Naming babies with 'Chinese characteristics'

( Xinhua ) Updated: 2017-02-04 09:50:33

Good business

With the second-child boom, business has been good for naming services companies. Duan Lingang, 58, a self-professed name expert based in Jiangxi, founded his business five years ago.

"Back then, there were no orders for months," he said.

Duan improved his proficiency after learning from a master in the "I-Ching," or "Book of Changes," in Beijing. He charges 600 yuan (about $92) for a name, and writes up to 24 options for parents to select from.

"My reputation spreads through word-of-mouth. Now I get two to three orders every week," he said.

Duan calculates the baby's five elements-metal, wood, water, fire and earth-from the date and time of birth, before giving names accordingly.

"A baby's name can make up for the element he or she lacks from birth, bringing good fortune," he said.

Names matter so much that Chinese parents are not settled with buying only Chinese names; they are also buying English names.

Beau Rose Jessup, from Britain, established the website to give new Chinese babies English names. The website claims it has given names to 295,379 babies. She did not respond to an interview request from Xinhua.

"The English name you give your children will change their future," the website proclaims.

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