New Names for Municipalities Merging from Two or More Villages or Towns
For some decades many villages in the Netherlands have been merging into new municipalities. These new entities need a new name. The central assumption in this contribution is that every participating village or town will try to get its name accepted as (part of) the new name. By means of several examples some factors will be demonstrated which can play a part in the process of establishing a new name, like differences in the size of the population of the participants, differences in age, or their place in alphabetical order. Attention will be paid to two types of new names that are chosen. The simplest solution is maintaining the name of one or more of the participants, but there is an important restriction: the new name should not be too long, and can do right only by few participants. An increasingly popular method is choosing a wholly new name, often referring to some shared geographic or historical feature, like a river, a castle or a hillcrest. This method has the advantage that none of the participants loses face.