The character of Walter Shandy in Laurence Sterne’s novel Tristram Shandy believes that names are as important to a person’s character as noses are to a person’s appearance. He considers Tristram the worst name in the world. Therefore, Walter’s solution to the problem of his new child’s crushed nose is to name him Trismegistus, the name of the greatest king, lawgiver, philosopher, priest and engineer ever. Walter’s rationale is that if one does not have a sizable nose he, at least, has a chance in life if he has a significant name, and this is one of the best. In the end, however, his child is accidentally christened with the name Tristram.




Alternate Spellings

Tristyn, Tristen

Related Names