Siblings to Samuel and Halina!

My SO and I already have a handsome son by the name of Samuel Kenneth (Samuel after my SO's and then Kenneth after mine). We are expecting this winter and have decided on Dean Thomas if we have a boy and are pretty sure on Halina (Ha-LEE-na) Jolanta (Yo-LAWN-Tuh) for a girl. Halina is the name of my maternal grandmother and Jolanta is my mother's name. They are both from Poland so their names are very tradtional Polish. However, I'm unsure if there will be good sibling names to go with Halina later on since we deffinitely want more children. We like the name Mary (my paternal grandmother) and Betty (SO's mother's name). We adore Halina and do not want to change it so any help on future sibling names would be much apperciated! Older names are certainly our style! Thank you!


August 13, 2016 4:27 PM

I like Halina and don't think it would be difficult to find names that "match."  I don't have any particular suggestions at this point.

I want to point out that Dean Thomas is one of Harry Potter's roommates at Hogwarts.  I think that makes it cool, but you should be aware.  : )

August 13, 2016 6:29 PM

Since these are all names from your family trees, any other family names will "go."  If you have used all the family names that you like and want to branch out, there are many Polish names which are spelled identically to English names, although the pronunciations may differ slightly.  An example that would go well with Samuel would be Adam, common in English and the name of Polish poet Adam Mickiewicz for whom a well-known Polish university was named.  Or to go with Halina perhaps Barbara, used in Polish and English, and with the Polish nickname Basia.  There are many many other Polish-English crossover names: Ada, Adela, Adrian, Alicia, Angelika, Ania, Antonia, August, Damian, Daniel, Emil. Emilia, really too many to list.  My son's first serious girlfriend was from Poland and her little sister was...Mary.  His wife is a California girl and her little sister is...Mary.  

You could also go for something a little more Polish-y, but still familiar looking to English speakers: Agata, Artur, Dorota, Edyta, Ewa, Filip, Marek...

I would avoid the names with elements that are difficult for Anglophones to pronounce, like that pesky dark L.

August 13, 2016 8:47 PM


August 14, 2016 8:29 AM

Girls: Aniela, Gizela, Kamilia, Lidia, Roza, Zofia

Boys: Jedrek, Kaz, Marek

All of these seem like names that could work in English and Polish, as well as being siblings with Samuel and Halina. My favorites are Kaz and Gizela.

August 14, 2016 7:12 PM

Does Samuel ever go by Sam? Because then you'd have Sam and Dean. :)

I like Halina, and I don't think it's crazy out there. It's perfectly fine for siblings to have names that don't "match". I know siblings named Mary and Austin, which to me sounds pretty similar to Samuel, Halina, and Betty.

If you do end up having more children, do you think you'd want them to be closer in style to Samuel, Halina, or unlike either of them?

Tania, Mila, Anna, Lucy, Eva, Nina, Sylvia, Mara, Katie

Simon, Henry, Ivan, Benjamin, Davis, Reuben, Victor, Roman, Miles

August 15, 2016 10:18 AM

Halina is lovely! I especially like its diminutive of Halinka.

Kazimierz shortened to Kaz (or Kazik) would be a Very Polish name that fits well in English, like Halina. You could also go with something like Kazimir, as a compromise between the Polish spelling and the usual Latinate form of Casimir.

There are also many names in the boy's top 100 in Poland that are spelled identically in English and sound "current" or "stylish" to my ear: Adam, Alan, Leon, Julian, Sebastian, Gabriel, Adrian, Daniel, Damian, Robert, Alex, Milan, Dorian. There are also several that would be surprising on a child in the US, but are written the same in Polish and English: Igor, Marcel, Hubert, Fabian, Olaf, Bruno, Emil, Norbert, Leonard, Cyprian.

The top 100 for Polish girls ( has so much overlap with current US usage that it'd probably be shorter to list the names on it that aren't used in English. Some names that struck me as Very Polish but could work in English: Katarzyna, Agnieszka, Elzbieta.

August 15, 2016 11:47 AM

My son's college girlfriend was born in Poland and named Katarzyna.  I had the devil's own time pronouncing it.  Happily she went by Katie which I could handle.  Hint: the z is not like the z in zipper.

August 15, 2016 12:35 PM

Isn't it just a /zh/ like the s in measure? /kaht-are-zhee-nah/? That's certainly what I hear in all the forvo pronunciations.

August 15, 2016 1:31 PM

To my ears there is also what sounds like a glide stuck in there after the n, and I had trouble with the zh and the n glide so close together.  BTW the forvo pronunciations are somewhat different from Katie's own pronunciation.  She was from Poznan, and there would certainly be regional differences.  Her surname began with Szcz, and I had trouble with that too.  It's like the shch in Krushchev, but in initial position I had no end of difficulty.  I ended up sounding like a twittering bird.

August 16, 2016 7:43 AM

I have met a little Agnieszka recently. Her peers (about six years old) pronounced her name something like Annyeshka.

August 16, 2016 7:42 PM

That's pretty close. "Sz" is the Polish spelling of the /sh/ sound (as in shirt or ash). "Ni" tends to become a palatalized n, like the ny in canyon or the ñ in El Niño. So Agnieszka is, roughly, /ag-ñesh-kah/, where /ag/ rhymes with "tag", /ñesh/ rhymes with "thresh", and /kah/ rhymes with "blah".

August 15, 2016 12:58 PM

Just to throw this out here... I don't know if it makes any difference to you, but Dean Thomas is a character in the Harry Potter series!