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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Posts
    4,807

    Pretentious names please apply

    So here's the thing. We're trying to conceive. You know all those names that get wrinkled noses and "That's quite... pretentious?" Apparently, that's my style. And my husband's style, as well, which is sort of happy making. But I would like to lengthen our list.

    Help!

    So far we have:

    Boys
    Lysander - husband likes this a lot.
    Peregrine - I love this one but husband doesn't so I don't want to fixate to the exclusion of all else.
    Nathanael / Nathaniel - Husband dislikes this one, I don't know why.
    Zacharias
    Ptolemy
    Cassius
    Alasdair - I like it a lot, but my brother is Alexander would that be weird?
    Thaddeus

    And if you're naming a boy something like that, what do you name his sister(s)?
    Girls
    Marie - Proper, vaguely out of style, but I don't know if it even belongs here. It seems too sweet for that.
    Minerva - This one belongs here! But I love it.
    Irina
    Isis
    Zephirine
    Rosamund - Pretentious or just old fashioned? I would love some R names or I names for this list though.

    I'm drawing a blank. Help me! Suggestions for this list gratefully received.

  2. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    622
    Ha ha, I have to say that some (but not all!) of your names do have that pretentious air about them. Not that there's anything wrong with that, especially if the name lends itself to an 'everyday' nickname for your kids to fall back on if they don't like or can't pull off their full name.

    Some more names that can strike me as 'pretentious':

    Atticus
    Lucian
    Cornelius
    Leander
    Theophilus (too far?)
    Ignatius
    Lazarus
    Erasmus
    Sebastian
    Rafferty

    Annabel
    Clio
    Iolanthe
    Ariadne
    Hermione
    Philomena
    Thomasina
    Georgina
    Eulalia
    Rafaela
    Current Favourites: Sophie, Rose, Elsa, May, Anna, Charlotte, Ada, Georgina, Juliet, Rosalie, Amelina, Flora, Louis, Dominic, Julian, Simon, Alan, Ivan and Alistair.
    Love but Can't/Won't Use: Emmanuelle, Autumn, Emily, Emmeline, April, Rosamund, Thomasin, Ruby, Roscoe, Etienne, Emile, James, Quincy, Quentin.

  3. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Posts
    4,807
    Haha! Oh, I love you.

    Lazarus has actually been on our list, I just forgot it. Not sure I could have one AND a Lysander but I love each. Not sure if I have a preference.

    So has Iolantha I just wasn't sure if it counted as pretentious (or just weird). I do love it, DH doesn't.

    Sebastian is kind of nice but I know too many. It's very popular where I'm from. Atticus is also getting a good bit of use.

    Just out of curiousity, which of mine didn't seem pretentious? I find that as interesting as what people find very pretentious. I tend to think of mine, Nathaniel was pretty "normal" but I've been told it's pretentious?

    I adore Rafaela but I know my sister has Raphaela on her very tight, confirmed, three-name list for daughters so I'd feel like a thief. She's much more organized than I. She wants three daughters and has three names picked out.

    I hadn't thought of Thomasina which is pretty cute.

  4. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Posts
    336
    The names on your list don't strike me as pretentious. Names that I find pretentious include those with diacritical marks, those that were chosen to ostentatiously honor a famous author or work of literature, and some Anglophile/Francophile/Italian names.

    Examples:

    Anaïs
    Vincenzo
    Zoë or Zooey (but not Zoe)
    Graeme
    Auden
    Amelie

    As for names that might fit with your style, how about...

    Sterling
    Percival
    Winston

    Lavinia
    Lucinda

  5. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Posts
    4,807
    Well, holey, I think you have me to a tee. So call it what you will (what WOULD you call that 2nd batch of examples you have? It might give me search terms at least) but I like Percival and find Sterling interesting, and I can't use Lucinda but I like it as well.

    That first batch... not the style I'm looking for. I know a lot of people who like Amélie, Anaïs, etc. and I can't very well point fingers and be "how weird" but they don't speak to me, I'd rather Amaryllis or Araminta. (Examples! I can't use Araminta because as my husband so helpfully says, "I don't like mint.")

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