February 9, 2012
My name in Chinese
Seal carved by Ian Boyden, 2011
Qingtian soapstone, 15 x 15 cm
This seal reads Bo Ying (薄英), which is my name in Chinese. One of the cool things about Chinese names is that they mean things, often really cool things. For instance, I have a friend whose name is "Study Thunder" and another whose name is "The Way of Meaning." My own name was chosen for me by a teacher long ago because "Bo" sounded like "Boyden," and "Ying" sounded like "Ian." But I prefer the actual meanings. My name can be read alternately as "Meager Hero," "Delicate Flower," "Thin Englishman," or "Outstanding Mint." I am told that my name is very literary, and it makes people smile quietly when they hear it.