Kriystal Gray of Montreal wanted to name her one-month-old daughter Zoé (zo-AY). But she also wanted her daughter’s name to stand out. So what did she do? She decided to spell it Zöé.
At first, the government of Quebec rejected Zöé and its gratuitous diacritic. Article 108 of the Civil Code of Quebec states that:
Where a name contains characters, diacritical signs or a combination of a character and a diacritical sign that are not used for the writing of French or English, the name must be transcribed into French or English, at the option of the interested person.
In French, the diaeresis mark is typically used to change the sound of the second of two vowels (as in naïve). And you’ll never find one over an o. So the diaeresis mark in Zöé doesn’t make sense at all.
Despite this, and despite its initial ruling, the government later reversed its stance and approved the name.
What do you think: Are the dots a big deal? Why or why not? Would you have approved or rejected this name?