Elon Musk and Grimes’ name for their new son, X Æ A-12, may be so unusual that the law won’t allow it. That’s why the couple just changed it to include a roman numeral.
According to California’s state constitution, legal names may only use the 26 letters of the English alphabet, and concerns that the child’s name wouldn’t be allowed spread after his birth earlier this month. On Grimes’ Instagram account, a user asked about these laws and if the name changed.
Without confirming a reason why, Grimes wrote that the child’s new name is X Æ A-Xii Musk, with the “12” changed to the roman numeral XII to take state law into account. Grimes also said that the numerals were also added because it “looks better.”
How the name is pronounced changes depending on who you ask. On Twitter, Grimes explained the X represents “the unknown variable” and “Æ, my elven spelling of Ai (love &/or Artificial intelligence).” The “A” stands for her favorite song, “Archangel,” and the 12 represents the Chinese zodiac sign of the rat. Combined, the A-12 is also a nod to the A-12 recon jet of the same name, which she says the Musks admire because it has “no weapons, no defenses, just speed.”
But Musk had a different explanation when he was interviewed by Joe Rogan: “I mean it’s just X, the letter X. And then, the Æ is, like, pronounced ‘Ash’… and then, A-12, A-12 is my contribution,” he said.