The Name That Reaches Across Time

Aug 12th 2010

A thriving subgenre of kids' literature brings the supernatural past into the present. Powerful forces from ancient Greek and Egyptian mythology roar into the modern world, with only resourceful tweens to stop them. Rick Riordan's Percy Jackson leads this literary pack, but Percy ( Perseus) has plenty of company. Consider these synposes of two recent young adult novels:

In England, 1906, the daughter of archaelogists discovers that ancient curses still cling to Egyptian artifacts. She finds herself embroiled in a dangerous web of intrigue, fighting German operatives who want to use the ancient Egyptian powers against England.

In England, 1938, an orphaned sister and brother stumble on the 3,000-year-old prophecy of a Greek oracle. The threat it foretells reaches into their world -- via Nazi Germany -- and they find themselves embroiled in a desperate adventure against ancient demons.

The shared DNA of the two books is clear, but one element they share is particularly unlikely. The girls in both stories are named Theodosia.

I can't imagine that either author was pleased to find the quirky, distinctive name she chose popping up so close by. It's like a creative-naming mom learning that her son has to go by "Zephyr W." in his preschool class.

What is it about Theodosia that drew both writers in? The name is a very old one, carried forward in Greek and Slavic traditions by an 8th-century saint. Theodosia has never been a common English name, but like other names with classical origins saw some usage in the 18th and 19th Centuries.

The heroine of the first book described above, Theodosia and the Serpents of Chaos, would have been born in the mid 1890s. The name is plausible for that period, but far from common. Birth records from 1890s England show that for every Theodosia born there were 4 Theodoras, 11 Dorotheas and 450 Dorothys. By the late '20s, when the second Theodosia of Oracles of Delphi Keep would have been born, England's Dorothy-to-Theodosia ratio was up to 4,500 to 1. So we can safely rule out period flavor as the explanation for the double-dip naming.

As usual, the real naming story probably comes down to style. For their tales, the authors wanted a name that would come across to modern readers as:

- Old and mysterious;
- Smart and scholarly;
- Vaguely British (both authors are American) and sophisticated.

Theodosia's classical roots, scholarly revival, and simple rarity accomplish a lot of these these tasks. It may help, too, that the best known Theodosia was a genuine intellectual prodigy. Theodosia Burr Alston, the daughter of U.S. Vice President and dueler Aaron Burr, had an extraordinary education for a girl of her time and the talent to take full advantage. (OK, there is actually one better-known Theodosia, but silent film vamp Theodosia Goodman went exclusively by her stage name, Theda Bara.)

What other name could serve all of the authors' purposes? Only 26 girls' names made the "Classical Style" list in the Baby Name Wizard book. Of those, most are too romantic (Liviana), exotic (Xanthe), familiar (Lydia), non-English-sounding (Severina), etc. The best fits for our intrepid young English adventurers are Cornelia, Octavia, and...Theodosia. So perhaps the coincidence isn't so unlikely after all.


By Wiley (not verified)
August 12, 2010 1:52 PM

Thea also seems to be showing up among girls... Something about the TH sound I guess. In Xanthe too :-)

By JMT (not verified)
August 12, 2010 1:55 PM

I've got to stop latching onto unique names I love for my unborn (way unborn) children. First I love Juniper, then it starts popping up everywhere. Then I love Thea, and it starts popping up everywhere. Wiley, for me it's definitely the TH ... I also love Edith, Luther, and Thaddeus. I should just give up and plan on Elisabeth (a family name).

By Wiley (not verified)
August 12, 2010 2:09 PM

I'm also giving up on naming unborn children currently, and I've got two gestating currently. Assuming there is a boy is there, there's a Chiron Falco, but we still don't know what to name one girl, much less two. And we have ultrasounds August 19 and August 23 when gender is possible, but unlikely, so we probably have to wait until September 16. Regardless, I've stayed pretty resolved to not work names at all until we know!

By TM (not verified)
August 12, 2010 2:25 PM

I have Thea on my list, too, and I agree that it's the "th" sound that keeps attracting me to names recently. Tabitha and the longer Althea are two other ones that I've been giving a lot of consideration to as well. I really like Athena (especially since my trip to Greece), but I think the association to the goddess might be too much for me.

My daughter, Julia, was almost Elizabeth. Now I'm leaning more towards Diana. (Another goddess name!) *sigh*

Sounds like JMT and I have similar taste! :)

By Wiley (not verified)
August 12, 2010 2:43 PM

Why are girls so hard to name? I want to like Althea, but I can't get behind it. I could do Aletheia, but perhaps that is too much. I'm guessing since we can't come up with a single first or middle girl name, both twins will be girls :-)

By Jane, Mother of Five (not verified)
August 12, 2010 2:48 PM

TM: There is a little girl named Athena at our church. I would never have thought I'd like Athena on a little girl today, and yet I was surprised to find that I love the name on her. It packs a lot of punch and spunk even though the actual sounds are very soft and feminine. I can't think of another name that has that combination.

Also, our baby number six was born one week ago today:
Joshua Edmund Palmer.

So now we have:
Anne Juliet
John Stewart
Charles Wallace
James Michael
Patrick Eugene
Joshua Edmund

(I love writing them out:))

By Jodi Y. (not verified)
August 12, 2010 3:30 PM

Hmm, I wonder if there was also the subconscious influence of Molly Ringwald's For Keeps? Her boyfriend named their baby Theodosia after his grandmother(?) while Molly's character was in some kind of postpartum shock. I watched it while I was pregnant with our Juniper (JMT, is it really everywhere? Bummer! We met one in a Chick-Fil-A once, but she was 9 or 10, so I wasn't too worried and just chalked it up to fluke) and was *very* tempted to add it to our list. It's a sweet name, and Thea is a long time favorite of mine in any form.

By Thea (not verified)
August 12, 2010 3:33 PM

Okay, so I'm not quite Thea (an accent over the "e" in my name renders it "Thay-uh," though people call me Thea about 50% of the time), but it's still lovely to run into a discussion about my quite uncommon name.

For those of you considering it, rest assured that it's still good and unusual - every so often I hear about a Thea, or a Tia, or a Taya, but for the most part, I'm on my own. So don't lose hope!

August 12, 2010 3:44 PM

Fun topic! Cornelia is actually a family name for me (grandmother and older cousin) and I have to say they were/are both pretty spunky. If such things were possible I could totally see them both having gone of on some mythical adventure as kids!

By Larksong nli (not verified)
August 12, 2010 4:41 PM

Utterly fascinating!

August 12, 2010 4:44 PM

I can't tell you how many people have asked if my daughter Dorothy is actually named Dorothea. No, she's not, but obviously the sound is attractive to some.

By Amy3
August 12, 2010 5:08 PM

I know two Theas irl (no Theodosias though). The first, a former co-worker, would be in her late 30s/early 40s and pronounced it thee-ah. The second is my neighbor. She's probably early 50s, pronounces it tea-ah, and it's short for Dorothea. I don't know any kids with this name so I think those of you considering it shouldn't cross it off your lists.

I do think the /th/ sound could rise, although it's an uphill battle in our current vowel-saturated/ends-in-A girls' naming environment. (There are two Athenas at my daughter's school, both rising 1st graders, could they be in the vanguard?)

August 12, 2010 5:44 PM

I like a (sometimes nearly) ends-with-th sound myself, for a girl's name: Iolanthe, Amaranth, Elspeth, Jacinth, Gwyneth, Tanith.

Heck, if it weren't for meaning, I like the sound of Labyrinth.

That "th" sound is also a very strong language marker--most languages don't use any "th" sounds. Makes it quite the shibboleth.

By hyz
August 12, 2010 6:04 PM

Funny coincidence, and I agree the authors were probably none too happy about it.

I also love the soft (unvoiced) TH sound, for what it's worth. Before we found out this baby was a boy, I was feeling pretty confident that our girl name choice would be Anthea (although I couldn't help feeling somewhat torn between that and my more fanciful favorite, Hyacinth, also featuring that sweet lispy -th at the end).

August 12, 2010 6:23 PM

Oh no! Of course, right when I think I'm being original, I discover I'm right on trend! That lispy th sound really is a great blend of romantic, intellectual, and yet somehow no nonsense all at the same time. A secret gem of mine is Thisbe, which my bf actually loves too. Now I just hope it stays obscure long enough for when we're actually ready for kids.

By Tirzah (not logged in) (not verified)
August 12, 2010 7:31 PM

How about Iolanthe? Thor?

So is it supposed to be pronounced "THEE-a" or "THAY-a"? I always presumed the latter. I wonder what the proportions are?

By Allison Margaret (not verified)
August 12, 2010 8:34 PM

I don't love the th at the beginning or in the middle of names, but I sure do like it at the end of girls' names! Elspeth, Meredith, Judith, Lilith, Edith... I love them all. Today I took a call from a 20-something Judith nn Judy who clearly didn't love her full name, and I had to refrain from commenting about how awesome I think it is.

By Also ZR (not verified)
August 12, 2010 11:42 PM

Comments on this and also last thread since I've been away...
Larksong-Welcome back! I think many of the names you've listed for girls go together well. They seem to have a modern (popular a few years back) feel with a slight French leaning. Piper, Riley, Harper, and Rowan sound like a great group of sisters or friends. The boys seem to be much more -en ending and R-beginning oriented with no other discernible features. Dylan, August, and Leo are my picks for them. And yes, I do agree that Eden and Arden are too similar.

Wiley-Have we known you by a different sn? It seems I missed something there.

Re: Theodosia. I agree with Laura that the reasons are most likely similar as to why this name occurred in both these books. It's a bit like how we've mentioned that librarians tend to the same names for their children many times.

I personally don't care for the older in- fashion names of late, but I don't mind some of the sounds. Meredith, and Tabitha are okay names but I think I actually like them for their "other" sounds funny enough. It's also probably why I dislike names like Theodosia and Iolanthe-the O throws me.

OT-I was at the park with the kids and heard a mom refer to her children Kaden/4(sp?) and Ella/3. She also had a baby with her about 6 mo. I was dying to know the baby's name but didn't ever hear it. Not even sure whether it was boy or girl, but I'm sure it was WAY trendy.

August 13, 2010 9:48 PM

Larksong: From the previous thread, I think eclectic does fit, but there are definitely some patterns - you tend to like short and spunky names for boys and many of your girls names as well. Most of these are not the current mega-hits but either previously popular or rising names with currently fashionable sounds.

You have a lot of relatively popular (in the US) names that strike me as being evocative of Ireland and the non-England parts of the UK: Rogan, Ryan, Rory, Roarke, Dylan, Nolan, Kieran, Kian, Keegan, Reilly, Lorcan, Callum, Carys, Isla, Shannon, Keira. Most of these have been kicking around in the US for long enough that they feel really "contemporary familiar Irish (Welsh, Scottish)" here. And Sinead, though that's decidedly less popular.

And a few that are very spunky English in particular: Poppy, Luna, Camille, Briony... but these really are engulfed by the other big category, the nature names: River, Willow, Eden, Ember, Summer, Skye, Jade, Sage, Jasmine, Larkin.

I think those hippie-esque nature-evocative nature names actually pair pretty well with your other big boy name category, which is the frontier cowboy names. They all say "rugged man enjoying nature on his horse" to me, so it's a logical match as the male equivalent to your nature names (River is the only one there on your boy list. :)
-Relatively popular Cowboys: Ryder, Chase, West, Sawyer.
-Surnamey cowboys: Lawson, Dawson.
-Biblical cowboys: Seth, Asher?
(And I think that the couple of 60s surfer names you have on your list: Troy, Ross, Reid, Topher, are slightly more boyish throwbacks to the same outdoorsy naturey image.)

And that category in turn sort of overlaps with the antebellum southern charm: Scarlett, Savannah, Sawyer, Tallulah. More contemporary southern: Tatum, Harper, too.

Those in in turn overlap with the Androgynous: both more 80s (Cameron, Jamie) and contemporary (Arden, Bailey, Sasha, Piper, Blair, Reilly). All of your other categories have some surnames thrown in, too, and therefore it makes rather a lot of sense, I think!

And also in another direction with the newly revived classics: Penelope, Phoebe, Charlotte, Honour, then the frillier ones: Anastasia, Evangeline, Arielle, Isabella, and then the simpler, more melodic ones ones to match Phoebe: Maya, Laila, Sophie.

And there, your names neatly stereotyped. :) Most of all, I think strong nature/spunky/surnamey feeling abounding. I have no idea how you will narrow it down to actual kids, but it helps if you write!

August 13, 2010 9:08 AM

Congratulations Jane, Mother of Five really Mother of Six now though! Your children have lovely names. As a mother of a P@ul, Cl@re, M@rk, and K@th@rine with hopefully more to come, what I noticed is that you were able to seemlessly switch from one syllable first names to two. Did you intentionally use another two syllable name so Patrick's name wouldn't be the one longer name? I ask that because our top girls name for a future baby is Anne but I worry if she were somehow our last that K@th@rine would be the stand out. DH of course thinks I'm crazy to worry about these things b/c we call her K@te or K@tie all the time anyways.

August 13, 2010 9:45 AM

@lucubratrix Oops, yep I wasn't logged in. Wiley is just what I get filled into forms by default!

August 13, 2010 9:46 AM

Congratulations, Jane Mother of 5(well, 6). Would you hate me if I said John Stewart made me think "Daily Show fan"? :p Still, Joshua Edmund is lovely, I really like traditional Edmund and Joshua (which sounds more modern to me) together.

By Larksong nli (not verified)
August 13, 2010 10:01 AM

@Jane Mother of 5

Congratulations! I didn't read the comments yesterday, and therefore missed out on the news!

I wish you and your family all of the best, and hope that you have many years of love and well-named family memebers ahead of you!

@lucubratrix & Also ZR

Thank you for the input ! It is very helpful and very much appreciated :)

The breakdown that you did is amazing ! Yes, it definitely helps if you write! I've even started to like a name that I didn't before, because I liked the character lol Plus, writing helps you to get the name out of your system . Writing forces you to be in constant contact with the name, so that you mentally test yourself to see how much you really like it. E.g., I KNOW that if I had a Shannon, it's a name that I'd be comfortable shouting out in public, while calling a child .... does that make any sense?

Most of the names on that list, I've liked for years . If I like a name, I tend to like it forever - if it is a genuine like. The scale of how much I like it might change, but, I still like it :)

When I have kids --- which is going to be in a LONG time if I have my way, I will try to choose names that I've liked for years ,so that it is a true love.Plus, someone else will have 50% of the decision --- so the kids might all end up with completely different names or my taste might dramatically change (though I really doubt it ..... if you knew me in every-day life, this would make sense)

If I've liked a name for 5 + years, then it generally means that I'll most likely like it in the future. If I've liked it for around a decade + , e.g. I've liked Piper & Phoebe since Charmed started (12 years) , then I will probably seriously consider it

If I were to have a kid now -- with no spousal input , the seriously considered choices would be (based on longevity):

GIRLS: Eden, Tatum, Piper, Phoebe, Sasha, Anastasia,Evangeline, Penelope,Laila ,Arden ,Sage

BOYS: Dylan,Dawson,Blake,Keiran,Rory,Asher,
Seth,Troy, Tristan,Reid & Reilly

First picks: Dylan & Eden

I only want 3 kids, so if I had to pick from those:
Eden, Piper & Sage/Sasha
Dylan,Blake & Rory

But, hey, who really knows what will happen. Let's just hope that the spouse is similarly minded!

I do have a huge crush on Mythological or ancient names like Persephone,Hermione,Aristarchus ,Euripides etc, but, I HIGHLY doubt I'd ever use them or consider them because of 1) Nowhere near cool enough to pull it off 2) because of my environment .... I'd use the more mainstream e.g. Orion

Sorry for the long post and thank you for the help!

By Beth the original (not verified)
August 13, 2010 11:01 AM

Jane, congratulations! I think Anne will have a novel to write by the end of her childhood with FIVE brothers!

Odds and ends:

I just got back from a summer camp for same-sex parents and their kids. Lots of interesting names there -- Meredith nn Minty, Rudy (girl), Delia, Anina, Blaise (boy), Maizie, Honor (girl), Griffin, Marina, Halle, Viola, Matisse (boy), Zorea (girl), Pepper (girl), Nephratiri, Ander (boy).

About 5 years ago a friend of mine had a baby she named Theodora, which seemed just outlandish to me. Now it feels quite hip. I happen to love Thalia, but it's pronounced TALL-ya, so I guess it doesn't count as a "th" name. But as a "Beth," I always found the "th" at the end of my name kind of lispy and weird.

By ADY (not verified)
August 13, 2010 11:47 AM

Larksong nli - we have very similar tastes! My son and daughter are named Blake Vaughn and Piper Shea. And my daughter's Hebrew name is actually Eden.

By Larksong nli (not verified)
August 13, 2010 11:57 AM


That's fabulous! I also really like Shea!It's actually the nickname that I would use for Shannon! Blake Vaughn also flows wonderfully

It's always fun to come across someone who has similar taste !

Sorry, in the previous soliloquy, I meant that the person who would have 50 % of the name vote is the future Mr.Larksong lol

By hyz
August 13, 2010 12:30 PM

Jane, MO6, congratulations!! I somehow missed your announcement yesterday. I think Joshua is a sweet, handsome name, and goes very nicely with your others. And I agree, little Anne will have quite the tales to tell of growing up with 5 little brothers!! Hope you are enjoying the babymoon and are able to get some rest!

August 13, 2010 1:48 PM

50% naming rights. Granted in advance? Impressive.

By Amy3
August 13, 2010 2:24 PM

@Jane MO6, congrats! I missed your announcement too. Love Edmund so I'm thrilled you used it, and I think Joshua is a nice fit with the other kids' names (and it might be your husband's name too? Am I remembering this right?). Enjoy your new baby!

By Larksong nli (not verified)
August 13, 2010 2:36 PM


'''Why are girls so hard to name?''

Ironically, I find it easier to name ''hypothetical'' girls .. . It's easier for me to find girl names than boy names that I like


Well, the way I look at it, it takes to 2 people to make a child & to people to raise it... so, 2 people to name. If Mr.Future Larksong isn't bothered by names, then I'd do what I want if he gives the go ahead. Just because I like names, doesn't mean that he has a lesser vote. I just look at it as being able to present him with options that he maybe never had before. If he hated a name that I loved (e.g. Eden, please ...NO NO!), the name wouldn't be used. If he loved a name that I hated, it wouldn't be used. A compromise would be in order.There'd also be discussion lol I'd explain to him why I love it and maybe his perspective changes; he could do the same to me.Maybe I land up loving that name. It's just another part of the partnership. Maybe this is the wrong way to look at it ... I don't know , it just seems more fair/logical to me. I am DEFINITELY open to learning from others and being corrected ,though :)

By JMT (not verified)
August 13, 2010 2:54 PM

Jodi - everywhere means I've seen it like, 3 places. :p

Here's one for hyz and all y'all. Can you think of any names with a voiced TH? (For those who aren't phonetics phans, the "th" in "though" is voiced, and the "th" in "thought" is unvoiced.)

It's a fairly unusual sound in English to start with - found mostly in little functiony words like the, these, those, that, there, and so on.

Does it appear in any known names? I couldn't think of any, but I'm not great at coming up with names that fit certain characteristics.

By Cara (not verified)
August 13, 2010 2:55 PM

Help, please. First baby, a boy, due in 6 weeks. We have reached naming morass. Nothing sounds particularly good anymore. Looking for just a first name, middle name will be my one-syllable English last name. Last name is also English, two syllables and ends in 'er' so names like Conner and Xavier don't flow very well.

The ones we have kicked around more seriously are:

And we have considered (but probably don't jointly like enough):


By JMT (not verified)
August 13, 2010 2:58 PM

oh, and lulz at linnaeus and shibboleth.

By Edith Bouvier Beale (not verified)
August 13, 2010 3:22 PM

Cara: Have you considered Conrad or Caspar? You seem to favor those C-sounds in the names you like. Do you mind sharing what letter your last name begins with? That makes a big difference.

Xavier is all kinds of stylish, but well-known enough not to scandalize grandparents. Minus the last-name issue, I'm a fan. Otherwise, I think that the appeal of Lucas is also big: It's a lovely mash-up of softer sounds (which I also see you gravitating towards) in a distinctly masculine name, and it works in different variations all over the world, which is always nice. It also has that C-sound you like so much, just in the middle this time. It's a really flexible name, too: it's easy to imagine Lucas/Luke as a senator, or as a cowboy, or as an artist, or as a social worker, or as really anything else. Finally: Cool Hand Luke.

By Cara (not verified)
August 13, 2010 3:59 PM

Last name starts with W.

Xavier was my choice for a long while, but I mentioned the '---er ---er' problem to DH at one point and he seized on it. But I think he never liked it quite as much as me.

Re Conrad, it's not appealing to me, and Caspar I think ghost. And the 'ar' ending is probably close enough to 'er' for a veto from the hubs. In the Caspar vein, Jasper I do like a lot, but it also has the ending problem.

Lucas, maybe I have to revisit this one and kick it around for awhile. Its a good name for the reasons you mention, soft sounds but still masculine, and I love the idea of a nice one-syllable short form built in.

I think I'm burnt out! But the baby WILL need a name :) Generally also names grow on me if I accustom myself to them over a few days and didn't dislike them initially. At least that was how Cadel worked, only then DH rejected it after he suggested it! Sigh...

Thanks for your thoughts!

By ajg (not verified)
August 13, 2010 5:05 PM

How about Blythe?

By ajg (not verified)
August 13, 2010 5:08 PM

Hm, that looks "out of nowhere." That was directed at JMT-- Blythe has a voiced th, or at least, that's how it's pronounced where I am!

By hyz
August 13, 2010 5:13 PM

JMT, good point/question. All I can come up with right now are Heather and Merriwether. The NameFinder also lists Weatherly as a girls' name, but that's a new one to me. Given the paucity of voiced -th names, it was probably hardly worth noting that I like the unvoiced version. And really, Heather and Merriwether are both pretty nice names, too.

I think I mentioned it because I noticed that I tend to prefer other unvoiced consonants over their voiced counterparts, too. So, not as a hard rule, but pretty often I like names featuring T sounds better than D sounds, C/K better than G, P better than B, and CH better than J/G. Maybe just a personal quirk, I don't know....

August 13, 2010 5:14 PM

Cara: Silas is a stand out for me. Riley seems a bit played out and, while I do like Colby/Cole and Lukas/Luke, they also seem a bit more common. If that's not a concern for you, I think the two-syllable ones sound best. I'm not familiar with Cadel. The pronunciation online sounds similar to cattle; is that right? Hrm... do you like Austin, Damon, or Damien?

By hyz
August 13, 2010 5:15 PM

ajg, good one! I feel like I've heard Blythe both ways, but I would normally say it voiced, as well.

August 13, 2010 8:35 PM


Congratulations! Juliet is going to make a great babysitter in a few years. (I say that as the only girl--and the oldest--in a family full of boys.)

By Also ZR (not verified)
August 13, 2010 9:00 PM

chipper28-Thanks for the response. That was me wondering about your sn. It all makes sense now. I am alter-sn of Zoerhenne in case anyone didn't realize.

larksong-That seems like a perfectly rational way to do things. If the future Mr. Larksong is anything like my DH he will readily accept that plan. *Hint: it worked right up until the very end when I consequently freaked out because I still had 6 names on the list to choose from with my dd.

Also, Eden, Piper and Sage sound darling together as a sisbset or bunch of friends in a book. I have always loved Shannon on a girl and Samantha too (going back a thread or so).

Jane-Congrats! Joshu@ Edmund is a perfect name.

Cara-From what you've listed I vote for Lucas/Luke or Gavin. Have you considered Eric? I wanted something recognizable but not extremely popular in my parts, few sp problems, and fairly classic. We ended up with Eric. Also fond of Jeffrey, Matthew, Brian, Colin, Connor, etc to give you a feel for my tastes.

August 13, 2010 9:58 PM

@ Jane, M06 - congratulations, I also missed your announcement! Joshua Edmund is lovely and goes well with your other 5. How is Juliet liking being the eldest of 5 brothers?

@ Cara - I think Silas is a bit of an outlier in your options. I love Silas but it doesn't seem to fit with your other choices. I think Lucas is a good options for you but I also like Colby, Caleb and Cameron. I think most of your options work well but I agree that I'm not a fan of the 'er/ar' endings with your last name.

I am also a fan of Cadel and haven't heard anyone else considering it. I pronounce it ca-DELL, and is best known on Cadel Evans the Australian cyclist

By Zannejude (not verified)
August 13, 2010 10:08 PM

@Cara --

Have you considered Marcus, which I think of as a nice alternative to Lucas?

Some other names on our list that you might like are Simon, Martin, Ian, Joel and Nathan. Good luck! I'm due in four weeks, and we haven't decided either!

By knp
August 13, 2010 11:18 PM

Congrats Jane! Lovely! :)

By Guest (not verified)
August 14, 2010 9:23 AM

First time on site, so please excuse any redundancies or etiquette violations.

Motherof6 - Best wishes!

Athena is very common in the Greek-American community, which often names babies for their grandparents (= first cousins may have the same first name, and last name too if related through their dads).

JMT - Meredith (to me a male name)

Cara - Kevin, Stephen

general thought #1: I'm a psychologist and used to teach at a state university in a multicultural city. By the time our twin daughters were conceived, I had a personal manifesto about appropriate names, which I'll post if there's interest. My husband added the qualifier that the names had to be suitable for a president of the U.S.

general thought #2: My husband died young, and several of his married nieces said that they would name the next boy among them for my husband. (We had only one daughter, the other miscarried.)
That was nine years ago; several boys have been born since, none of them named for my husband, not even the middle name. I do not feel that his relatives were under any obligation, but as the widow I was disappointed. I's better to keep the intention private until the baby's parents have made a firm decision.

By Also ZR (not verified)
August 14, 2010 1:50 PM

Guest#46-Welcome. If you intend to post more (which I hope you do) please pick a suitable sn as there are way too many guests on this site and it gets a bit confusing.

I am sorry to hear of the circumstances you've encountered. I agree that one shouldn't tell someone (or their family) they are being honored and then not do it. That is rude unless circumstances changed within the family so significantly as to warrant not using the name chosen for honoring.

Kevin and Stephen are excellent choices for Cara and I second them.

And finally, I for one, would be interested in hearing your personal name manifesto. Some of us have posted before about those kinds of things so it would be an interesting read I'm sure. The "suitable for a President" thing is kind of funny to me though.

By Larksong nli (not verified)
August 14, 2010 2:40 PM


I second everything that ALSO ZR said!


Eden/Piper/Sage Thank you! The other main one that I toy with is Eden,Piper & Blair

I can completely understand freaking out at the end!

I like a lot of the names that you listed!

Some new ideas (if you hate them ... no problem):

Deysel DAY-sil

By Guest the II (not verified)
August 14, 2010 4:10 PM

Just got back from the park and was enchanted by a sibset I met there:

Saffron (g, 7)
Lindon (b, 4)
Rosemary (2)

They were adorable!!
I think my son has a crush on the eldest (He's 5). So cute!

By Rhodolady (not verified)
August 14, 2010 5:59 PM

Ben Mulroney, Canadian TV personality, and his wife Jessica had twin boys -
Brian Gerald Alexander (named for grandfather Brian Mulroney, former PM of Canada)
and - John Benedict Dimitri

Main point is that they each have three given names. Of late I have noticed this practice here (Toronto), sometimes with the mother's maiden name included, but often three normal given names, both boys and girls. Has anyone noticed this trend elsewhere?