It's a boy!!!! Help me put together a list!

So, we just found out today that the baby is, without a doubt, a boy!  Let the naming begin!!!!!  I think and hope DH will let the name conversations start in earnest now.  I want to feel like we've explored a lot of names, and would like to suggest some new options to DH if possible.  

The two more solid combinations that are on the table are:

Simon Xavier (DH reacts negatively to Simon, saying it's nerdy, but I don't know how much of that is just to tease me.  He says we can keep it on the list for now.)

Xavier Camille (The only combo we can agree on so far.  Camille, as mentioned previously, is a pretty important family name for him.)

Another name we both like is Everett.  I suppose Everett Xavier could work fine, but I'm not convinced about Everett Camille

What I like about Simon is that it's simple, serious, and strong.  I think the simplicity and strength of it goes well with the more flowery last name.  I also think the ON combo works well with the ON sound in the last name.  I suggested Eamon to DH as an alternative, but he just made a derisive noise.  Any other ideas up this alley?

Like many people, we're looking for a less than trendy boy's name that's still strong and not too odd.  I mentioned Elliot, Oliver, and August to DH and all got nixed.  Frankly, DH would be thrilled with something like Jack, but I'm trying to steer us a little more towards the bookish end of the spectrum...at least a little more thoughful.  

Thanks in advance!

Replies

1
May 18, 2012 9:51 PM

Congratulations on your son! How wonderful! Your comment about your DH liking something like Jack made me laugh -- I always tease my hubs that his favorite boy name is Bob (as opposed to my more adventurous tastes), and he basically agrees.

I love Simon Xavier, I think Xavier Camille sounds fine (though I admit I have a hard time thinking of Camille as male, though I did read the posts and your comments about the name and the relative on one of your previous threads), and Everett Xavier flows well too imo. Elliot, Oliver, and August are all up my alley as well -- and my hubs loves loves the nn Gus and so is a big fan of Augustine/Augustin/Augusten -- would your husband like something like that? A name I've recently been thinking about too is Bennett -- I think that would fit with your "bookish" inclinations, and the nn Ben is so great, and like Jack. So are Hank (Henry) and Gabe (Gabriel) to my mind. I like Bennett Xavier, Bennet Camille, Henry Xavier, and Henry Camille, though I don't care for Gabriel Xavier and I would stay away from Gabriel Camille since Gabriel's occasionally used for girls and with the mn Camille people might assume he is a girl. I look forward to reading the other comments on this one!

2
May 19, 2012 6:26 AM

Congratulations on a boy!! How wonderful.

 

I still love Simon Xavier but if it won't fly will Xavier Simon work? The flow isn't quite as good but it still gets both the names in.

Xavier Camille is growing on me. The significance of the name to your husband makes me like it and it does flow well.

Everett Camille doesn't seem to work for me. Everett Simon or Everett Xavier I think work well though.

I like the option of Xavier Grey that you were thinking about before. I think that is my favourite after Simon Xavier.

I was going to suggest Eamon, but see that won't work for your husband.

It's a shame that Elliot, August and Oliver won't work for your husband. Would he go for Sebastian? Other thoughts are: 

Owen

Spencer

Miles

Theodore

Silas

Louis/Lewis

Conrad

Amos

3
May 19, 2012 9:08 AM

this may be out there, but i wonder how you and your hubby would feel about Conrad either before or after Xavier. it seems he wants a no nonsense 'manly' name

4
May 19, 2012 12:50 PM

We've been talking names a little bit, and some that have come up are: Abram, Cyrus (not great associations for me, but I'm trying to have an open mind), Joachim, Elijah (probably too common?), and Auden (this one DH thought of, and I really quite like it), though I feel like I'd need to get more familar than I am with W.H. Auden's poetry.  Don't know if that helps give a sense of what we're liking.  It's all over the place, I know.  

5
May 21, 2012 9:07 AM

Ohhhh I've never seen anyone like Joachim! It's one of my very very favorites!! It's been on our list for a couple of our sons, but my husband has a hard time going for it since (1) he thinks it's too out there and (2) there's a basketball player with the name (Joakim Noah), and he therefore thinks everyone will only think we named our son after the basketball player. The only thing that softens him toward it is my planned nn for it -- Jake. My husband loves Jake. Maybe don't mention that to your husband, if you don't care for Joachim and want to steer him away from it -- if your DH likes Jack, he might be the type to love Jake too.

I'd forgotten about Xavier Grey -- I love that combo too.

6
May 19, 2012 4:07 PM

From your list, Simon Xavier is by far my favorite based soley on flow.  Xavier Camille is lovely as well, and the family connection certainly earns it some extra points.  I like Everett, but I prefer the flow of Xavier Everett or Simon Everett over Everett Xavier.  

I'll second the suggestion of some version of Augustine.  Simon Augustine, Xavier Augustine and Augustine Camille are all very nice.

You may have considered some of these already, but your list plus your husband's suggestions made me think of Solomon, Lucian/Lucias, Ruben and Ambrose.

7
By hyz
May 19, 2012 6:16 PM

Congratulations!!  A son!!  What an exciting day! :)

I tried to post this last night, but my post got eaten, so just a quick recap.  As much as Simon and Everett (and of course August and Oliver) are usually more up my alley, I am really loving Xavier Camille for you.  It sounds dashing, handsome, romantic, and worldly, esp. with your surname.  And the family connection to Camille is really pretty neat, and it's great that your DH feels so strongly about it (I tried so hard to get mine to really *love* something).  What a nice connection that is between father and son.  But really, all your other options are wonderful too, and it's just as important (if not moreso!) that you love the name, too.  

If you go with Everett, I think it actually flows better with Camille than Xavier in the middle.  Xavier seems choppy there, and makes me want to pronounce the X (ex-ZAY-vyer) for flow.  I'll have to think more on some of the new names on your list, but for now I'm really loving Xavier Camille F.  

8
May 20, 2012 10:20 PM

Ok, just thought of Ezra.  We had talked about it in the past, but I had forgotten it (is that a bad sign?)  Ezra Camille HF?  Or Ezra Xavier HF?  Too obviously a Jewish/Catholic mix, or a nice balance?  Have no perspective right now...

9
May 20, 2012 11:04 PM

I don't think it's a bad sign! Why should you limit yourself to names that have been swimming around your head for the last while? If you like it now, that's all that matters!

I really like Ezra and think that Ezra Camille sounds great. I find Ezra Xavier too "Z" heavy, especially because the two occurrences of the sound are quite close together.

Now, I have a question about rhythm. Pretty much all of the boys' names that I can recall you talking about are 2 syllables. That means that your son would have an official name that's 2-2-2-3. There is nothing wrong with that, and not all 2-syllable names have the same stress, but it's something that I wanted to mention in case you wanted something else to worry about :)

OH! I think that's another reason why I like Ezra Camille more than Ezra Xavier: The stress of Camille is opposite to that of the other names, so it takes away the repetitive stress pattern.

EHZ-ra ZAY-veer HOFF-man FON-tuh-no versus EHZ-ra ca-MEEL HOFF-man FON-tuh-no

Even if Ezra isn't the name, I used it as an example because the theory still holds.

10
By Coll
May 20, 2012 9:27 PM

A boy! So wonderful. Little boys are the best!

I of course love Simon Xavier and don't think it's dorky at all. I agree that Simon is sweet and strong and intelligent and sophisticated (and basically the best name ever). And we've had nothing but enthusiastically positive reactions to it since naming our son, if that helps.

But I also like Xavier Camille and August, as well.

Other names that feel similar to me are: Ambrose, Victor, Roland, Sebastian.

11
May 20, 2012 10:52 PM

Sigh.  DH doesn't love Ezra.  I thought it was a decent substitute for Simon, but just didn't fly.

12
May 20, 2012 11:00 PM

Thanks for the input so far!  I know it's tough to peg what style will work, and I guess I have really particular and sometimes off-the-wall reactions to names.  I love the suggestion of Solomon - problem is, we don't really like the nn Sol. I just think of an old man (probably doesn't help that I had a tiny old great uncle Saul).  And Sebastian, nn Baz is pretty cool, too.  I'll have to run it by DH, but I suspect he'll think it's too flowery.  He won't even go for August, after all.  

13
May 21, 2012 12:49 AM

If he doesn't mind Sebastian maybe Bastiaan would work? A slightly different feel.

You mentioned Auden and I quite like that as well. This also made me think of Odin.

Cyrus is a bit country to me, I much prefer Silas. 

Elijah isn't too popular around me but Eli is so probably more common than you are looking for. Elias might be an option though?

I like Abram. The nn Bram is pretty cool. A little boy called Bram F....... would be very cute!

Joachim isn't a particular favourite of mine and seems quite different to the other options.

I assume Augustus is out as well as August?

I think Xavier is a pretty good option so don't stress too much about finding something just yet!

14
May 21, 2012 7:40 AM

Chimu - 

I think I can safely predict that DH won't go for Sebastian or Bastian, but we'll see.  

Cyrus is too country for me, too.  I think DH likes the nickname Cy, but I don't think Cyrus going to stick around.  It's funny that it resonates so country, because it's origin is Persian, but I agree.  Frankly, Silas feels to simple/country to me, too.

I agree that all the Eli-related names are probably too trendy for me right now.  

Joachim isn't a favorite of mine, either.  Trying hard to not immediately nix some DH is interested in (though secretly I know they won't work).

Yeah, I think Augustus would be just too grand.  Think he thinks August too pretentious already.

This is all really helpful.  I think I'm liking simpler names like Simon, Auden, and Abram because they balance out the floweriness and make my last name less out of place in there.  With Xavier Camille it feels very much the "odd name out", but I don't know how much of a dealbreaker that is.  

Also, I haven't yet gauged how much DH has his heart set on using Camille as a mn.  That really narrows down the options, I think.  

Abram is nice because we could use Bram, but a little Abe could be cute, too, maybe...

Auden doesn't make you think of "odd"?  I guess kids don't use the descriptor "odd" that much...?

 

15
By Coll
May 21, 2012 9:42 AM

Abram is great! I've recently added Bram to my list for a potential future brother to Simon. I'll also throw out Graham/Graeme , which is my current top pick for Simon's hypothetical brother. I like the sound of Graham Xavier.

Simon's such an interesting name because whether it reads English Quaint or Biblical/Jewish depends on the sibling context, I feel. Simon and Alistair or Simon and Graham read "English". Simon and Ezekial or Simon and Abraham read Hebrew Bible. That cultural flixibility is one of the nicest things about it (being that I'm part of an interfaith couple, like you).

ps: if Ezra's not working for your husband, what about Ezekial? Zeke F0nten0t is a pretty bad-ass name.

16
May 21, 2012 4:38 PM

Auden when I say it is more like OR-den, not quite but the Au is the same as the Au in August so not at all close to odd.  I guess it depends on your regional accent but I still don't think it would be a big teasing point. I figure kids will find *something* to tease about if they want to tease so you can't elminate all options.

I think with the middle names you should keep Camille as a definite possibility and maybe some other names you might like to use and then see how you feel once he arrives. When we ended up naming Astrid we had ruled out family names (I was willing, DH not so much and it didn't matter to me so we nixed them) but in the end he got the middle name he slightly preferred off our list. I loved the middle we used but it wouldn't have been my pick but it was a name he felt a connection to so I felt it was worth going with. You might end up feeling similarly about Camille. Or it might turn out that you meet your son and he is a totally different name.

I think Abram - Abe/Bram is great and should be a keeper. Auden seems to work for both of you. 

Other thoughts: Oscar, Lachlan, Owen, Caleb, Callum, Austin, Jasper.  I thought some of these are familiar, not flowery and sound approachable?  

Oh and on the A name theme how about Amos? 

17
May 21, 2012 6:05 PM

You know, I'm intrigued by Oscar, but I don't know that I can get around The Grouch.  You've really hit a sweetspot, though, because the sounds are all great with the LN.  Owen and Caleb are good, too, but either too common or used by friends.  I even mentioned Jasper to DH, but he didn't go for it.  I'll mentally try on Oscar for a bit for fun.  Thanks!

18
By hyz
May 22, 2012 12:01 PM

Regrettably, Auden does start with "odd" for me (I think I would pronounce Auden and Odden the same)--while the name does not make me think of odd in general, I do think there's teasing potential.  But then, Audrey is increasing in popularity for girls, so maybe it's not an issue. 

19
By Guest (not verified)
May 22, 2012 1:13 AM

Oh, hurray! Little boys are fantastic!

I really like Xavier Camille. I think I've probably said this to you about Camille in the middle before, but middle names are so super-secret after the birth announcement - just between you, your child, and your child's teachers - that I would really not worry about the fact that Camille in isolation reads very female in this country. Xavier is pretty solidly male, and Family significance makes me really happy so while it might not be my first choice bsaed on sound/style alone, I think in this case it's perfect for you!

Xavier is really fantastic and I think eclipses any other suggestions I could make for you.

So, mostly wanting to pass on my utmost congratulations, and great joy for the fact that you and your husband get to discuss baby names for real!

20
May 22, 2012 7:22 PM

I'm wondering if Xavier is just too Catholic.  Neither of us are Catholic even though DH was brought up so, and I do feel a little wary of naming my kid after a missionary.  Though missionaries now do some amazing things, the whole go across the world and convert nations of people thing isn't too appealing to me (I hope I don't offend anyone there).  A missionary who tended to the sick and needy would be another thing.  Does it resonate very Catholic to the average person these days?  And is it too flowery?

Thoughts like that make me wonder if it'd be safer to go with something like Nathaniel/Nate or Abram/Bram.  Simple, straightforward, familiar, with a strong short nickname.  Is that a better idea with such a flowery hard-to-pronounce last name, or am I just getting cold feet?  And are people going to try to pronounce it EX-zavier all the time?  That could get old fast.  

So, to add to the list: Nathaniel, Walker (a family name), Jonah, Elias (way too many Eli's?), and Rowan.  Don't know yet how DH feels about some of these.  

The problem is, fewer names will go with Camille.  A French-ish name makes it less out of place.  Oh, it's so hard!

 

21
May 22, 2012 7:28 PM

Crazy idea, but what about Nicholas nn Nico?  Is Nico Fontenot just too many O's or could that be cool?  Nicholas is traditional, I know...maybe more popular than I'd like.  

22
May 22, 2012 10:09 PM

I like Nicholas nn Nico, and I don't think it's too "o" heavy with the last name. I also love Nathaniel/Nate (I have friends of French heritage with son named Nathaniel/Nate) and Abram/Bram (and just Bram on its own too). Walker's not usually my style, but I love family names; Jonah and Elias/Eli are fairly popular where I live; and Rowan seems feminine to me (not a good match for mn Camille imo).

I admit we chose Xavier for our son because, to us, it's very Catholic. We love the saint too. (It was also my [Irish] grandfather's mn, which justified our decision even more.) We also say EX-zavier -- I believe Laura said in the BNW that the EX-zavier pronunciation is the "Catholic and X-Men" pronunciation. The people we know and meet are pretty much split down the middle regarding whether ZAY-vier or EX-zavier feels more natural to them. My own mom didn't realize her dad pronounced his mn EX-zavier til she was an adult -- her whole life she'd assumed it was ZAY-vier and pronounced it that way. I think it would be easy enough to correct someone if they mistakenly say EX-zavier, and of course you'd always introduce him as ZAY-vier.

23
May 22, 2012 10:43 PM

I checked in with DH and he's not fond of Nico, so out that goes.  I asked him about the Auden/odd concern and he scoffed and said that was just "an NE worry".  He seems to really like it and said it has the added bonus of being related to his grandfather's name (Audley, which I WON'T consider).  He also said I was silly to worry about Xavier being Catholic.  He said he never considered that his name had anything to do with the Argonauts, or that he had blood on his hands because of all that.  I guess he's a good foil to my NE tendency to overthink things.  

25
May 23, 2012 11:29 PM

Is this name provisional [P] or husband-approved [HA]? ;)

While Asa is two syllables, like the majority of the other options, visually, I feel like it gets swallowed by the lengthy names names that follow.

26
May 24, 2012 1:42 AM

Asa Xavier is a bit too much AY sound for me. Plus I agree it is visually swamped by all the surname!

I don't think Xavier is too Catholic. I don't think it's an immediate association for most people.

Elias is nice but I would avoid the nn Eli. I know a ton of Eli's who are just Eli or a nickname for Elijah. I know one baby Elias and he is just Elias.

Nathaniel/Nate is actually a favourite of mine even though it's not really the sort of style name I like.  I think it's a solid choice but probably not as dashing as either Xavier or Auden.

Walker I think can work as a middle name but I don't like it much as a first name. Then if you use it as a middle along with H...... and F...... it starts sounding like a law firm!

Rowan I've always liked. I prefer the Rohan spelling (same pronunciation for me) but either way it is nice. I think it is getting used less and less for girls now so I think it's a good bet.

Jonah is nice too. Do you like Jonas? I know people say the Jonas Brothers make it harder to use but are they really still popular? At any rate both Jonah and Jonas are nice.

27
May 26, 2012 9:53 AM

Ok, I'm leaning strongly towards Xavier (despite the surprising baffled responses from a couple of people IRL).  Whatever.

When I look at his little ultrasound photo, I think of a sweet, longer name like Christopher (probably thinking of Christopher Robin).  Of course, we all know that Christopher will just be Chris by the time he's 9 or 11.  Xavier has a similar feel and will stay Xavier.  It has a little more dash to it than Christopher, and that's fine.

It also helped to look on Wikipedia and see different people who had been named Xavier - artists, writers, mathematicians, economists, etc.  

I'm still open to other ideas, but I've browsed countless lists and haven't found another name that fits quite as well.  We'll be in real trouble if we ever expect another boy.  I guess Everett could go ok with a Xavier...?  But that's a whole other subject ;)

28
By hyz
May 27, 2012 2:02 PM

Aww, I'm happy to hear that Xavier might be feeling like the right choice.  I know what you mean about Christopher--I have a similar feeling about Timothy, which I just love in full, but which I feel would be inevitably shortened as he gets older.  And Tim is fine, but jut not the same.  Xavier is handsome, and I agree it will be fairly nn proof.  

29
May 30, 2012 7:46 AM

Ok, I'm experiencing serious name angst.  I've pored over name list after name list, literally browsing all English, French and Russian names from A-Z.  I really can't find other names that fit.  I don't know why, but so many just don't work for one reason or another.  Between my odd and random associations, mild synesthesia which makes me dislike certain letters or combinations, and not wanting a name that's too common or traditional, a LOT of names get eliminated.  

DH is very fond of Auden surprisingly, but I'm still on the fence.  The only name that feels right to me is Xavier, but I'm uncertain because it has such strong Catholic associations.  Though DH's family is Southern Catholic, we are a pretty atheist/agnostic family and half of MY family is Jewish.  Am I overthinking this and angsting unnecessarily?  Can Xavier just be Basque and not Catholic?  

Just needed to vent a little to people who might understand.  Of course, DH thinks I'm being silly...which is probably very, very true.  

30
May 30, 2012 9:11 AM

If another culture adopts a name and uses it in droves, does it color it?

31
May 30, 2012 9:01 AM

i'm not catholic, so i do not associate Xavier in any way with religion. funnily, i do receive the catholic online saint of the day on my email, just for baby naming purposes. i like Auden with Xavier. i like Xavier in general and wish my husband did too.once we came across a mashup name Alexavier, and i thought that was absolutely 'the one' and he vetoed that like no tomorrow! normally, i prefer "normal" names.  it's hard not to overthink it, so be easy on yourself and maybe take a nap if it's possible, or enjoy a nice walk outdoors. plus you got us! we'll find the 'right' one.

32
May 30, 2012 10:25 AM

To me just Xavier with your surname would immediately bring Catholic to mind.  Auden Xavier, not so much, Francis Xavier absolutely.  In New Orleans, my house was in St. Frances (nee Francesca) Xavier Cabrini parish, and there is Xavier University, found by St. Katharine Drexel and the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament.  So, to me Xavier is Catholic as they come.  I don't know how the Jewish side of your family would feel about it. 

The situation reminds me of my (ex-)husband's middle name Aloysius.  To me that's 100% per cent Catholic and beyond Catholic, Jesuit, even though my husband was brought up without any religion.  We both agreed not to perpetuate the name.  I have recently discovered trawling through Ancestry.com that Aloysius appears to be the surname of my ex's Irish Catholic paternal grandmother, and thence became the surname-as-middle-name of my father-in-law and then of my ex.  I still would never have used it for my son.

33
May 30, 2012 10:45 AM

Ok, so I don't have a Catholic background, and I don't know many Catholics currently. The Xaviers I've known have all been from "crunchy" families who are more "Mother Earth" in their "religion" than anything else. So for me, Xavier doesn't read Catholic at all. But again, I'm not immersed in that culture either. You sound like family would take it to be Catholic, so it might be better as a middle for you.

34
May 30, 2012 11:07 AM

Well, my mother was a little surprised by the choice (she's not from the Jewish side, so she was just surprised...probably she's just not aware that it's become so popular and hasn't heard it used at all).  My family isn't close knit and is small, and my immediate family isn't religious in any way, so there would be no dismay for not having a Jewish name.  There's really no extended family to consider and I'm more a mutt than anything else.  So, overall, family concerns are next to null.  It's more about "packaging or branding" in a way that isn't authentic to us our our kid, because I guess that's what a name does, right?  Frankly, Darwin or Calder would be more appropriate "signs" for us and how we'd bring up our kid, but I just like the sounds and look of Xavier.  

As much as DH seems to like Auden, I just don't quite buy it.  I can't quite imagine calling it out at the playground.  I wish he would go for August, which is so close and feels more authentic/grounded in history.  He's troubled by the nickname conundrum and I think feels August is too stuffy.  Admittedly, I don't much like Augie or Gus, either.  

Going through the ss list, I also kind of like Nathaniel/Nate and Nicholas/Nico...maybe Declan and Oliver???  

When you get down to it, though, even Christopher and Declan were saints.  If you avoid Christian, biblical, and saint names you're eliminating quite a few.  

Clearly, I should just take a mental break for awhile.   

35
By hyz
May 30, 2012 4:41 PM

Well, my grandparents on both sides were very devout/observant Catholics (which is how my dad ended up as one of 10 kids), and although my own parents were not particularly religious, much of my extended family still is, and I did go to Catholic school for awhile.  I also now live in a city with a very high concentration of Catholics, so many of our (and our kids') peers are Catholic.  So that's my frame of reference--and Xavier does not sound overwhelmingly Catholic to me.  I can't think of any Xaviers I've ever personally met, and although of course I'm aware of St. Francis Xavier, etc., that doesn't make the name feel particularly Catholic to me--even less so than, say, Francis (I've known a lot of Jewish and otherwise non-Catholic men named Frank--of course I don't know if Frank or Francis are on their birth certificates, but either way the names are related), or any of a host of other well-known saints' names, like John, Anne, Peter, Michael, even Joseph and Paul.  That is to say, all of those names could sound very Catholic in a very Catholic family, but they seem to have broad enough usage to not be pigeonholed.  Xavier certainly seems to have the makings for a broad appeal, with the fashionable X, exotic flair, and popular -er ending. 

I'm trying to think of what names would sound almost undeniably Catholic to me, and I'm not coming up with much beyond Mary, Maria, compound Mary names like Mary Margaret, Mary Agnes, etc., maybe Dolores, Virginia, Magdalene, Guadalupe, Lourdes, Immaculata, Theresa, Patrick, Anthony, Dominic, Benedict (these days particularly), and maybe some of the more anachronistic (mostly Latin) names that I've only ever heard in connection with a saint/church/Catholic school/etc., like Aloysius, Ignatius, Innocent, Alphonsus, Athanasius, Bonaventure, Camillus, Stanislaus, Wenceslaus, and maybe Augustine, Bartholemew, Barnabus.  I would also tend to associate many Irish, Polish, Spanish, Italian, etc. names in general with Catholicism, but that's more tied to the leanings of those countries than the names themselves, if that makes sense.          

To Miriam--you are far more versed in the history of these things, obviously, and I see where you are coming from, but to the less trained eye (most of the population, I would guess), I don't think the name Xavier or even the combination with the surname would create the "branding" problem that PennyX is worried about. 

PennyX, you've probably checked this out already, but FWIW, Nymbler's suggestions for Xavier siblings range from everything from modern popular (Wyatt/Chase/Carter/Kiara/Braden/Ava/Grace/Liam/Ethan), to the clearly Latino and religious (Socorro/Salvador/Magdalena/Rafael), to African American (Iesha/Ladonna/Deshaun/Darius), to the modern vintage/classic names popular in these parts (Oliver/Amelia/Sebastian/Charlotte/Julia/Henry/Matilda), to the standard biblical (Hannah/Jeremiah/Abigail/Isaac/Elijah), with a few Irish (Malcolm/Kieran/Declan) and French (Colette/Elodie/Severin/Anais) hits for good measure, and more.  This reflects my feeling that Xavier is a good chameleon with pretty broad appeal, regardless of its actual history.  The Namipedia list of actual Xavier siblings is in accord, with a heavy slant towards the vintage/classic names: http://www.babynamewizard.com/baby-name/boy/xavier .

36
May 30, 2012 4:57 PM

Hyz - Thanks!  It's really helpful to look at the Nymbler results that way.  Though I did go on there, I didn't think to extrapolate the perception of Xavier from the other names that came up.  I think that if I really identified as Jewish, Xavier might be an odd choice.  But since I'm a cultureless mutt and a heretic, maybe it's ok.  And it's funny, my feeling like I might not "be able" to use Xavier has kind of clarified for me how much I really like it...and how little other names seem to measure up for me.    

37
May 30, 2012 6:48 PM

I think Xavier is a great option so I wouldn't stress about finding something else. It might just be 'the one'. I also don't think it reads overwhelmingly Catholic. I guess if down the track you add some other kids with quite Catholic names it might start to seem that way but as a stand alone name it could be many things (hyz gave good examples of this from Nymbler). I also wonder if it matters if a few people think, oh that might be Catholic? I doubt it's going to be an overwhelming associaton from most people.

I also prefer August to Auden but I do like Auden. Maybe if you take a break for a bit your DH will come around on August? At any rate Auden is nice and would make a great sibling to a Xavier.

38
By Guest (not verified)
May 30, 2012 9:20 PM

Xavier only reads Catholic to me if I already know the family is Catholic. It would never occur to me to think "Catholic" if I saw it on a class list or something.

39
June 26, 2012 11:31 AM

That's strange! I have never heard the ZAY-vier pronunciation, just EX-zavier and hav-iER (the spanish). But then, I live in San Antonio!

Regarding the Catholic connection, I am Catholic and wouldn't think Xavier is very Catholic. No more than any other saint name like Nicholas or Paul. I would consider Magdalene, Maria, etc. to be "very" Catholic.

40
By Guest (not verified)
May 31, 2012 2:53 PM

PennyX, how exciting! I've been away from the boards for the past few weeks and am delighted to come back to this news. Best wishes for the rest of the pregnancy!

I'm not sure where to start in adding to the extensive and thoughtful commentary that has proceeded in my absence. I really do like Xavier Camille for you. As to whether Xavier is "too Catholic" - it does read Catholic to me, more so now that I've married into a half-Catholic family and to a husband whose alma mater is Xavier University. A few years ago, when I knew fewer Catholics the association was much less strong. My guess is that those who are Catholic themselves or familiar with Catholic naming culture may tend to make a (correctable!) assumption that your son/family are Catholic or at least have that background (true), but others are more likely to just think, "Hey, cool name!" As hyz elaborates, Xavier is a name with wide and increasing appeal to contemporary namers: the "high Scrabble value" letters, the long "ay" vowel, the common -er ending all fit in to the modern namescape. This is not to say I think Xavier will become overwhelmingly popular, just that I can picture people of many demographics finding it appealing, and that it's likely if people do know multiple Xaviers they won't all be Catholic or of an ethnic background in which Catholic names are common. It's also very flexible in terms of giving your son plenty of room to fill it with his own personality. It has a studious, serious side that I know appeals to you - and here the Jesuit connection helps make the case, given their tradition of education and scholarship - but it's not hard to picture an athlete, judge, businessman, artist, etc. wearing the name. In that sense it represents an excellent compromise/overlap between what you like about Elliott/August/etc. and what your husband likes about Jack. It also leaves you plenty of flexibility with sibling names if your family expands: I can easily see Xavier + Ursula, Xavier + Simon (or Xavier + Natalia, Everett, Anya, August, Elliott, ... Rachel, Joseph, Quentin, Matilda, .... probably Oliver is ruled out though).

If you do go with Camille as a middle, I think Xavier pairs with it perfectly: it's got a sophisticated, "international" side that matches Camille, but it also provides some contrast, being unambiguously masculine, with a vigorous sound that balances the softness of Camille. I really like the idea of using Camille, since it's a name that's so important to your husband, but if you do go with it, then it's extra important that the first name be one you love without reservation and feel fits comfortably with your heritage. Simon Camille may not be as "dashing" a name as Xavier Camille (though still a handsome as well as meaningful combination), but it may just feel truer to who you (your family) are - and if that's so, I think it's a compromise your husband should reconsider seriously. Or perhaps Xavier Simon?

I'd concur with what others have said regarding Auden, both pro and con: a nice connection to the poet, gender ambiguity, seemingly a jump ahead of the Aiden trend but still close enough to be both consonant with it (pleasant combination of fresh and familiar) and potentially confused with those names. I like it, but I have to admit I like it less in the context of Aiden, Audrey and the general surname trend - the rest of those associations do rob some of the poetry for me. Like others, I don't love the overall rhythm with your surnames H--- F---, which also tends to highlight the "odden" downside. Overall, since you don't have a strong desire to reference the poet, I probably wouldn't pick it, in your shoes. However, if in the course of exploring names, you or your husband spend some time with Auden's poetry and fall in love with it, then that kicks it higher into contention, I think.

Looking forward to seeing how the discussion continues to unfold!

- kalmia

41
By Guest (not verified)
May 31, 2012 2:54 PM

PennyX, how exciting! I've been away from the boards for the past few weeks and am delighted to come back to this news. Best wishes for the rest of the pregnancy!

I'm not sure where to start in adding to the extensive and thoughtful commentary that has proceeded in my absence. I really do like Xavier Camille for you. As to whether Xavier is "too Catholic" - it does read Catholic to me, more so now that I've married into a half-Catholic family and to a husband whose alma mater is Xavier University. A few years ago, when I knew fewer Catholics the association was much less strong. My guess is that those who are Catholic themselves or familiar with Catholic naming culture may tend to make a (correctable!) assumption that your son/family are Catholic or at least have that background (true), but others are more likely to just think, "Hey, cool name!" As hyz elaborates, Xavier is a name with wide and increasing appeal to contemporary namers: the "high Scrabble value" letters, the long "ay" vowel, the common -er ending all fit in to the modern namescape. This is not to say I think Xavier will become overwhelmingly popular, just that I can picture people of many demographics finding it appealing, and that it's likely if people do know multiple Xaviers they won't all be Catholic or of an ethnic background in which Catholic names are common. It's also very flexible in terms of giving your son plenty of room to fill it with his own personality. It has a studious, serious side that I know appeals to you - and here the Jesuit connection helps make the case, given their tradition of education and scholarship - but it's not hard to picture an athlete, judge, businessman, artist, etc. wearing the name. In that sense it represents an excellent compromise/overlap between what you like about Elliott/August/etc. and what your husband likes about Jack. It also leaves you plenty of flexibility with sibling names if your family expands: I can easily see Xavier + Ursula, Xavier + Simon (or Xavier + Natalia, Everett, Anya, August, Elliott, ... Rachel, Joseph, Quentin, Matilda, .... probably Oliver is ruled out though).

If you do go with Camille as a middle, I think Xavier pairs with it perfectly: it's got a sophisticated, "international" side that matches Camille, but it also provides some contrast, being unambiguously masculine, with a vigorous sound that balances the softness of Camille. I really like the idea of using Camille, since it's a name that's so important to your husband, but if you do go with it, then it's extra important that the first name be one you love without reservation and feel fits comfortably with your heritage. Simon Camille may not be as "dashing" a name as Xavier Camille (though still a handsome as well as meaningful combination), but it may just feel truer to who you (your family) are - and if that's so, I think it's a compromise your husband should reconsider seriously. Or perhaps Xavier Simon?

I'd concur with what others have said regarding Auden, both pro and con: a nice connection to the poet, gender ambiguity, seemingly a jump ahead of the Aiden trend but still close enough to be both consonant with it (pleasant combination of fresh and familiar) and potentially confused with those names. I like it, but I have to admit I like it less in the context of Aiden, Audrey and the general surname trend - the rest of those associations do rob some of the poetry for me. Like others, I don't love the overall rhythm with your surnames H--- F---, which also tends to highlight the "odden" downside. Overall, since you don't have a strong desire to reference the poet, I probably wouldn't pick it, in your shoes. However, if in the course of exploring names, you or your husband spend some time with Auden's poetry and fall in love with it, then that kicks it higher into contention, I think.

Looking forward to seeing how the discussion continues to unfold!

- kalmia

42
By Guest (not verified)
May 31, 2012 2:55 PM

PennyX, how exciting! I've been away from the boards for the past few weeks and am delighted to come back to this news. Best wishes for the rest of the pregnancy!

I'm not sure where to start in adding to the extensive and thoughtful commentary that has proceeded in my absence. I really do like Xavier Camille for you. As to whether Xavier is "too Catholic" - it does read Catholic to me, more so now that I've married into a half-Catholic family and to a husband whose alma mater is Xavier University. A few years ago, when I knew fewer Catholics the association was much less strong. My guess is that those who are Catholic themselves or familiar with Catholic naming culture may tend to make a (correctable!) assumption that your son/family are Catholic or at least have that background (true), but others are more likely to just think, "Hey, cool name!" As hyz elaborates, Xavier is a name with wide and increasing appeal to contemporary namers: the "high Scrabble value" letters, the long "ay" vowel, the common -er ending all fit in to the modern namescape. This is not to say I think Xavier will become overwhelmingly popular, just that I can picture people of many demographics finding it appealing, and that it's likely if people do know multiple Xaviers they won't all be Catholic or of an ethnic background in which Catholic names are common. It's also very flexible in terms of giving your son plenty of room to fill it with his own personality. It has a studious, serious side that I know appeals to you - and here the Jesuit connection helps make the case, given their tradition of education and scholarship - but it's not hard to picture an athlete, judge, businessman, artist, etc. wearing the name. In that sense it represents an excellent compromise/overlap between what you like about Elliott/August/etc. and what your husband likes about Jack. It also leaves you plenty of flexibility with sibling names if your family expands: I can easily see Xavier + Ursula, Xavier + Simon (or Xavier + Natalia, Everett, Anya, August, Elliott, ... Rachel, Joseph, Quentin, Matilda, .... probably Oliver is ruled out though).

If you do go with Camille as a middle, I think Xavier pairs with it perfectly: it's got a sophisticated, "international" side that matches Camille, but it also provides some contrast, being unambiguously masculine, with a vigorous sound that balances the softness of Camille. I really like the idea of using Camille, since it's a name that's so important to your husband, but if you do go with it, then it's extra important that the first name be one you love without reservation and feel fits comfortably with your heritage. Simon Camille may not be as "dashing" a name as Xavier Camille (though still a handsome as well as meaningful combination), but it may just feel truer to who you (your family) are - and if that's so, I think it's a compromise your husband should reconsider seriously. Or perhaps Xavier Simon?

I'd concur with what others have said regarding Auden, both pro and con: a nice connection to the poet, gender ambiguity, seemingly a jump ahead of the Aiden trend but still close enough to be both consonant with it (pleasant combination of fresh and familiar) and potentially confused with those names. I like it, but I have to admit I like it less in the context of Aiden, Audrey and the general surname trend - the rest of those associations do rob some of the poetry for me. Like others, I don't love the overall rhythm with your surnames H--- F---, which also tends to highlight the "odden" downside. Overall, since you don't have a strong desire to reference the poet, I probably wouldn't pick it, in your shoes. However, if in the course of exploring names, you or your husband spend some time with Auden's poetry and fall in love with it, then that kicks it higher into contention, I think.

Looking forward to seeing how the discussion continues to unfold!

- kalmia

43
By Guest (not verified)
June 6, 2012 10:04 PM

Ok, just as I've started to imagine my boy as a Xavier, DH says that he thinks the name is a little "bit of a mouthful". Hmph!  I disagree.  I know it's 3 syllables, and it doesn't have the simple no-nonsense force of a Jack, but I think all the consonants in it flow off the tongue pretty easily.  Am I wrong? He's leaning more towards Auden, but I just don't quite buy it.  No doubt he's influenced by the fashionable sounds of our times, though he's not aware of it and surely wouldn't admit it. 

44
June 6, 2012 10:13 PM

I disagree, too! *Especially* since you pronounce it with the "Z" beginning and 3 syllables instead of 4. In everyday life, he would be Xavier F0nten0t, right? That sounds great to me! No difficult consonant clusters, lots of vowels to break it up... I actually find Auden F0nten0t harder to say because of how close the "n"s are to one another! (Not that it's too difficult to use, just that if I'm comparing Xavier and Auden with that last name, Xavier flows much more easily off my tongue.)

45
By Guest (not verified)
June 6, 2012 11:11 PM

I disagree too!  Heck, the way I say it, Xavier is only 2 syllables (ZAY-vyer), and rolls off the tongue much more smoothly and easily for me than Auden with the d in the middle!  I'll second your hmph!   

46
June 7, 2012 12:35 AM

I agree, Xavier is pretty much 2 syllables for me (maybe 2.5 at a stretch) and it also flows better with F0nten0t than Auden. Auden, is not a problem but is slightly more effort to say.

 

47
By hyz
June 7, 2012 9:37 AM

Oops, the "guest" above was me, forgot I wasn't logged in.

48
By Guest (not verified)
June 7, 2012 10:06 AM

Thanks guys!

49
June 19, 2012 7:07 PM

Ok guys, just in case I'm missing something:

Can anyone think of simple two-syllable boy names that end in -n (I know, the trendy ending) that we could use in place of Simon or Auden.  I like Simon and DH doesn't, he likes Auden and I can't quite get on board.  No made up names and nothing uber popular (no Aiden/Aidan or Ethan).  I think we're not fans of Colin, either.  Just want to make sure I'm not overlooking something.  I love the rhythm of ***n Xavier H F and DH likes the idea of X as a middle initial.  I guess we're open to monosyllabic names, too, if it seems like a great fit.  

We got 3+ more months to go before he gets here, so I just want to make sure we've explored all our options.

Thanks!

50
June 19, 2012 8:21 PM

Some suggestions, trying to stay within the same style. Some of these may already have been suggested.

  • Alan/Allen
  • Deacon
  • Ivan
  • Gordon
  • Lucian
  • Nolan
  • Martin
  • Warren