This trope is about characters whose names are a flagrant mismatch of ethnicities and cultures, like Sakura Mikolajczak or Chandraharam O'Malley. Often, this is seen alongside In the Future, Humans Will Be One Race. Both tropes are indications that the setting is very much a cultural melting pot. In other cases, such names are used to indicate that a character doesn't completely fit in with the culture in which they are living (being a child of the native culture and something else). And sometimes, the author just wanted to mix and match things. This is much more common in Real Life than it is in fiction. In real life, this often happens for fairly simple reasons. It's fairly common amongst some families who have arrived in a new country. They may give a newly born child a (let's say) English first name, while they retain their (for example) Asian or African last name (e.g. Margaret Cho). Also, in "mixed-culture" couples, their children are often named in a way that represents the cultural mixture; you can expect a character who falls under the But Not Too Foreign trope to have this kind of name. And then there are people who name their children after personal friends, famous people or give them a name that lost some its cultural ties thanks to the aforementioned famous people. Compare Name From Another Species, which is the otherworldly version.
open/close all folders
Anime and Manga
- Negi Springfield and his father from Mahou Sensei Negima! as well as Gateau Kagura Vanderburg!
- Asuka Langley Soryu from Neon Genesis Evangelion. And her mother, who was half-Japanese and half-German, was Kyoko Zeppelin Soryu. Zeppelin isn't even a proper name, though it does fit with the Theme Naming of the series where most characters take their surnames from battleships or other types of vehicles.
- Rebuild of Evangelion adds Mari Illustrious Makinami. Like Zeppelin, Illustrious has the same problem. In these movies Asuka's name is changed to Shikinami but she keeps the Langley.
- From the spinoff game Girlfriend of Steel we have Musashi Lee Strasberg - Japanese, English and German, respectively.
- Light Yagami of Death Note. Oddly, 'Light' is written with the kanji for 'Moon', because one of the rare nanorinote for 「月」 is "Raito". Which is the closest way the Japanese can render the word "Light".
- Cowboy Bebop:
- Edward Wong Hau Pepelu Tivrusky IV. She made up herself because she thought it sounded cool. Her parents named her Francoise Appledelhi, which is French and (mangled) Turkishnote .
- Spike Spiegel has a relatively new (mid-20th-century) American first name which is more often a nickname than a given name, and a German surname. He's from Mars and has a Jew 'fro, so his ancestry is anyone's guess.
- This is fairly common in Gundam works. Some notable examples are the original Mobile Suit Gundam's Ryu Jose (Japanese and Spanish, black Argentinian) and Anavel Gato (Hebrew & Spanish, born in a space colony) of Mobile Suit Gundam 0083 fame.
- Used liberally throughout The Five Star Stories due to Mamoru Nagano's love of Culture Chop Suey.
- Pani Poni Dash!: Rebecca Miyamoto, an 11-year-old with a doctorate from MIT.
- Mai-Otome, all over the place. Most characters who were previously in Mai-HiME have Japanese first names and European last names (for example, Natsuki Kuga becomes Natsuki Kruger). Then there's people like Erstin Ho and Sergei Wang. Then again, it's a far-future Lost Colony where the various cultures have presumably intermixed to great extent.
- In the Mai-HiME manga, Alyssa Kuga has a Western first name and a Japanese surname.
- In Detective Conan, Shin'ichi Kudo's alias Conan Edogawa is a Line-of-Sight Name after mystery writers Arthur Conan Doyle (English) and Ranpo Edogawa (Japanese). His excuse when asked about his peculiar name is "My parents are really big Sherlock Holmes fans." (Note that it's possible to write 'Konan' in kanji, though he uses katakana.)
- Endemic in Michiko & Hatchin. The show has a Latin American setting and uses pseudo-Spanish/Portuguese surnames, but everyone still has Japanese first names. The title characters, Hana Morenos and Michiko Malandro, are the most obvious examples.
- Love Momozono/Cure Peach from Fresh Pretty Cure!. Her grandfather gave her the name because he wanted her to be full of love... but since people would recognize the name 'Love' more than 'Ai', he insisted that her name be in English.
- In GJ-bu, there's the Canadian Kirara Bernstein.
- In Kin-iro Mosaic, there is the half-Japanese, half English Karen Kujou. The series also discussed another form of this trope—that of the name was deliberately chosen so that it taken as completely different names in different languages. Karen is an example of this trope; the English use of this name has Armenian roots, while the Japanese use of the same name is a Chinese loanword, meaning "adorable." (Yes, the "Karen" in Zettai Karen Children)
- Several parts of Lucy (abbrv.) Yamagami's Overly Long Name in Servant × Service are clearly western names— of course there is the visible "Lucy", but also includes "Emilia" and "Juria." She's entirely Japanese as far as we can tell, but her parents couldn't make up their minds between the names their friends suggested and just went with "all of the above."
- The main characters of Galilei Donna, Hazuki, Kazuki, and Hozuki Ferrari. And their father, Geshio Ferrari, though he wasn't born a Ferrari.
- Vivio's name in Lyrical Nanoha is most likely Belkan (out of universe, she's named after the Subaru Vivio). After being adopted by Nanoha, she gains her last name "Takamachi" (which is Japanese). The same thing applies to the Wolkenritter in INNOCENT, where they (except Zafira) receive Hayate's last name "Yagami".
- One of the main characters in the Atari Force mini-comics series (produced by DC Comics) is the Chinese-Irish security chief, Li San O'Rourke.
- Miguel O'Hara aka Spider-Man 2099. As his name suggests he's half-Hispanic and half-Irish.
- Kiyoshi Morales, the future Captain America. He's not only of mixed Japanese and Latino descent, but Native American and African-American (he's a descendant of Luke Cage) as well.
- Appears in several places in Transmetropolitan - most prominently in Spider's assistant, Yelena Rossini.
- Electra Pendragon, a Parody Sue from Jake Englishs Mysterious Theater Of Scientific Romance From The Year 3000 and Justice Society of Japan. In the former case, her full name is stated to be Electra Rozelyn Sakura Belladonna Tokasha Emiya Brunestud Tono Nanaya Einzbern Pendragon.
- "From Bajor to the Black, Part II" has two of them. Eleya's Starfleet Academy roommate is Jasmine Velasquez, a mix of Persian and Spanish (she's Ambiguously Brown and pretty clearly multiracial). Then we get to one of the admirals at graduation, one Daisuke Hussein (Japanese and Arabic).
- The Wrong Reflection has a brief mention of a Terran Empire admiral named Dzhabrail Mahadeo (Chechen and Hindi).
- "Tinker Golfer Doctor Trill" likewise mentions that the captain of the USS Coridan is a guy named Diego O'Shannon (Spanish/Irish).
- There’s a joke about a sexologist talking to a man and mentioning her research about penis size among various ethnicities to a man she speaks to, saying that blacks have the longest penes while Jews have the thickest ones. The man replies, ‘Pleased to meet you, I’m Mambaso Cohen.’
- Luis Wu, one of the heroes of Larry Niven's Known Space series, has a Spanish first name and a Chinese last name. By appearance, however, you'd assume he was a native of Central America. Niven did this to indicate that the world's population in the 31st century had been melding together for a while. Niven did this with Sigmund Ausfaller, who despite his Scandinavian first name and German last name, is a black man.
- From Prince Roger: Prince Roger Ramius Sergei Alexander Chiang MacClintock. Being several centuries in the audience's future, there has been a lot of blending of cultures, making the titular prince's full name nothing particularly special in and of itself.
- The eponymous hero of the Takeshi Kovacs series. The series takes place 500 years into the future and he originates on a planet colonized by Japanese and Slavs.
- In Robert A. Heinlein's The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress, the author invokes this trope with the name of the protagonist, Manuel Garcia O'Kelly-Davis. He wanted to show a society totally blind to racial prejudice. Note that the "Davis" on the end represents the family name he married into.
- William S. Burroughs did this on occasion, just for yet another surreal touch. There's a passing reference in Naked Lunch to someone called Ali Wong Chapultepec (Arab/Chinese/Aztec), and one of the book's villains is named Salvador Hassan O'Leary (Spanish/Arabic/Irish).
- In the Wild Cards series, there's the Indio-Irish Elephant Girl, whose real name is Rhada O'Reilly.
- Just about everyone in the Honor Harrington series once you learn their full name. The title character's mother's full name, for example, is "Allison Benton-Ramirez y Chou Harrington".
- Some places more than others though. On the one hand you have Beowulf, Old Earth or (to somewhat less extent) Manticore, where no one as much as bats an eyelash at the names like Omosupe Quartermain, Chiang Benton-Ramirez or Aivars Terekhov, through some sort of middle-ground, where people combine two or three ethnicities at most (Anglo-French like in Haven or Chinese-German with Andermanis, see Lester Tourville and Chien-Lu Anderman, Herzog von Rabenstrage as the respective examples) to the proudly single-culture worlds, usually settled as the Cult Colonies or just by the fans of that culture (Grayson and Montana are examples of the first and second types respectively, both taking heavily from the Middle America).
- Common in the works of H. Beam Piper. Uller Uprising had major characters with names like Hideyoshi O'Leary and Themistocles M'zangwe.
- In Bumped, there are a lot of these. Two such characters are Zen Chen-Chavez and Shoko Weiss.
- One of the supporting characters in the Mass Effect tie-in novel, Ascension, is an African man with a German last name as a first name and a Hindu last name as a last name: Hendel Mitra.
- The Star Trek: New Frontier series had a minor character, Romeo Takahashi, who was a natural blond and of Japanese descent.
- The Harry Potter books feature Antonin Dolohov; "Antonín" (accent on the 'i') is Czech, but -ov surnames are only really found in Bulgaria and Russia. In fact there is a Russian officer named Dolohov in War and Peace. Also Gellert Grindelwald, whose first name is Hungarian, while the surname is German.
- Many Hungarians had historically Germanized their surnames in Real Life, what with Hungary being the one and the same country with Austria for a long time.
- Not to mention Albus Percival Wulfric Brian Dumbledore (Albus being Latin; Percival being one the heroes of Chretien de Troyes's Grail romances, based on the Welsh hero Peredur; Wulfric being an old Anglo-Saxon name; and Brian being an Irish name; reflecting the many cultural groups that have played a role in British history.)
- Somewhat permissible in that wizards tend to have... unusual names by Muggle standards, and don't necessarily follow Muggle standards of national borders or cultural norms.
- Alastair Reynolds' works often feature this trope, e. g. Ana Khouri, Xavier Liu, Gillian Sluka, Pauline Sukhoi, etc.
- Ciaphas Cain had a fencing instructor in school named Miyamoto de Bergerac.
- In Mikhail Akhmanov's Arrivals from the Dark, we have Olaf Peter Carlos Trevelyan-Krasnogortsev, who claims to have French and Russian ancestry. The latter (and the second part of his last name) comes from a Tsarist Russian nobleman who fled his country to France during the October Revolution. Interestingly, he claims that "Trevelyan" comes from the French side of the family, although it's a Cornish (English) surname. Then there's his Scandinavian first name and a Spanish third name, which go completely unexplained. Then we have his descendant Ivar Trevelyan (Olaf's children chose to shorten the overly-long surname), who also has a Scandinavian first name.
- Slightly averted with Paul Richard Corcoran. Corcoran is an Irish surname, and Paul is named after his (supposed) father Richard Corcoran. Paul is the English equivalent of his godfather's first name Pavel. Here, the author chose not to give his protagonist a name with this trope.
- There's also Sergey Valdez, one of Paul Richard Corcoran's descendants, although that's hard to tell based on his Russian first name and Spanish last name.
- One of the main characters in In The Mouth Of The Whale by Paul McAuley is Sri Hong-Owen, daughter of Maria Hong-Owen.
- Rainbows End has Robert Gu (Sr. and Jr.), who reflects the melting pot nature of modern (and near-future) America. The Indian national named Albert Vaz, on the other hand, suggests that the rest of the world is becoming more of a melting pot as well.
- A minor character in the web-novel Domina is named Zusa Pham, which is Yiddish/Vietnamese. Her friend Jelena Aune has a Serbian given name, and her last name is either a Finnish given name or an obsolete French unit of measure.
- The Hoka story "Undiplomatic Immunity" features the Scottish-Arabic community Bagdadburgh, whose residents have such names as "Zuleika MacTavish" and "Colin MacHussein".
- The Halo: Evolutions short story "The Mona Lisa" gives us Chinese/Hispanic Sergeant Zhao Heng Lopez, and Vietnamese/Italian Navy Corpsman Ngoc Benti.
- Used quite a bit in Dragon's Egg. There are a few regular-sounding names such as Jean Kelly Thomas and Carole Swenson, but then we have Pierre Carnot Niven, Cesar Ramirez Wong, Amalita Shakhashiri Drake, Seiko Kauffman Takahashi, and Abdul Nkoma Farouk.
- A non-SF example is Christopher O'Yee, one of the regular cops in William Marshall's Hong Kong-set Yellowthread Street series.
- Lampshaded in Douglas Adams' Mostly Harmless, the fifth Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy novel - a character called Stavro Mueller has a Greek mother and a German father.
- Melchizedek Okabe from The Red And The Rest has a Jewish-Japanese name, with hints that his parents were strict converts. Lampshaded in the beginning with Smith Cavendish Geier, a first-generation German-American. Neither of them fit in very well with their chosen professions.
Live Action TV
- In Firefly, it was mentioned in the commentary for "Shindig" that they gave Asian surnames to characters played by white actors as an indication of Western and Chinese cultural intermingling.
- On 24, the name of an Asian-American employee at CTU (played by an actor whose name also fits the trope, James Hiroyuki Liaonote ) is "Devon Rosenthal".
- This happens sometimes on Babylon 5, like ISN reporter Derek Mobotabwe, who is a white guy. Probably because of cultural intermingling, like the Firefly example.
- Juan Epstein's full name ("Juan Luis Pedro Felipe de Juevas Epstein"), specifically the fact that it mixed a long list of Hispanic names, yet ended in a Jewish surname, was considered a point of humor in the first episode of Welcome Back, Kotter.
- Star Trek
- The original pilot features a helmsman named "José Tyler" in a conscious attempt to invoke this trope.
- Hikaru Sulu, Japanese first name and a surname of a Philippine sea (Japanese doesn't even have an "L")
- While it wasn't her original name, after she got married, Keiko O'Brien definitely counts. Likewise her son, Kirayoshi O'Brien, actually combines three: His Irish father's surname of O'Brien, and a first name which combines both Japanese (-yoshi) from his mother's side and the Bajoran (Kira-) family name of the alien surrogate who carried him to term (which is traditionally put first anyway, giving him two family names, both Kira and O'Brien).
- Lieutenant Daniel Kwan (Hebrew, Korean), a half-human, half-Napean who worked at Utopia Planitia Fleet Yards
- Dr. Julian Bashir in Star Trek: Deep Space Nine; presented as very pukka British, but with an Arabic name.... and his parents, when they appear in the show, come over as old-time cockney Jews of the Rabbi Lionel Blue variety, his father speaking like a true Yiddisher mensch from Stepney or Bow or one of the lower-rent streets on the monopoly board.
- Then there's B'Elanna Torres, named by her Klingon mother but keeping her human (Hispanic) father's last name. Her father, John Torres, also qualifies, given his English first name (he's played by a Hispanic actor), as well as his brother Carl and the brother's children Michael, Dean, and Elizabeth. According to a non-canon novel, he lives in Mexico.
- B'Elanna and her husband, Tom Paris, have a daughter—Miral Paris. Miral after B'Elanna's Klingon mother, and Paris being her human father's surname.
- Averted by Worf's son Alexander Rozhenko, who is one-quarter human. His half-human mother named him Alexander. After her death, Worf sent the boy to live with his adopted parents in Belarus. After Alexander grew up, he took their last name instead of the traditional Klingon naming convention (e.g. Alexander, son of Worf) even after joining the Klingon Defense Force.
- Dharma Finkelstein from Dharma and Greg. As she put it, her father is Jewish but wanted to be the Dalai Lama.
- Agent Graham Tanaka on Dollhouse, played by Mark Sheppard. The part was originally written with an Asian actor in mind, and Sheppard wanted to keep the name. The Word of God explanation is that he took the name of his stepfather.
- An episode of Veritas: The Quest featured a Neo-Nazi group led by a typical Aryan Ubermench...whose name was "Heinrich Cordova" and spoke with a Latino accent. Heavily lampshaded:
Bella: You know Heinrich, I can never get used to that accent coming out of that face.Heinrich: South America was very kind to my German ancestors.
- Note that this would not be all that strange: there were quite a few World War II era German military types with South European ancestry, including Spanish. For example, Generals Otto and Maximilian Fretter-Pico.
- One episode of 30 Rock featured a news anchor named Carmen Chao. It was a running joke that no one could figure out her ethnicity.
- Chuck has a character named "Lester Patel". He was actually born in Saskatchewan, Canada, in a "Hinjew" community (he admits it may have been a cult). Hinjew traditions appear to be an amalgamation of Hindu, Jewish, Canadian, and First Nations (e.g. he celebrates Hanukkah but is also being forced into an Arranged Marriage by his parents).
- Kamen Rider Double had guest characters named Lily and Frank Shirogane.
- Oren Pierre Alfonso in Kamen Rider Gaim. Explained in-series that his birth name was Gennosuke Oren, but he changed it after taking French citizenship.
- Peggy Matsuyama and Yayoi Ulshade in the Super Sentai franchise.
- The Look Around You episode "Sport" has an extremely Scottish news correspondent named Mario Abdullah-Levy.
- An Israeli comedy show named The Leash featured a recurring character of a Philippine work immigrant named Meilingnote Patuangnote .
- Ayako Valentina Hamada Villarreal (Japanese-Mexican), along with her sister Xóchitl Guadalupe Hamada Villarreal.
- In Avenue Q, a character with the first name of "Christmas Eve" is Japanese. Her husband is also Jewish, though we don't know his surname or whether she took it.
- The The Sims 2 random character generator is notorious for producing townies with names like Juan McCullough or Kiyoshi Centowski (when the names it comes up with aren't just plain bizarre, like the infamous Goopy GilsCarbo) and having no relation whatsoever between looks and the ethnic background of a Sim's name. For example, the aforementioned Kiyoshi is a Dark-Skinned Blond with blue eyes.
- Sports games which used a name generator from in-game players and mixed and matched random fore- and surnames also count. An example from MVP Baseball 2003: "Sun-Woo Knoblauch".
- Soranica Ele gives us Zenobia Adelaide Albert Axelrod and Kaguya Lolotte Omi de la Patelliere.
- In Escape from Monkey Island, Guybrush has a run-in with the pirate-hating, heavily-armed Admiral Ricardo Luigi Pierre M'Bengu Chang Nehru O'Hara Casaba III (Spanish, Italian, French, African, Chinese, Indian, Irish, and again Spanish).
- Juan Lebedev in Deus Ex. According to the Deus Ex Bible, at one point in the series' universe the Russian Mafia and the Mexican drug cartels formed a powerful alliance that rivalled each of their countries' respective governments, which may explain his heritage.
- His full name is Juan Ivanovich Lebedev. Given his patronymic, we can surmise that his father's name was Ivan Lebedev. Since Juan is the Spanish equivalent of Ivan, it's possible he was named after his father, but with a nod to his Latin American heritage.
- Grace Nakamura in Gabriel Knight. Her parents were Japanese, but they emigrated to the United States before she was born.
- Ragnar McRyan in Dragon Quest IV. He's Scottish. Ragnar is a Scandinavian name.
- Ambassador Donnel Udina from Mass Effect is a man of African descent with an Irish first name and a Russian surname. This is explicitly due to cultural intermingling.
- Lieutenant Kaidan Alenko also counts. His surname is Ukrainian, while his given name seems to be of Japanese origins. And he was born and raised in Vancouver.
- The Player Character can also be this, since while their surname is always Shepard their give name (and appearance) is decided by the player. The default names are John for a male Shepard and Jane for a female, but go to any site where people post about their custom Shepards and you'll see many examples of this.
- Ingrid Hunnigan from the newer Resident Evil installments has a German given name and Irish surname, and is herself Ambiguously Brown.
- Most of the soldiers in UFO: Alien Invasion have first and last names randomly selected from a database, which is, of course, multiethnic. Peon names range from 'Daniel Danielsen' to 'Naoko Ab Del Farak.'
- In Dot Hack GU, online web show host "Salvador" Aihara's given name is actually Carlos. This is because, while fully ethnically Japanese, he was born and raised in Brazil.
- In a pre-release rag for Mortal Kombat 3, Ed Boon and John Tobias had stated that early in the development of the original game, Liu Kang was going to be named "Miyamoto Yo Shin Soo," which was apparently too much even for a series that would become known for its inability to tell Chinese and Japanese cultures apart from each other.
- In Barkley, Shut Up and Jam: Gaiden, Clispaeth, the resident Crystal Dragon Jesus was once a soldier by the name of Crispus Ryuji Attucks.
- Max Payne 3 has both Good Cop Wilson Da Silva and Rabid/Dirty Cop Armando Becker.
- The full name of The Demoman, of Team Fortress 2, is Tavish Finnegan DeGroot. While Tavish is indeed a Scottish name, Finnegan is Irish and DeGroot is Dutch.
- Syndicate 2012 has Agent Tatsuo Hamilton, of the Aspari Corporation. Additionally, most of the named Aspari citizens and employees have English given names and Chinese surnames (eg. Gary Chang).
- In Umineko: When They Cry, all of Kinzo Ushiromiya's children and grandchildren have Western given names: Krauss, Eva, Jessica, George, and..."Battler". Like the example with Death Note above, though, their names are all written in kanji despite being Western, which adds more meaning to them in Japanese.
- Lilly Satou from Katawa Shoujo, who is half Japanese and half Scottish. Her sister Akira's name seems fully Japanese at first glance, but the name "Akira" is also a legitimate Scottish name.
- Most Japanese characters in Rose Guns Days adopt Western given names, apparently to forget about the war and start their lives anew, since the story takes place in an Alternate Universe 1947 where Japan fell victim to a natural disaster and was virtually repopulated by Westerners who tried to help rebuilding the country.
- Kudryavka Noumi from Little Busters!, who is three-quarters Russian and one quarter Japanese.
- Karen/Caren Ortensia from Fate/hollow ataraxia doesn't seem to be an example at first, but Karen is both a legitimate Japanese name and a fairly common Western one. It's more obvious once you find out that the surname of her father (who abandoned her) is Kotomine while her mother was a Western woman named Claudia Ortensia.
- The Dragon Doctors has had a few: battle surgeon Goro Delgado (Japanese given name, Spanish surname), who looks like a pale-skinned redhead; Preston Chang; Tomo Wakeman, and so on. Since it takes place over 2,000 years in the future, there's been some melding, too.
- Questionable Content. Sven Bianchi. His last name comes from his Italian-American dad, whereas his Swedish-American mother insisted she could choose his first name on her own since she gave birth to him.
- Ki Oshiro of General Protection Fault, the result of her Chinese mother winning a bet against Ki's Japanese father, and getting to name her.
- Kimiko "Kim" Ross of Dresden Codak was born Kimiko Kusanagi, but changed her surname to her mother's after she died and her dad vanished from her life. She usually just goes by "Kim" since she's uncomfortable with her Japanese heritage.
- Zaboo in The Guild. Real name: Sujan Goldberg. As he explains to anyone who asks, he's a "hinjew".
- Futurama has Father Changstein el-Gamal.
- Bender Bending Rodriguez' surname makes sense as he's "hecho en Mexico," whereas his first name is the English description of his primary function and his middle name, again in English, serves as his model designation (he's a "bending unit") and a Literal Metaphor Is My Middle Name run through the Department of Redundancy Department. The English also makes sense as he was presumably intended for market in the U.S.
- Family Guy: When Peter finds out he's part black and changes his name, Chris decides to call himself Mobutu O'Malley.
- Isabella Garcia-Shapiro from Phineas and Ferb. Appropriately enough, her mother seems to be an affectionate blend of Yiddish and Hispanic stereotypes.
- The City Wok in South Park is owned by Tuong Lu Kim, whose name is Vietnamese-Chinese-Korean. However, it is later revealed that he is actually one of the personalities of the insane Dr. Janus.
- Nigel Uno aka Numbuh One from Codename: Kids Next Door (who is presumably British) has a British first name but a Spanish last name, though admittedly this is Just for Pun.
- Abraham De Lacey Giuseppe Casey Thomas O'Malley from The Aristocats. Duchess lampshades this.
Duchess: (Chuckles) Monsieur, Your name seems to cover all of Europe!
- The pilot for the Nick Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles features news anchor Carlos Chiang O'Brien Gambe.
- In Steven Universe, we have Connie Maheswaran. Her surname is Tamil and means "Lord of the Universe". However, it has been theorized "Connie" is a Westernized version of Hindi name Kahaani.
- Often subverted before 20th century. Many people changed their whole names to their equivalents in other languages to fit the local culture. An example of this is Giovanni Luppis, a 19th century Austro-Hungarian naval officer credited with inventing the modern torpedo, along with British engineer Robert Whitehead. Luppis, whose name roughly translates to John Wolf or Wolfson, in English, was descended from An Italian mercantile family that lived in modern day Croatia for centuries, and as such, sometimes used the surname Vukic (meaning Wolf or Wolfson in Croatian). For this reason, he is also known as Ivan Vukic (i.e. John Wolfson), especially among Croatians.
- Bernardo O'Higgins, the liberator of Chile (part Spanish, part Irish).
- When France ceded Louisiana to Spain in 1763, the first Spanish governor was so unpopular the natives threw him out. His replacement was Alejandro O'Reilly. Both O'Reilly and O'Higgins represent the close relationship between Spain and Ireland in the 18th and 19th centuries, based primarily upon a shared religion and hatred of the English.
- Patrice de Mac Mahon, the first elected president of France, a descendant of Irish soldier(s) who left Ireland to join the French Army against Britain.
- "Carlos Murphy's" is a famous chain of Irish-Mexican restaurants.
- Irish revolutionary, second Taoiseach and third President of Ireland, Éamon de Valera. His father was Cuban (and de Valera also had American citizenship, as he was born in New York, although he was sent to Ireland for his education at age two). De Valera was actually born "George de Valero" (which, besides the typo, is also an example"; the name was subsequently corrected to "Edward de Valera", which he switched to "Éamon" to sound more Irish. He experimented a bit with further Gaelicising his surname as "de Bhaléira'' (same pronunciation), but realised this was absurd and left it as-is.
- One of the more famous examples is former NASA astronaut Dr. Franklin Chang-Diaz; he was born to a Chinese-Costa Rican family and apparently named after Franklin D. Roosevelt (he was born in 1950, when FDR was still rather popular worldwide).
- Grant Imahara of Mythbusters.
- African-American slave names.
- Also found with a number of blacks who were born free or freed slaves who adopted their names by choice.
- French actor Slimane-Baptiste "Slim" Berhoun (French/Algerian).
- Japanese immigrants to Brazil often gave their children both a Japanese "family" name and a Portuguese "official" name, resulting in multiethnic first names.
- Peru has had many Japanese immigrants over the years and it is not rare to encounter mixed Peruvian and Japanese names, like former Peruvian President Alberto Fujimori.
- A subtle example with Benito Mussolini. Although "Benito" sounds like it could be Italian, it is actually Spanish (his parents having named him after Mexican President Benito Juárez); "Benito" is a Spanish diminutive of Benedicto, "Benedict", for which the Italian would be Benedetto.
- Of interesting note, baseball pitcher Bruce (Scottish) Chen (Chinese). You'd never guess where he's from. Panama.
- This trope is a lot more common than you might think in the United States, where most people in urban or suburban settings are of mixed descent to some extent. Any matchup of a name like "James" or "John" with an Italian last name counts — and, technically, unless the guy in question is a "Seamus" or "Sean", the same goes for Irish surnames, too (although since Ireland has been effectively anglicized for centuries, the dissonance is lost on modern listeners. That being said, Celtic given names have been increasingly popular across ethnic lines since The '90s). For girls, names like "Juanita" and "Yolanda" are relatively common across all ethnic lines.
Roy O'Bannon: That's a terrible cowboy name.
- Every once in a while, you can find names in different languages that sound close enough together to be switched out in order to fit in better depending on where you are; Chinese men with the given names of "Zhang" or "Li" can easily go by "John" or "Lee" amongst English-speakers without actually changing their names. Hence The Reveal at the end of Shanghai Noon being Jackie Chan's character having a Punny Name: Zhang Wang.note
- Keanu Reeves' given name is Hawaiian.
- Hawaii is a concentrated example of this trope having a very mixed population where "everyone is a minority" meaning no single race or culture accounts for more than 50% of the population. This results in elaborate mixing of Japanese, Hawaiian, and American names. Also some random and made-up names just for fun.
- How about Franklin Delano Roosevelt (English, French, Dutch)? Or Dwight David Eisenhower (English, Hebrew, German)?
- Australian comedian and TV presenter Shaun Micallef - Irish first name (or rather an Anglicised spelling of an Irish name) and a Maltese surname.
- NFL linebacker Scott Fujita...son of Rodney Fujita who is Japanese-American.
- Former Superman actor Dean Cain whose real name is Dean George Tanaka.
- Most Christian names are originally either Hebrew, Latin or Greek, and bear a meaning in those languages.
- Subverted in that these names are frequently assimilated to the languages that adopt them and thus become associated more with those languages and ethnicities than the original one. Take for instance the various forms of Yohanan (Hebrew for "God is Mercy"): Eoin, Gianni, Giovanni, Hans, Iain, Ian, Ieuan, Ioannis, Ion, Ivan, Jack, Jan, Janacek, Janne, János, Janusz, Jean, Jens, João, Johan, Johann, Johannes, John, Jon, Joop, Juan, Juanito, Juha, Juhani, Vanya, etc.
- Actress Alanna Ubach has a German last name, but is mostly of Puerto Rican descent.
- It is plainly the common practice in Hong Kong for a person to adopt an English name — officially or otherwise — on top of their (usually Cantonese) birth names. This cause the strange construct (see Name Order Confusion) where the surname is in the middle, e.g. former Hong Kong Chief Executive (2005-2012) Donald (English, likely unofficial) Tsang (surname) Yam-kuen (Cantonese).
- Common across the border in Shenzhen as well, possibly because of the comparatively large number of foreigners living in the city. The Chinese who adopt Western names seem to do it based on their perception of the difficulty it takes to pronounce the Chinese. Ex: a girl named "Baozhu" adopting the name "Coco", while "Xinyi" doesn't adopt an alternate name at all. Neither Chinese name is that difficult to pronounce.
- Chinese students studying abroad, particularly in England generally pick English names, but often pick names that are not in common use any more, such as 'Joyce' or 'Jaron'.
- Common across the border in Shenzhen as well, possibly because of the comparatively large number of foreigners living in the city. The Chinese who adopt Western names seem to do it based on their perception of the difficulty it takes to pronounce the Chinese. Ex: a girl named "Baozhu" adopting the name "Coco", while "Xinyi" doesn't adopt an alternate name at all. Neither Chinese name is that difficult to pronounce.
- Interestingly sometimes surnames alone can be multiethnic due the names travelling and getting adapted to different patronymic systems for example: Neilson which combines the Gaelic name "Neil" with the English "Son", MacAdams which combines Gaelic "Mac" (Son of) with the Hebrew name "Adam" and the Norse-Gael surnames MacAuliffe, MacIvor and MacLeod, combining Gaelic "Mac" with the Norse names Olaf, Ivar and Ljótr (originally a nickname), respectively. This also applies to names with the prefix "Fitz-" ("illegitimate son of", from French fils). In various Germanic languages you have similar suffixes "-sen" (e. g. in Petersen, where it is attached to a Greek name), "-zoon" (e. g. Adrianszoon, son of Hadrian) and "-sohn" (combined with the diminutive form of the Hebrew name "Menahem" in Mendelssohn). Patronymic names ending in "-i" or "-y" frequently attach the Latin genitive to non-Latin names.
- The practice of patronyms used in Slavic countries can lead to interesting combinations in cases of non-Slavic residents, such as Yuri Irsenovich Kim, better known as Kim Jong Il, the late North Korean dictator and son of his predecessor Kim Il Sung whose name was rendered as Irsen in Russian. Kim Jong Il was born in Russia where his father spent several years in exile.
- In Sinhala the surname suffix "ge" (pronounced gay) means "House of", and this has been combined with Portuguese names such as "Fonseca" to Fonsekage. Other example of combinations of multiethnic Sri Lankan surnames, both Sinhala and Tamil, include ("Pillai" being pronounced Pillay and "Pulle" pronounced Poo-lay), Johnpillai, ("John" being the English form of a Hebrew name) Fernandopulle ("Fernando" is a Portuguese name), Bastianpillai ("Bastian" being a shortened form of the originally Latin "Sebastian"), and Peduru Hewage, ("Peduru" being a Sinhala corruption of the Portuguese "Pedro")
- Juan Williams
- Soledad O'Brien, daughter of an Irish-American and a Cuban-American.
- The number of non-native Koreans in KPop has lead to many famous Korean singers with Korean surnames and non-Korean given names, as well as some Korean singers without Korean names at all ("Isak", real name Ida Simmons)
- William Tecumseh Sherman, "the first modern general". His middle name was supposedly a result of his father's admiration for the Shawnee chief Tecumseh.
- Der-Shing Helmer, author and illustrator of the webcomic, The Meek.
- Australian actor Yvonne Strahovski has a name suggesting French and Polish influences.
- Her parents immigrated from Poland to Australia. She explained in an interview with Jimmy Kimmel that "Yvonne" came from them originally calling her Ivanka (itself from "Iwonka", presumably).
- The first name and nickname of German WWII nightfighter ace Gordon Max "Mac" Gollob honor a Scottish friend of his family's.
- There are other Germans with Scottish ancestry as well. Another famed World War II German fighter pilot was a certain Douglas Pitcairn. Other examples from WW2 German military include Alistair Maclean, Alexander Ratcliffe, etc.
- Mikhail Barclay de Tolly, a marshal of....Tsarist Russia who fought against Napoleon, mostly descended from Baltic Germans (with only rather distant Scottish ancestry).
- Some Mexican voice actors has mixed ancestry as well:
- Gabriela Willert (Motoko Kusanagi and Li Meiling) has Mexican and German ancestry, albeit her real name is Gabriela Schreitter Castañon. Her late mother's real name, Liza Willert (who voiced Ms. Arnold), was Elizabeth Schreitter.
- Despite her name, Nancy McKenzie (Marge Simpson) hails from Peru, but she lives and works in Mexico.
- Gabriel Cobayassi (who voiced Belfry the Rat) and his daughter Denisse, both are Mexicans with Japanese ancestry. (His last name is pronounced as "Kobayashi" but he insists it should be written as Cobayassi)
- The late actress Carmen Donna Dio (Nanny) was born in Cuba, from Cuban and Italian ancestry, but her daughter Olga Donna Dio was born in Mexico.
- Subverted with Japanese-Mexican voice actress Hiromi Hayakawa (Draculaura): While she use her Japanese name when she's in Japan and she's credited as such in Mexican dubs, her full name is Maria Hiromi Hayakawa Salas as she was born in Japan, but raised in Mexico.
- Iranian-Japanese baseball player Yu Darvish.
- A surprising number of people in India have Portuguese surnames, especially among Indian Catholics, owing to the long Portuguese control over Goa and Calicut regions and the role played by the Portuguese in spreading Catholicism in India. Interestingly, many of these people mix Hindu and Portuguese names, so names like Chandraharam Fernandes or Dinesh D'Souza (an actual Indian-American social commentator) are not uncommon.
- Sri Lanka is full of examples of this trope, given its historic strategic location along trade routes, which lead to much foreign influences, including colonisation.
- A significant number of people in Sri Lanka have Portuguese surnames due to Portuguese colonization. People with Portuguese surnames in Sri Lanka can be divided into a few categories, including but not limited to, people with actual Portuguese ancestry, people who took a Portuguese surname upon conversion to Catholicism, and people who took Portuguese surnames to show loyalty to the Portuguese colonial regime. Not all of those in Sri Lanka with Portuguese surnames are Catholics, a significant number of them are Buddhists, for example, Ernest de Silva.
- Sri Lankan cardinal Albert Malcolm Ranjith Patabendige Don (German, Scottish, Hindi, Sinhala, Portuguese)
- The 1st Prime Minister of Sri Lanka, Don Stephen Senanayaka (Portuguese, English, Sinhala)
- His son (the 2nd, 6th, and 8th Prime Minister of Sri Lanka) also had a multiethnic name, Dudley Shelton Senanayaka (English, English, Sinhala)
- The 3rd Prime Minister of Sri Lanka, John Lionel Kotelawala (English, French, Sinhala)
- The 4th Prime Minister of Sri Lanka, Solomon West Ridgeway Dias Bandaranaike (English, English, English, Portuguese, Sinhala)
- The 2nd Governor-General of Sri Lanka, Oliver Ernest Goonetilleke (English, English, Sinhala)
- The 3rd Governor-General and 1st President of Sri Lanka, William Gopallawa (English, Sinhala)
- The 7th Prime Minister and 2nd President of Sri Lanka, Junius Richard Jayawardena (Latin, English, Sinhala)
- Singer and guitarist Clarence Wijewardena (English, Sinhala)
- Singer Hettiarachchige Reginald Jothipala (Sinhala, English, Sinhala)
- Guitarist Patrick Tibertius Maximus Denipitiya (English, Latin, Latin, Sinhala)
- World War 1 German submarine ace Lothar von Arnauld de la Perière, like many other fighting Germans descended from French immigrants (mostly Huguenots driven out of France by Louis XIV, but also sometimes soldiers of fortune or people who fled from the French Revolution).
- Huguenots had huge influence on Germany, especially among soldiers but also among artists, writers, and intellectuals. Among others, World War I general Herman von Francois, fighter ace Hans-Joachim Marseille, pacifist novelist Erich Maria Remarque, etc.
- On the other side, there were many French and Russians with German heritage as well, as many Germans (and German-speaking Swiss) entered services of French kings and Russians tsars, or more often, just immigrated to these countries. Not to mention German-speaking natives of Imperial Russia's Baltic provinces and the inhabitants of formerly German French territories like Alsace and Lorraine. Examples include the late 19th century Russian diplomat Alexander Konstantinovich von Benckendorff, World War I Russian general Pavel von Rennenkampf, World War II French General Pierre Koenig, Napoleonic Marshal Francois de Kellermann, etc.
- Ludwig van Beethoven. The first name is German, the family name is Flemish (Dutch) - the family originally comes from Mechelen in Belgium.
- Some German sports stars: Pierre Littbarski, Reinhard 'Stan' Libuda, Rudolf Caracciola, Boris Becker, and Kevin Kurányi.
- As well as Lukas Podolski and Miroslaw Klose, both living and working in Germany, but born in Poland to families of German (Silesian) descent.
- Before he converted, German poet Heinrich Heine was named Harry Heine, after a friend of his father.
- Many countries have several ethnic roots, thus it is not uncommon for individuals to have names that combine more than one of them. Take anti-Nazi resistant Helmuth James Graf von Moltke - "Helmuth" is German, "James" is the English form of a Hebrew name (his mother was White South African of British descent), "Moltke" is Slavic (the family originates from Mecklenburg, a Slavic territory that was absorbed into Germany during the middle ages). Or take Czech names like Prohaska and Svoboda, which are very common in Austria due to the long historic association of Bohemia, Moravia and Silesia with the Holy Roman Empire and Austria. Cultural influences can also spread across borders, thus in the German Rhineland, which borders on the Walloon part of Belgium and bilingual Luxemburg, and which is also quite close to France, French given names and French surnames have been quite common for centuries.
- German actor Santiago Ziesmer, who's half-Spanish.
- The German politician family de Maizière, including Lothar, last prime minister of East Germany, and Thomas, the current interior minister and general right-hand-man to Angela Merkel, descended from French Huguenots who fled France during the 17th century.
- The Soviet Union's policies of encouraging widespread population movement and relocation helped spread various cultural mixtures across the former USSR. As a result, it's not uncommon to find Russians, Ukrainians or Kazakhs with peculiar names.
- Austrian diplomat Count Richard Nikolaus Eijiro von Coudenhove-Kalergi. His name alone reflects at least four different ethnicities: German, Japanese, Flemish, and Greek, as he was descended from a multiethnic aristocratic family (the actual ancestry is more complicated) that served the Habsburgs since 18th century that added Japanese into the mixture through the marriage of his father, an Austrian diplomat in Japan, with a daughter of a Japanese businessman. Befitting his multiethnic ancestry, the younger von Coudenhove-Kalergi devoted most of his life to the cause of pan-European unity.
- Spanish ducal house of Moctezuma de Tultengo. The daughters of the last Aztec ruler were admitted into Spanish nobility and their descendants received noble titles that joined together Aztec Moctezuma with names of Spanish noble families.
- Jews, especially in Israel, often have a name indicative of their ancestry along with a Jewish/Israeli name, or a local first name along with a Hebrew name (like Grace from Will and Grace has the Hebrew name ‘Ruchl’note ), which means you can find people named Moshe Calderón or, amusingly, a famous rabbi with unfortunate last name ‘Führer’note .
- Actress Lupita Nyong'o. She was born in Mexico to Kenyan parents.