In "Q Who", we hear the following:

Q: Those dealings were two centuries ago. This creature is not what she appears to be. She's an imp, and where she goes, trouble always follows.

PICARD: You're speaking of yourself, Q, not Guinan.

Q: Guinan? Is that your name now?

What was Guinan's name two centuries prior?

  • 6
    Fred. Her name was Fred. Prove me wrong. – Politank-Z Nov 24 '15 at 1:13
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    Five hundred years prior, she used the name Guinan already (Time’s arrow). – chirlu Nov 24 '15 at 1:17
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    Out-of-universe, I don't think they created a "real" name for the character. It has been stated (although I couldn't find an official source) that her name Guinan was inspired by the performer Texas Guinan. – user35594 Nov 24 '15 at 1:35
  • 1
    Deceptively simple, but loads of research fails to turn up any positive answer - that's a sign of a good (but infuriating) question! :-) – Rand al'Thor Nov 24 '15 at 1:59
  • @randal'thor, no. It just means there's no answer in canon. – ThePopMachine Nov 24 '15 at 2:34


Neither Memory Alpha not the Star Trek Database say anything about Guinan having a previous name beyond the quote you mention.

Previous questions about Guinan and Q's history on Stack Exchange and Reddit also fail to cover her previous name.

I even found an interview with Whoopi Goldberg where she talks about her character and some backstory, but no mention of Guinan's previous name.

It looks as though nobody out-of-universe ever bothered to make up a previous name.

(A less likely possibility is that Guinan had always been the name she went by, and Q was just trying to make her feel uncomfortable.)

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  • 3
    Ha! Proof that it was Fred! – Often Right Nov 24 '15 at 1:58
  • @N_Soong : F is only one letter away from G after all... ;-) – Praxis Nov 24 '15 at 3:58
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    I want to accept this --- the only obstacle is "Q had forgotten it". Q forgets nothing! We know from the episode "Time's Arrow" that Guinan had a habit of visiting other worlds and pretending to be a local. On that occasion, she used the name Guinan, but on other occasions she could have used a different alias, particularly if the local naming conventions make "Guinan" sound too unnatural. – Praxis Nov 26 '15 at 15:19
  • @Praxis I edited out the bit about "Q had forgotten it". Should I add in some of the stuff from your comment about how her using a different name would make sense, or shall I not as it doesn't technically answer the question? – Rand al'Thor Nov 27 '15 at 0:10
  • @randal'thor : Much better now. Nah, let's just leave that extra info in my comment, as it is completely apocryphal. :-) – Praxis Nov 27 '15 at 0:58

She would have recognized the name Guinan at the time OP is asking about (22nd century), but it may or may not have been her birth name.

She was openly going by "Guinan" as early as the 19th century in "Time's Arrow":

DOORMAN: Good afternoon, sir.
DATA: Good afternoon. I would like to speak to Guinan.
DOORMAN: And you are?
DATA: Data.
DOORMAN: Mister Data. Could it be under another name?
DOORMAN: I can't seem to find your name on the guest list, sir.
DATA: I am a personal friend.
DOORMAN: Madam Guinan has discovered many personal friends since the newspaper announcement, but if your name is not on the guest list, there's nothing I can do.
GUINAN: What exactly are you?
DATA: Android. Artificial life form.
GUINAN: Ah. Did my father send you here? Because if he did, you must go back and tell him I've not done listening
DATA: I was not sent by your father. Circumstances demand that I take you into my confidence. I require your assistance.
(Guinan touches his nose)
GUINAN: Sorry.
DATA: I am from the twenty fourth century, where you and I serve aboard a starship.
DATA: Our ship encountered a species who appears to be threatening 19th century Earth. I investigated, and was inadvertently pulled into their temporal vortex. When I saw your photograph in the newspaper, I assumed you had joined me from the future, from the Enterprise. I knew your species was long-lived, but I did not realise you had visited Earth so long ago.

Star Trek: The Next Generation 5x26 "Time's Arrow" (part 1)

Based on the line about her father, I suspect that Q was correct in stating that "Guinan" was not her real name, because I find it hard to believe that she would hide from her father under her real name. However, this is entirely speculative; I can't find any solid evidence that she ever went by any other name. Given the remoteness of Earth at this time, it is entirely possible she did not expect her father to find her there regardless of what she called herself.

It is also possible that her real name has always been "Guinan," but at some point she felt the need to lie about it to Q.

This is the same Guinan, not an alternate timeline:

GUINAN: You just do. Do you remember the first time we met?
PICARD: Of course.
GUINAN: Don't be so sure. I just mean, if you don't go on this mission, (the [drink she was making] evaporates) we'll never meet.


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  • She wasn't hiding from her father. – Valorum Mar 15 '17 at 9:55

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