In Kit Berry's Stonewylde series, the inhabitants of the Dorset village of Stonewylde live a secluded life, segregated from the Outside World and happy in their own little world. They have a pagan and extremely traditional culture, and as far as I can remember, they're always addressed by their first names only (Yul, Maisie, Tom, Violet, and so on). I don't recall any mention of surnames.

Does anyone in Stonewylde have or use a surname?

I'd expect the Hallfolk at least to have surnames, since they tend to have a stronger connection to the Outside World. Many Hallfolk kids end up going to university, where they presumably need to supply a full name; and many Hallfolk adults, including Magus, have a job or some kind of presence in the Outside World, in some cases even migrating out and living there.

And if the Villagers don't have surnames, then what does Yul do when he

studies at university

between books 3 and 4? Again, presumably he needed to supply a full name in order to do so.

Is there ever any information on this in the books?

  • What do one-named people in the real world do when they study at university? Do universities really require students to supply a first and last name, when they have one legal name?
    – user14111
    Jun 19, 2016 at 11:36
  • @user14111 Are there one-named people IRL, outside of maybe people in isolated tribes who'd be unlikely to go to university? I don't know, perhaps things are different in other countries, but in Britain (where Stonewylde is), I've never heard of anyone with only one legal name, and I'm sure UCAS would have trouble processing a university application from such a person.
    – Rand al'Thor
    Jun 19, 2016 at 11:46
  • @Randal'Thor - In the UK, a passport would show three XXXs to indicate that the person has changed their name to a mononym; deedpolloffice.com/change-name/restrictions-on-names
    – Valorum
    Jun 19, 2016 at 12:45
  • Wikipedia tells me that quite a few people in places like India and Indonesia have mononyms. I'd be surprised if none of those people went to universities in Britain.
    – user14111
    Jun 19, 2016 at 17:10
  • @user14111 OK, I stand corrected. But the university issue was only part of my motivation for asking the question, which is still valid regardless of real-world customs on mononymity.
    – Rand al'Thor
    Jun 19, 2016 at 17:12

1 Answer 1


I asked my good friend Kit Berry these questions. She was kind enough to respond.

Q: Does Yul have a surname?

Kit Berry: Nobody at Stonewylde has a surname!

Q: So when Yul went to (muggle) university, what surname did he use for his paperwork?

Kit Berry: Stonewylde! Seriously - Villagers would have no need of surnames (other than the old 'son/daughter of', or perhaps trade).

  • I don't often approve of Twitter-based answers, but this one nails it perfectly.
    – Rand al'Thor
    Sep 29, 2016 at 13:10
  • @Randal'Thor - I'm hoping for a follow-up answer to the second point raised, that of his surname at university.
    – Valorum
    Sep 29, 2016 at 13:25
  • And you got one!
    – Rand al'Thor
    Sep 29, 2016 at 13:26

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