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This given name is actually medieval in origin, given that it has been in use in Germany (especially the areas where Low German is spoken) and the Netherlands since medieval times. It is quite rare these days, at least in the Netherlands. You are much more likely to encounter it as a patronymic surname instead (in the form of Mertens, which means "son of Merten"). Its close relative Meerten is a bit more common there (as a given name), but it is already rare by itself, especially when compared to the names Maarten and Marten (which are hugely mainstream).
Merten is pronounced as MER-tən in Dutch, so as you can see, the pronunciation is not all that different from the German pronunciation listed in this entry.
I would also like to note that Merten is one of the forms of Martin(us) used in West Frisia. The other form is Marten, which is also used in North Frisia (i.e. not just in West Frisia).
(solely lists Dutch bearers, most of which are from the 17th and 18th century)
(in Dutch; it's a list of medieval variants and spellings (on the right) that were found in all manner of records from the period of 1300-1654. These records all belonged to the villages of Beesel, Belfeld and Swalmen, which are located in the province of Limburg in the Netherlands (and are also quite close to the border with Germany). As such, in a way, you could also consider these variants and spellings to be medieval Limburgish.)
(in Low German; mentions Merten as a medieval masculine Low German name)
- for Merten, see page 86 of the book "Fryske foarnammen / Friese voornamen" written by Rienk de Haan
- for Marten, see page 84 of the book "Fryske foarnammen / Friese voornamen" written by Rienk de Haan
- "Rufnamen auf den Inseln Föhr, Amrum und Sylt von ca. 1600 bis 1900" (männlich):
(in German; mentions Marten being used as a masculine given name in North Frisia)
(lists only bearers currently living in the Netherlands). [noted -ed]
Pronounced MER-ten. [noted -ed]
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