Alex's Strange Name

Silver coin with the head of Alexander the Great wearing the horn of Zeus Ammon and diadem. Image from the British Museum.

Now I’ve addressed our heroine’s name and what it means, it’s only fair I formally introduce our antagonist, the filthy brute, Alex Basileus-Trapezites. First name: Alex, after Alexander the Great. This is generally as a type, class, or order, not that particular Macedonian. Although, it does secondarily identify the allegorical theme of the Alexander Romances and all that they bring to the table. Surname: Basileus-Trapezetes. The simple translation from the Greek is ‘Royalty-Bankers’. The hyphen in any surname, of course, represents the alliance of two different families by marriage. Allegorically, this represents an alliance of two different types, classes, or orders (in history, this has sometimes actually involved marriage). For optimum consistency with other aspects of the wider allegory, I tried to source the names from a common source and that was the Bible, using the Koine Greek. All this makes for a very unusual name, which helped with the plot in regard to Lydia searching him out. I don’t think it’s unbelievable, though. The British have surnames like ‘King’ and ‘Banks’ and suchlike, why not the Greeks? Alexander the Great obviously had no need for alliances with international finance houses in his day. He would have had his own treasury and mint financed by tax, colonial campaigns, and pillage. Later in history, his type, class, or order had need to make those alliances, whether by marriage or the agreement of mutually beneficial interests. That is all I need to say on this one. There were a couple of other options in the Koine Greek, but they had complicating issues. I also toyed with the full Alexandros Basileus-Trapezetes, but that’s far too grand for a boy from either Grimsby or Hinckley.


This is a repository of insights about the novel I Am Not Gog (and future work). There will be new insights every month or so until we have a full library and nothing is left unexplored. If you came here to find out more about the allegory of the novel, start by clicking HERE.

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I Am Not Gog. A novel by Matthew James Hunt.