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Category: names from the arts

posted by: Nook of Names View all posts by this author
artistrock

By K. M Sheard, Nook of Names

I’ve been musing for a while now on the rich mine of names that are the surnames of artists.

Many of them have a great ring in themselves, as well as carrying strong artistic connotations.

With the most famous, it is as though their names “mean” their paintings.

Say Monet, for instance, and lovely, soft, impressionistc images float into the mind.

Here, then, is my pick of the artists:

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namesakeadlai

By Linda Rosenkrantz

Last week we looked at some neglected girls’ namesake names, now it’s the boys’ turn as we seek some equally distinctive names from American history and culture, names that could provide unique-ish options with interesting back-stories.  What’s especially evident here is how many of the unusual boys’ names are mothers’ maiden names that started out in the middle but were switched by their sons into first place.

Adlai Stevenson—There were three noted generational bearers of this name– their combined accomplishments: one vice president, two senators, one governor, a two-time presidential nominee, and an ambassador to the UN.

Alpheus Hyatt was the founder of the Marine Biological Lab at Woods Hole; his namesake Alpheus Hyatt Verrill invented the autochrome natural color photography process, and there have been two Alpheuses in the U.S. Senate.

Atlee Burpee (full name Washington Atlee but always called by his middle) was creator the world’s largest mail-order seed house.

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Alice in Nameland

alice fey

A tribute today to the wonderful writer Alice Munro, winner of the prestigious 2013 Nobel Prize for Literature—and to other notable Alices who share her classic name. We love Alice for its blend of great qualities—she’s sweet and dainty yet strong and substantive, traditional and timeless but still feels young and fresh. Here, some Alices who’ve made a name for themselves.

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Snap! Great Photography Baby Names

photodorothea

In these digital days, everyone is a photographer. But that’s not to say everyone is a Photographer. In the history of photography, which dates back only a couple of centuries, there were a number of towering figures who happened to have—surprise!—some particularly interesting names, including:

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home games

By Linda Rosenkrantz

It’s not unusual to find interesting and creative names among the leading figures in all spheres of the arts, but there’s a really stellar group to be found among notable architects.  International in scope, and looked at across time, here are some of the most intriguing first and last name examples–any of which you might want to consider if you’re an architecture aficionado—or if there’s an architect in your family.

Addison Mizner was one of the key developers of Florida resort architecture, Spanish Revival style.  Mizner was born in 1872, when Addison was strictly a boys’ name—it didn’t begin to take off for girls until 1994, but still can make a valid patronymic choice for a boy.

Cass Gilbert was an early proponent of the Beaux Arts style skyscraper, designing, among others, the Woolworth Building in New York—the world’s tallest building at the time.   He was named for a statesman-relative called Lewis Cass, but the name stands well on its own as a first.  Sinclair Lewis wrote a novel about a judge called Cass Timberlane.

Decimus Burton was a prolific nineteenth century English architect and garden designer whose works included buildings at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew Gardens and the London Zoo. Decimus is one of the old Latin numeral names that adventurous babynamers are beginning to consider.

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