Friday, 25 September 2009

London is Tintin

According to the Dictionnaire des Orientalistes de Langue Francaise, Hergé based Tintin on 'much-travelled campaigning journalist, Albert Londres' (a possibility not noted here). Londres certainly seems to have lived a varied, much-travelled life, but its the naming that really intrigues me; the idea that francophone Tintin was named after the French for 'London'. I wonder how much, to a French ear, the awkward reduplication of '-on-on' sounds: how close it is to the French pronunciation of 'Tin-tin.' A slight lightening to the sound, maybe.

2 comments:

mahendra singh said...

Although I've never once heard it used in conversation, Roberts gives the meaning of tintin as "no way!".

Looks like Hergé saw through your little anglophile scheme (ton petit complot britannique)! Sapristi!

Adam Roberts Project said...

My alter-ego! In Dictionary form! I can hardly argue with that ...