don’t sin anymore!
If there is a misuse of common language, there is an easy way to stop making this grammar mistake.
“In his latest self-titled album, the artist reconsiders his entire repertoire”, “This brand is launching its eponymous perfume line”… The regularity with which the term “eponymous” is misused is such that the best connoisseur of the French language might stop paying attention to it. Borrowed from Greek “epônumos”, which means “which gives its name…”, the word originated during ancient Greece, explain the sages of the French Academy.
At this point in history, the term was used to refer to the gods or heroes who gave their name to a particular city, dynasty, or tribe. In this way, we can say that Aegeus is the eponymous hero of the Aegean Sea or that Athena is the eponymous goddess of Athena. One also called the “archon of the same name” the chief magistrate of several cities because his office lasted one year, and his name was assigned to the year of his mandate.
Eponym or namesake
In a broader sense, since the 18th century in France, the term “eponym” has been used to describe fictional characters whose name is the origin of the title of the work in which they appear. As such, Nana is the eponymous heroine of the author’s famous novel Zolajust as Lucien Leuwen is the eponymous character of Stendhal’s unfinished novel or Carmen is the eponymous protagonist of Bizet’s opera.
Contemporaries are the ones who, especially through the music industry (where the “album of the same name” is spoken of wrongly and upside down), created confusion. Indeed, as he noted Project Voltaire, today a mistake is made between the hero (or person) who gives his name and the work that receives it. As a reminder, only the first can qualify as “of the same name”. Also, be careful not to tell “Patrick Roger is the founder of the eponymous chocolate brand”because it is not the brand of chocolate that gave the name to the creator, but “Patrick Roger is the founder of the eponymous chocolate brand”.
Mnemonic device: as soon as it is simply permissible to replace the term with “who gives his name…”, we can use “eponym”. Otherwise, it is better to use “homonym” (“said to be words of the same spelling”). As in the sentence: “Véronique Sanson has released an album of the same name”. In other words, the album in question is therefore called Veronique Sanson.