'Illegal' name costs Icelandic Harriet her passport

London passport control

Passport refused to ten-year-old because Icelandic girls cannot be called Harriet

LAST UPDATED AT 10:28 ON Fri 27 Jun 2014

A ten-year-old girl named Harriet has been denied a passport because her name does not appear on the list of approved Icelandic names.

Had her parents chosen Hjörný, Haddý, Hekla, Hrafnhildur or Hörn she would have been approved, but the name Harriet is not on the list and cannot be added to it, according to the country's strict naming laws.

"They have deprived our daughter of freedom of movement," the girl's mother, Kristín Cardew, told visir.is. "It is in violation of the United Nations' Convention on the Rights of the Child."

Cardew and her husband, Tristan, who was born in Britain, have four children: Lilja, Belinda, Harriet and Duncan. But Duncan and Harriet's names appear in the National Registry as /drengur/, which means boy, and /stúlka/, which means girl, because neither name has been approved by a body called the Icelandic Naming Committee.

Until now, this is also how their names have appeared in their passports. But when Cardew went to renew Harriet's passport, she was told that the document could not be issued because her daughter's name was "illegal".

Icelandic law says that unless both parents are foreign, all children born in the country must have their name submitted to the National Registry within six months of birth, The Guardian reports. If the chosen name does not appear on the official list of 1,853 female and 1,712 male names, parents must ask for approval from the Naming Committee.

Around 100 applications are received each year from parents hoping to give their child an unrecognised name. Of those, approximately half are rejected under a 1996 act which aims to preserve the Icelandic language.

The complexity of naming conventions in the country is that new names must be able to be conjugated so as not to "conflict with the linguistic structure of Iceland". Harriet was turned down because it could not be properly given nominative, accusative, and genitive cases, the Guardian says.

Jón Gnarr, the former mayor of Reykjavik, described the country's naming laws as "unfair, stupid [and] against creativity". · 

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Sooo, yet another smiley-faced fascist country...

Forsðnam Ólðfartsðottir - How's that one? Could I get that approved?

Using the word 'fascist' so loosely is a sign of ignorance. Clearly you have no idea what the definition of the word is.

I have a great deal of knowlege of what fascism is, and this Icelandic law is a thoroughly fascist law. Fascism with a smiley face is still fascism.

on one hand It seems ridiculous. On the other hand an open system gets up Jaxzion and La-a

Derpy derp. Fascism requires militarism, and a lot of other things that Iceland does not have. Please go read a book.

It is sort of ridiculous, but to call it fascist is just dumb on so many levels.

Dunning-Kruger to the courtesy phone please!

and yet you use the term incorrectly...

At least there is one European country where "Mohammed" won't be the most popular name anytime soon.

Looks like a couple of foreigners moving to a new country and refusing to follow it's rules. Strange, when this happens in the UK, people are quick to complain. If they want Harriet to have a passport, they can get one in the UK. She is still entitled to one as a child of two british parents and as a British and EU passport she is free to go anywhere. Nobody has restricted this child's freedom of movement exept her stupid parents. Non story.

Just one more reason to nuke Iceland, with the first being Bjork, of course.

Why stop half way? let's go the full Monty (as in Python) and just call everybody 'Bruce' or 'Sheila'.

Only one (father) is a foreigner. If both were, they would be able to get an exception, it seems: "Icelandic law says that unless both parents are foreign, all children born in the country must have their name submitted to the National Registry within six months of birth"

Liberal hippy paradise. Keep going.

Sounds pretty conservative to me, not liberal.

liberal
ˈlɪb(ə)r(ə)l/

adjective
1.willing to respect or accept behaviour or opinions different from one's own; open to new ideas.

Except that that's what they call themselves.
Gay friendly, earth friendly, this that and the other friendly and tolerant. A country w/o even a self defense force. In the same far left nanny state mother government ethos that's proposing as we speak to
BAN or block all internet porn from the entire country.

This is perhaps the best internet comment I have ever read.

As a bearer of the name, I am very disappointed. And as for "tedcase"'s comment about following rules... which form of your name is correct? Eomund, Eadward, Aedefrith?? Where would you be if your name had to be Anglo-Saxon or older in order to be approved in the UK? I understand wanting to keep traditions and language alive, but there should be a bit more leeway, IMHO.

Good. Maybe it could be applied here and stop all the ridiculous, made-up names we have to put up with in our schools. The Tee-jays; Coolios. The surnames as first names; Madisons; Tylers... The Jadens and the Kataras would be banned.

We criticise icelands traditional outlook,yet they are not one of the worlds troublesome countries, they just sit there and get on with life, whilst bastions of freedom like Britain and the US lose standards continuously, have huge crime rates and social ills, interfer in the running of countries which are not any of their business,have subjugated their peoples to the will of bankers and corporate interest and spy on their citizens, All iceland has done is protect its traditional language, Get your priorities right people.

We criticise Icelands traditional outlook,yet they are not one of the worlds troublesome countries, they just sit there and get on with life, whilst bastions of freedom like Britain and the US lose standards continuously, have huge crime rates and social ills, interfer in the running of countries which are not any of their business,have subjugated their peoples to the will of bankers and corporate interest and spy on their citizens, All iceland has done is protect its traditional language, Get your priorities right people,some things are worth preserving, and we accept that here,the welsh like their language tradition, its on all the signposts alongside english,no one complains,yet it must cost a huge amount of extra cash.Maybe complaining when the world and his uncle arrive In your country and try to undermine your own values might be a start.

Yes, less freedom!!! Start with positing on the internet. A lifetime ban for spurnlad.

fas·cism

noun \ˈfa-ˌshi zəm

: a way of organizing a society in which a government ruled by a dictator controls the lives of the people and in which people are not allowed to disagree with the government

: very harsh control or authority

Last time I checked, Iceland was not ruled by a dictator. Perhaps you should look up that word too?

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