Vorname and Rufname – about German Given Names

The German word Vorname can be literally translated into English as pre-name. This is a name that German parents give to a newborn child. Among Catholics it often happens that a child has more than one Vorname. However, in informal daily communication people usually call a person by just one name, and this is a Rufname. This is a person’s main name, but it often takes the 2d or the 3d place in official papers, as middle names are considered to be more important.