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Shakespeare Names: Embrace the Ides of March!

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Alexandra.Iseult Says:

March 15th, 2012 at 1:10 am

Just as a note:
Hero in Much Ado About Nothing is (as described) a gem, but the name is NOT pronounced “HERE-oh” as the word.

It is “HAIR-oh” like the ‘Her’ in the name of the Greek Goddess Hera.

Given that Juno is so popular, Hero is truly beautiful and actually quite usable despite the fact that few people will pronounce it right (i mean, it was never mentioned in this post), and many will make this mistake.

There are variants, such as Heiro, and Herro, but I believe similar problems are at hand.

By the way, I love Octavia and its modern nick name tavie!

little_cupcake Says:

March 15th, 2012 at 2:07 am

We were going to name our baby Octavia if he was a girl! Shh, don’t tell too many people about this name, I don’t want it becoming popular! I might get to use it one day :)

Katja Says:

March 15th, 2012 at 2:52 am

Sorry, Alexandra.Iseult, but you are wrong. The name Hero is pronounced exactly like the word (HERE-oh) in Shakespearean English.

Here are some examples:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DlqMHQN0oAk (3:04 and 7:58)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R1S2AKSHf1I (0:20 and 1:27)

minorbeatrice Says:

March 15th, 2012 at 5:47 am

I’ve always adored Cassio since the very first time I read Othello.

Sadly though, all my friends said to me, “Are you going to name a child after a Japanese electronic company?” Which took Cassio off the list straight away.

I also LOVE Rosalind. Such a delicate name.

CraftyDiem Says:

March 15th, 2012 at 9:13 am

We named our daughter Ariel for the sprite in the Tempest and because of the tie to my Jewish roots. We pronounce it R-E-L. We love it, she loves it, and the nickname Ari is great too!

Lola Says:

March 15th, 2012 at 9:40 am

I’ve gotta admit, Cassius is a long time love of mine. Cassio makes me think of the electronics co. too, but I could see it as an occasional nickname! :)
Octavia’s pretty but too severe for me. I like Rosalind much, much more (but adore the un-Shakesperian Rosamund most of all).

Love Cymbeline quite a bit too, so melodic! I’ve got it in the middle: Beatrix Cymbeline. It’s a bit OTT, but I adore it there. :D

kgcg31 Says:

March 15th, 2012 at 1:02 pm

I’ve already posted a couple of times how much I adore Humphrey . . . Unfortunately, I just don’t know how it’s usable anymore. :(

Alexandra.Iseult Says:

March 15th, 2012 at 2:25 pm

Katja, the reason I mentioned this pronunciaiton is that my Classics professor always insisted that it is pronounced ‘HAIR-oh’, because it shares a derivative with the goddesses’ name Hera (warrior), and therefore is pronounced that way.

However, like many Greek names there is controversy over how they are actually pronounced (just think Athena, and how no one can positively confirm a pronunciation for even this name), and I’m sure that in Shakespeare’s time Hero was pronounced as you say.

I’m just here to say that it wouldn’t be ‘wrong’ to use the more directly derived pronunciation (as my prof always said). In many ways it makes the name more appealing. You do present an interesting point, :) thanks.

jame1881 Says:

March 15th, 2012 at 6:22 pm

Corin…never heard of it before, but I quite like it.

laurann Says:

March 15th, 2012 at 7:10 pm

My favorite Shakespearean play is Much Ado About Nothing, and seeing as how my hubby LOVES the name Leo, I’ve thought about using Leonato (Hero’s father). I’m not sure how usable it is though.

caroline11278 Says:

March 15th, 2012 at 7:11 pm

I like Corin, Cressida, and Rosalind the best. I also like Claudio, but I will never be able to hear it without thinking of the creepy Fred Figglehorn character *shudders*.

miloowen Says:

March 15th, 2012 at 7:36 pm

I do love Corin…and in the original Italian, Cassio was Michele….I also prefer Rosamund to Rosalind…but I love Miranda, Edmund, Edgar, Tom, Cordelia, Humphrey, and Kate.

I just can’t see Ariel as a female name. I’ve been in The Tempest, my son has been Prospero, and I’ve read it many times, and I just can’t see the justification for making Ariel female. I much prefer to leave Ariel to Ariel Sharon and go with Ariella for the female.

I also disagree with your suggesting that Cassius was a villain. I have taught Julius Caesar many times, and yes, Cassius may have manipulated Brutus into the original conspiracy, but once Brutus made the decision to join, he took over, and it was his flaws that led to the downfall of both men. Cassius was a deeply flawed character, but he was not Octavius.

Lastly, Octavia is a very common name here in the Deep South among my African American students. I have taught at least one Octavia every year.

joel613 Says:

March 15th, 2012 at 8:30 pm

All fine names but my favorite Shakespearean name has always been Aliena from As You Like It and used by Ken Follett in the great Pillars of the Earth. My nephew was planning on using it for his second daughter until she turned out to be a he.

auroradawn Says:

March 15th, 2012 at 9:42 pm

Corin is also a Narnia name (the twin brothers Cor and Corin from “The Horse and His Boy”), but I don’t know whether C.S. Lewis got it from Shakespeare or not! I like it, too.

strangeasang3ls Says:

March 21st, 2012 at 4:33 pm

Cassio makes me think of Casio, like, keyboards. Charmian is nice, but I think it would get confused with Charm-a-i-n. Lucette is nice, but sounds a little too much like Lucite for my liking. I like Corin and Rosalind though.

Benson5 Says:

May 12th, 2012 at 6:02 am

I have 3 children all named for Shakespearean literature – Beatrice (Much Ado About Nothing), Toby (Twelfth Night) and Benedict (Much Ado..)

We have only ever met 1 other Benedict, a few elderly Beatrices, and a dog called Toby.

I love the fact that they are the only children with those names in their school (700 pupils) in amongst all the Callums, Emilys, Georgias, and Jakes :)

magpie1127 Says:

June 23rd, 2012 at 1:26 pm

Pretty sure the character from R&J was Rosaline, not Rosalind…

hopefulmommatobe Says:

January 27th, 2013 at 6:17 am

Benson5- that’s intriguing. I teach in the Uk and have 3 Boys called Toby in a year group of 45 children!

Kateri Says:

March 10th, 2013 at 11:59 am

Balthazar is my all time favorite boys name, and I love Rosalind pronounced Rose-a-lind, not Rahz-a-lind.

What’s in a name? Welcome to Anthropologizing | Anthropologizing Says:

August 4th, 2013 at 6:45 pm

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