A guide to my name

My first name (Gerasimos) in Greek is written as Γεράσιμος. That stems from the words γέρας + σίμος. Γέρας means honor, award and σίμος means… means. So my first name means “honored”. Γεράσιμος is a very popular name in Kefalonia (the island my mother was born and where I was born and raised) since the patron saint is called Γεράσιμος. Otherwise, it’s not a very common name. Fun fact: There is a version of the name in Russian: Герасим.

How do you pronounce it? The only difficult issue is with the greek Γ (or small-case γ).

Ye – ra – si – mos (stress marked)

My last name (Spanakis) in Greek is written as Σπανάκης. It literally means spinach (σπανάκι in Greek). However, the name stems from the terms σπανός + άκι (or άκης). Σπανός means the one who has little hair, beardless. Ending άκι (or άκης) is used to give diminutive form, expressing small size (and sometimes affection). Σπανάκης is a common surname in Creta (the island my father was born).

How do you pronounce it? That’s easy:

Spa – na – kis (stress marked)

If all these seem very complex to you, you can just call me Jerry.