The Margaret Matrix: Maisie, Margot, and Mae

The names Mary and Elizabeth were once so ubiquitous (there sometimes would be two in one family) that it was inevitable that a ton of nicknames and variations would evolve, not to mention international versions. Running a close third to those ultimate girls’ classics is Margaret, which means ‘pearl’ and which in fact shares a number of Mary’s pet forms. Here are just a few of Margaret’s offspring, and their recent bearers.


Classic nickname Maggie took off from the medieval pet form Mag, and was popular first in Scotland. It got a big bump here via the 1971 Rod Stewart hit song “Maggie May” and is now still at Number 246. Maggie Gyllenhaal (born Margaret) is a current representative.

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