A German woman has been denied in her quest to change her name to one so long that she would probably run out of breath just introducing herself. The desired name? Frieda Rosemarie Thalheim-Kunz-Hallstein, a combination of her and her husband’s surnames. A panel of judges denied the request on the grounds that the name “lessened the impact of...what it was supposed to do, namely ‘to identify.’” The case highlights one of Germany’s quirks: Parents naming their kids have to choose the name from a government-approved list, and any departure from the list must be approved. In the case of Thalheim-Kunz-Hallstein, there was one hyphen too many.
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