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Baby Name Nicknames: Getting to Gus

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By K. M. Sheard, Nook of Names

Do you like Gus as a short name, but are not so keen on Augustus and its related names August and Augustine?

Here are some alternatives!

Agastya — A name from Hindu mythology. Agastya is a name of Shiva, as well as the name of a legendary Hindu sage, believed to have received many of the earliest mantras which feature in the Rig Veda from Brahman. It is also the Indian name for Canopus. It comes from the Sanskrit, and is usually translated as ‘mountain-thrower’.

Angus — a classic and very old Gaelic name, from the Old Irish óen ‘one’ + gus ‘excellence’, ‘force’ and ‘courage’. The standard modern Gaelic form is Aonghas, but Aengus, Aonghus, Oenghus and Óengus are all known. In Irish myth Aengus is the God of love, youth and poetic inspiration.

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What were your dolls’ names?

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Did you call your Barbie Barbie?

Use the name on the birth certificate that came with your Cabbage Patch doll?

Maybe you had a Samantha or a Felicity doll from the American Girls collection.

Or maybe you renamed your dolls, or had more generic models for which you picked creative new names.

Or perhaps you didn’t play with dolls at all, but named your beanie babies, pet mice, or Playskool people?

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The Next Baby Name Style Wave

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by Pamela Redmond Satran

You have only to look at the popularity lists to know which names are used most widely now.  There’s Sophia, Isabella, Emma, and Olivia for girls; Jacob, Mason, and Ethan for boys.  Which reminds us: Have you seen our new, searchable U.S. Top 1000 list?  It’s awesome; have a peek.

Beyond the most popular names are the names we might think of as most stylish today.  These are represented on the Nameberry Top 1000 list, which gauges the names that are viewed most often on our site, updated monthly.  While the U.S. Top 1000 list tallies names used most frequently for babies born in 2012, the Nameberry Top 1000 surveys names capturing the most interest from prospective parents in 2014 — so it’s more theoretical, and up-to-date.

Based on the Nameberry list, we’d place the following baby names atop the current style wave.  What many of them lack in popularity, they make up for in stylishness.

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True Name Confessions: What’s yours?

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Here’s my true name confession: We almost named our youngest son Pike.

So sue me.

I still like it.  Sometimes, about as often as I miss that bright orange sweater I gave away in 1994, I wish we’d actually named him that.  We like fish!  In fact, little coulda-been-Pike grew into a boy who loves to fish!

But we chickened out, and Owen he became.

I could confess to other name indiscretions I contemplated but now it’s your turn to tell all.

Did you spell your name with an i at the end with a little heart drawn over it when you were 13?

Attempt to change your name to Sigourney when you were in college?

Did you contemplate a baby name crime: name-napping, perhaps, or….well, I can’t think of any other baby name crime, but maybe you can confess to one anyway.

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Many of the world’s great lovers in myth, legend and history have highly romantic names—or so they have come to seem as the result of their provenance. From ancient Greek mythology to Anglo-Saxon, Irish, Persian and Italian lore, we find some intriguing names that– despite the often tragic fates of their bearers—continue to celebrate the power of love.

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