Category: Guest Bloggers
By Abby Sandel, Appellation Mountain
Here’s something I overheard recently:
There’s something to that statement, isn’t there? Olivia feels like a vintage revival, a literary choice thanks to Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night, and a wildly popular name for over a decade. Aria is a newcomer, a noun name that leapt from obscurity to prominence thanks to more than one pop culture reference. They’re very different names.
Yet on sound alone, Aria and Olivia are similar. Reverse the histories – make Aria the Shakespearean choice and Olivia the twenty-first century television darling – and it is easy to imagine the statement reversed, too. After all, five of the current US Top 20 girls’ names end with -ia.
Nouveau or traditional, popular or obscure, our favorite names tend to share sounds.
The sixth month of the year includes the summer solstice along with the birthdays of lots of fascinating people — big-screen stars, composers and artists, military and sports heroes, and one pioneering pacifist. The month itself has some serious mythological ties, having been named for the goddess of marriage. Here are some of the best names connected to the month of June . One of them may even be perfect for your own little Junebug.
Audie– Audie Leon Murphy was the most honored American military hero of World War II, awarded a total of 37 medals and decorations, including the Medal of Honor for his singlehanded attempt to hold off an infantry company of Germans for an hour in France in 1945. Today, Audie is more commonly used as a nickname for the girls name Audrey– that popular choice which is reminiscent of Old Hollywood glamour was Number 32 for girls last year.
When it comes to naming a daughter, imagination reigns. From Hollywood birth announcements to literary powerhouses, blog babies to the most random of name spottings, a great name can come from anywhere.
This week’s potential seismic name influence? Disney’s big screen retelling of Sleeping Beauty. This time, we’re getting the villain’s side of the story in Maleficent. Angelina Jolie might make the two-horned headdress look elegant, but I doubt she can sell her character’s name to future parents. Maleficent is too downright evil! But plenty of other choices associated with the big summer film could get a boost.
On a sad note, this was also the week the world said farewell to the towering Maya Angelou. If Francis has gained currency as a hero name, could the widely admired writer’s names – first and last – be next?
Together, they point towards some of the most interesting sources for naming daughters in our age: myth, fable, and literature, much of it ancient and well-worn, but some of it modern, even newly invented.
Hi everybody. Like expectant parents everywhere, my husband and I are thinking a lot these days about baby names. We bandy names about, try them out on paper, say them out loud to see how they sound. And yes, we have been known to call different names out to my belly, to see if the baby answers to the name by kicking his/her approval. (Note to other expectant parents: this strategy does not work.)
It’s been interesting to see how Mike and I view names. I like an unusual name — not something funky or too showy or trying too hard — but something that not every kid in kindergarten is going to have. Mike likes traditional names, especially ones with history or family meaning. (And I do, too, of course.) But I admit I had to laugh when, when considering a certain boy name, he worried, “I like it, but won’t people will be asking all his life, how do you spell that??”
By Abby Sandel, Appelation Mountain
Both new arrivals names’ are definitely distinctive, and at first glance, it might seem that they wouldn’t have much impact on what the rest of us name our children.
But high profile birth announcements – even the most extreme examples – do change the way that we think about possible names, often for the better.