, day.”²³⁴⁵
    • This name was given to 42 boys and 9 girls, amounting to 51 babies in total.
  • Newen – this is derived from the noun newen meaning “strength.”²³⁴⁵
    • This name was given to 18 boys. There were also 10 boys named Nehuen, amounting to 28 boys in total.
  • Aukan – this is derived from the noun awkan meaning “rebellion, war.”²
    • This name was given to 22 boys. There were also 3 boys named Aucan, amounting to 25 boys in total.
  • Ayun – this is derived from transitive verb ayün meaning “to love, to want.”²³⁵
    • This name was given to 11 boys and 5 girls, amounting to 16 babies in total.
  • Aliwen – this is derived from the noun aliwen meaning “tree.”²⁵
    • This name was given to 7 boys and 3 girls. There were 4 boys named Alihuen, amounting to 14 babies in total.

What do you think of these names? Favourites? Leave your thoughts in the comments section below the sources.

Sources:
Servicio de Registro Civil e Identificación name data via Ahora Noticias: http://www.ahoranoticias.cl/noticias/nacional/188388-conocelos-estos-son-los-diez-nombres-mas-inscritos-durante-2016.html
Behind the Name – https://www.behindthename.com/¹

Dictionaries:

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