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Category: Names from the Arts & Pop Culture

august baby names

By Denise K. Potter

Today, we associate the month of August with sweltering hot weather, vacationers and (gasp) back-to-school shopping commercials. But over the past few centuries, there have been some even more incredible things happening in August. This month is mostly about birthdays: international and national heroes, musicians, poets and explorers all blew out candles in the last month of summer, and their fulfilled wishes were pretty powerful ones. Check out this list of awesome August names and their meanings. And Happy Birthday to all August-born berries and baby-berries!

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shakespeare baby names

By Linda Rosenkrantz

Some names scream out their Shakespearean heritage–think Hamlet, Macbeth, Desdemona, Ophelia, Iago, Romeo–while others carry a more subtle reference to their ties to the Bard. We’re looking here towards the bottoms of the cast lists, at the secondary characters who might be a servant or a follower or friend.  So to avoid Romeo always being followed by Juliet, you can pick one of these that have a less pronounced Shakespearean tie.

Angusa good old Scottish name from “the Scottish play,” Macbeth, in which he is a general and the thane of Glamis, influenced by the prophesies of the three witches. Also the god of love and youth in Irish myth, Angus is especially popular in Australia now, thanks to AC/DC rocker Angus Young.

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Peale_Family_ca_1771_73

By Sephora, Baby Names from Yesteryear

Charles Willson Peale was one of the key players in early American art, painting some of the most famous political figures in American history. He founded a dynasty that would produce a number of important and influential artists. But it’s his creativity in naming his children which brought him to my attention.

Peale was married three times and had seventeen children with his first two wives, Rachel Brewer and Elizabeth de Peyster. Most of his children’s names are testament to his love of art, politics and the natural sciences. This man certainly knew how to stick to a theme (kind of…).

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abby-dash

By Abby Sandel, Appellation Mountain

There are dozens of ways to slice and dice baby names.  Classic or hipster, modern or vintage.

But here’s a divide that cuts across style categories: is the name on the birth certificate the name intended for daily use?  Or is it more of a jumping off point, the source of a nickname that will actually be what you call your kiddo 99% of the time?

The first group are WYSIWYG baby names: What You See (on the birth certificate) is What You Get (in real life).  Jack is called Jack, Sadie is Sadie, and how could Ellie answer to anything else?

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Dax-Shepard--Kristen-Bell-jpg

By Tara Ryazansky

High profile celeb couple and unique baby namers, Kristen Bell and Dax Shepard have mentioned in more than a few interviews that they’re “completely stumped” when it comes to naming baby #2. They already have a one-year-old girl named Lincoln, a name that they chose when Bell was pregnant and decided to use regardless of the sex of their child.

Will they take the same unusual approach once again? Will they go with a theme and pick something like presidential Kennedy, or another Nebraska city like Omaha, or the auto-related Ford?

Here are my suggestions for the couple.

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