Beyoncé has officially introduced her baby twins to the world, and a single question is on everyone’s mind: What is Sir Carter’s full name?
The caption on Beyoncé’s Instagram says simply, “Sir Carter and Rumi 1 month today.” So does the placement of “Carter” next to “Sir” indicate that it is part of Sir’s first name? Meaning that his full name is Sir Carter Carter? Maybe Sir Carter Knowles? Sir Carter Knowles-Carter? Or is the “Carter” meant to apply to both Sir and Rumi, meaning that Sir’s full name is Sir Carter, full stop?
Fans have been taking to Twitter all morning to muse over the possibilities.
Beyoncé wrote "Sir Carter and Rumi" not "Sir and Rumi Carter" so is Rumi not a Carter or is Sir Carter Sir Carter Carter? pic.twitter.com/UTOvLLupP4— Kingsley (@kingsleyyy) July 14, 2017
Does the name being written out as "Sir Carter" substantiate the claim they haven't confirmed that Jay-Z took Beyonce's last name please god— Alana Massey (@AlanaMassey) July 14, 2017
LISTEN Y'ALL, SHE SPECIFICALLY PUT SIR CARTER AND RUMI, NOT SIR AND RUMI CARTER. WE WILL REFER TO KING #1 BY HIS COMPLETE NAME, SIR CARTER pic.twitter.com/37bgVVzHWI— state attorney (@beygency) July 14, 2017
Some suspect that Beyoncé’s mother, Tina Knowles, may have clarified things. On Instagram, she posted Beyoncé’s portrait with the caption, “hello Sir Carter and Rumi Carter,” which Refinery29 argues is definitive proof that Sir’s full name is just Sir Carter.
Regardless of whether the proper address is Sir or Sir Carter, the name Sir fits into a long history of black people using honorifics as first names. Names like Master, King, and Prince were common among African-American men in the beginning of the 20th century, and some scholars have suggested that the naming convention may have functioned as a way for black people to imbue pride in their children.
It’s also been suggested that Sir is a reference to the Persian poet Rumi, making Sir and Rumi a matched pair of names. As TMZ points out, Rumi addresses a line in one of his most famous poems to “sir”:
Bring the pure wine of
love and freedom.
But sir, a tornado is coming.
More wine, we'll teach this storm
A thing or two about whirling.
That’s not necessarily a smoking gun — sir is a pretty common word that shows up in a lot of poetry! — but it would be a very Beyoncé move to make sure her twins’ names correspond to each other.