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My first contact with Japanese names or their meanings was around 2021. Since then, I haven't stopped researching Japanese names. I want to create a meaningful Japanese name for my (fictional) story: 秋空 {あきぞら}. As far as I know, you can use this kind of real word as long as it's a noun or has a noun at the end. However, I don't want the conventional reading of あきぞら.

I chose this name because Japanese names usually carry a poetic meaning. My character was born in October (autumn season) and will often introduced during a sky sunset (空 {そら}) in autumn (秋 {あき}).

I know that 秋空 {あきぞら} is already a noun and could be used as a fictional name. However, I don't like the conventional reading, あきぞら. The way to read my name would be 秋空 {あいうつ}. I love the pronunciation and the meaning of both kanji together. I believe I could use it as a name without any issues, but I need confirmation.

"あい" is an (not so common, I believe) reading of "秋," and "うつ" is also an uncommon reading of "空" (both for names only). I was inspired by the surname "あいつ" when creating my original name. So, yes, I knew of a somewhat similar surname. And (at least to me) mine would be better because it's an "original" work.

What do you think of the name? Can I already "create" names without worrying?

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First of all, I think creating natural names is virtually impossible unless you are VERY fluent in Japanese, whatever 'natural' means.

There are no strict rules (legal or otherwise) on how to read kanjis for human names, so in theory, 秋空 (which is only barely possible as a name) can be read あいうつ if you choose.

For the particular reading, you should be aware that nobody can read it あいうつ or even guess it. あい for 秋 is not something that comes top of my head1 and うつ for 空 is only possible for 空蝉 (or words like 空ろ).

What you disregard is that reading for some kanjis are dependent on combinations with other kanjis (or sounds). Reading 秋空 as あいうつ is exactly like claiming ghoti can be read fish.


1 I only see 秋沙(あいさ). Note this is an instance of sound change あき→あい by 音便. It is not really reading 秋 as あい.

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  • First of all, thank you for reading and taking the time to respond to me. Reading it now, it does seem like I made significant mistakes, perhaps I am not yet ready or should give up, I don't know. Anyway, thank you for your response and for your time spent. Dec 22, 2023 at 22:57
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    @TokamiChelsea And just another thing, うつ (by itself) means depression in Japanese (鬱). So it sounds a bit odd for a name by sharing the sound.
    – sundowner
    Dec 22, 2023 at 23:02
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    Honestly, I see no problem with あきぞら being used as a name. あいうつ on the other hand, gave me the impression of 愛鬱, aka love-depression. Idk but an image of someone depressed because of (loss of) love? If that’s the image you wanna convey then go ahead with that name
    – dvx2718
    Feb 15 at 22:05

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