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Leif


Some of you may recognize Leif as a Viking name, Leif Erikson, one of the first explorers to North America. He did so 500 years before Christopher Columbus, and was written about in the Sagas of Icelanders. He was born about 970 AD. Leif is Norse, Scandinavian, meaning "heir," but it is possible it means "relic." There are a few other famous namesakes, including Leif Garrett, 70s teen idol, which made the name appear on the charts, but it dropped off soon after. Leif can be pronounced the American way, LEEF, or the Norse way, LAYF.

In 2010 there were 172 baby boys named Leif, and in 2011 there were 183.

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*UPDATED
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Lavinia

Italian actress Lavinia Longhi
Lavinia (lah-VIN-ee-ah) is a Latin name possibly meaning "purity," but the name is so old that no specific meaning can be given. It could simply mean "woman from Lavinium," which was an ancient town in Rome/more ancient than Rome/Etruscan. Lavinia was known as the "Mother of Rome." In Virgil's Aeneid, Lavinia was betrothed to a man named Turnus, King of the Rutuli, but when the hero Aeneas came to town her father, King of the Latins, changed his mind and wanted Lavinia to marry Aeneas. The two men then fought for her hand, but Aeneas won. Aeneas then built the town of Lavinium for her. Shakespeare had Lavinia as a character in Titus Andronicus, but her story is an unfortunate one not worthy of repeating and not true to Virgil's Lavinia. Ursula le Guin later wrote more in depth about their relationship in her 2008 novel Lavinia. And she's been a character in many more stories, including The Hunger Games. In all l…