The Royal Commission for Onomastics and Dialectology performs its scientific task under the high patronage of the Koninklijke Vlaamse Academie van België voor Wetenschappen en Kunsten and the Académie royale des Sciences, des Lettres et des Beaux-Arts de Belgique. It is the scientific aim of the Academy to study the onomastics (toponymy and anthroponymy) and the dialectology, especially in Belgium in both Germanic and Romance areas. The Commission therefore brings out scientific studies (Bulletin, Publications) about these disciplines. The Commission is also an advisory body; the government can always ask for its scientific advice.
The statutory meetings took place in the Palais des Académies – Paleis der Academiën in Brussels (Hertogstraat 1, rue Ducale) on 26 January, 25 May, and 26 October 2008. There were six section meetings (each time two of them on 26 January, 25 May, and 26 October 2008), one plenary meetings was held on 26 January, and two meetings of the board took place on 25 May, and 26 October 2008. In addition, the Flemish section held an extraordinary board meeting of its own on 18 March 2009.
Lectures held at the plenary meeting
Bernard Roobaert: La langue des différents intervenants du Doyenné de Hal à la fin du XVIIIe siècle. Jozef Van Loon: De Vita Sancti Landoaldi (anno 980) als onomastische, prosopografische en historische bron.
Lectures in the Flemish section
Ward Van Osta: Een mislukt boek: Andouerpis Antwerpen van A. Michiels Vic Mennen: Veen in Lommel. Een landschappelijke, historische en naamkundige benadering José Cajot: Vlaanderens omgangstaal – Naar eigen Vlaamse normen Hugo Ryckeboer: Verklarend woordenboek van de Vlaamse gemeentenamen. Verslag over de voortgang in 2009 (Etymological dictionary of Flemish Municipality Names. Progress Report 2008)
Lectures in the Walloon section
Jean Germain : L’origine givetoise du nom de famille (NF) (de) Suraÿ Jean Loicq : Quatre questions d’hydronymie Marie-Guy Boutier: Sur un cas de clonage des dérivés toponymiques latins en –acu à base anthroponymique: *Gaudiacu
Important deliberations in the board meeting, the plenary and the section meetings
Website The commission launched its own website on March 1 2007. The information published to the site includes the scientific and advisory activities and the international contacts of the commission and its members.
External editorial board of peer reviewers The board and the two Sections of the Royal Commission for Onomastics and Dialectology have decided to establish a new editorial board for the periodical of the organisation (Handelingen / Bulletin). This editorial board will consist of both the members of the commission and a number of international experts in the various branches of science that are represented in the publications of the commissioners. The commission’s own editorial team and the external editorial board will jointly garantee the international quality and afeguard the outstanding scientific content of the journal.
The Bulletin LXXXI (2009) counts 348 pages. It was exchanged for a number of periodicals and with scientific institutions. The publications acquired by purchase or exchange were stored in the library, which is located in the library of the Palais des Académies – Paleis der Academiën in Brussels (Hertogstraat 1, rue Ducale). Sixty copies are placed at the disposal of researchers and students at the scientific centres of the Belgian universities.
The study “Maurits Gysselings Toponymisch Woordenboek. Receptie, aanvullingen en correcties” (Maurits Gysseling’s Toponymic Dictionary. Reception, supplements, and corrections) of Jozef Van Loon, member of the Flemish section of the Royal Commission for Onomastics and Dialectology, was published as Werk 26 and constitutes an indispensable supplement for every reader of Gysseling’s dictionary.
With regard to street names the Commission was consulted by numerous Belgian local authorities in 2009.
The Commission further continued the linguistic adaptation of the geographical names of the ordnance survey maps published by the Nationaal Geografisch Instituut – Institut National Géographique.
The Royal Commission for Onomastics and Dialectology has been represented by his members on several international scientific meetings in Belgium, France, Germany, The Netherlands, Monaco, Poland, Romania, Russia, Slovenia, South Africa and the USA.