WARNING: This article contains spoilers from all seasons of Outlander
The Droughtlander will be coming to an end later this year when season seven debuts with 16 episodes. While viewers wait for the new series to air, they are revisiting the previous outings with questions about the story. One of the big ones is when Jamie Fraser (played by Sam Heughan) and Claire (Caitriona Balfe) met for the first time.
Why did Jamie Fraser lie to Claire about his name?
Claire was saved from the clutches of the sadistic Captain Jack Randall (Tobias Menzies) before he could rape her with Murtagh Fitzgibbons (Duncan Lacroix) rescuing her in the nick of time.
She was then introduced to a rag-tag group of Jacobite outlaws on the run from the English Redcoats.
Along with meeting Angus Mhor (Stephen Walters) and Dougal MacKenzie (Graham McTavish), Claire met Jamie.
However, the Highlander hero kept his cards close to his chest when he met Claire and introduced himself as ‘Jamie MacTavish’.
Jamie told the white lie because Claire was English and therefore potentially an enemy to them.
There were fears she could be a spy for the English given her cover story didn’t stack up and she seemed highly suspicious wandering through the Highlands in a shift dress.
She only found out Jamie’s true name on their wedding day after the couple were forced to wed to protect Claire.
Just as they prepared to exchange vows, Claire told her husband-to-be: “I can’t marry you. I don’t even know your real name.”
He responded and told her: “It’s Fraser. James Alexander Malcolm MacKenzie Fraser.”
She told him her name was “Claire Elizabeth Beauchamp”, which wasn’t strictly true as she was married to Frank Randall (also Menzies) at the time and had taken his name.
Jamie’s initial distrust of Claire extended to him referring to her as a ‘sassenach’, a derogatory Scottish term for an English person and also denoting she was an outside or outlander.
Over time, sassenach became a term of affection for his wife rather than an insult to her.
Both Jamie and Claire have had different names and identities over the course of Outlander.
In season three, viewers saw Jamie have many different monikers including the Dun Bonnet, Red Jamie, Malcolm Alexander, Sawny, and Mac Dubh.
All of these names denote the various phases of Jamie’s life from a Jacobite fugitive to a prisoner as Ardsmuir to a seditious printer to an indentured servant.
This was also the case for Claire, who was known by her surname right at the start of Outlander before she went missing.
She became sassenach after meeting Jamie, then Claire Fraser after she married, Master Raymond (Dominique Pinon) referred to her as ‘Madonna’ because she was a time traveller.
When she returned to the future, she became Dr Randall as well as having a new identity as a mother as she raised Jamie’s daughter Brianna (Sophie Skelton) in the 20th century.
No doubt, Claire and Jamie will continue to have new names as they carry on through Outlander.
The same is true of other characters including Roger MacKenzie (Richard Rankin) and Geillis Duncan (Lotte Verbeek).