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Miriam, of course the name has nothing to do with the Indian caste! Obviously! I'm just saying one might want to know of the word--spelled the same when transliterated in English--before naming one's child that. Like I said, it's a lovely name in/from Hebrew, isn't pronounced like the Indian word, but is spelled the same way in English.
I really like the pronunciation of Dalit, but if anyone is thinking of using it, you might want to be aware that it is spelled exactly like dalit, which means 'oppressed' in Hindi and other Indian languages, and is the preferred term of those formerly known as the 'Untouchable' caste in India.
Abram Silas "Abe"-Very nice. Sort of Old Testament/ cowboy-ish.
Abram Forester-The flow of this sounds slightly nicer to me than Abram Silas.
Forester Abram-Nice but not as great.
Malcolm Shane "mac"--Both this and Cormac Shane are nice. Malcolm I don't love just because of the Latin meaning of mal- (even though it's unrelated to this name).
Cormac Shane "Mac"
Felix Owen- Sounds cute but less unique. I loved these names several years ago, but it seems everyone in my somewhat hipstery naming pocket did too. I bet you'll meet several other Felix Owens and Owen Felixes.
Maksim Leo "mak"- This one seems very different from the others and reads very Russian/Soviet Union to me (Maksim Gorky and Leo Tolstoy)
Crosby Milo- Cute. Maybe a bit trendy.
I've only ever met female Shannons. It does sound date-stamped to me around the late 1940's, 1950's. I'd group it with other Mom names like Sharron and Cheryl. But I see from the Name Voyager that it actually peaked a little later, in the 1970s. The peak is sharp, indicating a fairly date-stamped trend.
That doesn't mean you can't bring it back, though!
Not knowing the My Girl reference, I was actually thinking Veda would be a more logical spelling for getting the Vay-da pronunciation. People might read it as Vee-da, but would be easily corrected, a la Lena--Lee-na or Lay-na.
Miriam, I find the New Orleans pronunciation of Calliope really interesting, because that's how my Greek colleague pronounces her name.
I have a slightly negative connotation with the Gwen names. They seem a little ren faire to me-probably due to their similarity with Gwenevere. My sister wanted to name her daughter Gwendolyn a few years ago, and I, in what I now realize was truly biatchy big sister mode, objected on those terms. So I guess to make up for that, I should say to you, if you love it, go for it. It will be adorable on your daughter. And I'm probably the only person you'll ever encounter with strong aversions to things I'd associate with Anglophile (well, not Anglo- but British Isle-o-phile) creative anachronism--which I'm sure most people wouldn't associate with this name in the least!
African American babies can be fair-browed too!
Hi Nurlan. Well, I really love your real name. I was pronouncing it nurl-rhymes-with-curl, but could easily switch to noor. Or you could consider changing the spelling to Noorlan. And I think Nurik is adorable-but I get that adorable's not what you're going for. But since your heart is set on changing it, I'd say Kaisar is fine. Less likely to be mispronounced. But, having just seen a staging of Shakespeare's Julius Caesar, I have to say the name has some negative connotations. When I hear Kaisar, I think dictator with a tragic fate. On someone from Kazakhstan living in the West, I might worry it would also resonate with all sorts ofxenophobic cultural associations involving 'Oriental despotism'! Anyone else get that vibe, or am I being ungenerous of my expectations of fellow Westerners?
edited to add: I guess it could easily be mispronounced. I was reading it KEYE-sar too, not Keye-ZAR. That won't be the first impulse for moist Americans.
oh man, I'm really a big fan of Nurlan now! might be my new favorite name. It really sounds lovely, fits with the ends-with-n trend, has wonderful connotations.
For a boy, what about Vincent? The pronunciation is different in the various languages, but I think that they all sound similar enough that they would kind of give the kid an alter-ego feeling without feeling distant from his name, if you now what I mean.
Traleerose, that's about how I'd describe my Greek friend's pronunciation, except it sounds to me that the last syllable is really under-stressed, even swallowed a bit, so that it's more like ca-lee-OHP. I don't know if that's just because of her regional accent.
Yes. She's Greek and pronounces it very differently than I've heard it in the US.
What don't you like about Nurlan? I think it has a lovely sound. Of course I don't know what it connotes In Kazakhstan.
Oh, right, Anita. I knew there was a really obvious crossover I wasn't thinking of. And Anya's another one that works very well.
I adore the name Madhavi, but I'd never get "Maddy" from it. The vowel sounds are just too different.
Once you introduce the idea of a long Indian name that can get you a nickname that works in the West too, I feel like there's a lot. Lots of Ani/Anna's: Anokhi, Anshula, Anushka (love that name), Anupama you could even go with a nn Anu, which is pretty effing adorable too and I think not too out there for American naming culture.
I've been thinking about names that can cross over from Euro-American naming traditions to Indian ones a lot as well. In terms of girls' names, I've come up with a few. I'm guessing from Kieran that you're talking about Sanskritic or at least Hindu Indian names, not ones that specifically read Sikh, Muslim, etc?:
Meena/Mina (usually short for things like Philomina in the West).
Anika (If you don't mind that they're pronounced very differently in the two traditions -- uh-nee-kuh in India, Ann or Ahn-ik-uh in the US at least).
Nora (from Persianate-Islamic-ish naming traditions in the South Asian context).
Maya (I've met Indians named this, although as far as I know the only meaning is illusion, which doesn't seem like a very nice thing to be named after).
Meera/Mira (Too close to Neera, no doubt).
You could also go with names that are relatively imported to India (as far as I know) but in wide use there like Nadia, Monica, Natasha. I doubt the popular names like Pinky, Twinkle, Dimple, etc. will float your boat ; )
Let me know if you come up with any better ideas, as I'll be looking for something similar soon...
This is an interesting topic given that many parents today (as Laura has commented on) are giving their children first names that are occupational surnames. That is, they're chosing names that indicate occupations often without thinking about the occupation implied. Cooper, Chandler, Carter, Tyler, etc. are so fossilized that they don't tend to connote the (not particularly glamorous) labor involving barrels, candles, carts, or tiles.
I personally much prefer the meaning associated with Beatrice (happy) to that associated with Bianca (white/fair). Perhaps you could wait for the baby to be born, and see which quality suits her better?
When I read the title of your thread, I read it as lee-yum and lay-nuh, which are kinda close but I think sound very nice together. Lee-yum and lee-nuh, on the other hand I'm afraid share too many sounds. Bridget is very nice. Do you have any other ideas for your daughter's name?
I love Magn0lia and Marig0ld too, espeically when I think they might call themselves Maggie and Mari. Too cute.
I also adore R1ver V1olet. Kind of not my naming style, but I think it really works well.
And 0mar is one of my favorite boy names ever. Definitely on my list.