How DO You Pronounce That?

baby name pronunciation

By Abby Sandel

Most baby names come with a fairly predictable pronunciation, at least in English. No one argues over Emma or Mason, and we don’t mangle Charlotte or James.

And yet, other names are open to multiple possibilities. They’re not necessarily wrong – just different. Our assumptions about correct pronunciations are shaped by regional accents and changing trends. Pages and pages in our forum discuss this very issue.

It’s a different challenge from names that are misheard. Name your daughter Emmeline, and she’ll probably be called Emily at least some of the time. But that’s a different kind of frustration than explaining that she’s emmaLINE, rhymes with fine and sign, not emmaLYNN.

Or, of course, the opposite. Because it can be emmaLYNN, rhymes with kin and win, just as easily. Unless, of course, you pronounce it emmaLEEN.

Let’s take a look at nine baby names with pronunciations that often lead to confusion.

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12 Delicious Thanksgiving Baby Names

Thanksgiving 2016
If you’re still looking for a name for your late November babe, the Thanksgiving story has several interesting names tied to the holiday, from arrivals on the Mayflower to those who established it as a national holiday to the perennial parade.  Here are some of the best Thanksgiving-related names.

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100+ Cool Baby Names

cool baby names

by Pamela Redmond Satran

Maybe you’re looking for a cool name for your baby — or you might simply be interested in what counts as cool these days. Think of this as your starter list for cool baby names.

We include samples from all the different kinds of cool names here: vintage names and modern baby names, names from the Bible and mythology, along with baby names from brand-new sources. There are cool names here that are popular and also names so cool you’ve never heard them before. Find the cool names you like the best, and then dig deeper into that category.

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Brother Names: Finding a Middle Ground

a Name Sage post by: Abby View all Name Sage posts
Name Sage brothers

He says her favorite names are weird. She says his suggestions aren’t for her. But does this couple have more in common than they think?

K writes:

My husband and I are having a boy. We are struggling with a name and could really use your help!

Our older son is Levi Henry.

Most of my husband’s favorite names don’t really appeal to me. His list includes Everett, Oliver, Kendrick, Kenyon, Lincoln, Ellis, Ezra, Truman, Spencer, Trevor, and Eli.

My list is Finn (Phinneas Wilder, called Finn), Gray/Grey, Kipton, Cohen, Rowan, and Grant. I like Felix, too, but I can’t decide if it strikes me as too unusual.

I like names that are a little less common, but I don’t want it to be so unusual that people have no idea how to say or spell it. The other type of name that appeals to me is an old name that’s new again.

My husband thinks my list is “weird.” From his list, I think Oliver is okay, but too popular. Everett, Lincoln, Ellis, and Truman are on my maybe list. Ezra might be fine, but with a son named Levi, it seems like we’re sticking with Biblical names, and that’s not the case.

Our girl name for Levi was Leah Eleanor. My husband still really likes it, and I’m still ok with it. But I’d prefer Eleanor with Elle for short.

Our last name ends with -son, so names like Grayson and Emerson are out.

The Name Sage replies:

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12 Zippy Z Names for Girls

Z names for girls

By Linda Rosenkrantz

There aren’t very many usable names beginning with Z, and even fewer for girls than boys. Yet the very rarity of girls’ names starting with the last letter of the alphabet immediately gives them an element of distinction, as well as an exotic sound.

Over the years, Zelda has been the longest running American Z girl, in the Top 1000 for most of the years between 1880 and 1967 (and returning just last year). But recently it has been Zoe—and all her spelling variations—that has been the massive hit.

Here they are, along with other, less common, great Z possibilities for girls.

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