The Many Faces of Kate

The strong, straightforward Kate (along with her variations) is the most popular nickname for the perennial classic Katherine today, often standing on its own. Some of the world’s most famous women bear the name Kate, which is popular in the US, England, and Ireland. The nickname even has Shakespearean antecedents, in The Taming of the Shrew – “You lie, in faith; for you are call’d plain Kate, And bonny Kate and sometimes Kate the curst.” How do you get Kate from Katherine, a Greek name meaning pure? One theory is that it’s derived from Hecate, the goddess of magic. The name Kate, ranked in the U.S. Top 200, seems to work magic of its own. Take a look at some of the most famous Kates.

Cate Blanchett

The Australian-born Catherine Élise described herself as “part wallflower” growing up, a far cry from her transformation into Cate, now widely considered one of the greatest actresses in the world, portraying powerful women like Queen Elizabeth I. Most recently, she won the Oscar for Best Actress for her role in Woody Allen’s Blue Jasmine.

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15 Responses to “The Many Faces of Kate”

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SunKissedChild Says:

April 3rd, 2014 at 11:10 pm

Kate/Katie/Katherine/Catherine is soooo common where I live. It’s a nice enough name, but after you hear it all the time, it really loses it’s charm. I know around 15-20 people with this name and the majority prefer Kate or Katie. They are all aged between 18-28 too.

CsprsSassyHrly Says:

April 4th, 2014 at 8:14 am

Off the top of my head, I think I’ve only met two people named some variation of the Kate names. The first was back in elementary school and the second a coworker named Kathryn, who goes by Kat.

Personally, I do love the name Catherine, but I despise the Kat, Kate, Katie, Cathy nicknames for it. The one that I am liking right now is Cato. That is the only nickname I would let people call my daughter if I named her Catherine.

birdies Says:

April 4th, 2014 at 8:50 am

I only know two Catherines, both of whom go by Catherine. All of the Kate/Cate/Katies I know are Caitlin/Kaitlyns.

KateMP91 Says:

April 4th, 2014 at 9:40 am

I am a Kate, and proud to be one! My dad told my mom he wanted a K name, as it is a tradition, and she went with Kathryn. I was never called Kathryn, though. I’ve always been Kate, and I LOVE my name.

JH Says:

April 4th, 2014 at 11:47 am

My sister is Catherine, but we call her Kate or Katie. I love it because it’s classic and has a strong history. I’ve known many many Catherines or various spellings and nicknames.

csd267 Says:

April 4th, 2014 at 11:59 am

It’s funny how some of them share the middle name Elizabeth and a couple share the middle name Noel/Noelle. Catherine is such a wonderful name but is too popular for my liking. I do love the nickname Cat, though.

indiefendi Says:

April 4th, 2014 at 11:59 am

What about Kate Upton?

EmmaF Says:

April 4th, 2014 at 12:30 pm

I’m disappointed by this blog entry. I opened it expecting to see Kate’s many worthy namesakes; instead, most of the women were actresses and models, with one fashion designer, one TV journalist, and one prince’s wife. Aren’t there any strong, independent Kates who don’t fall into the archetypal “beautiful, fashionable, size-zero” mold? I have heard there are famous women who aren’t actresses or models.

bonfireazalea Says:

April 4th, 2014 at 2:40 pm

I’ve never liked Kate as a full name, but Catherine nn Kate is nice. Thanks for doing this post! (Was it done on purpose that they’re all wearing blue or in front of a blue background?)

@EmmaF- Care to suggest any? Though I’m personally not a fan of all these women, I admire the work most of them have produced. I have no idea with society/people lauding “beautiful, fashionable, size-zero” women as heroines/people to look up to as long as they have done good work and are admirable characters along with being good-looking.

QuinnTheEskimo Says:

April 4th, 2014 at 9:09 pm

I LOVE the name Kate. It always surprises me a little as many of my other favorite names are a little bit more unusual, if I ever have a daughter I think I would have to name her Kate. I think it’s such a simple name but beautiful and strong. I like just Kate though, I don’t want a longer version of the name.

Saffron_Rice Says:

April 4th, 2014 at 10:15 pm

Emma, here is a worthy Kate from history you may like:

Finuneby Says:

April 4th, 2014 at 10:16 pm

I love the name Kate and prefer it to Catherine, Katherine, Katelyn, Kathryn, etc. It’s short, sweet, strong and a classic. I would definitely use it for my daughter

sickwithsin Says:

April 4th, 2014 at 10:21 pm

Would have been nice to see more Katies and Kates who aren’t actresses or models … Loved the blue theme throughout the photos, though.

namelover77 Says:

April 5th, 2014 at 11:12 am

As common as it is, I will always have a soft spot for the name Kate. Katherine too, of course.

Elinfelin Says:

May 30th, 2015 at 4:11 am

Why does British and American site Always have K. Middleton on almost every picture? They support a system that is not voted from a democratic government!

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