Category: baby name Cosima
German names have had a spotty immigration record in the United States , even though one million Germans emigrated to America in the 1850s alone, and of course brought their native names with them.Â On the 1900 Social Security list, we find fairly high on the girlsâ side such names as Bertha, Gertrude, Hilda, Irma, Frieda and Wilhelmina, while for the boys there were Carl, Oscar, Herman, Otto, August, Rudolph, Emil, Gus, Adolph (at Number 180!), and Fritz.
These names âespecially for boysâfaded as the result of two World Wars that produced anti-German feeling and stereotypes, never to quite recover, though Oscar, August and Gus are making a comeback.
That aside, there are many, many attractive names with German roots, and here are just a few (which don’t necessarily reflect current popularity, where tastes run to more international favorites such as Mia, Hannah and Ben*:
- Adelaâthe a-ending of the rarely used German form of Adele (accent on the first syllable) makes it lighter and more feminine, as in Joanna/Joanne, Suzanna/Suzanne. Adela was the name of William the Conquerorâs youngest daughter and a character in E.M. Forsterâs A Passage to India. Adel, which means ânobleâ is a popular element in German names, as in Adelaide and Adelina.
- Amalia, AmalieâThese pretty alternatives to Amelia derive from the Old German word meaning âindustriousâ.
- Cosima has become somethingÂ of a hot choice, since it was chosen almost simultaneously last year by both Claudia Schiffer and Sofia Coppola. Though it has Greek roots, it has long been used in Germany, and has strong musical connections via the Cosima who was the daughter of Franz Liszt and the wife of Richard Wagner.
- DominoâYes, it sounds like a black-and-white game piece, but this playful and dynamic o-ending girlâs name became popular in Germany in the late 80s.Â It was used for her daughter by British designer India Hicks.
- EbbaâWidely used in both Germany and Scandinavia, this seventh century saintâs name has a nice bouncy sound, and could be a follow-up to Emma and Ella.Â As could Elsa, the operatic bride who was the first to walk down the aisle to Wagnerâs famous wedding march
Is it a coincidence that Sofia Coppola and Claudia Schiffer both picked the same unusual (in the U.S. anyway) name for their baby daughters almost simultaneouslyâor is it aÂ signal that itâs about to enter the mainstream?
Cosima (accent on the first syllable) derives from the Greek Kosmos, and refers to the order and harmony of the universe.Â Itâs a logical choice for both of these moms in terms of their roots: there could be a Cosima on Coppolaâs family tree and itâs also often heard in Germany, where Schiffer was born.Â Cosima is used in Greece as well, and by upper class Brits: English celebrity chef Nigella Lawson has a daughter named Cosima, while Marissa Ribisi and Beck used the male form, Cosimo, for their son.Â The most famous bearer of the name in history is a woman with strong musical tiesâCosima Wagner was both the daughter of composer Franz Liszt and the wife of composer Richard Wagner.
With her third child, Claudia Schiffer has continued her previous pattern of choosing a distinctive, cutting-edge name starting with her own first initial, âC,â as she did with older daughter Clementine and son Caspar. Â Clementine, although it hasnât made it onto the popularity lists yet, is rapidly becoming a favorite of both nameberries and celebrities .Â Kirstie Alley first revived it in the late 70s, and itâs since been chosen by Ethan Hawke and Rachel Griffiths. Â
Caspar has been slower to catch on, but may well follow in the wake of cousin Jasper, if it can finally shake the friendly ghost association. Romy, the name of Sofia Coppola and Thomas Marsâ first daughter, is also beginning to be heard more and more.
Several other celebs have followed Claudiaâs practice of serial-initializing, often repeating their own nameâs starting letter.Â There are, for instance, Tarian, Tristan and Tyler Tritt (sons of Travis);Â Corde, Cordell and Cori, children of Cordozar Calvin (Snoop Dogg) Broadus; Scarlet, Sophia and Sistine Stallone, who all share the middle name of Rose; andâthe grand prize winnerâdirector Robert Rodriguez, who named his five children Racer, Rebel, Rocket, Rogue and Rhiannon.
But getting back to Cosimaâdoes it have the potential to move out beyond the celebrisphere?Â Â Especially since itÂ could be limited byÂ some possible pronunciation problems âas in coz-EE-ma. Â
What do you think?