Novel Nicknames: A Whole New Approach

April 26, 2011 Linda Rosenkrantz

Remember when all Jacobs were nicknamed Jake, and every Theodore was Ted, and Victorias were automatically labeled Vicky?

Well, things have changed.  Today’s baby namers are putting a tremendous amount of thought into nicknames.  Not only are they more willing to put them on the birth certificate (Gracie, Gus), but they are placing almost as much importance on their babies’ everyday/pet names as on their birth certificate appellations, sometime picking the colloquial form first and then finding a formal name that’s fits it.

And in many cases, the connections between the two are way less direct than they used to be, sometimes just sharing a first initial, or playing with a middle or last syllable, such as using Lia for Cecilia or Amelia.

Our own nameberries are especially inventive when it comes to creative nicknaming.  Here are some of the recent examples we’ve noticed:


BEATRIX—BIXIE instead of Bea or Trixie

CAROLINECALLIE instead of Carrie

ELEANORNORA instead of Ellie or Nell

ELODIENELL instead of Ellie


FRANCESFANCY instead of Franny or Fanny

GWENDOLYNDOLLY instead of Gwen

JOSEPHINEEFFIE or FEE or POSY instead of Josie

JULIETTELETTIE instead of Julie

PENELOPEPIPPA instead of Penny

ROCHELLEELLIE instead of Shelley

TABITHA—BIT instead of Tabby

THERESAREESE instead of Terry

VICTORIAPLUM (as in the Victoria plum) instead of Vicky

VIOLALOLA instead of Vi

VIOLET—VIO instead of Vi


AUGUSTUS—GUSTO instead of Augie or Gus

CRISPINPIP instead of Cris

JACOBCOBY/COBIE instead of Jake

JAMESJEM instead of Jim


MALCOLMMAC or MALCO instead of Mal

NICHOLASCOLE instead of Nick

PHILIPPHILO or FLYNN instead of Phil

RICHARDHARDY instead of Rick or Dick

THEODORETHOR instead of Ted

WALLACEACE instead of Wally

Have you come up with any innovative nicknames for your favorite names?


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