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Showing posts from May, 2017

6 Syllable Girl's Names

With names this long, usability is questionable, but it truly depends on how long your last name is and how easy the name will be to read in the country you live in. Be sure to check out my list of 5 syllable girl's names as well.







Baby Names from Outer Space

We all know the planets, and some are brave enough to use Venus, Mercury, Mars, and even Jupiter or Neptune on their bundle of joy. Some get creative and use names from other languages, such as Sol or Soleil. Some parents use different names associated with the moon - Selene, Luna, Phoebe. Let's look at the other starry baby name options; names used for the moons of other planets, dwarf planets, stars or constellations can be just as celestially appealing.

Many things in space were named after characters in Shakespeare, Pope, Spencer and other literature, named after real people (especially those that discovered the object in space), and Greek and Roman mythology (sometimes other, older mythology as well).

Stars with proper names that have been or could be used as baby names: Alcyone, Capella, Altair, Aludra, Alula, Ascella, Alya, Atlas, Bellatrix, Castor, Chara, Electra, Eltanin, Izar, Fafnir, Lesath, Maia, Meissa, Merope, Mimosa, Mintaka, Mira, Mizar, Nashira, Pleione, Polaris, P…

Girls Nicknames So Dated They're Cute

Some nicknames from times passed were used as given names on formal records, such as Lucie instead of Lucille or Lucinda, or Evie instead of Eve, just as is done today. There are other nicknames that are undeniably vintage, like Hattie or Icy. Some of them have already made a comeback, and some have yet to be rediscovered. Let's delve into the so-dated-they're-adorable nicknames, with possible full formal names that could go on the birth record.

Nan - traditionally used for Nancy, but also sometimes Anna. Nanetta also works, but there's a wealth of other names containing the element 'nan' that might be good for Nan as a nickname. Nancy was given to 306 girls in 2016, a rank of #900
Etty - sometimes used for Harriet or Henrietta, sometimes for Etta, and sometimes for Esther, but today you could use Etty as a nickname for anything starting with Et- including Eternity. Etty was given to 23 girls in 2016
Effy/Effie - typically used for Euphemia, you could reasonably use t…


This name is currently worn by actor Idris Elba, whose birth name was Idrissa. He was born in the U.K. and his birth name name is of Krio African origin, chosen by his parents who came from countries in Africa. Guinean professional footballer Idrissa Sylla is an example of the African name as well.

Idris, as he shortens it, happens to be an ancient Welsh name meaning "ardent lord," pronounced IDD-riss. In legend, Idris Gawr was a leader of giants, and a mountain in Snowdonia was given his name - Cadair Idris, or "Idris's Chair." As a name it can be found as far back as the 6th century, but it was not really used in Britain until the 19th century.

Alternately, Idris is also an Arabic name meaning "lengthy learning," although some say it means "interpreter." It is most commonly pronounced idd-REES. This form of the name is worn by one the second prophet of Islam. He is sometimes identified as Enoch, from the Bible, because of his character des…

The Rarest Names of 2016

The U.S. top 1000 baby names and extended list is here (thank you Social Security Administration!), and my priority is picking out the gems from the very bottom of that list. While Emma and Noah are the current rulers of popularity, names like Cassiana, Euphemia and Faustine were only given to 5 baby girls into 2016, and Pippin and Lonan only given to 5 boys in 2016. In this post I'll talk about names that really stood out, and legitimate names at the very bottom of the barrel.

One thing I noticed right away was a large amount of boy names ending in -iel at the bottom of the list (5 boys in 2016). The letter Y had four - Yaciel, Yassiel, Yekusiel, and Yatniel. There was also Remiel, Raniel, Lexiel, Keriel, Joxiel, Joriel, Jazziel, Jaydiel, Ithiel, Eddiel, Doniel, Deriel, Azariel, Audiel, Andiel, Alexiel and Avriel.

For girls, I noticed the Brazilian (and Venezuelan?) -y ending on popular girl's names: Gabrielly, Isabelly, and so on. I also noticed a decline in Renesmee and al…


Perdita by Charles Robert Leslie 
Perdita (per-DEET-uh) may sound familiar to you for one of two references: either the mother Dalmation from "101 Dalmatians," the Disney movie (or the Dodie Smith novel The One Hundred and One Dalmatians), or the Shakespeare character from The Winter's Tale. Despite her familiarity, she's exceedingly rare - given to only about 30 girls in the U.S. between 1950 and 1980. In fact, the Social Security Administration shows no record for her after 1970. She was not given to any girls (at least not more than four) in 2016. Which is mind-boggling given her literary credentials and upbeat, classy sound. The name is even rare in its home country, where only 7 girls were named Perdita in the U.K. and Wales as of 2013.

They say Shakespeare invented the name. Meaning "lost," from Latin perditus, it suited the character. In Perdita's story, she is left as an infant to die. Her mother, Queen Hermione, is imprisoned because Perdita…


Florizel and Perdita by Mary F Raphael

Florizel is a rare boy's name seen in many literary works, and sometimes on influential men both past and present.

Florizel's name undoubtedly comes from the Latin flor, meaning "flower," while the zel element might be a rare medieval Germanic ending (as in Etzel and Wenzel). However, it could just be a medieval spin on an otherwise Latin name. It's also recorded as Florisel, as seen in Florisel of Nicea (1532), Book X from the Amadis of Gaul tales. Florisando may be another variant of the name, as seen in a novel that was possibly titled Florisando by Ruiz Paez de Ribera, which was a sixth book in the Amadis of Gaul romances. The books were published starting in 1508. It looks like this was a chivalric name based on a play on flore-sindo, Sindo being a nickname for Latin names such as Gumersindo.

Florizel was later used in Shakespeare's The Winter's Tale (1623), and it was the name King George IV assumed when writin…


You're probably thinking, "Take Lauren, create the nickname Laurie, change the spelling to Lori, then make a full name out of that nickname and you get Loria." Really, though, it is the elaborate Latin version of Lora, which came as a pet name for Eleanor in Italian, and also a short form of Dolores in Spanish. Whichever you prefer, Eleanor means "sun, bright," and Dolores "pain, sorrow." In modern times, however, Loria came about in English as a frilly version of Laura, which means "laurel" in Latin.

Although this is a rare name, it has been used since at least 1907 and it ranked in 1961 and 1962, the height of its popularity overall. However, it should be noted that it was only given to 132 girls in 1961 - the population was smaller so it took less to make it on the top 1000. In 2009 it was given to a mere 5 girls, and we haven't seen it since. Loriana, however, was given to 17 girls in 2016, and Lorianna to 7. It might be brought off …


Oslo is a place name, the capital of Norway since about 1300 AD, but place names on kids are nothing new for American parents. Oslo is on-trend with other names that end in O, such as Otto and Arlo. In Norway this name is not used, but in the U.S. it has been used since about 2006, and was given to 16 boys in 2015.

Founded in 1049 by Harald Hardrada, the city Oslo had burned down in a fire in 1624, so the people moved it close to Akershus Fortress to rebuild. This was during the reign of Christian IV of Denmark, and then the city was renamed Christiania in honor of him. After 1925 the original Norwegian name was restored. It is currently a "global city" with a population estimated at 658,390.


Here's a look at Venla, which is currently (2017) Finland's #4 most popular girls name. This #1 pick is a form of the boy's name Wendel, meaning "vandal." An older form is Vendla, and an alternate Swedish form is Vendela. Wendelin is the ancient Germanic male form, Vendelin the Czech form. Wendela and Wendelina pop up for girls from time to time, giving the option for Wendy as a nickname. Venla is used in Sweden, Norway and Denmark as well, just not as much. It has not been used in the U.S.

The first novel written in Finnish, Seven Brothers, features a character named Venla of Männistö. This may have brought attention to the name when it was published in 1870, bringing it from zero to at least five births in 1920. The Venla relay is the women's version of the more commonly known Jukola relay, an orienteering relay race that started in 1949 because of the Seven Brothers novel.

Since 1982 the Venla has been a Finnish television award. Venla Hovi is a Finnish ice…


Suvi Koponen
Suvi (SOO-vee) is a Finnish poetic word name meaning "summer." The word used in general for summer iskesä, so this is a bit like the American use of "fall" in reference to the season and Autumn as a baby name, although autumn is used in context of the season almost as much as fall (it could be a regional difference). The name is used in other Scandinavian countries such as Sweden, Denmark and Norway, though not as much. It is not unheard of for Suvi to be combined with another name, such as Suvi-Tuuli or Suvi-Marja, for the double-barreled effect. This site claims the name was used as early as 1150 or before. Finnish supermodel Suvi Koponen and Finnish taekwondo master Suvi Mikkonen are two native namesakes. In the U.S. the name is rare, given to only 14 girls in 2015, 11 in 2016, and only used since about 2007. Here is Finland's data for the name Suvi, which tells us about 440 girls were given the name between 2010 and 2017, and it has been used a…


Baylor is a name that sounds similar to modern favorites Blair and Taylor, giving it a slightly preppy vibe, yet it has an almost medieval underlying quality - like something out of a fantasy story. It is generally taken to mean "one who delivers goods" from the English term bailor. We are a bit uncertain, but it is first found as a surname after the Norman Invasion in the form of Baeler, in Westmoreland. As a German occupational surname, from beile, it means "measuring stick," given in reference to those who made them or inspected them.

Baylor is relatively new in terms of popularity, first popping onto the top 1000 in 2014 for boys, with 218 boys given the name that year, and soon it will break the top 1000 for girls because it was given to 215 girls in 2015. It remains an uncommon choice for either gender - at least until it climbs higher on the chart. Popularity might be in part thanks to Baylor University, founded by R.E.B. Baylor. The spelling Bailor was give…