Nameberry Week in Review: Debut issue

As promised, here is our first Week in Review by Abby Sandel–creator of the wonderful AppellationMountain blog– bringing you a roundup of the latest baby name news of the week every Monday  from hereon in.

Early January brought round-ups of The Most Popular Names of 2010, at least according to a host of informal polls and results from individual hospitals. It makes for a quirky assortment of headlines. Lauren is still holding on in Caledonia, Minnesota, despite falling for decades elsewhere.   The gems, of course, are the articles that mention the truly unusual choices, like Ged Spartacus and Hunni Princess, British babies born in 2010 according to an article by Hertfordshire’s The Watford Observer.

Just as we’d exhausted regional Top Tens, Pope VXI conveniently made a comment praising the names of the 21 infants – all of children of Vatican employees – he baptized in the Sistine Chapel on January 9.  It wasn’t much of a comment – he encouraged parents to choose Christian names, but his remarks were about religious faith, not Hollywood trends.  It was enough to result in a flurry of headlines, like this one from Canada’s National Post: Despite the Pope’s disapproval, designer baby names flourish. BBC News Magazine responded with a list of 10 Christian names you don’t really hear these days.  Gomer and Wilgefortis, anyone?  Jezebel also appeared on the BBC list, with an expert insisting that no one would give the name to a child.  Name junkies will have heard Jezebel mentioned on more than one message board.  Nancy’s exhaustive list of J names given to girls in 2009  reveals 24 girls named Jezebel – plus plenty of spelling variants, like:

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We’re happy to present the latest inventive post from one of our favorite guest contributors, Abby Sandel of  AppellationMountain.

Once upon a time, parents could name their daughter Mary Anne Jones without fretting that her school records would all read Mary A. Jones.  Then along came the almighty database.  Unless you’re Sarah Jessica Parker, chances are that a double name will cause a few headaches.

There’s a simple way to outfox the registrar, the Social Security Administration, even the insurance company: spell your daughter’s name Maryanne.  Or Marianne.  Smoosh the names together, and no data entry clerk can carelessly put them asunder.

Smooshing together two shorter names to create a new compound is nothing new, but some of the resulting names are novel.  It can satisfy parents who crave something relatively uncommon, but fear choosing a name that seems too strange.

Here are a few to consider:

Annalee, Annaleigh, Analee, Analeigh – The double n spelling seems preferable in these combos, but all of them are popping up on name boards.

Anneliese, Annalisa, AnnaliseAnneliese is a traditional German combo.  Annalise or Annalisa might be more intuitive for American parents.

Avalee, Avarose, Avalynne – Perhaps the most frequently smooshed name these days is Ava plus nearly anything.

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