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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Posts
    16

    Shapiro as a first name for a non-Jewish child?

    I must prefix this by saying that I'm not actually considering Shapiro for a child, but I would like to know people's thoughts on the matter, especially from Jewish forum members.

    Would it be disrespectful or inappropriate for non-Jewish parents to call their son Shapiro? For those who don't know, Shapiro is a common Jewish surname. According to Behind the Surname it derives from the Hebrew for "pretty, lovely". Wikipedia says it derives either from the name of the city of Speyer in Germany, or from the Hebrew for "sapphire, lapis lazuli". I'm aware of the controversy surrounding the surname Cohen being used as a given name by non-Jewish parents. Would Shapiro be any different, since its meaning is (seemingly) not religious?

  2. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Great Lakes
    Posts
    1,480
    I think it's disrespectful to use any uncommon surname as a first name unless it has family significance (even then, it should be reserved for the middle).
    ** The opinions expressed above are not meant to be reflective of Nameberry as a whole but are my opinion and mine alone. **

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  3. #5
    I don't know if disrespectful is the right word - but it certainly might get awkward.

  4. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Pacific NW
    Posts
    179
    As a Jewish person, I wouldn't take offense, but I might be confused. (I also don't see it as a particularly wearable first name.)

  5. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by shyshutterbug View Post
    As a Jewish person, I wouldn't take offense, but I might be confused. (I also don't see it as a particularly wearable first name.)
    I was thinking the same thing, lol - it reminds me of Spiro the Dragon.

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