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  1. #11
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    I like Eveluna, Castalia, Silena, Camellia, Orfea and Esmeray from your list. My favourite is Esmeray and I knew I've seen it somewhere in my many years of research and it it was driving me crazy. I have so many baby name books that I forgot which one I had seen it in. I believe it's Turkish and means "dark moon" (esmer "dark" and ay "moon"). How cool is that?
    All the best,

  2. #13
    Fifaltra – makes me think of farfalle, the bowtie pasta. I'm generally suspicious of 'word names' from foreign languages, even long-dead historical ones like Old High German. On one hand, Fifaltra is wild kicky fun — but I'd still want to know more about the word's original context, not least of all its grammatical gender and native pronunciation. Online searching doesn't turn up much; apparently other forms of the word include fīfaltara, fífalter, vivaltra, viveltre... If it were me I might consult some university's linguistics (or Germanic studies?) department. Anyway, as it is I want to pronounce this 'fee-FAHL-tra', which reminds me of 'falter' (also the German word for 'butterfly'), probably the reason I'm picturing a hyper, giddy child spin around and around until, too dizzy to stand, she falters, falls down.
    Eveluna – a whimsical play on Evelyn? Seems made-up, but it's lyrical and sweetly reminiscent of Stellaluna. I slightly prefer Evelune (food for thought: Nameberry writes, '...while Seraphina has been rising rapidly since Jennifer Garner and Ben Affleck chose it for their second daughter, Seraphine has been largely ignored, though we believe the French vowel-sound ending will soon be more stylish than the a-endings that have predominated in girls’ names for years').
    Castalia – dazzling, in a cold, stark sort of way. An ice queen, maybe? I like her connection to poetic inspiration, but prefer the softer Casilda.
    Plumeria – ahh! luscious, rich, evocative. An excellent opportunity to use nn 'Lumi', one of my favourites.
    Feniccia – looks like a shrill sneeze. Pronounced 'Phoenicia'? I don't get it.
    Silena – sleek, smooth, 'silent'... overall, meh. (If I knew more about it, maybe...)
    Swanilda – I like this, nn 'Swana'? It's a bit Eccentric Aristocrat, no?
    Esmeray or Esmerina – shimmery, dreamy Esmeray does seem to be an authentic Turkish name, with the -ay ending pronounced 'eye' (think Lorelei). Ismeria is another stunning option.
    Indrina – reminds me of contrived, feminissa Audrina.
    Jenavara – Ginevra is much simpler, at least visually.
    Camellia – pretty.
    Orfea – doesn't fea mean 'ugly' in Spanish? That's enough to put me off.
    Jilliana – hmm, I don't know... doesn't seem as sweet as the classic Jillian.
    Veruccia – again, looks like a sneeze. I think of Veruca Salt, and Veruschka.
    Moschatella – bewildering, perhaps suited for some mollusc-like being...?
    Jintana – looks like Gitana (Spanish for 'gypsy'). Nickname 'Jinty' would be cute.
    Valerianella – overkill (I'm a fan of the boys' name Valerian, though).

    Thanks for reading — I love your blog, by the way!

  3. #15
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    @yma - Thanks! And yes, Lumi is another nn possibility for Plumeria. I love the idea of hanging a large photograph of a plumeria in her nursery. As far as Feniccia goes, it's pretty much off the list now. I haven't done enough digging, but seems it is both "phoenix" and "Phoenicia." Italian variant, fen-ee-cha. Ginevra is one of my all time favorites but I can't use a soft g with a j last name, it just bugs me to no end. I wish, though. (please vote!)

    Just lurking since the birth of my son S. G. A.
    Zorina, Faustine, Castalia, Vasilisa, Oriana, Anaxandra, Sebastiana
    ... Alaric, Silvan, Alistair, Stellan, Rainer, Caspian, Theron, Salvatore

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