I am asking whether I should use it as a hint to make it clear that my story is about the story of Adam and Eve.

In my short story, there's a place called "Nede", with two characters called "Mada" and "Eve". It's a sci-fi book. Are semiordnilaps typically used this way?

  • Vee is a legitimate name for a woman (usually a nickname of other names, but still). (Not a semiordnilap of Eve, but a hidden spelling...)
    – Cyn
    Commented Feb 1, 2019 at 15:12
  • 1
    Even without this kind of naming, the reference might come across clearly enough, considering that allusions to Adam and Eve are a bit of a sci-fi staple.
    – aer
    Commented Feb 2, 2019 at 6:01

1 Answer 1


Using semordnilaps is indeed common enough. TV tropes refers to this trope as "Sdrawkcab Name". You can follow the link for multiple examples across media. A particularly known example is 'Alucard', a semordnilap so commonly used that TV Tropes gave it its own page.

However, because the tool is so commonly used, readers tend to notice it quickly enough. In your case, you can't even use it to hide the name 'Eve', since it's a palindrome. The name 'Eve' would point the readers towards Adam and Eve straight away. Hiding 'Adam' and 'Eden' behind 'Mada' and 'Nede' wouldn't so much "hint" at the source, as say it out loud and explicitly. If that fits what you want to do, that's great. If you do want the reference not to be obvious straight away, you might want to resort to other methods of hiding it.

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