Category: baby name Willem
By Linda Rosenkrantz
When you think of classic boys’ names, chances are that the first three that pop to mind are John, James and William. Of the three, William is, much like female counterparts Elizabeth, Mary and Margaret, probably the richest in its multiplicity of variations, nicknames, girl versions, etc. Here’s a rundown of the main man and his manifestations.
William—For four hundred years, William was second only to John as the most widely used name in the English-speaking world, and even now is the fifth most prevalent boys’ name in the US, given to almost 17,000 baby boys last year. With Germanic roots, William was introduced to England by William the Conqueror, and has long been a royal name in that country; it has belonged to no fewer than four US presidents and countless notables from Shakespeare to the present popular high-profile prince.
Don’t you love a good baby name controversy?
If you’re in the UK, ITV’s This Morning provided a delicious one last week. The show is exactly what the name implies – a morning talk program with chatter and discussion about current topics, something like The View.
Co-host Holly Willoughby recently introduced the topic of baby names. Guest Katie Hopkins – a reality show villain turned media personality – went on a rant about the names that she dislikes, adding that her children aren’t allowed to play with kids with certain kinds of names.
Hopkins was dismissive of lots of choices, including geographic ones – despite the fact that her daughter is called India. (“It’s not related to a location,” she protested.) Her other children are Poppy and Maximillian.
Another panelist characterized Hopkins as cruel and snooty. I’m inclined to agree. And yet one thing she said struck a chord. She characterized names as shortcuts.
I’m afraid that might be uncomfortably close to the truth.
The only rule of baby naming in 2013?
From reliable classics to nouveau inventions to family heirlooms, the range of possibilities is truly infinite.
So it is no surprise that the baby name news ran the gamut this week. On the one side are Dutch royals and a supermodel’s three sons with regal names. On the other? We have a few nouveau inventions and discoveries that could work nicely for a twenty-first century child.
All of this leads to my favorite piece of baby naming advice from the blogosphere this week: don’t whittle down your short list, discarding names for one reason or another. Narrow your list UP, until you find the one that you truly adore.