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  1. #6
    @saracita00, your list is spectacular and you and your husband sound funny as hell, my kind of people!

    I haven't much to add but that I think Zuleika is wonderful and perfectly usable even for people outside of the heritage. It's considered one of those rare, obscure and literary names and upon research (It's on my list as well) I found quite a few Zuleika/Zuleicas across the globe. It's not a name with big religion ties (not at all that I can think of) so it's perfectly fine for a family of non-Arabs to use it because even among Arabs themselves it's pretty obscure. And it also lends to Zuzu which you already said you loved. I think Soraya would be more off-limits than Zuleika.

    Avalon - not once did I think of the car company upon reading this or anything other than the island from the Arthurian legends that I've always wanted to visit with my friend Morgan Le Fay I absolutely adore this name, think it has a beautiful imagery and sound while still being seldom used as a name.

    Octavia - No, I don't think this would be confused with Olivia. It would probably work in your favor though as more people will be able to recognize it. I really appreciate the association of the fantastic actress Octavia Spencer who in recent years has given the name more recognition and has made it feel more usable while it continues to be strong, feminine, remarkable, historical and just about awesome. I wouldn't concentrate too much on the numeral thing because that'll go unnoticed by most mere mortals. Odds are they'll think A: parents' lucky number, B: Like the first emperor of Rome? or C: Musical Octaves for those who are musicians, and maybe D: Sounds a bit like October - cool, Halloween!

    I'm not a fan of: Kerensa Credenza, Cressida (seems very uptight British with a stuffy nose and painted eyebrows), Romilda (a bit dull actually) and not a fan of the Cal- names especially if you're not at all into Callie.

    Some ideas based on Zuzu: Susanna or Susannah (a bit mainstream for your tastes but the nickname gifts it pizzazz), Lazuli and Zephyrine.

    Other names I immediately thought of suggesting to you:

    Liselotte nn Lottie
    Marguerite
    Leopoldine/Leopoldina
    Philomena
    Berenice
    Araminta
    Amarantha/Amaranta
    Athenais
    Leonora
    Leontine
    Lavender
    Artemisia
    Selene/Celine
    Pamela
    Josephine/Josephina
    Amaryllis
    Tamarind
    Oriana

    Cassandra
    Wilhelmina
    Hippolyta (so cool!)
    Morgana
    Guinevere
    Jessamine
    Valeria/Valeriana
    Ornella
    Adalgisa
    Thomasina
    Aurelia
    Aureliana
    Hermione
    Helena

    Alphonsine
    Amabel
    Camellia
    Cynthia
    Gwendolyn
    Gaia
    Corisande
    Corinthia
    Coraline
    Geraldine
    Hildegard
    Henrietta
    Hortensia

    Isadora
    Lavinia
    Mafalda
    Mavis
    Meredith
    Rosalind
    Aviva
    Celeste
    Celestine/Celestina
    Aspasia
    Eugenia
    Eudora
    Tabitha

    Rowena
    Sybilla
    Sibyl/Sybil
    Sylvia/Silvia
    Sylvana/Silvana
    Flavia
    Amadea
    Thais
    Winona
    Beatrice/Beatrix
    Galatea
    Mathilde
    Winola

    Hopefully you'll like some of these
    Thinking about...

    Asa Maroun Amal Valentina Louis Khalil Cora Mazal Aleph Theodore
    Arthur Miraz Iris Marjani Iris Aviva Florian Khalil Sylvie Manar
    Ondine Almira Julia Nawal Benjamin Moor Almira Ludivine Anouk Celestine
    Yuna Celeste Daisy Malala William Zafir Raphael Abbas Alma Khalila

    TTC 5# as of... Now

  2. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2016
    Posts
    1,147
    Anatolia - don't love the sound, maybe too close to "anatomical"? I'll suggest Antonina nn Nina (I think you are into music, Dvorak connection? and I love Nina), Antonia, Antonella (nn Nellie or Nell would be cute too), Tullia

    Aravis - Don't like the sound personally.

    Avalon - I like it. I didn't think of the car but that is a negative. Maybe Alondra, Ilana, or Apollonia?

    Calandra - Could use Lana instead of Callie. Not my favorite but it's OK. A little close to colander I guess.

    Callaia - pretty but wouldn't know how to pronounce it

    Iolanthe - I like this if you decide to go for it.

    Juno - I like this too. Similar ideas are Junia, Judith, Josephine, Ruth

    Kerensa/Kerenza - Not my favorite, maybe Keziah, Cassia, Carina?

    Lottie - Love this. Maybe it could work for Claudia/Clodagh? Or Clotilda, but that's a bit much for me.

    Romilda - love pp's suggestion of Tilda. I also like Hildie.

    Soraya - I always think of psoriasis. Maybe Sarai, Raisa, or Tamar?

    Tova - I like this and think TT is OK.

    Una - Really like this but prefer Oona spelling because of the Spanish word. Also came across Nuala (noola) which I like too.

    Ysella - maybe Gisela? Could use nn Zella

    Zipporah - I like this, not too close to Sephora.

    Zuzu - Do you not like Susannah as a long form?
    Last edited by sarah1800; October 15th, 2017 at 11:50 PM.

  3. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2016
    Posts
    847
    Anatolia - it reminds me of an oil brand I use, I don't remember the name but it's pretty close to Anatolia.

    Aravis - never heard of Avis, don't think it would be a problem tbh.

    Avalon - the closest I can think of is Aveline or Avantika.

    Calandra - does remind me of colander, I prefer Calandria, sounds prettier to me. Nn Andy, Lana, Ria...

    Callaia - Never heard of this but it's really pretty, nn Caia, Laia or Ally. I'd use the ay sound for Laia, the eye sound makes it sound like Liar.

    Cressida - a bit stiff upper lip, don't love it with the sibset. Reminds me of watercress.

    Iolanthe - you keep coming back to this, it's very pretty. I don't think its too out there. Nicknames...maybe Ollie?

    Juno - maybe Juniper nn Juno, or spelt Juneau, Junia. The suggestion of Judith was nice.

    Kerensa/Kerenza - even without having the credenza association, the name doesn't appeal to me. Can't think of anything similar...Firenza, Kahlen, Kalani, Florenzia.

    Lottie - Lieselotte, Lotus, Carlotta, Violet, Margoletta, Clothilda/Clotilda, Elotia...those are the only I could think of that might give you Lottie. Clotilda would give you the ilda ending too.

    Octavia - I'd feel weird giving Octavia to a 7th but I think she covers a lot of bases, similarly elaborate like Iolanthe, Calandra, Cressida etc but Tavi as a nn is similar to Tova.

    Romilda - cute, if not Romilda, Romilly, Clotilda, Mathilda (ma-teel-da) or plain Matilda, Swanhilda, Bathilda.

    Soraya - I can't think of ones similar to Soraya but if not Soleil, maybe Solange or Solene.

    Una - I just played a round of Uno so I can't get on board with this one atm. Maybe as a nn for something like Eugenia.

    Verona - is this a type of beer? That's the image that's coming to mind. It's okay I just prefer other V names, Vera, Verity etc

    Ysella - not sure what to say, Isella?

    Zipporah - I met a positively ancient lady with this name and she cackled like a witch, has potential but I think revival needs another 10 years. Maybe Zaafirah?

    Zoraida - cute, didn't catch on the Don Quixote connection with Dulcinea. Zoe could be a cute nickname.

    Zuleika - no I think it works, the Zuleika's I've met are pretty diverse plus Zuzu.

    Zuzu - cute, can't think of any other nicknames save for Zuleika and Susannah

    Oriel- Ariel/Arielle, Eriel, even Ariella?

    India: Indira maybe

    Zelda- Zelia is the only one that comes to mind.

    Names that occurred to me whilst reading this are Magdalene, Saskia, Milena and Caterine.

    I'm pretty sure Ethan means strong not steadfast but they could easily be each other, who knows, so many name meanings have been changed or lost.

    Names meaning strong... Bridgette and all variants, Matilda (ilda ending plus an honour name), Allonia (similar to Anatolia), Valerie/Valeria, Megan, Nina.
    The Rivers
    Magdalena Lily ~Alessia Genevieve ~ Catalina Sofia "Cate"
    Coppélia Willow ~ Evangeline Twyla ~ Isabella Wintertale ~ Nefertari Diana ~ Leona Rosaline


    The Mountains

    Malachi Thomas ~ Alexander Beaufort "Ender" ~ Theodore Calix
    Xavier Amadeus ~ Caspian Oliver ~ Tobias Maximilian ~ Gabriel Marcellus ~ Sebastién Prosper

    Twins...
    Zoe Victoria & Saylor Juliette
    Ethan Matthais & Luca Thiago
    Calum Archer & Isabeau Eleadora

    Italics are honor names

  4. #12
    Join Date
    Jun 2017
    Posts
    1,425
    Very quick thought: If you like Verona--as I really do--might you like Venetia? In vein of Soleil, I love Soledad although I know the meaning is completely different.

    I would hesitate about Anatolia because there is so much sadness and strife in that part of the world right now. Good luck!
    Ellen Virginia * Margaret Audrey * Louisa Catherine * Celia Irene * Molly Caroline
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  5. #14
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Location
    UK
    Posts
    3,396
    Love many of your options! Juno (obviously, though it's true that lots of people ask if it's for the film), Kerensa, Tova, Ysella and Zelda are especial favourites of mine.

    Focusing on your "like this but nots":

    Avalon - Avonlea, from Anne of Green Gables? It's not Don Quixote, but it's a pretty special and beloved book to many people.

    Juno - Hero (LOVE this - not a goddess, and Shakespearean), Junia, Juniper, Djuna, Caro, Io, Echo, Cleo/Clio, Vero...

    Soraya - Sunniva, Salome, Sapphira, Seraphina, Solveia, Shoshana...

    Tova - Leda, Hera, Freya, Priya, Ezri, Lumi, Zari, Elska, Runa, Yara, Tempe, Tesni, Flora, Mabli, Kira, Vita, Xanthe, Ianthe...

    Ysella - Zella, Ismay/Isemay, Isolde, Isabeau, Azenor...
    ♥ J. M. (09/15) ♥
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    15 Fierce Feminist Names for Boys

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