Word Names: Names with real meaning

Not since the Virtue Names of the Puritans have so many new words morphed into names. In recent years we’ve seen everything from the ridiculous (Peanut, Pirate) to the sublime (Serenity, Dream), and lately there’s been a rush of new weather, seasonal, and directional names. What’s next? Here are a few possibilities.


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We’ve had River and Forest and Field and Meadow—why not the wonderfully evocative Dune? In addition to its beachy attributes, it has sci-fi vibes via the Frank Herbert novel and film, Dune. Photographer Diane Arbus spelled her daughter’s name Doon.

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21 Responses to “Word Names: Names with real meaning”

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holst Says:

January 13th, 2012 at 1:29 am

“It could be conceived of as a tribute to an Uncle Larry or Barry.”
– On the possible name “Quarry”

I recently finished a geology course and my professor repeatedly pronounced it as “Kwah-ree.” Personally, it sounds more like “Corey.”

aunt_ning Says:

January 13th, 2012 at 8:42 am

I love the name Cameo but dont think of it as a boys name. Cameos are worn by women and have a womans head on them making them all the more feminine to me.

Kibby Says:

January 13th, 2012 at 10:08 am

I grew up with a German boy named Justus, it was pronounced more like Eustace than Justice, infact he was constantly correcting people that would say Justice.

abeezee Says:

January 13th, 2012 at 10:45 am

Love Sonnet and Dune!!!
Another one that I have been considering lately is Cove.

pam Says:

January 13th, 2012 at 11:45 am

Cove, I like that! Holst, I would pronounce Quarry like your professor, but my Wisconsin-born husband would pronounce it more like Corey.

Mischa Says:

January 13th, 2012 at 12:14 pm

I don’t know if I would be brave enough to use any of these as first names but all of them would make quirky middle name choices. I do like coherent sibsets so I find more traditional names easier to work with when deciding sibling names. I guess you could have a family of Cameo, Dune and Fable but I wouldn’t find them as interesting as Oliver, Sebastian and Georgina! I would like to thank Nameberry for supplying me with my laugh of the day: the Early little boy photo was priceless! Unfortunately, I’m sure I often look like him in the morning too! Ha!

lemon Says:

January 13th, 2012 at 12:47 pm

I love Echo and North, and maybe even Sonnet (though, strangely, Poet feels more romantic to me). I feel like Echo could be a cool nickname for…something.

I also really love Roux – cooking terminology! Cerise, Colby, Kip, Maple, Panko, Quince, Sage, Temple, and Zita are all great, too.

kalikeli Says:

January 13th, 2012 at 1:31 pm

Love Sonnett and Echo – so pretty. Early is a great name but reminds me too much of Brad Pitt’s serial killer character in Kalifornia. Yikes!

Nyx Says:

January 13th, 2012 at 2:51 pm

Read a book once with a minor character named Early… except he went by Earl. I dunno… I prefer Early.

i.heart.nerds Says:

January 13th, 2012 at 4:09 pm

I went to school with a girl named Cameo, it wasn’t after the jewelry though, it was after the term Cameo Appearance. I guess her mom heard it and liked it.
I do love North, a whole heck of a lot! So handsome.

bluedahlia Says:

January 13th, 2012 at 4:15 pm

I love Sonnett, Dune, Echo, Story and especially Fable. My BF has fallen hard for Fable it is in all of his Name combos!

spotlightstarlit Says:

January 13th, 2012 at 4:57 pm

Echo, Echo, Echo, Echo. I’ve loved her for so long.

clairels Says:

January 13th, 2012 at 6:24 pm

When I was in grad school, there was an undergrad girl named Sonnet. Predictably, she was known throughout campus as a poet.

LCMpdx Says:

January 13th, 2012 at 8:13 pm

I love North and Early.

hayleysaunt Says:

January 13th, 2012 at 8:14 pm

I love Verve! Its a great name I haven’t heard before. I also enjoy Early, Sonnet, and Story.

I like other word names as well, especially related to nature: Linden, Pearl, Lark, Bay, and Wren are among my favorites.

MollyKat78 Says:

January 14th, 2012 at 12:08 am

I know a girl

minorbeatrice Says:

January 14th, 2012 at 2:08 am

I know an Early, a girl. So it always strikes me as feminine.

Not a fan of Cameo. Although it has several meanings, I always think of “a minor part played by a prominent performer in a single scene of a motion picture or a television play”. (Dictionary dot com)

agirlinred Says:

January 14th, 2012 at 2:45 am

I’ve always thought of Early/Earlie as a nickname for Earl.

UniqueNameLover Says:

January 14th, 2012 at 5:42 am

Echo is actually on my list. I love Greek mythology names!

starophie Says:

January 15th, 2012 at 12:00 am

Cameo, Fable, Sonnet, and Verve are some BEAUTIFUL names! I personally am a nicknamer, and I sadly can’t think of any cute ones for these, but I would definitely consider them for middles! I also like the directional names (they remind me of a book I adore called “East” – birth directions are a big thing) as spunky and offbeat middles.

magicalmer Says:

January 16th, 2012 at 4:07 pm

I love word names for middles! My favorite is Echo. LOVE them all. A good name would be Echo Song.

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