Content-Type: text/shitpost

Subject: The correct spelling of Scedrov
Path: you​!your-host​!walldrug​!prime-radiant​!computer​!ihnp4​!grey-area​!fpuzhpx​!plovergw​!ploverhub​!shitpost​!mjd
Date: 2019-07-23T19:05:19
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Content-Type: text/shitpost

What's the right way to spell the name of Andre Scedrov? I suppose at some time in the past it was spelled “Andrej Ščedrov” but I've never seen anything actually written by Scedrov that spelled it that way. For example, here's his professional web page and here's a recent preprint paper of his which contains 21 instances of his name all spelled the same way.

A little more searching does find much older materials with the expected spelling. For example, his book on Forcing and Classifying Topoi from 1984, the dark ages of mathematical typesetting, before Donald Knuth came to lead us into the land of milk and honey. The book is typewritten, with accents and math symbols written in by hand.

When I was at Penn, Scedrov’s name was invariably pronounced “shedrov”. I was puzzled by this at the time because “Andre” looked French and then “Sced-” looked like it is going to be Italian, and maybe I thought that “Andre” was just Italian “Andrea” with the ‘a’ left off to prevent annoying confusions, but then I got to the “-ov” and went down for the count. It wasn't until many years later that I understood what was had hit me.

(That “Šč” is the Latin-script version of Cyrillic “Щ” that you meet in names like Khrushchev (Хрущёв).)

I don't know what I would do in a similar situation. Stubbornly insist on the original pronunciation of my name or change the spelling so that other people wouldn't stumble over it? My great-grandfather chose on my behalf around a hundred years ago when he dropped the ‘z’ from “Dominusz”.