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My Favorite Names
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April 15, 2016 07:55 AM

Are you asking for the American pronunciation? I have only heard it on Greek speakers in the US, who pronounce it KAL-EE-O-pee (first syllable rhymes with pal, second with sea, third with snow, fourth with pea, empasis on the first two syllables with the second to last also sort of emphasized and the last almost swallowed up).

April 7, 2016 10:31 AM
In Response to Opinions on Brecon

I think it fits very well in the ends in -en trend for boy's names. The pronunciation issue might be annoying for the kid growing up. I think I would tend to confuse it with the word bracken. But it's a pleasant sound, and pleasant association.

Perhaps as a middle name?

April 7, 2016 07:22 AM

Just popping in as I do every so often to agree that this disucssion embodies what is so great about this little community of naming enthusiasts. 

March 31, 2016 09:38 AM
In Response to Author Names

To me, stylistically, the practice of authors using initials is very reminiscent of the South Indian naming practice in which a man (I think it's only men) uses the initial of the father's name as the first part of the given name, prior to the given name. I'm trying to think of a famous example, but am coming up empty. 

I also associate the practice in the West with British authors. This leads me to wonder whether this is a stylistic borrowing that originated in the colonial encounter in India. 

In other news, I've seen China Mieville give a reading. He is quite masculine, and very intelligent, as one might gather from his writing (not that it's not without its flaws. I mean if anyone read Embassytown... great premise, wonderful initial atmosphere, squandered). And extremely charismatic and attractive. 

March 20, 2016 08:22 PM
In Response to Name Opinion

I really love Rowan. In fact, I ran into identical twins boys named R0w@n and R1v3r the other day, and thought that was really a perfect pair: stylish but classy and strong, unisex or nearly -- sweet names for sweet boys.

Unfortunately I can't think about Maverick without thinking of Sarah Palin's descriptions of John MacCain. Or, rather, Tina Fey's impersonation of Palin describing McCain as "Mavericky." Sorry!

March 20, 2016 08:15 PM

Will, you might want to mention whether those interviewed would remain anonymous. I for one would be interested in answering your questions, but my interest in naming is a little embarrassing. Let us know if you're still looking for more respondants. 

February 29, 2016 07:44 AM
In Response to Intersex Baby

Oh, how odd. Sorry I responded to what appears to be a troll. 

February 29, 2016 07:42 AM
In Response to Intersex Baby

But I wonder if the feminine Julian is pronounced differently than the masculine. More like Julie-Ann vs. Jul-yun. 

I think the suggestions of Rowan and Rory are perfect. They are different than your Latinate syllbling set, but I think syb-set cohesiveness is over-rated.

I also know a female Tate, which you might consider. Or perhaps Kato--It reads as a male name, but with its similarity to Kate could also work on a girl. 

Big congratulations to you on your new child. They are very lucky to have you as a parent. I'm excited for you and for them.

February 25, 2016 07:43 AM
In Response to Thoughts on Ander?

I really like Anders, but agree with others that Ander feels unfinished. I live in a real Asher pocket, so that option is less appealing to me. 

Is the clunkiness of Anders due to an initial S or other silibant? 

With the silblings' names, the name Cormac jumped into my head. It shares the C with Carys, which might be problmatic, but just seems very in keeping with the other names. Just a thought. 

February 22, 2016 10:25 AM
In Response to Laureanne/Laurianne?

I agree. It does make me think of Lorraine, which is related to Joan D'Arc, apparently. I think it's due for a revival. Lori-Anne and its variants are nice, but a little... secretarial sounding. 

February 22, 2016 08:00 AM

I think it's absolutely lovely upon reading. However, when I try to say it out loud, I get a little tripped up and find I have to pause for a beat between the two names in order to distinguish the Ro of Rose from the ra of Laura. I fear the name may also have a bit of the Rural Juror problem, where r's and l's get confusing in close proximity.... Laura-Grace looks less lovely to my eye, but sounds better spoken.

I'd prefer a second half of the name that lacks the letter R entirely. So Laura-Fenn (although does that sould like a chemical?), Laura-Jean, Laura-Faye, Laura-Juliette, Laura-Quinn, Laura-Evelyn 

February 21, 2016 06:28 PM
In Response to Miriam or Maristella?

OK, in that case I vote wholeheartedly for Maristella. Maris and Stella are wonderful nicknames, and it is much less common than Miriam. 

February 19, 2016 12:49 PM
In Response to Miriam or Maristella?

I'd actually suggest you look farther afield in order to find names that don't have the same initials as your current kids. Virginia occurs to me, or Guadalupe. 

February 15, 2016 09:28 AM
In Response to Paxley


February 12, 2016 07:22 AM
In Response to Too Late For Kate?

Is this really true in practice? In my experience these kinds of hypothetically 3-syllable names are ususally pronounced with two syllables. So Barbara and Barbra are pronounced nearly the same most of the time, same for Deborah Debra and William (at least potentially pronounced Will-ee-um) is Will-yam. Same for Catherine and Kathryn. I've very rarely heard the first pronounced with the same meter as margarine. 

February 5, 2016 09:18 AM

With celebrities whose last names sound like first names, I usually assume they're stage names formed out of the individual's first and middle names. 

February 4, 2016 08:11 AM

Clarion is pretty brilliant. Especially with the potential nickname "Clare" to make it more name-like. 

February 1, 2016 10:07 AM

Hi VeeMarie 123, I wasn't involved in the initial discussions here about your name choice. But I just want to write in to reassure you that this is a very normal reaction in the emotional first weeks of motherhood. I have a daughter whose name I now absolutely 100% love. But we had to choose between it and the runner-up the day we left the hospital, and I found myself calling her name #2 in my head for at least a week afterwards and sort of mourning the loss of that name. I've thought of several things wrong and right with the name we decided on. I think part of it is that, as someone interested in naming, and who had spent years obsessing about name trends, popularity, traditions, etc., that wasn't just going to disappear because I was done naming little children (witness my current presence on this site). But I'm now totally at peace with her name and it's grown a retrospective inevitability and a rightness that it didn't have at first. 

So, yes, give it a few weeks. 

From an outsider's perspective, all of the names you were choosing from are lovely. If you find that Ava (which I have to say, just typing, is so full of elegance and glamor) feels too short, you might consider formally or informally chaning it to a hyphenated first name, Ava-Louise. It's such a lovely combination, handsome and sweet at the same time.

Another idea to toy with: I know Ava has multiple possible etymologies (in as much as names have etymologies), but one is apparently that it's related to the Latin for bird, Avis. So a possible nickname might be Birdie if that suits your little one.

Congratulations on a healthy little girl and good luck with the naming thoughts and all the other emotions that come with new motherhood.

January 15, 2016 09:31 AM
In Response to Bishop

I agree with the others. It does make me think of the character named Shepherd Book from the (great, shortlived) show Firefly. Which, now that I google it, turns out was a religious title, not his first name. But it feels more name-like to me than Bishop. Just an idea.

January 15, 2016 09:28 AM

Agreed, Emily.ei. It seems very much an aspirational rather than arrogant move. Sort of like naming your son Harvard or Princeton.