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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Northern England
    Posts
    3,591

    Can we talk about Virginia?

    I absolutely adore the name Virginia, but whilst it has some really good associations, it has some really bad ones. Sorry if this is an absolute ramble, it's just points I've been thinking about for a couple of years now.

    Obviously it's absolutely beautiful. It has wonderful namesake of Virginia Woolf, but my main association comes from the photography of Sally Mann (photography has always massively influenced my name lists, strangely) - Deep South and Immediate Family are focused around the landscapes of Virginia itself and Mann's children, one of whom is called Virginia. They're two of my favourite works ever - so strikingly beautiful and deeply nostalgic, and the main reason I fell in love with Virginia.

    But here's the downfall...
    It's uncommon in the UK, I don't recall it being in the top 1000 even, and the fact it's so unusual sort of emphasis two words it sounds similar too - virgin and vagina. Vagina, I have no problem with (but then I don't want to justify its teasing potential with some sort of sub-par feminist statement), virgin is my issue. Without writing an essay I have an issue with the societal concept as a whole and the history behind it. Not only does it contain the word itself, but it actually means virgin.
    I also read on behindthename that ''according to a legend, it was the name of a Roman woman killed by her father so as to save her from the clutches of a crooked official''. I'm usually not bothered by the tragedies behind names but I think with the virgin connection this one is getting at me.

    What do you think? Whenever I mention it on Nameberry, especially paired with Dulcie/Nancy/Eilidh it gets 'such a pretty Southern-Belle name' which I don't relate to, but I guess being raised in the UK it wouldn't matter?

    I'll apologise again for my jumbled thoughts... but what do you think? In your opinion do the positives outweigh the negatives? What are your own associations of the name? Anyone want to talk me into loving it again?

  2. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Posts
    1,015
    I like Virginia and associate it with the state. I'm not at all bothered by the "virgin" meaning as it is not offensive. There's teasing potential, yes, but ultimately it's not a negative association. There are a lot of names with less ideal meanings (like Mary and Cecilia) but are perfectly acceptable to use and I don't think Virginia should be dismissed because of the meaning.

  3. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Posts
    503
    I absolutely LOVE the name Virginia. I'm British too, so I agree that the 'southern-belle' connotations or links with the state don't really mean too much to me. I think it's a beautiful name, and I adore the nickname Ginny. I know a Virginia who goes by Ginny and I don't believe she's come in to contact with any virgin/vagina teasing.

    I think that the beautifully rich history of the name outweighs any nickname negatives. Virginia was also the name of the first child born to British parents in North America, and believed to be the name of Edgar Allan Poe's wife for whom he wrote his poem Annabel Lee. (I especially love this link, seeing as my own name is Annabel.)

    Don't let anyone talk you out of Virginia, is my advice. I think it's a beautiful name!

  4. #7
    I love Virginia, the first person I think of when I see it is Virginia Woolf. I understand your worry about its meaning, maybe you could see it more as meaning 'pure, unspoilt' rather than a literal virgin. Ginny would be an adorable nickname.

  5. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Location
    Manila, Philippines
    Posts
    132
    Virginia is uncommon and underused, so I say go for it. I like the nicknames Ginny and Virgie. I like it especially paired with one syllable middle names. Virginia Faye or May would be great.
    Amateur party planner. Alive for nearly sixteen years, in love with names since forever. Deliberately misspelling names is not an option.

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