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Category: international baby names

Baby Naming Traditions Around the Globe

namingtradit

By Abigail Cukier

As we all know, choosing a name for your baby can be a daunting task. Many factors come into play – trends, tastes, opinions from relatives. But parents are also often guided by religious or cultural traditions. Here are some naming customs from around the world.

Judaism

Personally, when naming my own children, we had to be careful not to choose anything too similar to that of a loved one, because for Ashkenazi Jews this goes against tradition. We usually name a baby after a deceased relative. Some will use the full name, while others use just the first letter. For example, I am named after my grandfather, Arthur.

This is to honour loved ones who have died but also to a superstition. The old belief was that there might be a mix-up and the angel of death might take the baby instead of the older relative.

On the other hand, among Sephardic Jews, who originated in Spain or Portugal, it is actually an honour to name a child after a parent or living relative.

Babies usually receive an English and a Hebrew name. Some parents translate the child’s secular name while others choose a separate Hebrew name.

A boy is named on the eighth day after the birth during the bris (ritual circumcision). Loved ones have the honour of carrying the baby and often the grandfather holds him during the ceremony.  A girl is named in the synagogue, where the father reads from the Torah (Bible) and the baby and mom are blessed.

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sagittarius_constellation

By E. Wittig, aka “Frankie

We’ve just entered the period of the sign of Sagittarius, the archer.  Sagittarius, ruled by Jupiter, is the ninth sign of the zodiac and is represented by a centaur drawing a bow.  Traits said to be shared by people born under the archer are generosity, honesty, and compassion as well as foolishness, pride, and frankness.  They are ethical but impulsive, and have a love of excitement and adventure.  Though the turquoise is their main gemstone, a handful of others represent them as well.

Other elements associated with this sign are the color purple, the narcissus, and the dandelion.  The archer is one of three fire signs along with Leo and Aries.  Here are some astrological names for a baby born between now and December 21st which reflect these attributes:

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germLeni

by Angela Mastrodonato of Upswing Baby Names

My former boss from London once said that when he walked down the streets of Boston for the first time the experience was like, “looking into the eyes of every ethnicity and culture in the world.”

This diversity is a source of pride for many Americans. Consequently, when naming their offspring some Americans like to recognize the country of their ancestors.

And coincidentally most of these ancestors come from countries with lovely lyrical romance languages–languages such as Greek, Italian, and Spanish. There are also many Americans who claim Irish heritage, another source of trendy names.

I envied those Americans. My heritage doesn’t come from a place with a language that was considered lovely or fashionable when I had my kids.

The observant among you may notice my long, vowel-heavy last name that is–yes, Italian–and wonder why I was squawking.

I’m not Italian. Obscured by my married last name is my (mostly) German ancestry.

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by Linda Rosenkrantz

If you’re looking for a name that reflects your Welsh roots, or simply find the soft sound of names from Wales appealing, there are several possible ways to go.  You could consider Welsh names that have long been used in the US—some of which have far from obvious roots. Then there those currently popular in Wales which have never made their way through US immigration. And, finally, some other, interesting Welsh names worth considering, including some Welsh versions of classics.

WELSH NAMES WITH US CITIZENSHIP

Girls

Branwen

Bronwen

Enid

Gladys

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Beach Baby Names

georgia-beach

This summer, the ocean’s influence can be found in the latest and coolest baby names, both unusual and traditional. Whether it’s the sandy dunes off the shore, the seaweed that washes up in the waves, or even the ancient gods and goddesses who controlled the seas, these fresh new baby names all allude to the extraordinary appeal of the coast.Here are a few of the coolest new beach-inspired baby names:

Beach- This boys’ name could pay homage to the 1950’s American boy-band The Beach Boys or be an evocative choice for hard-core beach lovers.

Cordelia- Meaning “heart; daughter of the sea,” Cordelia’s origin is Latin and Celtic. In Shakespeare’s tragedy King Lear, Cordelia was the King’s youngest and favorite daughter. Though a bit grown up sounding, it also yields the fresh nicknames Cora, Delia, Del, Lia, and Cory.

Doris- This female name is Greek, meaning “gift of the ocean.” A longtime grandma name, Doris is not quite back but could make a Geek Chic choice for the adventurous parent.

Dune- A unisex name! Dune can also allude to the science-fiction franchise stemming from Frank Herbert’s 1965 novel.

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