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Category: baby name Amaryllis

posted by: histornamia View all posts by this author
restoration

By Amy of histornamia

While the Elizabethan/Jacobean playwright William Shakespeare has had a long influence on the names of children, his Restoration successors haven’t had as much impact on the name game. But when looking through character lists of these Restoration comedies, written between 1660-1710, there are some fabulous names to be found, some that have been heard of since, like Amanda, Julia and Sylvia, and some that are extremely rare. Here are thirteen of the more interesting feminine names from the most popular Restoration comedies of the day.

Amaryllis – As seen in 1671’s The Rehearsal, which was published anonymously, though prominent courtier, George Villiers, 2nd Duke of Buckingham, was most likely the writer. The name Amaryllis is of Greek origin and means ‘to sparkle’.

Araminta – As seen in 1693’s The Old Bachelor by William Congreve, the name is actually a disguise for the character of Sylvia. Araminta is a hybrid of the names Arabella and Aminta as well as having the Greek meaning of ‘defender’.

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Nolan Gerard Funk - Honestly Sincere

The first real Broadway musical was a five-and-a-half-hour 1866 curiosity called The Black Crook, featuring characters named Rodolphe, Stalacta, Barbara and Amina.

Since that time, of course, there have been countless more shows with zillions of  names of characters belting it out on the Great White Way, ranging from the sublime to the ridiculous.  There are so many of the former that it’s been hard to narrow it down to a dozen or so Nameberry Faves, but here are our final picks:

Adelaide—In Guys & Dolls, Adelaide is an endearing Hot Boxclub dancer with a perpetual psychosomatic cold due to the frustrations of a 14-year engagement.  Not surprisingly, Aussie Rachel Griffiths chose this rapidly climbing Australian place name for her daughter; Katherine Heigl spelled it Adalaide.

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