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Category: Scottish baby names

Scottish baby names

By Linda Rosenkrantz

There are many Scottish boys’ names that have become so familiar that we don’t even recognize their roots—names like Malcolm and Cameron and Gavin and Gordon and Keith and Kyle. But there are others that have never reached our shores and that might be worth considering, and here are some prime examples.

Bear in mind, that most of these names are not currently popular in Scotland; only one of them, Struan, appears in the current Top 100 (at Number 99)—a list headed by Jack, James and Lewis, with just a smattering of old Gaelic names like Euan, Arran, and Ruaridh.

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posted by: Elea View all posts by this author
British baby names

By Eleanor Nickerson, British Baby Names

What names are quintessentially ‘British’?

I see this question a lot but it’s a hard one to pin down. Do we mean solely British in origin, or only British in use? When Prince George was born our media heralded it as a “quintessentially British” name — and why not? We’ve had numerous kings bear the name, and it’s even the name of the patron saint of England. But George was originally a Greek name, brought late into our Royalty by German Hanovarians. Ask many Americans and the first George they think of is Washington or Bush.

For me, the quintessentially British names are those which are very familiar to us as a nation, that have been or are currently popular, but are little used in America, Canada, Australia and other English-speaking countries. Names such as Nicola – our darling of the 70s – Darcy, Imogen, Poppy, Freya, Alfie, Jenson, Gareth, Alistair and Finlay.

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Celebrity Names: The Mc’s and the Macs

mcmatthew

Most cultures have some word for names meaning ‘son of’—called patronymics– from the English son, the Danish sen , Armenian ian, and the Scottish and Irish, Mac and Mc. The latter two have made their way into first as well as surname use—as in Macauley Culkin, Mackenzie Phillips, McGeorge Bundy, and McCoy Tyner.These days, daughters as well as sons are given Celtic patronymics: Mackenzie (jump-started for girls by 80’s TV star Phillips, and used for her daughter by Harry Potter author J. K Rowling) now ranks at Number 71. Variant McKenzie is at 152, McKenna at 226, McKinley at 457, and the hybrid, non-Celtic McKayla at Number 701.Right now there are a number of Mc and Mac celebs on the scene, whose surnames could possibly be the next baby names. Well, maybe not McConaughey.

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irish14

By Linda Rosenkrantz

I must admit that I’m addicted to birth announcements.  Not just to our own babyberries’—which are, of course, the best–but to any others I can lay my eyes on.  I love the British choices that Elea posts regularly on BritishBabyNames.com, and also try to follow, among others,  those in the Irish and Scottish newspapers.

Here are some entries that I’ve come across there recently, along with some particularly tasty sibling names that have been included–making a nice mix of authentic Gaelic names and cool modern choices.

IRISH GIRLS

AIMEE VIOLET, sister of Alaoise

ANNA EVE

ARIA ADRIENNE, sister of Cosette

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posted by: Nook of Names View all posts by this author
st_andrews_day_by_vulcantrekkie45-d34mlx1

Here in America, we honor the Irish on St. Patrick’s Day, but what of the poor Scots? Their national saint’s celebration, St. Andrew’s Day, is all but ignored. This year it falls on November 30th, and so we thought we would rectify that omission with K.M. Sheard’s selection of some of her favorite uncommon Scottish names.

By K. M.  Sheard of Nook of Names

Affrica  — The Anglicized form of the Gaelic Oighrig, an ancient name. Its meaning isn’t known for certain, but most agree the most likely source is the Old Irish Aithbhreac. It is found in a number of other forms across the centuries, including AfricaAffreca and Effrick. One bearer was a Viking princess of the Isle of Man, who married John de Courcy, the twelfth-century de facto king of Ulster.

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