Category: Historic Names
By Abby Sandel
In April, we looked at the vintage girl names of 1916, rarities still lingering in the attic. Now it’s time for vintage boy names from 1916! These choices weren’t chart-toppers one hundred years ago, but they were in the Top 1000, and in steady, regular use. Today, they feel surprisingly fresh, even modern. If you’re looking for a rare name with a history of use, these names could be the perfect pick for a son.
By Arika Okrent
Looking for a unique name with some historical cachet? The Dictionary of Medieval Names from European Sources is the place to go. It is a hefty work of scholarship that “aims to contain all given (fore, Christian) names recorded in European sources written between 500 and 1600, less the names of historical/non-contemporary people and names occurring only in fictional literature or poetry.”
The dictionary so far has over 1000 names, documented with citations and etymologies. They are constantly adding to the collection, planned in two phases, first looking at Western Europe and Hungary and then Eastern Europe. They also maintain an active blog with interesting facts about medieval naming practices and a “Mystery Monday” feature, covering documented names that have uncertain etymologies.
Here are 17 medieval names that would make great hipster baby names today.
Summer is in full swing now that July is here! A month filled with sunshine, barbeques, and vacations, July also delivers several noteworthy namesakes. Let’s pull some name inspiration from literature, activists, pioneers and an aviator all tied to the month of July.
Beatrix Potter was born on July 28, 1866. Born Helen Beatrix Potter, she wrote and illustrated more than twenty children’s books starring Peter Rabbit. Beatrix is a Latin name meaning she who brings happiness–a lovely meaning with a cool x ending. Beatrix lends itself to fun nicknames like Bea/Bee, Trix, and Trixie. Beatrix Wilhelmina Armgard was the reigning Queen of the Netherlands from 1980 until her abdication in 2013. Only 209 little girls were given the first name Beatrix last year. Actress Jodie Sweetin named her youngest daughter Beatrix Carlin in 2010.
The weather bureau says summer starts June 1 — and temperatures in Omaha this June show they have a point. Astronomers say summer started when the sun reached its annual highest place in the sky at 5:34 p.m. Monday.
“Summer” goes back millennia to “sem,” the word for summer in ancient Indo-European. Though not as ancient, “winter” also goes back thousands of years, to a Germanic word which probably meant “wet season.”