About Me

I am a self-proclaimed "name nut." I don't have children but I write fiction and am always interested in finding good names for characters, and have always enjoyed learning about meanings and origins of names.

My Favorite Names

No favorite names yet.

My Recent Blog Comments
November 24, 2017 06:24 PM

Isn't it pronounced Mah-RISH-ka?

October 18, 2017 11:01 PM

I was going to suggest Adelaide or Adeline, but it sounds like you came up with your own very unique solution!  Love it!

October 18, 2017 10:57 PM

A friend of mine used to have a cat named Curie.  Said friend had a PhD in physics, and when she got her cat, she wasn't able to come up with a famous female physicist, so she thought through females in all areas of science and came up with Curie.  Her cat was a beautiful little blue-point Siamese who had a long, good life.

Another friend had a cat named Linux, a very large orange tabby (who disappeared last year)!  I believe this friend's husband works with computers, so I can see how they came up with Linux for their cat.

And yet another friend had a dog (a male, I think), named Anakin.  Never having watched the Star Wars movies, I had no clue where the name came from, so she had to explain it to me.

August 27, 2017 07:34 PM

I had an aunt whose name was Dixie Virginia (South Carolina native), and her husband's name was Austin (also an SC native)!  Both are long gone, but I think they would get a kick out of seeing their names on this list!

I'm a 30-year resident of Nashville, TN, and have to add that Nash is a popular name here not only for babies, but also for pets!  I had a neighbor with a beagle named Nash, and a friend just added a second cat to her household, and the new cat's name is Nash.  (First cat she got close to a year ago is named Tootsie, which is the name of a famous Nashville landmark, Tootsie's Orchid Lounge, so both of her cats' names are in honor of this city!)  Also, country singer-songwriter Paul Overstreet has a son named Nash, who is now grown, but I remember seeing Paul and his little boy on a TV show years ago, and he told the audience that Nash was named after the city of Nashville.

As a long-time Tennessee resident, I will have to agree that the crime rate in Memphis is out of sight, and it's sad.  In my 30 years as a Nashville resident, I've been to Memphis twice to go sightseeing, not staying long either time.  It's a beautiful city and I'd love to go again and see some of what I haven't already seen, but the crime there sadly is a deterring factor for tourism.  We just passed the 40-year anniversary of the death of Elvis a few weeks ago, and that time of year always draws a huge crowd, but there's much more to Memphis than just Elvis/Graceland.  Memphis is also the home of the Blues genre of music, Sun Records (where rockabilly got its start - Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis, Roy Orbison, Charlie Rich, etc., as well as Elvis!), and being on the Mississippi River, it has a lot of non-musical history.

August 17, 2017 12:43 AM

Some friends of mine had a baby girl about eight months ago and her name is Hattie.  Not Harriet or any other longer name, just Hattie.

July 18, 2017 04:10 PM

This makes me think of British Prince Harry.  His official name is Henry, but was given the nickname Harry at birth, and I'm pretty sure I remember hearing that he would be referred to as "Prince Henry" once he was older, yet all news reports of him still refer to him as "Harry" or "Prince Harry."  His brother William managed to escape the toddler nickname "Wills" and goes by William.

July 18, 2017 03:51 PM
In Response to L names galore

The correct Latin pronunciation is "Lukes," not with the short U sound like the liquid soap!  Assuming that's the pronunciation that will be used, I doubt anybody will think of soap.

Also, is Lani pronounced like "Lonnie" or like "Lanny"?

June 21, 2017 02:48 PM

Neyland in Tennessee is the other!  Neyland Stadium at University of Tennessee in Knoxville!

October 26, 2016 11:23 PM

This was fun to read, but I'm very surprised not to see David on your list of boys' names from the 1960's.  I was born in very late 1963, and was in school with more Lisas and Davids than I could count, and it seems that those were the top names (Lisa for girls, David for boys) in 1963-64 and maybe a few years afterward.  I believe the character on the soap opera As The World Turns made Lisa popular during that time, but I don't know what popularized David.

September 18, 2016 09:53 PM

Country star Barbara Mandrell has been known to say "I love my name but I hate my initials," all in fun, of course.

I live in Nashville, TN, and when I first moved here in the late 1980's, I worked at Barbara's museum for a few years.

The man who was our manager there for awhile had the initials GAS, and I noticed them monogrammed on his shirt cuffs.  He was quite a character and a cut-up, so he laughed about his initials and clearly never was bothered by them.

Not including my middle name, my initials are PP.  When I noticed the monogram on the manager's shirt cuffs, I asked him what his middle name was.  He answered, and then added, "We both have initials that have to do with bodily functions."

I glanced at the cardboard stand-up of Barbara Mandrell and responded, "We're in very good company."

Who knows if your son will have the attitude that Barbara and my former boss and I have!  If he does, you won't have a problem!

Growing up, I knew someone whose name was Scott Alexander and his last name started with an S.  Come to find out, his father had the same name only with the first and middle names reversed - Alexander Scott S-last name.  I'm guessing the father got needled about his initials so when his son came along, instead of saddling him with the same issue, he just changed the order of the names. 

July 12, 2016 04:41 PM

I have friends whose three boys are named Braxton, Davis, and Sullivan.  (Braxton is referred to as "Brax" fairly often; Sullivan is an infant and it wouldn't surprise me to see him called "Sully" at some point.)  And other friends with three boys named Geddings, Fielder, and Sanders.  (I know Geddings and Fielder are family names, not sure about Sanders.)  Both families seem to like using family names as first names, and it seems to suit their boys well.

July 5, 2016 06:40 PM

I cringed when I saw Ambrosia on this list!  That's a dessert, made with fruit and coconut, that's very popular here in the South.  (Google ambrosia recipes for details.)  Any child tagged with that name will be subjected to a lifetime of teasing and bad jokes!  It seems to lend itself to rude ethnic jokes as well, unfortunately!

Some of the biblical names, such as Nicodemus and Bathsheba, have negative connotations because of the behavior of their namesakes in the Bible, so I'd say those require a second thought (or more!) as well!

There is a female country singer from Ireland named Philomena Begley, and until I heard of her, I'd never heard the name!  It's pronounced Fill-o-MEE-nah, at least in her case.

I had a neighbor growing up named Bart, and I had known him for a long time before I learned that his name was Bartholomew.  I also know of someone with the last name Bartholomew. 

I had never heard of the name Sophronia until a few years ago when I read a series of murder mysteries by author Vicki Lane.  There was a character in one of them whose name was Sophronia, but was usually referred to as "Miss Fronie."  Unfortunately this character was a very abusive mother to her youngest child!

With this being a year for the Olympics, I could see Olympia becoming popular.  I don't think I'd heard of it as a name until actress Olympia Dukakis (and cousin of then-presidential candidate Michael Dukakis) became known for her movie roles in the 1980's.

A lot of these names can be traced to Greek mythology.  In general, I'd urge all parents-to-be to research not only the literal meanings of names, but also the connotations attached to them, before saddling innocent children with something that will set them up for a lifetime of bullying, insensitive questions, and other difficulties! 

May 2, 2016 06:00 PM

I laughed when I read this because it reminded me of a conversation I had with my mother when I was a teenager.  She mentioned a woman in town whose name was Lassie, and my response was "Lassie's a DOG'S name!"  She immediately said no, it's a girl's name.  Maybe a dog's name to my generation, she added.  I had never heard of a human named Lassie before then!

March 29, 2016 04:00 PM

Wow!  I've only heard of four of these!

There was a woman in my church named Mozelle, who died in 2011 at the age of 89.  A friend from childhood lost her mother Mozelle a few years ago, and this woman was probably in her early 70's.  I never knew this one's first name until  her daughter posted the news of her death on Facebook; as a child, I just called her Mrs. [Last Name].

Grand Ole Opry star Jean Shepard's birth name is Ollie Imogene, but she's always gone by Jean.  Ollie can also be a nickname for Olivia.

Many moons ago, the road known as Music Valley Drive here in Nashville, TN (where I live), was called Elzie Miller Drive.  This was long before I came to Nashville, but at one time I worked at a business on Music Valley Drive, and occasionally we would receive mail addressed to the Elzie Miller address.  I never learned who it was named after in those days, and coworkers and I assumed Elzie was the name of a female.  I only learned it's a male name in reading this article!

Singer Juice Newton (of "Angel Of The Morning" and "Queen Of Hearts" and "Break It To Me Gently" fame of the early 1980's) had a boyfriend/manager for several years named Otha Young.

All the other names in this list are brand new to me! 




March 1, 2016 01:54 PM

How about Hatteras?

March 1, 2016 01:39 PM

The top girl's name when I was in school was Lisa, thanks to the character on the soap opera As The World Turns.

February 23, 2016 01:00 PM

Aw, heck, why don't you just call 'em Bubba and Sissy!  (Southern tongue planted firmly in cheek!)  :)

February 16, 2016 05:58 PM

I've definitely gone with human names for my pets, at least from my teenage years on!  Current cat is Mitzi (16 years old), named after actress Mitzi Kapture of "Silk Stalkings" fame.  Current dog is Lynndi (one year old, just got her three months ago), named after singer Lynn Anderson, who died just over six months ago.  I guess, looking at what I just typed, I'm going with human AND celebrity names, at least now!  

The dog I got when I was a freshman in high school was Mandy, and I named her that because I loved the name Amanda.  Lynndi is the first dog I've had since losing Mandy when I was a senior in college.

My very first cat, that I got right after starting first grade, was Puffy, named after his lookalike Puff in the "Dick and Jane" reading books that my school used.  He lived to be about 15, and the next cat was Julio, named after singer Julio Iglesias.  This was around the time of the Julio Iglesias-Willie Nelson duet.  I moved away after college and left Julio with my mother.  He lived to be 17 years old.

My first cat after moving was Ashley, so named because the friend who gave her to me was a big "Gone With The Wind" fan.  Additionally, we weren't sure at first if Ashley was male or female, and since the Ashley in GWTW was male but the name has since become very common for females, I figured it would work either way.  Cat #4 is the above-mentioned Mitzi, my current one.

First dog when I was about three was named by my parents, and his name was Stormy.  He was a German shepherd mix, and my father named him after the German storm troopers of WWII fame.  Stormy lived until I was about ten, and we got another dog whom I named Lucas after a teacher at my school whose last name was Lucas.  After Lucas, the next dog had a typical dog name, Tippy.  Next came the above-mentioned Mandy.

January 29, 2015 12:16 PM

A teacher friend of mine actually had a student with this name - LONG before it became an urban legend!

January 27, 2015 12:58 PM

No, it's anger at HIM - for not doing the job he was elected to do the RIGHT way!