Lv 5
r asked in Education & ReferenceTrivia · 9 years ago

How did the names 'John Doe' and 'Jane Doe' come to refer to unidentified bodies?

Why the names John and Jane Doe?

How were these names chosen?

I know John and Jane were chosen just for being common, generic names, but why the last name 'Doe'?

4 Answers

  • Favorite Answer

    It was actually first coined by Homer Simpson...very little known fact. Homer was walking through an alley after coming from Moe's, and he tripped over a dead body. Think it was his buddy John, he said, "John...Doe!!"

    Source(s): I know, this was very helpful...
  • patti
    Lv 4
    5 years ago

    There used to be this legal debate in historic England related to the Acts of Ejectment involving a hypothetical landowner named John Doe who leased a section of land to an equally hypothetical man, named Richard Roe, who then claimed the land his possess and ejected John Doe. These names -- John Doe and Richard Roe -- had no special importance, apart from "Doe" (a female deer) and "Roe" (a small species of deer determined in Europe) being frequently known nouns at the time. However the debate grew to be a trademark of authorized idea, and the title "John Doe" in exact won wide forex in each the legal world and basic utilization as a generic stand-in for any unnamed character. The subculture of fictitious names comes from the Romans, who additionally had names that they ordinarily used for fictitious events in lawsuits. The two names most customarily used had been Titius and Seius.

  • 9 years ago

    The name "John Doe", often spelled "Doo," along with "Richard Roe" or "Roo" were regularly invoked in English legal instruments to satisfy technical requirements governing standing and jurisdiction, beginning perhaps as early as the reign of England's King Edward III (1312–1377).[5


  • 9 years ago

    I believe it is because at one point these were the two most male and female names. I'm not sure, it might just be because it's easy to say/remember.

Still have questions? Get your answers by asking now.