Since I am a westerner and I study Chinese, I am currently undergoing the hard task of choosing a Chinese name for myself. The last thing I want to do is to simply translate my Italian name in Chinese... instead, I want to pick up a name that really sounds Chinese.

My passion for Chinese culture led me to buy an old book that aims at leading the reader to choose an auspicious Chinese name based on zodiac, yin/yang, binomials, stroke numbers etc. I was born on May 27, 1988 (year of the dragon), around 8:30 a.m., and after some study and attempts, I came up to what sounds to me like a fair name, but I would really like to hear from any Chinese native speaker or experts among you if, to your ears, this sounds like a good name for a male.

So, here we go: the surname is 波 (Bo1), given name 傲蟀 (Ao2 Shuai4) - I  really liked the idea of having both a character that reminds of the cricket, with its fighting spirit and good fortune meaning, and a character that conveys the meaning of being proud. Does this sound like a nice/good/fair/natural name to you? Any possible suggestions? I really appreciate any feedback you may give me.

Thank you!

I insert the answer to your comment/question also here: I have chosen 白+鷺振. I like the idea that the 白鷺 bird (and the sound of my actual Italian surname) is suggested by the surname 白 and by the first character of the given name. According to my little understanding of Chinese traditional beliefs regarding names (based on the little book I mentioned at the very beginning), it seems to me that 白+鷺振 works fairly well also in terms of ying/yang, being an auspicious combination of Yang+yin+yin. Moreover, it seems that the zongge of the name (total strokes of the three characters) amounts to 39, related to happiness and blessing.

I hope this works!

  • 1
    no, "波傲蟀" is not a natural chinese name. would you give me your original full name, and preferences? Commented Aug 20, 2019 at 11:16
  • well, may i ask, what's your level of chinese competency? cause, my answer might be too simple for expert, or complicated for novice. Commented Aug 20, 2019 at 14:08
  • I'd rate my Chinese as lower-intermediate.
    – Emans27
    Commented Aug 20, 2019 at 14:10
  • then, at this moment, try to comprehend the poem provided is ok. in case, if you need, there're ample texts, stories about little egret. Commented Aug 20, 2019 at 14:13
  • I really appreciate the edit of your answer, it is incredibly detailed and you came up with a great suggestion which I deeply appreciate. If you have any further suggestions or idea, I will treasure it greatly! Thank you indeed.
    – Emans27
    Commented Aug 20, 2019 at 14:16

1 Answer 1


no, "波傲蟀" is not a natural chinese name.

the answer below is extremely superstitious, read with cautions.

there're many sects of fortune telling; here, i convert your birthday to "eight characters" (八字), with our any adjustment.

was born on May 27, 1988 (year of the dragon), around 8:30 a.m.

your eight characters would be:

甲 壬 丁 戊
辰 午 巳 辰

in terms of five elements (五行):

木 水 火 土
土 火 火 土

a simple saying of it is: 五行欠金 (lack of the metal element)

for such case, people would choose a baby name with the component 金 (radical 167), might be 木 (radical 75) & 水 (radical 85). meanwhile, they would avoid any character with the component 火 (radical 86) & 土 (radical 32).


i see. ok, without yin & yang, my first suggestion is:

白鷺, 振

your surname "ballo", it sounds identical to 白 (u+767d) & 鷺 (u+9dfa) according to cantonese. these two characters together, means "little egret"

it's a double characters surname. little egret (白鷺) is a good symbol in chinese culture.

from 禽經:


about the given name 振 (u+632f), it roughly means flap. when a little egret flaps its wings, it determines to fly, upwards into the sky.

this character is chosen according to a poem (indeed, there're countless poems talked about little egret).in the book of poetry (詩經 周頌 臣工之什 振鷺):





more about 鷺:

御定駢字類編 卷二百五 p134-144

御定分類字錦 卷五十六 鷗鷺第十七 p65-78

these two are cheat-sheets, most, if not all related texts / poems are recorded. need some level of competency to read it.

my second suggestion, considering yin & yang, is:

巴, 鑫

again, the first syllable of "ballo" in italian, is quite similar to 巴 (u+5df4) in cantonese.

it's a "common" han chinese surname.

back to five elements, your birthday is considered as having one wood (木), one water (水), three fire (火), three earth (土), and without any metal (金).

then, the compensation is choosing a name with component 金, in order to "feel / think" that name plus birthday together, all five elements are included.

that why the character 鑫 (u+946b) is chosen. it means "prospering or good profit".

if you examine the character closely, 鑫 is composed by three 金, which matches three fire and three earth in your birthday.

the name "巴鑫" would be a ordinary, common one.

the above show a basic method only, different sects of fortune telling would have different considerations or compensations.

have fun :)

  • Thank you for your insight on my reply! Since you asked, my general preference would be that of having a name that suggests a determined spirit or a reflexive one. I was looking for reference to an animal to convey this message (bird, insect or the like), that's why I thought of the cricket, which I really like!
    – Emans27
    Commented Aug 20, 2019 at 12:41
  • By the way, my name is Emanuele (first name) Ballo (surname)!
    – Emans27
    Commented Aug 20, 2019 at 12:42
  • You should listen to 水巷孑蠻, I'm sure his advice is in line with Chinese tradition.
    – Pedroski
    Commented Aug 20, 2019 at 14:07
  • I'll do for sure, 水巷孑蠻's suggestions and his late edit of his initial answer is absolutely welcome and I really appreciate his efforts and detailed answers! Looking forward for the further suggestions he was mentioning! Thank you indeed!
    – Emans27
    Commented Aug 20, 2019 at 14:14
  • I think you can put your first comment (no, "波傲蟀" is not a natural chinese name) in the answer, because that answers the question directly :)
    – dROOOze
    Commented Aug 20, 2019 at 15:07

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