Names and Saints’ Days

Saint Christina

Saint Christina by Carlo Dolci – Art UK, Wikimedia Commons

Christina here – This week I will be celebrating my name day – a Swedish tradition that baffles a lot of my English friends, although I know other countries, like Spain, share this custom (there it’s called día de santo). It’s probably not as common in Sweden nowadays, but in my family we keep it up, mainly because it’s a great excuse for cake (if you need an excuse! – see my previous post here) and also because several of us share the same name so it gives us a special bond.

Friday (24th July) is St Christina’s day and although Sweden is mainly a Protestant country, for some reason they have retained the various saints’ days in their calendar. To make it more modern and inclusive, as names vary a lot more now than in the past, they have recently added lots of new names (not belonging to any saint as far as I know). That means I officially have two name days, with a new one for my other name Pia, but I’ve always celebrated Christina and one is enough for me.

While doing genealogy, I often come across documents where the dates are given only with reference to a saint’s day. For example, I found this entry in a Devon manorial court roll:-

"To the Court of North Bovy held there Tuesday before the Feast of St Ambrose, 4 Hen. 6. [the fourth year of the reign of Henry VI] came William, son of John and of Agnes his wife, and gave a fine for an inquisition to hold enquiry as to his right in one ferling of land …”

584px-After_Guido_Reni_-_Saint_Michael

Saint Micheal by Guido Reni – Wikimedia Commons

It would seem that our ancestors were very familiar with all the various days and would have known exactly which date the Feast of St Ambrose referred to (7th December), whereas we would have to look it up. Words like Michaelmas (short for “Michael’s Mass”) – the Feast of Saints Michael, Raphael and Gabriel (aka the Archangels) on 29th September – were commonly used, and one of the important quarter days each year. It was around this time that hiring fairs were held and thus a new working year for hired servants began. I find this all fascinating!

I am sure that the naming of characters has been discussed before by the Wenches, but having recently started work on a new novel, I am slightly obsessed with this topic at the moment. Choosing names for my characters is one of my absolute favourite parts of writing and I can spend hours just looking through name sites to find the perfect one for my hero or heroine. Some authors can write a whole story without deciding on any names, referring to them as just X or Y, but I can’t – they absolutely have to have a name before I even put fingers to keyboard. A person’s name is so much a part of them, of their personality, that without knowing it, I can’t visualise the character. I have only ever written one story where I wasn’t sure what the heroine was going to be called. For some reason I couldn’t find a name that suited her and tried changing it several times – nothing worked. In the end, I just had to pick one but to this day, it doesn’t feel quite right to me whenever I look at it. Very frustrating!

Nothing can be as important as naming your children obviously – they have to live with your choice for the rest of their lives – but sometimes choosing one for a character feels almost the same. It’s a huge responsibility and can influence the way readers feel about them. The only difference is that a fictional character can’t complain whereas my two daughters frequently moan about theirs. I can’t blame them as I do the same to my own mother – I don’t like my name and as a child I wanted to be called Selina which means “moon” – as you can see, I was a bit of a dreamer and romantic already then.

Whenever I come across interesting or different names, I write them down and I have a long list now in a special file on my computer. This helps each time I have to start a new story and decide what to call my heroine. Sometimes a name will even spark a character in my imagination, because certain names feel like their owners ought to have specific traits.

Anthony_van_Dyck_-_Mary_Ruthven _Lady_van_Dyck

Lady Mary Ruthven by Anthony van Dyck – Wikimedia Commons

Genealogy is a particularly fertile ground for discovering unusual gems. Here is a small selection of the ones I’ve found while working on my family tree (and I bagsy/call dibs on the first one for next time I write a story set during the English Civil War!):-

Arminell – this is a very rare name and there is some disagreement as to its meaning – possibly it might mean “female/noble warrior”. I suspect it’s a surname used as a Christian name in rare cases and I found it during the mid-17th century in south west England. I can easily imagine that my Arminell will be a staunch Royalist and wife or sweetheart of a Cavalier, helping to defend King Charles I. For some reason, in my mind I see her dressed in a beautiful blue silk gown like the lady in this portrait – Anthony van Dyck’s wife.

Sidwell – this seems to be the name of a Devon virgin saint (in Latin Sativola but possibly Brythonic in origin) and there is a church in Exeter called St Sidwell. It was definitely used for girls, at least on my family tree, but I’m not sure I can picture a Sidwell, unless it’s a modern heroine who gets called Sid for short (like girls named Samantha are always Sam these days). In that case, she probably has short, spiky hair, piercings, tattoos and attitude, don’t you think?

Hans_Holbein_d._J._-_Portrait_of_an_Unknown_Lady_-_WGA11619

Portrait miniature of a lady by Hans Holbein – Wikimedia Commons

Gelyn – a very old name, from the end of the 16th century, and sometimes written as Gelynan. I can’t find a meaning for this but I see Gelyn as a wise woman (although young and pretty) skilled with herbs and potions, who is happy to help those in need of her knowledge. (Perhaps she looks like this pretty Tudor lady?)

Peternell – an alternative form of Petronella, a diminutive of the Latin Petronia which is the feminine form of Peter, ie “rock”. I have also seen this as a variation on Eleonor. I like it and think of Peternell as a rather feisty medieval lady who takes no prisoners and doesn’t suffer fools gladly.

Philotis – yes, this one is very unusual! It seems to be a Roman name and the archivist at the Devon Record office told me it appears in a play (a tragedy) written in the early 1600s by John Ford called “’Tis a Pity She’s a Whore” – who knew? If I’m going to have a heroine of this name she’ll probably have to be Roman.

Wealthian – I have only found two instances of this name in the entire county of Devon so it was clearly either made up by one particular family, or extremely rare. I quite like it though – what do you think? It has a sumptuous feel to it.

Garthred – is an old-fashioned English or Anglo-Saxon way of saying Gertrude (from the Germanic for “spear” and “strength”). Could be great in a Saxon story, perhaps for some sort of shield maiden or tomboy?

Pertese/Perteze – where did this come from? It sounds as though it ought to be Italian, but I can’t find a meaning or origin for it except as a surname. I wonder what a name like that is doing on a medieval woman from Devon? (I have only found the one). It’s quite pretty though and has a lovely ring to it!

578px-Puritan_woman_holding_book_LCCN2002699167

Puritan Lady, Library of Congress, Public Domain

Asenath – now we are entering biblical territory and I love some of the names in there. Some of those used by the Puritans were wonderful and I would definitely use this, especially for a 17th century story. In one of my historical novels (The Gilded Fan) I called my heroine Temperance, which I really like!

Have you heard any of these names before? Do you perhaps have someone in your family with one of them? It could be that it’s been handed down through generations, just like the name Joseph occurs on my family tree for eight generations in direct descent – quite a feat! I think naming traditions are great and a lovely way of remembering our ancestors. In fact, that’s another favourite complaint of mine whenever I raise the subject with my mother – why didn’t she call me Elmina or Lovisa after her two grandmothers? Both wonderful names and so much nicer than Pia or Christina. But our choices are very subjective and I assume she didn’t think so, or at the time perhaps she felt they were too old-fashioned. She couldn’t have known she’d end up with a history-obsessed daughter after all!

Do you like your name? If not, what would you like to be called? I'd love to know.

 

215 thoughts on “Names and Saints’ Days”

  1. Thought-provoking column, Christina. I can’t claim a saint’s day, but I do have a rather odd name. My name is Binnie Syril Braunstein. My first and middle name come from my being named after my maternal great-grandmother. In that I am Jewish – in our religion, it is a long-held custom to name a child after a deceased relative,so I never met my great-grandmother. And as a matter of fact, my naming didn’t happen easily. My father’s family insisted that I be named after his mother, who name was Bertha. With all due respect to anyone who is named Bertha, I must say I’m grateful that my mother won the battle. So, because my mother fought for my name, I always use both names as my signature, to honor my mother. I will add that most people don’t get my name – either name. I can’t begin to count the number of times I’ve had to explain that Binnie is really my real name. And BTW – I have two cousins who are likewise named after our great-grandmother.

    Reply
  2. Thought-provoking column, Christina. I can’t claim a saint’s day, but I do have a rather odd name. My name is Binnie Syril Braunstein. My first and middle name come from my being named after my maternal great-grandmother. In that I am Jewish – in our religion, it is a long-held custom to name a child after a deceased relative,so I never met my great-grandmother. And as a matter of fact, my naming didn’t happen easily. My father’s family insisted that I be named after his mother, who name was Bertha. With all due respect to anyone who is named Bertha, I must say I’m grateful that my mother won the battle. So, because my mother fought for my name, I always use both names as my signature, to honor my mother. I will add that most people don’t get my name – either name. I can’t begin to count the number of times I’ve had to explain that Binnie is really my real name. And BTW – I have two cousins who are likewise named after our great-grandmother.

    Reply
  3. Thought-provoking column, Christina. I can’t claim a saint’s day, but I do have a rather odd name. My name is Binnie Syril Braunstein. My first and middle name come from my being named after my maternal great-grandmother. In that I am Jewish – in our religion, it is a long-held custom to name a child after a deceased relative,so I never met my great-grandmother. And as a matter of fact, my naming didn’t happen easily. My father’s family insisted that I be named after his mother, who name was Bertha. With all due respect to anyone who is named Bertha, I must say I’m grateful that my mother won the battle. So, because my mother fought for my name, I always use both names as my signature, to honor my mother. I will add that most people don’t get my name – either name. I can’t begin to count the number of times I’ve had to explain that Binnie is really my real name. And BTW – I have two cousins who are likewise named after our great-grandmother.

    Reply
  4. Thought-provoking column, Christina. I can’t claim a saint’s day, but I do have a rather odd name. My name is Binnie Syril Braunstein. My first and middle name come from my being named after my maternal great-grandmother. In that I am Jewish – in our religion, it is a long-held custom to name a child after a deceased relative,so I never met my great-grandmother. And as a matter of fact, my naming didn’t happen easily. My father’s family insisted that I be named after his mother, who name was Bertha. With all due respect to anyone who is named Bertha, I must say I’m grateful that my mother won the battle. So, because my mother fought for my name, I always use both names as my signature, to honor my mother. I will add that most people don’t get my name – either name. I can’t begin to count the number of times I’ve had to explain that Binnie is really my real name. And BTW – I have two cousins who are likewise named after our great-grandmother.

    Reply
  5. Thought-provoking column, Christina. I can’t claim a saint’s day, but I do have a rather odd name. My name is Binnie Syril Braunstein. My first and middle name come from my being named after my maternal great-grandmother. In that I am Jewish – in our religion, it is a long-held custom to name a child after a deceased relative,so I never met my great-grandmother. And as a matter of fact, my naming didn’t happen easily. My father’s family insisted that I be named after his mother, who name was Bertha. With all due respect to anyone who is named Bertha, I must say I’m grateful that my mother won the battle. So, because my mother fought for my name, I always use both names as my signature, to honor my mother. I will add that most people don’t get my name – either name. I can’t begin to count the number of times I’ve had to explain that Binnie is really my real name. And BTW – I have two cousins who are likewise named after our great-grandmother.

    Reply
  6. I’m fairly happy with my name “Katja”, but I am not at all happy about the fact that I have another three.
    And even worse, my parents listed them in an order where my real name is last.
    Which was fine in the age before computers, where you could just underline the name to be really used in the official documents.
    These days I have to use all four of them if I want to book a flight or a visum or … and normally there is not enough space so the list gets cut off somewhere in the middle.
    Really annoying.
    Oh yes, the other names: Hedwig, Maria, Johanna … all of which are reasonably o.k. today but were very oldfashioned when I grew up.

    Reply
  7. I’m fairly happy with my name “Katja”, but I am not at all happy about the fact that I have another three.
    And even worse, my parents listed them in an order where my real name is last.
    Which was fine in the age before computers, where you could just underline the name to be really used in the official documents.
    These days I have to use all four of them if I want to book a flight or a visum or … and normally there is not enough space so the list gets cut off somewhere in the middle.
    Really annoying.
    Oh yes, the other names: Hedwig, Maria, Johanna … all of which are reasonably o.k. today but were very oldfashioned when I grew up.

    Reply
  8. I’m fairly happy with my name “Katja”, but I am not at all happy about the fact that I have another three.
    And even worse, my parents listed them in an order where my real name is last.
    Which was fine in the age before computers, where you could just underline the name to be really used in the official documents.
    These days I have to use all four of them if I want to book a flight or a visum or … and normally there is not enough space so the list gets cut off somewhere in the middle.
    Really annoying.
    Oh yes, the other names: Hedwig, Maria, Johanna … all of which are reasonably o.k. today but were very oldfashioned when I grew up.

    Reply
  9. I’m fairly happy with my name “Katja”, but I am not at all happy about the fact that I have another three.
    And even worse, my parents listed them in an order where my real name is last.
    Which was fine in the age before computers, where you could just underline the name to be really used in the official documents.
    These days I have to use all four of them if I want to book a flight or a visum or … and normally there is not enough space so the list gets cut off somewhere in the middle.
    Really annoying.
    Oh yes, the other names: Hedwig, Maria, Johanna … all of which are reasonably o.k. today but were very oldfashioned when I grew up.

    Reply
  10. I’m fairly happy with my name “Katja”, but I am not at all happy about the fact that I have another three.
    And even worse, my parents listed them in an order where my real name is last.
    Which was fine in the age before computers, where you could just underline the name to be really used in the official documents.
    These days I have to use all four of them if I want to book a flight or a visum or … and normally there is not enough space so the list gets cut off somewhere in the middle.
    Really annoying.
    Oh yes, the other names: Hedwig, Maria, Johanna … all of which are reasonably o.k. today but were very oldfashioned when I grew up.

    Reply
  11. I think that’s a great custom, Binnie, apart from the fact that you don’t get to meet the person you’re named after, but at least they are remembered in this way. And it’s lovely to have such unusual names – they are very pretty! I can definitely relate to the fact that people don’t get them though – I have been called Pea, Piers and even Pierre on occasion, instead of Pia!

    Reply
  12. I think that’s a great custom, Binnie, apart from the fact that you don’t get to meet the person you’re named after, but at least they are remembered in this way. And it’s lovely to have such unusual names – they are very pretty! I can definitely relate to the fact that people don’t get them though – I have been called Pea, Piers and even Pierre on occasion, instead of Pia!

    Reply
  13. I think that’s a great custom, Binnie, apart from the fact that you don’t get to meet the person you’re named after, but at least they are remembered in this way. And it’s lovely to have such unusual names – they are very pretty! I can definitely relate to the fact that people don’t get them though – I have been called Pea, Piers and even Pierre on occasion, instead of Pia!

    Reply
  14. I think that’s a great custom, Binnie, apart from the fact that you don’t get to meet the person you’re named after, but at least they are remembered in this way. And it’s lovely to have such unusual names – they are very pretty! I can definitely relate to the fact that people don’t get them though – I have been called Pea, Piers and even Pierre on occasion, instead of Pia!

    Reply
  15. I think that’s a great custom, Binnie, apart from the fact that you don’t get to meet the person you’re named after, but at least they are remembered in this way. And it’s lovely to have such unusual names – they are very pretty! I can definitely relate to the fact that people don’t get them though – I have been called Pea, Piers and even Pierre on occasion, instead of Pia!

    Reply
  16. Oh, yes, I can see that would be annoying, Katja! My mother has the same problem and she hates the name that comes first and which always appears on computer searches. But great to have lots of names to choose from! In fact, you had a nameday in Sweden yesterday for Johanna, so you could join me in celebrating with a piece of cake. I like all your names and I believe old-fashioned names are actually very fashionable at the moment!

    Reply
  17. Oh, yes, I can see that would be annoying, Katja! My mother has the same problem and she hates the name that comes first and which always appears on computer searches. But great to have lots of names to choose from! In fact, you had a nameday in Sweden yesterday for Johanna, so you could join me in celebrating with a piece of cake. I like all your names and I believe old-fashioned names are actually very fashionable at the moment!

    Reply
  18. Oh, yes, I can see that would be annoying, Katja! My mother has the same problem and she hates the name that comes first and which always appears on computer searches. But great to have lots of names to choose from! In fact, you had a nameday in Sweden yesterday for Johanna, so you could join me in celebrating with a piece of cake. I like all your names and I believe old-fashioned names are actually very fashionable at the moment!

    Reply
  19. Oh, yes, I can see that would be annoying, Katja! My mother has the same problem and she hates the name that comes first and which always appears on computer searches. But great to have lots of names to choose from! In fact, you had a nameday in Sweden yesterday for Johanna, so you could join me in celebrating with a piece of cake. I like all your names and I believe old-fashioned names are actually very fashionable at the moment!

    Reply
  20. Oh, yes, I can see that would be annoying, Katja! My mother has the same problem and she hates the name that comes first and which always appears on computer searches. But great to have lots of names to choose from! In fact, you had a nameday in Sweden yesterday for Johanna, so you could join me in celebrating with a piece of cake. I like all your names and I believe old-fashioned names are actually very fashionable at the moment!

    Reply
  21. I wonder if anyone really likes their name. Mine is Margaret. My Viennese mother was Margarete, and on my father’s side Margarets are everywhere. Apparently when I was born there was no discussion as to what my name should be. It wasn’t until an English teacher dubbed me Maggie that I kind of stopped resenting it, LOL.
    I’ll never forget sitting in a pub in Scotland years ago. We struck up a conversation with a few other couples. Every single woman was Margaret, and all the men were John (my husband’s name)! Of course St. Margaret of Scotland is a famous historical figure, but it was pretty strange nonetheless. Happy Name Day!

    Reply
  22. I wonder if anyone really likes their name. Mine is Margaret. My Viennese mother was Margarete, and on my father’s side Margarets are everywhere. Apparently when I was born there was no discussion as to what my name should be. It wasn’t until an English teacher dubbed me Maggie that I kind of stopped resenting it, LOL.
    I’ll never forget sitting in a pub in Scotland years ago. We struck up a conversation with a few other couples. Every single woman was Margaret, and all the men were John (my husband’s name)! Of course St. Margaret of Scotland is a famous historical figure, but it was pretty strange nonetheless. Happy Name Day!

    Reply
  23. I wonder if anyone really likes their name. Mine is Margaret. My Viennese mother was Margarete, and on my father’s side Margarets are everywhere. Apparently when I was born there was no discussion as to what my name should be. It wasn’t until an English teacher dubbed me Maggie that I kind of stopped resenting it, LOL.
    I’ll never forget sitting in a pub in Scotland years ago. We struck up a conversation with a few other couples. Every single woman was Margaret, and all the men were John (my husband’s name)! Of course St. Margaret of Scotland is a famous historical figure, but it was pretty strange nonetheless. Happy Name Day!

    Reply
  24. I wonder if anyone really likes their name. Mine is Margaret. My Viennese mother was Margarete, and on my father’s side Margarets are everywhere. Apparently when I was born there was no discussion as to what my name should be. It wasn’t until an English teacher dubbed me Maggie that I kind of stopped resenting it, LOL.
    I’ll never forget sitting in a pub in Scotland years ago. We struck up a conversation with a few other couples. Every single woman was Margaret, and all the men were John (my husband’s name)! Of course St. Margaret of Scotland is a famous historical figure, but it was pretty strange nonetheless. Happy Name Day!

    Reply
  25. I wonder if anyone really likes their name. Mine is Margaret. My Viennese mother was Margarete, and on my father’s side Margarets are everywhere. Apparently when I was born there was no discussion as to what my name should be. It wasn’t until an English teacher dubbed me Maggie that I kind of stopped resenting it, LOL.
    I’ll never forget sitting in a pub in Scotland years ago. We struck up a conversation with a few other couples. Every single woman was Margaret, and all the men were John (my husband’s name)! Of course St. Margaret of Scotland is a famous historical figure, but it was pretty strange nonetheless. Happy Name Day!

    Reply
  26. Naming children is very subjective. I learned long ago not to question any name someone has chosen for their child. It can put a real chill in the air (smile).
    My own name would seem a natural choice in 1944. It was the most popular girls name and we were Catholic. However, I believe I was named for a favorite great aunt.
    I am amused at some of the names people choose these days. Some of them sound like they are totally made up. Others sound like last names (Taylor, Mason, etc.). Problem is they are not even from their family. They are somebody else’s last name.
    Great post.

    Reply
  27. Naming children is very subjective. I learned long ago not to question any name someone has chosen for their child. It can put a real chill in the air (smile).
    My own name would seem a natural choice in 1944. It was the most popular girls name and we were Catholic. However, I believe I was named for a favorite great aunt.
    I am amused at some of the names people choose these days. Some of them sound like they are totally made up. Others sound like last names (Taylor, Mason, etc.). Problem is they are not even from their family. They are somebody else’s last name.
    Great post.

    Reply
  28. Naming children is very subjective. I learned long ago not to question any name someone has chosen for their child. It can put a real chill in the air (smile).
    My own name would seem a natural choice in 1944. It was the most popular girls name and we were Catholic. However, I believe I was named for a favorite great aunt.
    I am amused at some of the names people choose these days. Some of them sound like they are totally made up. Others sound like last names (Taylor, Mason, etc.). Problem is they are not even from their family. They are somebody else’s last name.
    Great post.

    Reply
  29. Naming children is very subjective. I learned long ago not to question any name someone has chosen for their child. It can put a real chill in the air (smile).
    My own name would seem a natural choice in 1944. It was the most popular girls name and we were Catholic. However, I believe I was named for a favorite great aunt.
    I am amused at some of the names people choose these days. Some of them sound like they are totally made up. Others sound like last names (Taylor, Mason, etc.). Problem is they are not even from their family. They are somebody else’s last name.
    Great post.

    Reply
  30. Naming children is very subjective. I learned long ago not to question any name someone has chosen for their child. It can put a real chill in the air (smile).
    My own name would seem a natural choice in 1944. It was the most popular girls name and we were Catholic. However, I believe I was named for a favorite great aunt.
    I am amused at some of the names people choose these days. Some of them sound like they are totally made up. Others sound like last names (Taylor, Mason, etc.). Problem is they are not even from their family. They are somebody else’s last name.
    Great post.

    Reply
  31. I’m Kerry.I suppose that indicates that I like it,because that’s how I think of it.Not “my name is…” ,but simply “I’m Kerry.” I’m in my 60’s,and it was considered a very unusual name.I cannot count the number of times I was told it was a boy’s name. Women’s names do tend to the ‘different ‘in my family;there is an Asenath in my ancestry!

    Reply
  32. I’m Kerry.I suppose that indicates that I like it,because that’s how I think of it.Not “my name is…” ,but simply “I’m Kerry.” I’m in my 60’s,and it was considered a very unusual name.I cannot count the number of times I was told it was a boy’s name. Women’s names do tend to the ‘different ‘in my family;there is an Asenath in my ancestry!

    Reply
  33. I’m Kerry.I suppose that indicates that I like it,because that’s how I think of it.Not “my name is…” ,but simply “I’m Kerry.” I’m in my 60’s,and it was considered a very unusual name.I cannot count the number of times I was told it was a boy’s name. Women’s names do tend to the ‘different ‘in my family;there is an Asenath in my ancestry!

    Reply
  34. I’m Kerry.I suppose that indicates that I like it,because that’s how I think of it.Not “my name is…” ,but simply “I’m Kerry.” I’m in my 60’s,and it was considered a very unusual name.I cannot count the number of times I was told it was a boy’s name. Women’s names do tend to the ‘different ‘in my family;there is an Asenath in my ancestry!

    Reply
  35. I’m Kerry.I suppose that indicates that I like it,because that’s how I think of it.Not “my name is…” ,but simply “I’m Kerry.” I’m in my 60’s,and it was considered a very unusual name.I cannot count the number of times I was told it was a boy’s name. Women’s names do tend to the ‘different ‘in my family;there is an Asenath in my ancestry!

    Reply
  36. I think you’re right, Maggie – it’s very seldom you come across someone who is a hundred percent happy with their name. At least with Margarets on both sides of your family your parents didn’t need to argue about it! And it’s a lovely name in any language.

    Reply
  37. I think you’re right, Maggie – it’s very seldom you come across someone who is a hundred percent happy with their name. At least with Margarets on both sides of your family your parents didn’t need to argue about it! And it’s a lovely name in any language.

    Reply
  38. I think you’re right, Maggie – it’s very seldom you come across someone who is a hundred percent happy with their name. At least with Margarets on both sides of your family your parents didn’t need to argue about it! And it’s a lovely name in any language.

    Reply
  39. I think you’re right, Maggie – it’s very seldom you come across someone who is a hundred percent happy with their name. At least with Margarets on both sides of your family your parents didn’t need to argue about it! And it’s a lovely name in any language.

    Reply
  40. I think you’re right, Maggie – it’s very seldom you come across someone who is a hundred percent happy with their name. At least with Margarets on both sides of your family your parents didn’t need to argue about it! And it’s a lovely name in any language.

    Reply
  41. Thank you, Mary, and yes very wise not to question other people’s choices! I do wonder sometimes what they were thinking but as you say, it’s incredibly subjective. A lot of celebrities seem to go out of their way to find weird and wonderful names and I’m always curious to see what they’re going to come up with next! (And some of them actually make it onto my list of favourites).

    Reply
  42. Thank you, Mary, and yes very wise not to question other people’s choices! I do wonder sometimes what they were thinking but as you say, it’s incredibly subjective. A lot of celebrities seem to go out of their way to find weird and wonderful names and I’m always curious to see what they’re going to come up with next! (And some of them actually make it onto my list of favourites).

    Reply
  43. Thank you, Mary, and yes very wise not to question other people’s choices! I do wonder sometimes what they were thinking but as you say, it’s incredibly subjective. A lot of celebrities seem to go out of their way to find weird and wonderful names and I’m always curious to see what they’re going to come up with next! (And some of them actually make it onto my list of favourites).

    Reply
  44. Thank you, Mary, and yes very wise not to question other people’s choices! I do wonder sometimes what they were thinking but as you say, it’s incredibly subjective. A lot of celebrities seem to go out of their way to find weird and wonderful names and I’m always curious to see what they’re going to come up with next! (And some of them actually make it onto my list of favourites).

    Reply
  45. Thank you, Mary, and yes very wise not to question other people’s choices! I do wonder sometimes what they were thinking but as you say, it’s incredibly subjective. A lot of celebrities seem to go out of their way to find weird and wonderful names and I’m always curious to see what they’re going to come up with next! (And some of them actually make it onto my list of favourites).

    Reply
  46. Oh great, Kerry, glad you have an Asenath in your family tree too! Your name doesn’t sound like a boy’s name to me – it’s really pretty! And I must admit I’d never thought about it that way – just “I’m Christina” rather than “my name is …” – but you’re right and the name is so much a part of who we are, that makes sense.

    Reply
  47. Oh great, Kerry, glad you have an Asenath in your family tree too! Your name doesn’t sound like a boy’s name to me – it’s really pretty! And I must admit I’d never thought about it that way – just “I’m Christina” rather than “my name is …” – but you’re right and the name is so much a part of who we are, that makes sense.

    Reply
  48. Oh great, Kerry, glad you have an Asenath in your family tree too! Your name doesn’t sound like a boy’s name to me – it’s really pretty! And I must admit I’d never thought about it that way – just “I’m Christina” rather than “my name is …” – but you’re right and the name is so much a part of who we are, that makes sense.

    Reply
  49. Oh great, Kerry, glad you have an Asenath in your family tree too! Your name doesn’t sound like a boy’s name to me – it’s really pretty! And I must admit I’d never thought about it that way – just “I’m Christina” rather than “my name is …” – but you’re right and the name is so much a part of who we are, that makes sense.

    Reply
  50. Oh great, Kerry, glad you have an Asenath in your family tree too! Your name doesn’t sound like a boy’s name to me – it’s really pretty! And I must admit I’d never thought about it that way – just “I’m Christina” rather than “my name is …” – but you’re right and the name is so much a part of who we are, that makes sense.

    Reply
  51. From my A Who’s Who of Tudor Women:
    WELTHIAN YARDE (d.1521+)
    Welthian (Walthera/Weltian/Walthean) Yarde was born in Devonshire. Around 1493, she married Walter Yorke, mayor of Exeter. They had a son, Roger (c.1494-February 2, 1535). Her second husband was Thomas Drelne. In around January 1508, she married Sir Hugh Luttrell of East Quantockshead, Somerset (d. February 1521). Following his death, she claimed the manor of East Quantockshead as part of her jointure, but this was contested by her stepson, Sir Andrew Luttrell. Her bill of complaint against him claimed that he had seized all her goods and chattels. On June 7, 1521, a brawl took place in Quantock Park in which a man was killed. The feud seems to have been settled with the marriage of Roger Yorke to Hugh Luttrell’s daughter Eleanor.

    Reply
  52. From my A Who’s Who of Tudor Women:
    WELTHIAN YARDE (d.1521+)
    Welthian (Walthera/Weltian/Walthean) Yarde was born in Devonshire. Around 1493, she married Walter Yorke, mayor of Exeter. They had a son, Roger (c.1494-February 2, 1535). Her second husband was Thomas Drelne. In around January 1508, she married Sir Hugh Luttrell of East Quantockshead, Somerset (d. February 1521). Following his death, she claimed the manor of East Quantockshead as part of her jointure, but this was contested by her stepson, Sir Andrew Luttrell. Her bill of complaint against him claimed that he had seized all her goods and chattels. On June 7, 1521, a brawl took place in Quantock Park in which a man was killed. The feud seems to have been settled with the marriage of Roger Yorke to Hugh Luttrell’s daughter Eleanor.

    Reply
  53. From my A Who’s Who of Tudor Women:
    WELTHIAN YARDE (d.1521+)
    Welthian (Walthera/Weltian/Walthean) Yarde was born in Devonshire. Around 1493, she married Walter Yorke, mayor of Exeter. They had a son, Roger (c.1494-February 2, 1535). Her second husband was Thomas Drelne. In around January 1508, she married Sir Hugh Luttrell of East Quantockshead, Somerset (d. February 1521). Following his death, she claimed the manor of East Quantockshead as part of her jointure, but this was contested by her stepson, Sir Andrew Luttrell. Her bill of complaint against him claimed that he had seized all her goods and chattels. On June 7, 1521, a brawl took place in Quantock Park in which a man was killed. The feud seems to have been settled with the marriage of Roger Yorke to Hugh Luttrell’s daughter Eleanor.

    Reply
  54. From my A Who’s Who of Tudor Women:
    WELTHIAN YARDE (d.1521+)
    Welthian (Walthera/Weltian/Walthean) Yarde was born in Devonshire. Around 1493, she married Walter Yorke, mayor of Exeter. They had a son, Roger (c.1494-February 2, 1535). Her second husband was Thomas Drelne. In around January 1508, she married Sir Hugh Luttrell of East Quantockshead, Somerset (d. February 1521). Following his death, she claimed the manor of East Quantockshead as part of her jointure, but this was contested by her stepson, Sir Andrew Luttrell. Her bill of complaint against him claimed that he had seized all her goods and chattels. On June 7, 1521, a brawl took place in Quantock Park in which a man was killed. The feud seems to have been settled with the marriage of Roger Yorke to Hugh Luttrell’s daughter Eleanor.

    Reply
  55. From my A Who’s Who of Tudor Women:
    WELTHIAN YARDE (d.1521+)
    Welthian (Walthera/Weltian/Walthean) Yarde was born in Devonshire. Around 1493, she married Walter Yorke, mayor of Exeter. They had a son, Roger (c.1494-February 2, 1535). Her second husband was Thomas Drelne. In around January 1508, she married Sir Hugh Luttrell of East Quantockshead, Somerset (d. February 1521). Following his death, she claimed the manor of East Quantockshead as part of her jointure, but this was contested by her stepson, Sir Andrew Luttrell. Her bill of complaint against him claimed that he had seized all her goods and chattels. On June 7, 1521, a brawl took place in Quantock Park in which a man was killed. The feud seems to have been settled with the marriage of Roger Yorke to Hugh Luttrell’s daughter Eleanor.

    Reply
  56. Happy Name Day! What nice tradition! My parents had different names picked for me when I was born. The choices were Pauline, Paulina and Maryellen. I am very happy Maryellen won, I had a distant cousin born the same year and was named Pauline. We went to school together and it would have been awful for the teachers mixing us up. The only problem with my name is that Maryellen is written as Mary Ellen on my birth certificate and my parents wanted it to be one name. I used to get mad when teachers would write my name wrong. I am proud of my name. 😊

    Reply
  57. Happy Name Day! What nice tradition! My parents had different names picked for me when I was born. The choices were Pauline, Paulina and Maryellen. I am very happy Maryellen won, I had a distant cousin born the same year and was named Pauline. We went to school together and it would have been awful for the teachers mixing us up. The only problem with my name is that Maryellen is written as Mary Ellen on my birth certificate and my parents wanted it to be one name. I used to get mad when teachers would write my name wrong. I am proud of my name. 😊

    Reply
  58. Happy Name Day! What nice tradition! My parents had different names picked for me when I was born. The choices were Pauline, Paulina and Maryellen. I am very happy Maryellen won, I had a distant cousin born the same year and was named Pauline. We went to school together and it would have been awful for the teachers mixing us up. The only problem with my name is that Maryellen is written as Mary Ellen on my birth certificate and my parents wanted it to be one name. I used to get mad when teachers would write my name wrong. I am proud of my name. 😊

    Reply
  59. Happy Name Day! What nice tradition! My parents had different names picked for me when I was born. The choices were Pauline, Paulina and Maryellen. I am very happy Maryellen won, I had a distant cousin born the same year and was named Pauline. We went to school together and it would have been awful for the teachers mixing us up. The only problem with my name is that Maryellen is written as Mary Ellen on my birth certificate and my parents wanted it to be one name. I used to get mad when teachers would write my name wrong. I am proud of my name. 😊

    Reply
  60. Happy Name Day! What nice tradition! My parents had different names picked for me when I was born. The choices were Pauline, Paulina and Maryellen. I am very happy Maryellen won, I had a distant cousin born the same year and was named Pauline. We went to school together and it would have been awful for the teachers mixing us up. The only problem with my name is that Maryellen is written as Mary Ellen on my birth certificate and my parents wanted it to be one name. I used to get mad when teachers would write my name wrong. I am proud of my name. 😊

    Reply
  61. Oh wonderful, Kathy Lynn, thank you – that sounds like it would make a great basis for a story! Perhaps some of my ancestors knew or had heard of the mayor’s wife and liked the name so much they decided to use it. Or maybe Welthian Yarde was even a godmother to the child? I guess we’ll never know, but it’s intriguing, isn’t it? Many thanks again!

    Reply
  62. Oh wonderful, Kathy Lynn, thank you – that sounds like it would make a great basis for a story! Perhaps some of my ancestors knew or had heard of the mayor’s wife and liked the name so much they decided to use it. Or maybe Welthian Yarde was even a godmother to the child? I guess we’ll never know, but it’s intriguing, isn’t it? Many thanks again!

    Reply
  63. Oh wonderful, Kathy Lynn, thank you – that sounds like it would make a great basis for a story! Perhaps some of my ancestors knew or had heard of the mayor’s wife and liked the name so much they decided to use it. Or maybe Welthian Yarde was even a godmother to the child? I guess we’ll never know, but it’s intriguing, isn’t it? Many thanks again!

    Reply
  64. Oh wonderful, Kathy Lynn, thank you – that sounds like it would make a great basis for a story! Perhaps some of my ancestors knew or had heard of the mayor’s wife and liked the name so much they decided to use it. Or maybe Welthian Yarde was even a godmother to the child? I guess we’ll never know, but it’s intriguing, isn’t it? Many thanks again!

    Reply
  65. Oh wonderful, Kathy Lynn, thank you – that sounds like it would make a great basis for a story! Perhaps some of my ancestors knew or had heard of the mayor’s wife and liked the name so much they decided to use it. Or maybe Welthian Yarde was even a godmother to the child? I guess we’ll never know, but it’s intriguing, isn’t it? Many thanks again!

    Reply
  66. Thank you, Maryellen! Yes, it’s a lovely tradition and I enjoy having an extra day to celebrate every year. I can understand your frustration with people spelling your name wrong – I like it as one but I suppose most of them just assume it’s two and don’t bother asking. I actually have a hyphen between mine – Pia-Christina – but even the passport office here can’t get that right and I’ve given up trying!

    Reply
  67. Thank you, Maryellen! Yes, it’s a lovely tradition and I enjoy having an extra day to celebrate every year. I can understand your frustration with people spelling your name wrong – I like it as one but I suppose most of them just assume it’s two and don’t bother asking. I actually have a hyphen between mine – Pia-Christina – but even the passport office here can’t get that right and I’ve given up trying!

    Reply
  68. Thank you, Maryellen! Yes, it’s a lovely tradition and I enjoy having an extra day to celebrate every year. I can understand your frustration with people spelling your name wrong – I like it as one but I suppose most of them just assume it’s two and don’t bother asking. I actually have a hyphen between mine – Pia-Christina – but even the passport office here can’t get that right and I’ve given up trying!

    Reply
  69. Thank you, Maryellen! Yes, it’s a lovely tradition and I enjoy having an extra day to celebrate every year. I can understand your frustration with people spelling your name wrong – I like it as one but I suppose most of them just assume it’s two and don’t bother asking. I actually have a hyphen between mine – Pia-Christina – but even the passport office here can’t get that right and I’ve given up trying!

    Reply
  70. Thank you, Maryellen! Yes, it’s a lovely tradition and I enjoy having an extra day to celebrate every year. I can understand your frustration with people spelling your name wrong – I like it as one but I suppose most of them just assume it’s two and don’t bother asking. I actually have a hyphen between mine – Pia-Christina – but even the passport office here can’t get that right and I’ve given up trying!

    Reply
  71. I like your name and I like the Jewish naming customs. But the funny thing is, the only other Binnie I know is a man. In his case, it’s a nickname for Binaldo. His family is Cuban so I assume it’s a Spanish name.

    Reply
  72. I like your name and I like the Jewish naming customs. But the funny thing is, the only other Binnie I know is a man. In his case, it’s a nickname for Binaldo. His family is Cuban so I assume it’s a Spanish name.

    Reply
  73. I like your name and I like the Jewish naming customs. But the funny thing is, the only other Binnie I know is a man. In his case, it’s a nickname for Binaldo. His family is Cuban so I assume it’s a Spanish name.

    Reply
  74. I like your name and I like the Jewish naming customs. But the funny thing is, the only other Binnie I know is a man. In his case, it’s a nickname for Binaldo. His family is Cuban so I assume it’s a Spanish name.

    Reply
  75. I like your name and I like the Jewish naming customs. But the funny thing is, the only other Binnie I know is a man. In his case, it’s a nickname for Binaldo. His family is Cuban so I assume it’s a Spanish name.

    Reply
  76. Karen has been a very popular name for girls, so I like the fact that my name stands out a bit because it is spelled differently, as Karin. The only annoyance is how many people, including some who have known me for ages and have no excuse, spell my name wrong!

    Reply
  77. Karen has been a very popular name for girls, so I like the fact that my name stands out a bit because it is spelled differently, as Karin. The only annoyance is how many people, including some who have known me for ages and have no excuse, spell my name wrong!

    Reply
  78. Karen has been a very popular name for girls, so I like the fact that my name stands out a bit because it is spelled differently, as Karin. The only annoyance is how many people, including some who have known me for ages and have no excuse, spell my name wrong!

    Reply
  79. Karen has been a very popular name for girls, so I like the fact that my name stands out a bit because it is spelled differently, as Karin. The only annoyance is how many people, including some who have known me for ages and have no excuse, spell my name wrong!

    Reply
  80. Karen has been a very popular name for girls, so I like the fact that my name stands out a bit because it is spelled differently, as Karin. The only annoyance is how many people, including some who have known me for ages and have no excuse, spell my name wrong!

    Reply
  81. I have a relative named Margaret. When she went to kindergarten, there were two other girls in the class named Margaret. The nun said that three girls with the same name would be too confusing, so she decided one of them would be Meg, one would be Maggie, and one (my relative) would be Peggy.
    Well, Peggy she was called for years and years and years, but she hated it and finally when she was an adult, married, and with children of her own, she rebelled and declared that henceforth she was Margaret and wouldn’t answer to anything else.
    I sympathize, but I still have trouble not thinking of her as Peggy.

    Reply
  82. I have a relative named Margaret. When she went to kindergarten, there were two other girls in the class named Margaret. The nun said that three girls with the same name would be too confusing, so she decided one of them would be Meg, one would be Maggie, and one (my relative) would be Peggy.
    Well, Peggy she was called for years and years and years, but she hated it and finally when she was an adult, married, and with children of her own, she rebelled and declared that henceforth she was Margaret and wouldn’t answer to anything else.
    I sympathize, but I still have trouble not thinking of her as Peggy.

    Reply
  83. I have a relative named Margaret. When she went to kindergarten, there were two other girls in the class named Margaret. The nun said that three girls with the same name would be too confusing, so she decided one of them would be Meg, one would be Maggie, and one (my relative) would be Peggy.
    Well, Peggy she was called for years and years and years, but she hated it and finally when she was an adult, married, and with children of her own, she rebelled and declared that henceforth she was Margaret and wouldn’t answer to anything else.
    I sympathize, but I still have trouble not thinking of her as Peggy.

    Reply
  84. I have a relative named Margaret. When she went to kindergarten, there were two other girls in the class named Margaret. The nun said that three girls with the same name would be too confusing, so she decided one of them would be Meg, one would be Maggie, and one (my relative) would be Peggy.
    Well, Peggy she was called for years and years and years, but she hated it and finally when she was an adult, married, and with children of her own, she rebelled and declared that henceforth she was Margaret and wouldn’t answer to anything else.
    I sympathize, but I still have trouble not thinking of her as Peggy.

    Reply
  85. I have a relative named Margaret. When she went to kindergarten, there were two other girls in the class named Margaret. The nun said that three girls with the same name would be too confusing, so she decided one of them would be Meg, one would be Maggie, and one (my relative) would be Peggy.
    Well, Peggy she was called for years and years and years, but she hated it and finally when she was an adult, married, and with children of her own, she rebelled and declared that henceforth she was Margaret and wouldn’t answer to anything else.
    I sympathize, but I still have trouble not thinking of her as Peggy.

    Reply
  86. What an interesting list of names and a lovely way to celebrate your Name Day, Christina! Sidwell is familiar to me as a surname, not uncommon where I grew up, but I’ve never heard it used as a first name.
    My avid reader mother wanted to name me Cheryl Zane but couldn’t explain why to her disapproving mother and sister! In the long run, she gave in and named me Constance. She would never tell me from what novel it came, and I still wish I knew! My middle name is Powell, my paternal grandmother’s maiden name. In the American South, it’s not unusual to use surnames as middle names or even as first names. I’ve always liked my name, but it is amazing how often I am called Candace! I don’t think there are many of us with either name around these days, but perhaps there are more Candaces about than I know!

    Reply
  87. What an interesting list of names and a lovely way to celebrate your Name Day, Christina! Sidwell is familiar to me as a surname, not uncommon where I grew up, but I’ve never heard it used as a first name.
    My avid reader mother wanted to name me Cheryl Zane but couldn’t explain why to her disapproving mother and sister! In the long run, she gave in and named me Constance. She would never tell me from what novel it came, and I still wish I knew! My middle name is Powell, my paternal grandmother’s maiden name. In the American South, it’s not unusual to use surnames as middle names or even as first names. I’ve always liked my name, but it is amazing how often I am called Candace! I don’t think there are many of us with either name around these days, but perhaps there are more Candaces about than I know!

    Reply
  88. What an interesting list of names and a lovely way to celebrate your Name Day, Christina! Sidwell is familiar to me as a surname, not uncommon where I grew up, but I’ve never heard it used as a first name.
    My avid reader mother wanted to name me Cheryl Zane but couldn’t explain why to her disapproving mother and sister! In the long run, she gave in and named me Constance. She would never tell me from what novel it came, and I still wish I knew! My middle name is Powell, my paternal grandmother’s maiden name. In the American South, it’s not unusual to use surnames as middle names or even as first names. I’ve always liked my name, but it is amazing how often I am called Candace! I don’t think there are many of us with either name around these days, but perhaps there are more Candaces about than I know!

    Reply
  89. What an interesting list of names and a lovely way to celebrate your Name Day, Christina! Sidwell is familiar to me as a surname, not uncommon where I grew up, but I’ve never heard it used as a first name.
    My avid reader mother wanted to name me Cheryl Zane but couldn’t explain why to her disapproving mother and sister! In the long run, she gave in and named me Constance. She would never tell me from what novel it came, and I still wish I knew! My middle name is Powell, my paternal grandmother’s maiden name. In the American South, it’s not unusual to use surnames as middle names or even as first names. I’ve always liked my name, but it is amazing how often I am called Candace! I don’t think there are many of us with either name around these days, but perhaps there are more Candaces about than I know!

    Reply
  90. What an interesting list of names and a lovely way to celebrate your Name Day, Christina! Sidwell is familiar to me as a surname, not uncommon where I grew up, but I’ve never heard it used as a first name.
    My avid reader mother wanted to name me Cheryl Zane but couldn’t explain why to her disapproving mother and sister! In the long run, she gave in and named me Constance. She would never tell me from what novel it came, and I still wish I knew! My middle name is Powell, my paternal grandmother’s maiden name. In the American South, it’s not unusual to use surnames as middle names or even as first names. I’ve always liked my name, but it is amazing how often I am called Candace! I don’t think there are many of us with either name around these days, but perhaps there are more Candaces about than I know!

    Reply
  91. Loved this topic and the reader responses, Christina, but disappointed none of the other Wenches chimed in about naming characters. Maybe an Ask A Wench question?
    I’m another Mary from the heyday of Mary-ism, the ’40s. But when my daughter was about to be born, I resisted pressure from family to repeat it. For some reason, I KNEW her name (if female) was to be Susan. Not a family name on either side, but there it was … And she was the perfect Susan, if only in my mind. As an adult, she changed it legally (with my cooperation) to Suzanne, but she’ll always be my brown-eyed Susan.

    Reply
  92. Loved this topic and the reader responses, Christina, but disappointed none of the other Wenches chimed in about naming characters. Maybe an Ask A Wench question?
    I’m another Mary from the heyday of Mary-ism, the ’40s. But when my daughter was about to be born, I resisted pressure from family to repeat it. For some reason, I KNEW her name (if female) was to be Susan. Not a family name on either side, but there it was … And she was the perfect Susan, if only in my mind. As an adult, she changed it legally (with my cooperation) to Suzanne, but she’ll always be my brown-eyed Susan.

    Reply
  93. Loved this topic and the reader responses, Christina, but disappointed none of the other Wenches chimed in about naming characters. Maybe an Ask A Wench question?
    I’m another Mary from the heyday of Mary-ism, the ’40s. But when my daughter was about to be born, I resisted pressure from family to repeat it. For some reason, I KNEW her name (if female) was to be Susan. Not a family name on either side, but there it was … And she was the perfect Susan, if only in my mind. As an adult, she changed it legally (with my cooperation) to Suzanne, but she’ll always be my brown-eyed Susan.

    Reply
  94. Loved this topic and the reader responses, Christina, but disappointed none of the other Wenches chimed in about naming characters. Maybe an Ask A Wench question?
    I’m another Mary from the heyday of Mary-ism, the ’40s. But when my daughter was about to be born, I resisted pressure from family to repeat it. For some reason, I KNEW her name (if female) was to be Susan. Not a family name on either side, but there it was … And she was the perfect Susan, if only in my mind. As an adult, she changed it legally (with my cooperation) to Suzanne, but she’ll always be my brown-eyed Susan.

    Reply
  95. Loved this topic and the reader responses, Christina, but disappointed none of the other Wenches chimed in about naming characters. Maybe an Ask A Wench question?
    I’m another Mary from the heyday of Mary-ism, the ’40s. But when my daughter was about to be born, I resisted pressure from family to repeat it. For some reason, I KNEW her name (if female) was to be Susan. Not a family name on either side, but there it was … And she was the perfect Susan, if only in my mind. As an adult, she changed it legally (with my cooperation) to Suzanne, but she’ll always be my brown-eyed Susan.

    Reply
  96. You need to go and live in Sweden, Karin, because that’s how it’s always spelled there! It’s great to have slightly unusual spellings though, isn’t it? Even if you have to keep correcting people. I can see why this name is so popular – it’s very pretty!

    Reply
  97. You need to go and live in Sweden, Karin, because that’s how it’s always spelled there! It’s great to have slightly unusual spellings though, isn’t it? Even if you have to keep correcting people. I can see why this name is so popular – it’s very pretty!

    Reply
  98. You need to go and live in Sweden, Karin, because that’s how it’s always spelled there! It’s great to have slightly unusual spellings though, isn’t it? Even if you have to keep correcting people. I can see why this name is so popular – it’s very pretty!

    Reply
  99. You need to go and live in Sweden, Karin, because that’s how it’s always spelled there! It’s great to have slightly unusual spellings though, isn’t it? Even if you have to keep correcting people. I can see why this name is so popular – it’s very pretty!

    Reply
  100. You need to go and live in Sweden, Karin, because that’s how it’s always spelled there! It’s great to have slightly unusual spellings though, isn’t it? Even if you have to keep correcting people. I can see why this name is so popular – it’s very pretty!

    Reply
  101. Oh, I sympathise as well, if she didn’t like it! But you have to feel for teachers when there are several children with the same name – not easy. Funnily enough there were two Margarets in my class too but one had the middle name Christina so our teacher decided to call her that (I was known as Pia so didn’t clash). She told me afterwards it felt very strange to suddenly be known by a different name! In my daughter’s class they simply added the first letter of the surnames, so for example Olivia B and Olivia G – I’m not sure that works any better?

    Reply
  102. Oh, I sympathise as well, if she didn’t like it! But you have to feel for teachers when there are several children with the same name – not easy. Funnily enough there were two Margarets in my class too but one had the middle name Christina so our teacher decided to call her that (I was known as Pia so didn’t clash). She told me afterwards it felt very strange to suddenly be known by a different name! In my daughter’s class they simply added the first letter of the surnames, so for example Olivia B and Olivia G – I’m not sure that works any better?

    Reply
  103. Oh, I sympathise as well, if she didn’t like it! But you have to feel for teachers when there are several children with the same name – not easy. Funnily enough there were two Margarets in my class too but one had the middle name Christina so our teacher decided to call her that (I was known as Pia so didn’t clash). She told me afterwards it felt very strange to suddenly be known by a different name! In my daughter’s class they simply added the first letter of the surnames, so for example Olivia B and Olivia G – I’m not sure that works any better?

    Reply
  104. Oh, I sympathise as well, if she didn’t like it! But you have to feel for teachers when there are several children with the same name – not easy. Funnily enough there were two Margarets in my class too but one had the middle name Christina so our teacher decided to call her that (I was known as Pia so didn’t clash). She told me afterwards it felt very strange to suddenly be known by a different name! In my daughter’s class they simply added the first letter of the surnames, so for example Olivia B and Olivia G – I’m not sure that works any better?

    Reply
  105. Oh, I sympathise as well, if she didn’t like it! But you have to feel for teachers when there are several children with the same name – not easy. Funnily enough there were two Margarets in my class too but one had the middle name Christina so our teacher decided to call her that (I was known as Pia so didn’t clash). She told me afterwards it felt very strange to suddenly be known by a different name! In my daughter’s class they simply added the first letter of the surnames, so for example Olivia B and Olivia G – I’m not sure that works any better?

    Reply
  106. Thank you Constance! Sidwell does sound more like a surname,doesn’t it? It must have originated from that saint in Devon somewhere. How intriguing to be named after a novel but not know which one – perhaps you will stumble across it one day. I hope so! I have noticed that same naming pattern in the county of Devon – adding the mother’s surname as a middle name – so perhaps your family originated there? It certainly makes life a lot easier for a genealogist!

    Reply
  107. Thank you Constance! Sidwell does sound more like a surname,doesn’t it? It must have originated from that saint in Devon somewhere. How intriguing to be named after a novel but not know which one – perhaps you will stumble across it one day. I hope so! I have noticed that same naming pattern in the county of Devon – adding the mother’s surname as a middle name – so perhaps your family originated there? It certainly makes life a lot easier for a genealogist!

    Reply
  108. Thank you Constance! Sidwell does sound more like a surname,doesn’t it? It must have originated from that saint in Devon somewhere. How intriguing to be named after a novel but not know which one – perhaps you will stumble across it one day. I hope so! I have noticed that same naming pattern in the county of Devon – adding the mother’s surname as a middle name – so perhaps your family originated there? It certainly makes life a lot easier for a genealogist!

    Reply
  109. Thank you Constance! Sidwell does sound more like a surname,doesn’t it? It must have originated from that saint in Devon somewhere. How intriguing to be named after a novel but not know which one – perhaps you will stumble across it one day. I hope so! I have noticed that same naming pattern in the county of Devon – adding the mother’s surname as a middle name – so perhaps your family originated there? It certainly makes life a lot easier for a genealogist!

    Reply
  110. Thank you Constance! Sidwell does sound more like a surname,doesn’t it? It must have originated from that saint in Devon somewhere. How intriguing to be named after a novel but not know which one – perhaps you will stumble across it one day. I hope so! I have noticed that same naming pattern in the county of Devon – adding the mother’s surname as a middle name – so perhaps your family originated there? It certainly makes life a lot easier for a genealogist!

    Reply
  111. Thank you Mary! I think the other wenches may have discussed this before – as authors we are always preoccupied with naming our characters, but yes, great idea to have it as a topic for a future Ask A Wench! I think Susan/Suzanne is lovely however you spell it and no matter what our children choose to call themselves, they will always be what we named them in our minds.

    Reply
  112. Thank you Mary! I think the other wenches may have discussed this before – as authors we are always preoccupied with naming our characters, but yes, great idea to have it as a topic for a future Ask A Wench! I think Susan/Suzanne is lovely however you spell it and no matter what our children choose to call themselves, they will always be what we named them in our minds.

    Reply
  113. Thank you Mary! I think the other wenches may have discussed this before – as authors we are always preoccupied with naming our characters, but yes, great idea to have it as a topic for a future Ask A Wench! I think Susan/Suzanne is lovely however you spell it and no matter what our children choose to call themselves, they will always be what we named them in our minds.

    Reply
  114. Thank you Mary! I think the other wenches may have discussed this before – as authors we are always preoccupied with naming our characters, but yes, great idea to have it as a topic for a future Ask A Wench! I think Susan/Suzanne is lovely however you spell it and no matter what our children choose to call themselves, they will always be what we named them in our minds.

    Reply
  115. Thank you Mary! I think the other wenches may have discussed this before – as authors we are always preoccupied with naming our characters, but yes, great idea to have it as a topic for a future Ask A Wench! I think Susan/Suzanne is lovely however you spell it and no matter what our children choose to call themselves, they will always be what we named them in our minds.

    Reply
  116. I am comfortable with my name Carolyn Sue; I use Sue, but the Carolyn appears on all official papers. When I was born it was written “Carolin”. By the time I was in 8th grade I got so tired of telling people that it was NOT Caroline, but Carolin, that I changed the spelling to use the y. When I got my passport, i asked the state to amend to spelling on the birth certificate.
    Two funny to our family stories follow; my mother had two close college friends named Anita and Mary Sue. She had decided on the name Anita Sue for her daughter. And it IS a pretty name. The day I was born she announced this and her brother-in-law said; “Anita Sue Strickler — ASS” and my teacher parents changed the Anita to Carolin in honor of a great grandmother who WAS Caroline!
    She was sure my sister would be a boy: He was to have been named Robert Ray in honor of my father and of a close family friend. “He” was a girl! Well, Anita was left over from my birth and they would keep the friend’s name for the second name. She still uses the second name as her “use” name. It was spell Ray until she was ready to start high school. She decided that she would keep being put into boys gym classes and decided to change the spellling to Rae (which she still uses).
    My mother thought she should spell it as one name: this becomes Anitaray — which immediately becomes pronounce to rhyme with Sanitary.
    And, finally, my great grandmother from Holland was named Petronella, as was her grandmother.

    Reply
  117. I am comfortable with my name Carolyn Sue; I use Sue, but the Carolyn appears on all official papers. When I was born it was written “Carolin”. By the time I was in 8th grade I got so tired of telling people that it was NOT Caroline, but Carolin, that I changed the spelling to use the y. When I got my passport, i asked the state to amend to spelling on the birth certificate.
    Two funny to our family stories follow; my mother had two close college friends named Anita and Mary Sue. She had decided on the name Anita Sue for her daughter. And it IS a pretty name. The day I was born she announced this and her brother-in-law said; “Anita Sue Strickler — ASS” and my teacher parents changed the Anita to Carolin in honor of a great grandmother who WAS Caroline!
    She was sure my sister would be a boy: He was to have been named Robert Ray in honor of my father and of a close family friend. “He” was a girl! Well, Anita was left over from my birth and they would keep the friend’s name for the second name. She still uses the second name as her “use” name. It was spell Ray until she was ready to start high school. She decided that she would keep being put into boys gym classes and decided to change the spellling to Rae (which she still uses).
    My mother thought she should spell it as one name: this becomes Anitaray — which immediately becomes pronounce to rhyme with Sanitary.
    And, finally, my great grandmother from Holland was named Petronella, as was her grandmother.

    Reply
  118. I am comfortable with my name Carolyn Sue; I use Sue, but the Carolyn appears on all official papers. When I was born it was written “Carolin”. By the time I was in 8th grade I got so tired of telling people that it was NOT Caroline, but Carolin, that I changed the spelling to use the y. When I got my passport, i asked the state to amend to spelling on the birth certificate.
    Two funny to our family stories follow; my mother had two close college friends named Anita and Mary Sue. She had decided on the name Anita Sue for her daughter. And it IS a pretty name. The day I was born she announced this and her brother-in-law said; “Anita Sue Strickler — ASS” and my teacher parents changed the Anita to Carolin in honor of a great grandmother who WAS Caroline!
    She was sure my sister would be a boy: He was to have been named Robert Ray in honor of my father and of a close family friend. “He” was a girl! Well, Anita was left over from my birth and they would keep the friend’s name for the second name. She still uses the second name as her “use” name. It was spell Ray until she was ready to start high school. She decided that she would keep being put into boys gym classes and decided to change the spellling to Rae (which she still uses).
    My mother thought she should spell it as one name: this becomes Anitaray — which immediately becomes pronounce to rhyme with Sanitary.
    And, finally, my great grandmother from Holland was named Petronella, as was her grandmother.

    Reply
  119. I am comfortable with my name Carolyn Sue; I use Sue, but the Carolyn appears on all official papers. When I was born it was written “Carolin”. By the time I was in 8th grade I got so tired of telling people that it was NOT Caroline, but Carolin, that I changed the spelling to use the y. When I got my passport, i asked the state to amend to spelling on the birth certificate.
    Two funny to our family stories follow; my mother had two close college friends named Anita and Mary Sue. She had decided on the name Anita Sue for her daughter. And it IS a pretty name. The day I was born she announced this and her brother-in-law said; “Anita Sue Strickler — ASS” and my teacher parents changed the Anita to Carolin in honor of a great grandmother who WAS Caroline!
    She was sure my sister would be a boy: He was to have been named Robert Ray in honor of my father and of a close family friend. “He” was a girl! Well, Anita was left over from my birth and they would keep the friend’s name for the second name. She still uses the second name as her “use” name. It was spell Ray until she was ready to start high school. She decided that she would keep being put into boys gym classes and decided to change the spellling to Rae (which she still uses).
    My mother thought she should spell it as one name: this becomes Anitaray — which immediately becomes pronounce to rhyme with Sanitary.
    And, finally, my great grandmother from Holland was named Petronella, as was her grandmother.

    Reply
  120. I am comfortable with my name Carolyn Sue; I use Sue, but the Carolyn appears on all official papers. When I was born it was written “Carolin”. By the time I was in 8th grade I got so tired of telling people that it was NOT Caroline, but Carolin, that I changed the spelling to use the y. When I got my passport, i asked the state to amend to spelling on the birth certificate.
    Two funny to our family stories follow; my mother had two close college friends named Anita and Mary Sue. She had decided on the name Anita Sue for her daughter. And it IS a pretty name. The day I was born she announced this and her brother-in-law said; “Anita Sue Strickler — ASS” and my teacher parents changed the Anita to Carolin in honor of a great grandmother who WAS Caroline!
    She was sure my sister would be a boy: He was to have been named Robert Ray in honor of my father and of a close family friend. “He” was a girl! Well, Anita was left over from my birth and they would keep the friend’s name for the second name. She still uses the second name as her “use” name. It was spell Ray until she was ready to start high school. She decided that she would keep being put into boys gym classes and decided to change the spellling to Rae (which she still uses).
    My mother thought she should spell it as one name: this becomes Anitaray — which immediately becomes pronounce to rhyme with Sanitary.
    And, finally, my great grandmother from Holland was named Petronella, as was her grandmother.

    Reply
  121. Great name stories, Sue, thank you for sharing! I suppose it’s easy to overlook the initials when we name our children – good thing your uncle pointed it out! I like the spelling Rae and it goes really well with your name – Sue and Rae. And two Petronellas in the family – wonderful! It’s used in Sweden sometimes but more common is Pernilla (a shorter version I guess).

    Reply
  122. Great name stories, Sue, thank you for sharing! I suppose it’s easy to overlook the initials when we name our children – good thing your uncle pointed it out! I like the spelling Rae and it goes really well with your name – Sue and Rae. And two Petronellas in the family – wonderful! It’s used in Sweden sometimes but more common is Pernilla (a shorter version I guess).

    Reply
  123. Great name stories, Sue, thank you for sharing! I suppose it’s easy to overlook the initials when we name our children – good thing your uncle pointed it out! I like the spelling Rae and it goes really well with your name – Sue and Rae. And two Petronellas in the family – wonderful! It’s used in Sweden sometimes but more common is Pernilla (a shorter version I guess).

    Reply
  124. Great name stories, Sue, thank you for sharing! I suppose it’s easy to overlook the initials when we name our children – good thing your uncle pointed it out! I like the spelling Rae and it goes really well with your name – Sue and Rae. And two Petronellas in the family – wonderful! It’s used in Sweden sometimes but more common is Pernilla (a shorter version I guess).

    Reply
  125. Great name stories, Sue, thank you for sharing! I suppose it’s easy to overlook the initials when we name our children – good thing your uncle pointed it out! I like the spelling Rae and it goes really well with your name – Sue and Rae. And two Petronellas in the family – wonderful! It’s used in Sweden sometimes but more common is Pernilla (a shorter version I guess).

    Reply
  126. My name is Alice and my daughter is Kate. There are lots of Kates my age and lots of Alices my daughter’s age so we are regularly called by each other’s names. I am not sure how keen I am on my name as it always reminds me of little girls or very old maiden aunts. My younger son is Robin and I just reread Angel Rogue by Mary Jo with a hero called Robin – not many of those around!

    Reply
  127. My name is Alice and my daughter is Kate. There are lots of Kates my age and lots of Alices my daughter’s age so we are regularly called by each other’s names. I am not sure how keen I am on my name as it always reminds me of little girls or very old maiden aunts. My younger son is Robin and I just reread Angel Rogue by Mary Jo with a hero called Robin – not many of those around!

    Reply
  128. My name is Alice and my daughter is Kate. There are lots of Kates my age and lots of Alices my daughter’s age so we are regularly called by each other’s names. I am not sure how keen I am on my name as it always reminds me of little girls or very old maiden aunts. My younger son is Robin and I just reread Angel Rogue by Mary Jo with a hero called Robin – not many of those around!

    Reply
  129. My name is Alice and my daughter is Kate. There are lots of Kates my age and lots of Alices my daughter’s age so we are regularly called by each other’s names. I am not sure how keen I am on my name as it always reminds me of little girls or very old maiden aunts. My younger son is Robin and I just reread Angel Rogue by Mary Jo with a hero called Robin – not many of those around!

    Reply
  130. My name is Alice and my daughter is Kate. There are lots of Kates my age and lots of Alices my daughter’s age so we are regularly called by each other’s names. I am not sure how keen I am on my name as it always reminds me of little girls or very old maiden aunts. My younger son is Robin and I just reread Angel Rogue by Mary Jo with a hero called Robin – not many of those around!

    Reply
  131. This is a wonderful post, and all the comments are terrific. Thank you all.
    I come from a family filled with cousins. We have several names that are used over and over. When you speak of someone, you must identify which Rae, or Rachel, or Ray you mean.
    My parents evidently had a mean streak. My brother and sister were the first of 3 sets of twins within 3 years. Jack (really John, but always called Jack) and Jill. Next were my cousins, also a boy and girl, Pat and Pam. Finally two girls, Robin and Rae. Pam had twin boys, and another cousin had identical twin girls. Lots of names to be found.
    And for me, I am Annette, named after one of the Dionne quintuplets. I could have been Emilie, I would have loved that. In the Episcopal church at that time, children were supposed to be named after saints, in some form.
    And as much as I was not crazy about my name, I do believe that you found some names that make me think Annette is a real gem.
    Thanks again for the post. I hope that everyone will Take care and Stay Safe.

    Reply
  132. This is a wonderful post, and all the comments are terrific. Thank you all.
    I come from a family filled with cousins. We have several names that are used over and over. When you speak of someone, you must identify which Rae, or Rachel, or Ray you mean.
    My parents evidently had a mean streak. My brother and sister were the first of 3 sets of twins within 3 years. Jack (really John, but always called Jack) and Jill. Next were my cousins, also a boy and girl, Pat and Pam. Finally two girls, Robin and Rae. Pam had twin boys, and another cousin had identical twin girls. Lots of names to be found.
    And for me, I am Annette, named after one of the Dionne quintuplets. I could have been Emilie, I would have loved that. In the Episcopal church at that time, children were supposed to be named after saints, in some form.
    And as much as I was not crazy about my name, I do believe that you found some names that make me think Annette is a real gem.
    Thanks again for the post. I hope that everyone will Take care and Stay Safe.

    Reply
  133. This is a wonderful post, and all the comments are terrific. Thank you all.
    I come from a family filled with cousins. We have several names that are used over and over. When you speak of someone, you must identify which Rae, or Rachel, or Ray you mean.
    My parents evidently had a mean streak. My brother and sister were the first of 3 sets of twins within 3 years. Jack (really John, but always called Jack) and Jill. Next were my cousins, also a boy and girl, Pat and Pam. Finally two girls, Robin and Rae. Pam had twin boys, and another cousin had identical twin girls. Lots of names to be found.
    And for me, I am Annette, named after one of the Dionne quintuplets. I could have been Emilie, I would have loved that. In the Episcopal church at that time, children were supposed to be named after saints, in some form.
    And as much as I was not crazy about my name, I do believe that you found some names that make me think Annette is a real gem.
    Thanks again for the post. I hope that everyone will Take care and Stay Safe.

    Reply
  134. This is a wonderful post, and all the comments are terrific. Thank you all.
    I come from a family filled with cousins. We have several names that are used over and over. When you speak of someone, you must identify which Rae, or Rachel, or Ray you mean.
    My parents evidently had a mean streak. My brother and sister were the first of 3 sets of twins within 3 years. Jack (really John, but always called Jack) and Jill. Next were my cousins, also a boy and girl, Pat and Pam. Finally two girls, Robin and Rae. Pam had twin boys, and another cousin had identical twin girls. Lots of names to be found.
    And for me, I am Annette, named after one of the Dionne quintuplets. I could have been Emilie, I would have loved that. In the Episcopal church at that time, children were supposed to be named after saints, in some form.
    And as much as I was not crazy about my name, I do believe that you found some names that make me think Annette is a real gem.
    Thanks again for the post. I hope that everyone will Take care and Stay Safe.

    Reply
  135. This is a wonderful post, and all the comments are terrific. Thank you all.
    I come from a family filled with cousins. We have several names that are used over and over. When you speak of someone, you must identify which Rae, or Rachel, or Ray you mean.
    My parents evidently had a mean streak. My brother and sister were the first of 3 sets of twins within 3 years. Jack (really John, but always called Jack) and Jill. Next were my cousins, also a boy and girl, Pat and Pam. Finally two girls, Robin and Rae. Pam had twin boys, and another cousin had identical twin girls. Lots of names to be found.
    And for me, I am Annette, named after one of the Dionne quintuplets. I could have been Emilie, I would have loved that. In the Episcopal church at that time, children were supposed to be named after saints, in some form.
    And as much as I was not crazy about my name, I do believe that you found some names that make me think Annette is a real gem.
    Thanks again for the post. I hope that everyone will Take care and Stay Safe.

    Reply
  136. I was given Patricia as a middle name as I was born on St Patrick’s day at my Irish Great Grandmother s insistence. My sister was named after two great aunts my Aunt Dorothy who died of Kidney disease in 1941 my Grandfather only sister and my Grandmother sister Louvain. Most people call her Dora except
    My sisters and my self. Her husband finds it strange when they visit and keeps looking to find Dorothy😊

    Reply
  137. I was given Patricia as a middle name as I was born on St Patrick’s day at my Irish Great Grandmother s insistence. My sister was named after two great aunts my Aunt Dorothy who died of Kidney disease in 1941 my Grandfather only sister and my Grandmother sister Louvain. Most people call her Dora except
    My sisters and my self. Her husband finds it strange when they visit and keeps looking to find Dorothy😊

    Reply
  138. I was given Patricia as a middle name as I was born on St Patrick’s day at my Irish Great Grandmother s insistence. My sister was named after two great aunts my Aunt Dorothy who died of Kidney disease in 1941 my Grandfather only sister and my Grandmother sister Louvain. Most people call her Dora except
    My sisters and my self. Her husband finds it strange when they visit and keeps looking to find Dorothy😊

    Reply
  139. I was given Patricia as a middle name as I was born on St Patrick’s day at my Irish Great Grandmother s insistence. My sister was named after two great aunts my Aunt Dorothy who died of Kidney disease in 1941 my Grandfather only sister and my Grandmother sister Louvain. Most people call her Dora except
    My sisters and my self. Her husband finds it strange when they visit and keeps looking to find Dorothy😊

    Reply
  140. I was given Patricia as a middle name as I was born on St Patrick’s day at my Irish Great Grandmother s insistence. My sister was named after two great aunts my Aunt Dorothy who died of Kidney disease in 1941 my Grandfather only sister and my Grandmother sister Louvain. Most people call her Dora except
    My sisters and my self. Her husband finds it strange when they visit and keeps looking to find Dorothy😊

    Reply
  141. I think Alice is very pretty and to me it’s not at all just for little girls or maiden aunts! Some of my ancestors used the medieval spelling Alys which I really like as well. It’s funny how certain names become fashionable but great that you and your daughter didn’t follow the trend! I love looking at the yearly “top 100” names lists, it makes for fascinating reading. I suppose Robin is unusual as a hero’s name but it has always appealed to me.

    Reply
  142. I think Alice is very pretty and to me it’s not at all just for little girls or maiden aunts! Some of my ancestors used the medieval spelling Alys which I really like as well. It’s funny how certain names become fashionable but great that you and your daughter didn’t follow the trend! I love looking at the yearly “top 100” names lists, it makes for fascinating reading. I suppose Robin is unusual as a hero’s name but it has always appealed to me.

    Reply
  143. I think Alice is very pretty and to me it’s not at all just for little girls or maiden aunts! Some of my ancestors used the medieval spelling Alys which I really like as well. It’s funny how certain names become fashionable but great that you and your daughter didn’t follow the trend! I love looking at the yearly “top 100” names lists, it makes for fascinating reading. I suppose Robin is unusual as a hero’s name but it has always appealed to me.

    Reply
  144. I think Alice is very pretty and to me it’s not at all just for little girls or maiden aunts! Some of my ancestors used the medieval spelling Alys which I really like as well. It’s funny how certain names become fashionable but great that you and your daughter didn’t follow the trend! I love looking at the yearly “top 100” names lists, it makes for fascinating reading. I suppose Robin is unusual as a hero’s name but it has always appealed to me.

    Reply
  145. I think Alice is very pretty and to me it’s not at all just for little girls or maiden aunts! Some of my ancestors used the medieval spelling Alys which I really like as well. It’s funny how certain names become fashionable but great that you and your daughter didn’t follow the trend! I love looking at the yearly “top 100” names lists, it makes for fascinating reading. I suppose Robin is unusual as a hero’s name but it has always appealed to me.

    Reply
  146. Thank you Annette – I totally agree, there have been some wonderful and fascinating comments! And I am so envious of all those twins in your family! I always wished I’d been a twin and I was hoping for twins when I was having my children, but no such luck. I love the alliterative names your family chose and have to confess there’s a lot of that in my family too – my brother and I both have names starting with P, my children’s begin with J, and my brother’s children’s with A. It seemed like a good idea!

    Reply
  147. Thank you Annette – I totally agree, there have been some wonderful and fascinating comments! And I am so envious of all those twins in your family! I always wished I’d been a twin and I was hoping for twins when I was having my children, but no such luck. I love the alliterative names your family chose and have to confess there’s a lot of that in my family too – my brother and I both have names starting with P, my children’s begin with J, and my brother’s children’s with A. It seemed like a good idea!

    Reply
  148. Thank you Annette – I totally agree, there have been some wonderful and fascinating comments! And I am so envious of all those twins in your family! I always wished I’d been a twin and I was hoping for twins when I was having my children, but no such luck. I love the alliterative names your family chose and have to confess there’s a lot of that in my family too – my brother and I both have names starting with P, my children’s begin with J, and my brother’s children’s with A. It seemed like a good idea!

    Reply
  149. Thank you Annette – I totally agree, there have been some wonderful and fascinating comments! And I am so envious of all those twins in your family! I always wished I’d been a twin and I was hoping for twins when I was having my children, but no such luck. I love the alliterative names your family chose and have to confess there’s a lot of that in my family too – my brother and I both have names starting with P, my children’s begin with J, and my brother’s children’s with A. It seemed like a good idea!

    Reply
  150. Thank you Annette – I totally agree, there have been some wonderful and fascinating comments! And I am so envious of all those twins in your family! I always wished I’d been a twin and I was hoping for twins when I was having my children, but no such luck. I love the alliterative names your family chose and have to confess there’s a lot of that in my family too – my brother and I both have names starting with P, my children’s begin with J, and my brother’s children’s with A. It seemed like a good idea!

    Reply
  151. That’s great, Susan, then you can adopt St Patrick’s day as your name day and celebrate! Although according to the Swedish name day calendar, you could also have cake on 11th August as that day is for Susanna (which is Swedish for Susan). Love that your brother-in-law goes looking for a Dorothy – priceless! And thank you so much for mentioning the name Louvain. I had never come across that before and it’s beautiful – that’s going on my list right now.

    Reply
  152. That’s great, Susan, then you can adopt St Patrick’s day as your name day and celebrate! Although according to the Swedish name day calendar, you could also have cake on 11th August as that day is for Susanna (which is Swedish for Susan). Love that your brother-in-law goes looking for a Dorothy – priceless! And thank you so much for mentioning the name Louvain. I had never come across that before and it’s beautiful – that’s going on my list right now.

    Reply
  153. That’s great, Susan, then you can adopt St Patrick’s day as your name day and celebrate! Although according to the Swedish name day calendar, you could also have cake on 11th August as that day is for Susanna (which is Swedish for Susan). Love that your brother-in-law goes looking for a Dorothy – priceless! And thank you so much for mentioning the name Louvain. I had never come across that before and it’s beautiful – that’s going on my list right now.

    Reply
  154. That’s great, Susan, then you can adopt St Patrick’s day as your name day and celebrate! Although according to the Swedish name day calendar, you could also have cake on 11th August as that day is for Susanna (which is Swedish for Susan). Love that your brother-in-law goes looking for a Dorothy – priceless! And thank you so much for mentioning the name Louvain. I had never come across that before and it’s beautiful – that’s going on my list right now.

    Reply
  155. That’s great, Susan, then you can adopt St Patrick’s day as your name day and celebrate! Although according to the Swedish name day calendar, you could also have cake on 11th August as that day is for Susanna (which is Swedish for Susan). Love that your brother-in-law goes looking for a Dorothy – priceless! And thank you so much for mentioning the name Louvain. I had never come across that before and it’s beautiful – that’s going on my list right now.

    Reply
  156. Christina, first I want to mention a favorite children’s book, “The Golden Name Day”, in which the American Nancy, staying with adopted Swedish grandparents, wished for a name day of her own. It’s a very sweet story.
    I’ve seen several of the names on your list before, though I don’t think I’ve come across any of them in my own genealogical research — right now I’m concentrating on Schleswig-Holstein, where some of the names sound very strange to our ears: Bahne, Momme, Melf, and Sönke for males; and Gonke, Stienke, Chreste, and Herrlich for females!
    As I child I was not terribly fond of my given name, particularly since the only other Jane I knew was the grandmother I was named for. But doing genealogy has at least reconciled me to it! I know my grandmother was named for her great-grandmother, but since we don’t know who that Jane’s parents were, I haven’t been able to determine who she might have been named after.

    Reply
  157. Christina, first I want to mention a favorite children’s book, “The Golden Name Day”, in which the American Nancy, staying with adopted Swedish grandparents, wished for a name day of her own. It’s a very sweet story.
    I’ve seen several of the names on your list before, though I don’t think I’ve come across any of them in my own genealogical research — right now I’m concentrating on Schleswig-Holstein, where some of the names sound very strange to our ears: Bahne, Momme, Melf, and Sönke for males; and Gonke, Stienke, Chreste, and Herrlich for females!
    As I child I was not terribly fond of my given name, particularly since the only other Jane I knew was the grandmother I was named for. But doing genealogy has at least reconciled me to it! I know my grandmother was named for her great-grandmother, but since we don’t know who that Jane’s parents were, I haven’t been able to determine who she might have been named after.

    Reply
  158. Christina, first I want to mention a favorite children’s book, “The Golden Name Day”, in which the American Nancy, staying with adopted Swedish grandparents, wished for a name day of her own. It’s a very sweet story.
    I’ve seen several of the names on your list before, though I don’t think I’ve come across any of them in my own genealogical research — right now I’m concentrating on Schleswig-Holstein, where some of the names sound very strange to our ears: Bahne, Momme, Melf, and Sönke for males; and Gonke, Stienke, Chreste, and Herrlich for females!
    As I child I was not terribly fond of my given name, particularly since the only other Jane I knew was the grandmother I was named for. But doing genealogy has at least reconciled me to it! I know my grandmother was named for her great-grandmother, but since we don’t know who that Jane’s parents were, I haven’t been able to determine who she might have been named after.

    Reply
  159. Christina, first I want to mention a favorite children’s book, “The Golden Name Day”, in which the American Nancy, staying with adopted Swedish grandparents, wished for a name day of her own. It’s a very sweet story.
    I’ve seen several of the names on your list before, though I don’t think I’ve come across any of them in my own genealogical research — right now I’m concentrating on Schleswig-Holstein, where some of the names sound very strange to our ears: Bahne, Momme, Melf, and Sönke for males; and Gonke, Stienke, Chreste, and Herrlich for females!
    As I child I was not terribly fond of my given name, particularly since the only other Jane I knew was the grandmother I was named for. But doing genealogy has at least reconciled me to it! I know my grandmother was named for her great-grandmother, but since we don’t know who that Jane’s parents were, I haven’t been able to determine who she might have been named after.

    Reply
  160. Christina, first I want to mention a favorite children’s book, “The Golden Name Day”, in which the American Nancy, staying with adopted Swedish grandparents, wished for a name day of her own. It’s a very sweet story.
    I’ve seen several of the names on your list before, though I don’t think I’ve come across any of them in my own genealogical research — right now I’m concentrating on Schleswig-Holstein, where some of the names sound very strange to our ears: Bahne, Momme, Melf, and Sönke for males; and Gonke, Stienke, Chreste, and Herrlich for females!
    As I child I was not terribly fond of my given name, particularly since the only other Jane I knew was the grandmother I was named for. But doing genealogy has at least reconciled me to it! I know my grandmother was named for her great-grandmother, but since we don’t know who that Jane’s parents were, I haven’t been able to determine who she might have been named after.

    Reply
  161. That’s fascinating, Jane – I have never heard any of those names from Schleswig-Holstein! Perhaps they have a special dialect there? Stienke sounds a bit like Stina, which is a nickname for Christina in Sweden. Genealogy is such a treasure trove, isn’t it! I do hope you find your great-grandmother’s parents eventually, sometimes connections appear where you least expect them. Regarding that children’s book, that sounds lovely. It reminded me of my Dad – he was English and didn’t have a name day, but there is one day of the year that doesn’t have a saint’s name attached to it so he adopted that as his day and we always celebrated him.

    Reply
  162. That’s fascinating, Jane – I have never heard any of those names from Schleswig-Holstein! Perhaps they have a special dialect there? Stienke sounds a bit like Stina, which is a nickname for Christina in Sweden. Genealogy is such a treasure trove, isn’t it! I do hope you find your great-grandmother’s parents eventually, sometimes connections appear where you least expect them. Regarding that children’s book, that sounds lovely. It reminded me of my Dad – he was English and didn’t have a name day, but there is one day of the year that doesn’t have a saint’s name attached to it so he adopted that as his day and we always celebrated him.

    Reply
  163. That’s fascinating, Jane – I have never heard any of those names from Schleswig-Holstein! Perhaps they have a special dialect there? Stienke sounds a bit like Stina, which is a nickname for Christina in Sweden. Genealogy is such a treasure trove, isn’t it! I do hope you find your great-grandmother’s parents eventually, sometimes connections appear where you least expect them. Regarding that children’s book, that sounds lovely. It reminded me of my Dad – he was English and didn’t have a name day, but there is one day of the year that doesn’t have a saint’s name attached to it so he adopted that as his day and we always celebrated him.

    Reply
  164. That’s fascinating, Jane – I have never heard any of those names from Schleswig-Holstein! Perhaps they have a special dialect there? Stienke sounds a bit like Stina, which is a nickname for Christina in Sweden. Genealogy is such a treasure trove, isn’t it! I do hope you find your great-grandmother’s parents eventually, sometimes connections appear where you least expect them. Regarding that children’s book, that sounds lovely. It reminded me of my Dad – he was English and didn’t have a name day, but there is one day of the year that doesn’t have a saint’s name attached to it so he adopted that as his day and we always celebrated him.

    Reply
  165. That’s fascinating, Jane – I have never heard any of those names from Schleswig-Holstein! Perhaps they have a special dialect there? Stienke sounds a bit like Stina, which is a nickname for Christina in Sweden. Genealogy is such a treasure trove, isn’t it! I do hope you find your great-grandmother’s parents eventually, sometimes connections appear where you least expect them. Regarding that children’s book, that sounds lovely. It reminded me of my Dad – he was English and didn’t have a name day, but there is one day of the year that doesn’t have a saint’s name attached to it so he adopted that as his day and we always celebrated him.

    Reply
  166. My name Donna Jo was so prosaic. I think I would have liked another but can’t remember a specific one.
    My father had some interesting names on his side of the family. Two of my favorites (although glad they weren’t mine) were Gertrude Independence and Iowa, who died young.
    My husband’s maternal grandmother had an uncle and great uncle each named Truelove..last name was Sparks. At least it beat all the Williams and Henry’s in those generations.

    Reply
  167. My name Donna Jo was so prosaic. I think I would have liked another but can’t remember a specific one.
    My father had some interesting names on his side of the family. Two of my favorites (although glad they weren’t mine) were Gertrude Independence and Iowa, who died young.
    My husband’s maternal grandmother had an uncle and great uncle each named Truelove..last name was Sparks. At least it beat all the Williams and Henry’s in those generations.

    Reply
  168. My name Donna Jo was so prosaic. I think I would have liked another but can’t remember a specific one.
    My father had some interesting names on his side of the family. Two of my favorites (although glad they weren’t mine) were Gertrude Independence and Iowa, who died young.
    My husband’s maternal grandmother had an uncle and great uncle each named Truelove..last name was Sparks. At least it beat all the Williams and Henry’s in those generations.

    Reply
  169. My name Donna Jo was so prosaic. I think I would have liked another but can’t remember a specific one.
    My father had some interesting names on his side of the family. Two of my favorites (although glad they weren’t mine) were Gertrude Independence and Iowa, who died young.
    My husband’s maternal grandmother had an uncle and great uncle each named Truelove..last name was Sparks. At least it beat all the Williams and Henry’s in those generations.

    Reply
  170. My name Donna Jo was so prosaic. I think I would have liked another but can’t remember a specific one.
    My father had some interesting names on his side of the family. Two of my favorites (although glad they weren’t mine) were Gertrude Independence and Iowa, who died young.
    My husband’s maternal grandmother had an uncle and great uncle each named Truelove..last name was Sparks. At least it beat all the Williams and Henry’s in those generations.

    Reply
  171. Christina, thanks for an enjoyable post.
    I like the name Pia. Have you read Thea Harrison’s Dragon Bound? The heroine is named Pia.
    My posting name is not my actual name which makes it fun when I meet an online acquaintance in person and they ask how it’s pronounced.
    When I was a child, I was envious of my sister’s French name. My mother (Hungarian but raised in the Netherlands) said that my name seemed exotic to her which made me feel better.

    Reply
  172. Christina, thanks for an enjoyable post.
    I like the name Pia. Have you read Thea Harrison’s Dragon Bound? The heroine is named Pia.
    My posting name is not my actual name which makes it fun when I meet an online acquaintance in person and they ask how it’s pronounced.
    When I was a child, I was envious of my sister’s French name. My mother (Hungarian but raised in the Netherlands) said that my name seemed exotic to her which made me feel better.

    Reply
  173. Christina, thanks for an enjoyable post.
    I like the name Pia. Have you read Thea Harrison’s Dragon Bound? The heroine is named Pia.
    My posting name is not my actual name which makes it fun when I meet an online acquaintance in person and they ask how it’s pronounced.
    When I was a child, I was envious of my sister’s French name. My mother (Hungarian but raised in the Netherlands) said that my name seemed exotic to her which made me feel better.

    Reply
  174. Christina, thanks for an enjoyable post.
    I like the name Pia. Have you read Thea Harrison’s Dragon Bound? The heroine is named Pia.
    My posting name is not my actual name which makes it fun when I meet an online acquaintance in person and they ask how it’s pronounced.
    When I was a child, I was envious of my sister’s French name. My mother (Hungarian but raised in the Netherlands) said that my name seemed exotic to her which made me feel better.

    Reply
  175. Christina, thanks for an enjoyable post.
    I like the name Pia. Have you read Thea Harrison’s Dragon Bound? The heroine is named Pia.
    My posting name is not my actual name which makes it fun when I meet an online acquaintance in person and they ask how it’s pronounced.
    When I was a child, I was envious of my sister’s French name. My mother (Hungarian but raised in the Netherlands) said that my name seemed exotic to her which made me feel better.

    Reply
  176. Wow, those are really unusual names, aren’t they! I wonder if Truelove was a surname used as a Christian name? It’s certainly different anyway and for anyone researching your family tree it would make things a whole lot easier. And I really like Donna Jo, it sounds lovely!

    Reply
  177. Wow, those are really unusual names, aren’t they! I wonder if Truelove was a surname used as a Christian name? It’s certainly different anyway and for anyone researching your family tree it would make things a whole lot easier. And I really like Donna Jo, it sounds lovely!

    Reply
  178. Wow, those are really unusual names, aren’t they! I wonder if Truelove was a surname used as a Christian name? It’s certainly different anyway and for anyone researching your family tree it would make things a whole lot easier. And I really like Donna Jo, it sounds lovely!

    Reply
  179. Wow, those are really unusual names, aren’t they! I wonder if Truelove was a surname used as a Christian name? It’s certainly different anyway and for anyone researching your family tree it would make things a whole lot easier. And I really like Donna Jo, it sounds lovely!

    Reply
  180. Wow, those are really unusual names, aren’t they! I wonder if Truelove was a surname used as a Christian name? It’s certainly different anyway and for anyone researching your family tree it would make things a whole lot easier. And I really like Donna Jo, it sounds lovely!

    Reply
  181. Thank you, Kareni, so glad you enjoyed it! And I suppose it’s all relative – if we hear a name from a different country, it’s bound to sound exotic. I don’t like Pia at all, but other people seem to – I think it’s too short. As a twelve-year old I tried to get people to call me by my full name Pia-Christina, but it was such a mouthful that phase didn’t last long 🙂 I haven’t read Dragon Bound – will have to look that up now, thank you!

    Reply
  182. Thank you, Kareni, so glad you enjoyed it! And I suppose it’s all relative – if we hear a name from a different country, it’s bound to sound exotic. I don’t like Pia at all, but other people seem to – I think it’s too short. As a twelve-year old I tried to get people to call me by my full name Pia-Christina, but it was such a mouthful that phase didn’t last long 🙂 I haven’t read Dragon Bound – will have to look that up now, thank you!

    Reply
  183. Thank you, Kareni, so glad you enjoyed it! And I suppose it’s all relative – if we hear a name from a different country, it’s bound to sound exotic. I don’t like Pia at all, but other people seem to – I think it’s too short. As a twelve-year old I tried to get people to call me by my full name Pia-Christina, but it was such a mouthful that phase didn’t last long 🙂 I haven’t read Dragon Bound – will have to look that up now, thank you!

    Reply
  184. Thank you, Kareni, so glad you enjoyed it! And I suppose it’s all relative – if we hear a name from a different country, it’s bound to sound exotic. I don’t like Pia at all, but other people seem to – I think it’s too short. As a twelve-year old I tried to get people to call me by my full name Pia-Christina, but it was such a mouthful that phase didn’t last long 🙂 I haven’t read Dragon Bound – will have to look that up now, thank you!

    Reply
  185. Thank you, Kareni, so glad you enjoyed it! And I suppose it’s all relative – if we hear a name from a different country, it’s bound to sound exotic. I don’t like Pia at all, but other people seem to – I think it’s too short. As a twelve-year old I tried to get people to call me by my full name Pia-Christina, but it was such a mouthful that phase didn’t last long 🙂 I haven’t read Dragon Bound – will have to look that up now, thank you!

    Reply
  186. Having heard all the family tales and loving them all, I have to chime in again with my favorite: my sister was an English professor, now retired. When pregnant with my niece, she called to tell me she’d decided to call her Tatiana. A week later, it was going to be Miranda. A week after that, Prudence. (Aren’t hormones and Shakespeare a wonderful combination?) Prudence fell by the wayside when someone told her that the common nickname for Prudence in her state is Prudie! My sister’s name is Mary Julia; our mother was Julia Elizabeth; her mother was Mary Ella; and her mother was Julia Mary. So when my sister called to ask what I thought of Juliana, I was so excited! “After you and Mama and all the others!” I exclaimed. I so clearly remember her response, a startled “What?” The family history had never occurred to her! But my lovely, lively niece is Juliana Mary!

    Reply
  187. Having heard all the family tales and loving them all, I have to chime in again with my favorite: my sister was an English professor, now retired. When pregnant with my niece, she called to tell me she’d decided to call her Tatiana. A week later, it was going to be Miranda. A week after that, Prudence. (Aren’t hormones and Shakespeare a wonderful combination?) Prudence fell by the wayside when someone told her that the common nickname for Prudence in her state is Prudie! My sister’s name is Mary Julia; our mother was Julia Elizabeth; her mother was Mary Ella; and her mother was Julia Mary. So when my sister called to ask what I thought of Juliana, I was so excited! “After you and Mama and all the others!” I exclaimed. I so clearly remember her response, a startled “What?” The family history had never occurred to her! But my lovely, lively niece is Juliana Mary!

    Reply
  188. Having heard all the family tales and loving them all, I have to chime in again with my favorite: my sister was an English professor, now retired. When pregnant with my niece, she called to tell me she’d decided to call her Tatiana. A week later, it was going to be Miranda. A week after that, Prudence. (Aren’t hormones and Shakespeare a wonderful combination?) Prudence fell by the wayside when someone told her that the common nickname for Prudence in her state is Prudie! My sister’s name is Mary Julia; our mother was Julia Elizabeth; her mother was Mary Ella; and her mother was Julia Mary. So when my sister called to ask what I thought of Juliana, I was so excited! “After you and Mama and all the others!” I exclaimed. I so clearly remember her response, a startled “What?” The family history had never occurred to her! But my lovely, lively niece is Juliana Mary!

    Reply
  189. Having heard all the family tales and loving them all, I have to chime in again with my favorite: my sister was an English professor, now retired. When pregnant with my niece, she called to tell me she’d decided to call her Tatiana. A week later, it was going to be Miranda. A week after that, Prudence. (Aren’t hormones and Shakespeare a wonderful combination?) Prudence fell by the wayside when someone told her that the common nickname for Prudence in her state is Prudie! My sister’s name is Mary Julia; our mother was Julia Elizabeth; her mother was Mary Ella; and her mother was Julia Mary. So when my sister called to ask what I thought of Juliana, I was so excited! “After you and Mama and all the others!” I exclaimed. I so clearly remember her response, a startled “What?” The family history had never occurred to her! But my lovely, lively niece is Juliana Mary!

    Reply
  190. Having heard all the family tales and loving them all, I have to chime in again with my favorite: my sister was an English professor, now retired. When pregnant with my niece, she called to tell me she’d decided to call her Tatiana. A week later, it was going to be Miranda. A week after that, Prudence. (Aren’t hormones and Shakespeare a wonderful combination?) Prudence fell by the wayside when someone told her that the common nickname for Prudence in her state is Prudie! My sister’s name is Mary Julia; our mother was Julia Elizabeth; her mother was Mary Ella; and her mother was Julia Mary. So when my sister called to ask what I thought of Juliana, I was so excited! “After you and Mama and all the others!” I exclaimed. I so clearly remember her response, a startled “What?” The family history had never occurred to her! But my lovely, lively niece is Juliana Mary!

    Reply
  191. That’s wonderful, Constance – so glad she chose the perfect name without even knowing it! And yes, it’s funny the names you come up with during pregnancy, only to discard them at the last minute – hormones have a lot to answer for 🙂 Someone I once knew named her daughter Victoria, but she always called her Poppy – when I asked why, she said that “she looks like a Poppy”. Wonder why she didn’t go for that in the first place then!

    Reply
  192. That’s wonderful, Constance – so glad she chose the perfect name without even knowing it! And yes, it’s funny the names you come up with during pregnancy, only to discard them at the last minute – hormones have a lot to answer for 🙂 Someone I once knew named her daughter Victoria, but she always called her Poppy – when I asked why, she said that “she looks like a Poppy”. Wonder why she didn’t go for that in the first place then!

    Reply
  193. That’s wonderful, Constance – so glad she chose the perfect name without even knowing it! And yes, it’s funny the names you come up with during pregnancy, only to discard them at the last minute – hormones have a lot to answer for 🙂 Someone I once knew named her daughter Victoria, but she always called her Poppy – when I asked why, she said that “she looks like a Poppy”. Wonder why she didn’t go for that in the first place then!

    Reply
  194. That’s wonderful, Constance – so glad she chose the perfect name without even knowing it! And yes, it’s funny the names you come up with during pregnancy, only to discard them at the last minute – hormones have a lot to answer for 🙂 Someone I once knew named her daughter Victoria, but she always called her Poppy – when I asked why, she said that “she looks like a Poppy”. Wonder why she didn’t go for that in the first place then!

    Reply
  195. That’s wonderful, Constance – so glad she chose the perfect name without even knowing it! And yes, it’s funny the names you come up with during pregnancy, only to discard them at the last minute – hormones have a lot to answer for 🙂 Someone I once knew named her daughter Victoria, but she always called her Poppy – when I asked why, she said that “she looks like a Poppy”. Wonder why she didn’t go for that in the first place then!

    Reply
  196. Huge thanks again to everyone for your lovely comments and stories about family names – I have so enjoyed reading about them all!

    Reply
  197. Huge thanks again to everyone for your lovely comments and stories about family names – I have so enjoyed reading about them all!

    Reply
  198. Huge thanks again to everyone for your lovely comments and stories about family names – I have so enjoyed reading about them all!

    Reply
  199. Huge thanks again to everyone for your lovely comments and stories about family names – I have so enjoyed reading about them all!

    Reply
  200. Huge thanks again to everyone for your lovely comments and stories about family names – I have so enjoyed reading about them all!

    Reply
  201. Yes, Christina, Stienke is a nickname for Christina. And thanks for the encouragement regarding my genealogy; with new records becoming available all the time, you never knows when you might find a missing answer!

    Reply
  202. Yes, Christina, Stienke is a nickname for Christina. And thanks for the encouragement regarding my genealogy; with new records becoming available all the time, you never knows when you might find a missing answer!

    Reply
  203. Yes, Christina, Stienke is a nickname for Christina. And thanks for the encouragement regarding my genealogy; with new records becoming available all the time, you never knows when you might find a missing answer!

    Reply
  204. Yes, Christina, Stienke is a nickname for Christina. And thanks for the encouragement regarding my genealogy; with new records becoming available all the time, you never knows when you might find a missing answer!

    Reply
  205. Yes, Christina, Stienke is a nickname for Christina. And thanks for the encouragement regarding my genealogy; with new records becoming available all the time, you never knows when you might find a missing answer!

    Reply
  206. No, indeed – I looked for a particular Joseph for 10 years, all over Dorset where I thought he came from, and found him quite by chance in Wiltshire ten years later when I was looking for something else! So I do think luck plays a huge part in it too sometimes 🙂

    Reply
  207. No, indeed – I looked for a particular Joseph for 10 years, all over Dorset where I thought he came from, and found him quite by chance in Wiltshire ten years later when I was looking for something else! So I do think luck plays a huge part in it too sometimes 🙂

    Reply
  208. No, indeed – I looked for a particular Joseph for 10 years, all over Dorset where I thought he came from, and found him quite by chance in Wiltshire ten years later when I was looking for something else! So I do think luck plays a huge part in it too sometimes 🙂

    Reply
  209. No, indeed – I looked for a particular Joseph for 10 years, all over Dorset where I thought he came from, and found him quite by chance in Wiltshire ten years later when I was looking for something else! So I do think luck plays a huge part in it too sometimes 🙂

    Reply
  210. No, indeed – I looked for a particular Joseph for 10 years, all over Dorset where I thought he came from, and found him quite by chance in Wiltshire ten years later when I was looking for something else! So I do think luck plays a huge part in it too sometimes 🙂

    Reply

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