What’s In A Name?

Posted: June 30, 2009 in Misc Thoughts
Tags: , , ,

Have I ever told you how much I hate people misspelling my name? Probably, but that won’t stop me from doing it again. Anyone who has read through this blog will know that I love to whinge about the same issues over and over again.

Firstly, my Christian name is spelt Mathew. It is NOT Matthew!!! For thirty six years I have spelled it with only a single ‘tee’ not with a double ‘tee’. Can people just accept that this is how my name is spelt and get over it? It’s not such a big thing to get right, especially if you take the time to actually look at the way that I spell my name and not assume that it is always Matthew. I always make sure that I spell your name correctly so please pay me the same respect too.

I remember when I was back in the first grade and I had a teacher, Mrs. Panetta, put a big red cross through my name and had me rewrite it the way that she deemed correct. I protested that my name is spelt with just one ‘T’ but she wouldn’t hear of it. In her narrow mind Mathew was always to be spelled Matthew and nothing I could do would change her mind. I went home and told my Mum that the teacher said that my name was spelt wrongly, which you could imagine made my Mum and Dad fume with anger. They went down to speak to my teacher and to inform her that I was spelling my name correctly and that she should not interfere with it.

It’s not as Mathew is that uncommon as a variant of Matthew. On the second fleet that set sail to Australia there was a Mathew Mills, which means in the 200+ year old history of white settlement in this country I am not the only person with this name. (I only found this out during the bi-centennial in 1988 when a list was published of all the early Australian settlers. I was not named after this chap though!) Then there is the famous American civil war photographer Mathew Brady whose most famous photograph is the definitive portrait picture of President Abraham Lincoln.

So please just read my first name carefully and try to spell it right. It’s not that difficult to do.


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