Category: baby name Cormac
You might know the Irish poet William Butler Yeats (it rhymes with Gates, not Keats) from his much-loved poems like The Lake Isle of Innisfree, possibly the most peaceful poem ever written, or memorable lines like “tread softly, because you tread on my dreams.”
One thing (among many) Yeats is remembered for is his retelling of Irish myths and legends. He helped to introduce characters from ancient literature – and their names – to the English-speaking world. Today we take it for granted that it’s easy to access Irish culture – like stories, music, and of course names – but that wasn’t always the case.
It’s Labor Day weekend, and so time once more to turn our attention to the original, pre-barbecue significance of the holiday and celebrate some hard-working occupational names.
We’re focusing on the more uncommon, fresher sounding examples, and those with less obvious meanings, so no Archer, Shepherd or Baker. The er-ending trade names have continued their popularity run, with some individual examples rising (Ryder, Sawyer, Tucker) and others falling (Cooper, Carter, Hunter, Tanner).
Here are some examples of occupational surname names that still seem fresh enough to consider, together with the sometimes surprising trades they originally represented—even if it was so long ago that many don’t have much meaning in today’s world:
The er-ending brigade:
Banner— flag bearer
Barker –stripper of bark from trees for tanning
Baxter— a baker, usually female
Beamer — trumpet player
Booker — scribe
Bouvier—French for herdsman
Boyer — bow maker, cattle herder
Brenner — charcoal burner
Brewster — brewer of beer
Bridger — builder of bridges
Carver — sculptor