Name Spotlight: Sawyer

May 3rd 2010

Join me for a journey down the Mississippi with an all-American name.

Sawyer is an occupational surname that originally referred to someone who sawed wood for a living. Its free-spirited style, though, comes straight from Mark Twain's boy hero Tom Sawyer. Sawyer started to rise in popularity in the 1990s as part of a trend toward tradesman names, then spiked up after its prominent appearence on the tv series Lost. Like other literary surnames (Harper, Beckett), it has a broad appeal, luring in an educated slice of parents who usually prefer more traditional given names. It is pronounced...well, that's where today's story starts.

A site visitor clicked the "Report inappropriate content" on the Sawyer page in Namipedia. The visitor wrote:

There is an error in the pronunciation of this name. I named our son Sawyer and we have spent 22 years correcting people you (sic) slovenly say "SOY-yer." The word AND the name are correctly pronouned just as it reads: "SAW-yer." One wouldn't say, "I soy your mother at the store." :-)  I hope you will change this. Thank you.

22 years of correcting people can't be any fun, but there's a reason all those folks said SOY-er. It's the standard pronunciation of the word and name in both the U.K. and the U.S. -- take a listen at this Oxford dictionary page. SAW-yer is an acceptable variant, used by a small minority of people. I added it as a second listing in Namipedia, but parents of a SAW-yer should know they're fighting an uphill battle. (As for the idea that not pronouncing a word phonetically is "slovenly," hey, this is English we're talking about. Even the word English itself isn't pronounced phonetically.)

As I learned more about the word sawyer, though, I came to realize that the standard listing for the name really is wrong. Not the pronunciation, but the meaning.

Look up sawyer in a modern dictionary and you'll find two definitions. First is the person who saws wood, second a beetle that bores into trees. Look it up in a baby name dictionary and you'll find just the first definition. That's proper, since little Sawyers are hardly likely to be named for the beetle. But look up sawyer in a 19th-century American dictionary and you'll discover something quite different. Here's an excerpt from Noah Webster's 1828 edition:

In America, a tree which, being undermined by a current of water, and falling into the stream, lies with its branches above water, which are continually raised and depressed by the force of the current, from which circumstance the name is derived. The sawyers in the Mississippi render the navigation dangerous, and frequently sink boats which run against them.

In the words of John Bartlett's 1848 Dictionary of Americanisms, "This may truly be called an American word; for no country without a Mississippi and Missouri could produce a sawyer."

It was this all-American word, this peril of the Mississippi and scourge of steamboats that gave Tom Sawyer his name. Tom, in turn, gave all the first-name Sawyers their names. After all, as a surname Sawyer is less common than Glover, Decker, Collier, Skinner and many others. Its style mojo comes from the book. So arguably, the "real" meaning of Sawyer that should be listed in baby name dictionaries is a submerged tree.

Just think of it. All of this uncertainty about the pronunciation and meaning of a name that is an English word, a familiar surname, and one of the most recognizable names in American literature. Meanwhile new names are being introduced every day. A Baby Name Wizard's work is never done.


May 5, 2010 12:30 PM


They probably just really liked the name Autumn or they could be immigrants from a Southern Hemisphere, if they're going according to seasons. I actually find it more odd to name the child after the season they were born , instead of just using a name because they truly loved it. That way it really means something. :)

Some of the others were definitely interesting, though . . .

Congratulations ! I wish you & your family all of the best !

The Sawyer discussion: here are are the two ways being said

By hyz
May 5, 2010 12:34 PM

Oh, and as for Sunny Park, I guess that could either be a proper name (like Sun-ee), or it could be an English nn derived from her full name (like Sun-jin or whatever) because she was tired of people mangling the full thing all the time. I knew a Min-sun one time who just went by Min because people always seemed to trip over her name. It's phonetic, just like it looks--min plus sun--but people were always calling her "min-soon" or "meen-sun" or some variation thereof, I guess feeling the need to make things more complicated than they were.

May 5, 2010 1:15 PM

How do you all say Violet?

is it:

or do you say the 'let' part more like 'lit'?

By hyz
May 5, 2010 1:22 PM

larksong, it's generally "vye-uh-lit" for me, with the middle syllable very short and fast.

May 5, 2010 1:32 PM

ditto, i find nothing peculiar about an autumn born in april either.

and i think i generally say violet like hyz does, though any of those pronunciations sound normal to me.

thanks for the interesting bit on korean/korean names. i always like hearing about that. but all this talk of "sun" and "paik" is starting bring my thoughts around to lost again (don't bring up last night's episode, lest i burst into tears!).

By Amy3
May 5, 2010 1:42 PM

@Larksong, ditto to emilyrae's and hyz's pronunciation of Violet. The middle syllable is quite fast and barely there.

@SarahC, congrats! Love Caroline Jean's name and I'm sure she's a beautiful baby.

May 5, 2010 1:47 PM

hyz- thanks so much for explaining- I feel a lot clearer now. Perhaps I'll ask Young Min what her name means, some time! Interestingly enough, her brother's name is Laurence. I should imagine they were both given Korean and Western names, and just chose differently how they want to be known.

May 5, 2010 1:48 PM

oh, sarahc, yes! i meant to congratulate you as well. caroline jean is a beautiful name. :]

May 5, 2010 1:49 PM

I think that the rise of Ryker is due to William Riker, character on Star Trek: Next Generation. Years ago I took a family trip with my parents and two of my younger brothers to Alaska. While in Valdez, I remarked on how pristine everything looked in Prince William Sound five years after the oil spill (although I was assured that things looked less beautiful on close inspection). One of my brothers said, "Wow! We're in the future birthplace of William Riker." My brother is now 30 and I wouldn't be surprised if his similarly-minded peers are naming their kids Riker/Ryker because of Next Gen.

Congratulations, Sarah C.!

May 5, 2010 1:54 PM

Is it possible that some parents of Ryker are using it as an alternative to Ryan? The first time I heard of it was in a book & I liked it. I just thought it was an alternative to Ryan & that was a method that I could use to get to 'Ry', because I like that sound. At the time (this was a couple of years ago), it seemed striking, but still approachable because of the very popular Ryan & Riley

May 5, 2010 1:55 PM

yes, ryker is listed under laura's "fanciful and fantastical" section in bnw2, along with names like anakin and albus. i assumed ryker was probably a well-known fictional character of some sort. i suppose ryker is significantly more accessible than spock. :]

By hyz
May 5, 2010 2:08 PM

Valerie, sure thing. I wish I had more details myself. The whole thing is obfuscated for me because I have to ask my DH, who asks his mom, who gets in touch with DH's dad's relatives in Korea who are in charge of the naming and know the reasons behind everything, and then they all play telephone getting back to me. I had some luck asking DH's cousins some questions (it seems their father gives them more info than DH has), but I don't know them that well, so I can't bug them with name questions too much. Beyond that, I've been left to my own devices researching the internet. It would be neat to find out what Young Min's name means, and I bet you're right that she and her brother both have English names but she didn't choose to use hers. I'd have to think that's the case.

emilyrae, I've actually never seen more than 5 cumulative minutes of Lost, so there's no danger of me bringing up last night's episode, lol. I wonder if you or anyone here knows anything about Japanese naming traditions. I often find Japanese names very pretty, and I'm sure they tend to have a lot of significance placed on meaning like Korean and Chinese names, but I don't know anything more than that, really.

May 5, 2010 2:06 PM

What about Stryker everyone? If Ryker's being used and regarded as either : bad boy, cowboy, ultra-masculine or sci-fi (based on things I've seen said around), then what about Stryker? I wouldn't use him myself, but it 'might' appeal to some. Especially if they are die hard Sherrilyn Kenyon fans. I haven't Stryker's book in the series myself, but imagine that some might go for it. I know Acheron,Kyrian,Zarek & Wulf have been used by some of her fans . It seem theoretically possible - though not mainstream or easily approachable

Either way, it'd be interesting to meet a Stryker, even though it does remind me of soccor.


I am hopelessly uneducated about Japanese names & I'd love to be educated!

May 5, 2010 2:09 PM

ha, good. the korean characters on that show are my very favorites.

i don't think i can be very much use as far as japanese names go (maybe chimu...? i think it is chimu that has some japanese heritage). i studied the language for several years, but names only came up occasionally. however, like you're saying, it's possible to have one name--yuko, for example--that could be written with any different number of kanji, and thus have multiple possible meanings; you couldn't know which unless you saw it in writing. although i *think* some are more common than others (which sort of makes sense. people are more likely to pick the "beautiful flower" meaning over the "sour fish" meaning or whatever (obviously those are fake examples)). and of course the surname comes first, followed by the given name, which is the standard in most east asian countries, i think. i think children are often given names that reflect virtues. for example, i had a professor (a woman) whose name was hirok0, which meant "wise child." and her last name meant "1,000 leaves," by the way, which i always thought was about the most fantastic meaning a name could have. hmm. now that the topic has been brought up, i wish i knew more!

May 5, 2010 3:00 PM


I just watched Lost & I know you feel !

May 5, 2010 3:21 PM

oh man, tell me about it... it was just the worst. of all the gut-wrenching things...

i've always been very intrigued with their names though. obviously the writers picked names that translate well to english audiences (jin is like jim, and sun is just a familiar word), but i've always wondered what the korean meanings were. hmm. to wikipedia!

May 5, 2010 3:26 PM

Please tell me when you find out !

I can't believe the show is nearly over. :(

May 5, 2010 3:40 PM

I know a lot of the names in Lost actually mean something.Like with Rousseau ,Faraday & Shephard. There were actually famous scientists with the first two names. The names were selectively chosen. And, if you take into account the Lost/Last Supper Painting, pay attention to the names of the characters & where they are standing/sitting. I'm not giving anyone spoilers here. so any other Lost fans - don't worry !

By hyz
May 5, 2010 3:38 PM

I know "jin" can mean jewel/treasure, and I believe it can also mean lake. "Sun" seems to be translated often as goodness. Both of these probably have dozens of possible meanings, though--I wonder if the writers of the show gave them full names (more than just one syllable each) and actually picked Chinese characters for them.

I'm kinda glad to hear the show is ending. DH and I heard good things about it early on, but decided that we didn't have time to get sucked into a serial drama like that. So, the plan is to get the show on netflix after it ends and watch it at our convenience--sounds like our turn is coming!

May 5, 2010 3:43 PM


The last few seasons have been amazing ! There was only one season which was a bit off, but otherwise, the show is brilliant if you can follow it episode by episode. It's by far my favorite show of all time.

Thank you for the information on Sun/Jin.

May 5, 2010 3:57 PM

Valerie: I think that an older sibling with a Korean name and a younger one with an "American" name could also reflect when the family immigrated. Maybe Young Min was born in Korea and her brother in the U.S.?

re: Japanese names: I'll second what emilyrae says. Also, I watch a Japanese program called Soko ga shiritai and I notice that many of the older people do not have Chinese characters (esp the women maybe). I'm not sure what this is about; maybe their names were given orally rather than written?

I also know that many female names end in "ko," meaning child. For example, Haruko=spring child. Many male names end in "o" which is written with the character for male.

re: Jin and Sun on Lost: Do you think these are the first syllable of their given name? Is it common for Koreans to be called only by the first syllable? Or is it their family name? Or is it just something made up for American TV? lol.

May 5, 2010 4:00 PM

they did pick full names. jin-soo and sun-hwa. the surname is kwon (and sun's maiden name is paik). these are mentioned on the show multiple times, but when they are around english-speaking characters (as they generally are), they are always just "jin" and "sun." i noticed that sometimes, when speaking in korean, sun addressed jin as "jin-soo shi" and i always wondered if "-shi" was some sort of affectionate suffix attached to names (the same sort of idea as -chan in japanese), but of course i don't know (but you might!). and wikipedia does list chinese characters for their names, but i don't know if those are from the lost creators or not.

robynt, so yes, they did give them full names, though i suspect the casually going by the first syllable was just something adopted for american television audiences (though hyz can answer that question, i'm sure).

also, good call on not getting sucked into a serial drama. it can be a bit consuming. better to watch at your own pace on dvd. :]

By hyz
May 5, 2010 3:58 PM

Ok, I realize I just misinformed you. A common male name including Jin is Jin-ho. But in that, the Jin part still means jewel, and ho is the part that means lake. (Jin-ho was the name of a character on a Korean soap opera we used to watch, which is why I know that, lol, sorry. Jin is also part of my SIL's name, although she spells it differently).

May 5, 2010 4:05 PM

RobynT- good point about when my Korean classmate's family might have immigrated. I don't know who is the elder of the two- I would say both are around 45-50 years old. I love this discussion of Asian names. I'm learning so much.

By hyz
May 5, 2010 4:09 PM

emilyrae, "shi" (more often transliterated as "-ssi", for some reason) IS a familiar name suffix, which might be used between friends, or used by parents to speak to children, etc. In my experience, spouses more frequently call each other "yuhboh" rather than using each others' names (I often call DH that, actually), but that might not make as much sense to the show's audience. And I can tell you that "soo" can mean "great", so jin-soo is potentially "great jewel". I don't know anything about hwa offhand.

RobynT, thanks for the additional info on Japanese names, very interesting. I read some things that said that, traditionally, only male children in Korea were given the generational names and girls could be given any old name, but I guess in more modern times they decided girls mattered enough to be included as well (I wonder, is this kind of like the bar mitzvah/bat mitzvah thing?). So maybe the older Japanese women weren't regularly given "official" names or something? All very interesting to find out, I think....

By knp-nli (not verified)
May 5, 2010 4:25 PM

I have a friend who is Japanese, and his name is Makoto, but we called him Mako around the lab. He later told me that it is ok, but weird/embarrassing around other Japanese b/c girls names end in -ko, not boys.

May 5, 2010 4:29 PM

oh, neat! i like it when my guesses turn out to be right (though they very often do not!). i also just really like the idea of name suffixes; i'm not sure we really have anything like that in english (unless something like "dear" counts. i'm thinking of lady and the tramp's "jim dear" and "darling"). i always assumed that the korean speech and vocabulary had some level of accuracy, as yunjin kim (the actress who plays sun) is actually a korean actress and pretty famous in korea, if i understand correctly. daniel dae kim, on the other hand, was raised in pennsylvania. :]

May 5, 2010 4:30 PM

oh, yes. ditto robyn t and knp. ko is definitely a feminine ending in japanese names.

By hyz
May 5, 2010 4:36 PM

I have no idea how legit this is, but I just found this list of "top Korean girl and boy names from 2001-2007" at :

"Korean girls names
Soo Bin
Sun Yeon
Mn Ji [I think this should be Min Ji]
Seo Hyun
Yea Eun [I think this should be Yae Eun]
Ji Min
Min Seo
Ha Eun
Yu Jin
Da Eun

Korea boy baby names
Min Joon
Joon Seo
Dong Hyun
Joon Hyuk
Min Sung
Jung Woo
Woo Jin
Min Gyu
Min Jae
Ji Min"

I thought the repetition of certain syllables was pretty interesting--for instance, Min, Eun, and Joon seem to be very hot. And Ji Min shows up in the top 10 for both boys and girls (I knew this was a very common girl name, but I didn't know boys had it, too). Going back to Laura's previous post, I wonder how cyclical these things are in Korea--is it like here, where some things sound like young or old names? How does the fact that the grandparents or great-grandparents pick at least half of the name affect name trends? I mean, were there some great "min" role models or public figures in the 1940s that caused all these grandparents to love that syllable?

If it passes muster from the Korean powers that be, our boy Korean name will probably be Young-joon (young because it was chosen for us, and joon to honor my DH's father who also had joon in his name, and because I like the sound of it). So I guess he'll be "on trend" in Korea?

By EVie
May 5, 2010 4:59 PM

Re: Lost names - yes, a LOT of the characters' surnames on Lost are allusions to famous intellectuals - the ones Larksong mentioned, and also John Locke, Hume, Hawking, Lewis (as in C.S.), Austen, Burke... I'm sure there are others I'm forgetting. I wouldn't recommend trying to use the names as a key to interpreting the show, though - I think, with a few exceptions, they're assigned pretty haphazardly.

I also was totally sad after last night's episode :( I think the watching-on-Netflix strategy is a great idea - I missed one season and later caught up on DVD, and it was soooooo satisfying to be able to watch the next episode right away (of course, I think I wasted about three days doing nothing but watching Lost because I couldn't stop). It's a great show for literary people - lots of hidden symbolism and complex characters with hidden motives and tons of personal baggage. It does demand a pretty high level of tolerance for ambiguity though - I don't think they're going to tie up every single loose end in the next three episodes.

Sorry to go off topic!

By Nicolette (not verified)
May 5, 2010 5:07 PM

I realize the conversation has moved on from Sawyer but I just wanted to throw in my two-cents. I moved to Oklahoma City right after my son was born, his name is Sawyer, and most of the locals here call him SAW-yer while I call him SOY-yer. I don't bother correcting them since that is just how they say it, but I will say one thing, when I yell at him from across the playground SOY-yer rolls off the tongue much more quickly then SAW-yer does, that seems to require a little more of a drawl. :)

By The BNW Larksong (not verified)
May 5, 2010 5:29 PM

I had my whole message typed out & then my browser suddenly closed & I'm battling with & had to switch to another browser - hence the different name



There was talk of a Lost movie & I know the writers/producers said that they will slowly reveal everything via podcasts or a similar format, as not everything will be revealed in the finale.

I have actually tried to see what could possible be meant with the Lost names to guess the show lol :) Some of it helps & some of it doesn't really. I think some of the names were assigned on purpose, but it doesn't really help much in guessing what's going to happen - at least not sufficiently :)

I also had a ''Lostahon'' awhile ago for one of the seasons & that's how I caught up

Did anyone else who watched Lost pay EXTRA attention to how 'Sawyer' was said?

as a SAW-yur sayer, I get what you mean about the 'drawl'. I say it with a slight 'twang' :)

May 5, 2010 5:43 PM

Regarding Ryker:

Ryker is all-around masculine and just plain cool. TNG's William Riker was the show's alpha male, and the name convincingly announced it. (Ryker beats up Worf on the playground.)

Stryker is more aggressive (striker) to me. It sounds like it goes too far, to me.

If you like the sound of Ryker (heck, I do!) but don't want to suggest that the name is invented/a sci-fi reference, then you can make the name a classic as Reichert.

(I do enjoy the many ways the Germanic thematic element "ric" can be used. Also, for those people looking for a name that is masculine and not likely to be used for girls, the "ric" names are a good place to look, outside Rickie.)

Congrats to Caroline Jean!

May 5, 2010 5:54 PM


Heheehhe. I actually really like Ryker :) I agree with everything you said :)

The book that I read a few years ago (can't remember who it was or what it was called ) was actually an espionage book.So, Ryker sounds sleek, cool,compelling & strong as opposed to sci-fi ish to me

I know what you mean about Stryker , as well

By hyz
May 5, 2010 6:06 PM

If I had some prominent association with Ryker OTHER than Riker's Island, I could see finding it an ok name. But I'd never heard of this William Riker before today, so the only thing I think of when I hear the name is something uncharitable like "the parents must think prison is cool" or, given the prevalance of aspirational names, "the parents must be hoping their kid does time someday." The only appropriate sibling I can think of is Alcatraz, or maybe Scotland Yard (compound name, or FN MN). Or if you wanted to broaden the theme a bit (to place names and things generally crime/violence related), maybe Dresden, Cannon, and Ruger could all work. Anyway, I feel much better learning that there IS some other popular association with the name, so now I can try to assume the parents are sci-fi fans and not crime fans, but it still doesn't override my main association enough that I could like the name.

May 5, 2010 6:11 PM


Dresden's begun to get some use. And heck, have you been to Dresden lately? It's beautiful.

As for gun names, Colt's been popular, and not only as a reference to a young horse.

For prison names, I recommend Quentin and Sing.

May 5, 2010 6:21 PM

I am really getting sick of my posts disappearing!! Anyway, hyz I had totally forgotten about the fact that you HAD to use certain syllables based on Korean naming traditions. I am anxous to find out whether you are having a boy or girl becaue so many of the posters here thought they were having girls and they turned out to be ACTUAL boys.

Sarah C-Congrats on Caroline Jean!

I also like Ryker in theory. It does bring up the prison island association but it is not as big a turn off to me as one would think because I still like the sound of the name. However, it is just not a style I could see myself using. I agree with the sibset of Ryker, Cannon, Weston/ley, maybe Ace. There's always Jesse too!

Re local listing names: I didn't mean to imply that I dislike these names. Some of them I would have used alternate spellings however. I would have spelled Basel with an i like the spice. I would have used an F for Phaith or not used it at all. Autumn is a lovely name so I agree that the parents just liked it.

May 5, 2010 8:03 PM

"(I do enjoy the many ways the Germanic thematic element "ric" can be used. Also, for those people looking for a name that is masculine and not likely to be used for girls, the "ric" names are a good place to look, outside Rickie.)"

Hmmmm, Erica, Frederic(k)a, Ulrica....
Richildis and Richardis were big hits in the ninth/tenth centuries, not so much since. Overdue for revival...or not?

By Amy3
May 5, 2010 8:27 PM

I kind of like Richildis. It's a hard /c/ sound for the /ch/, right?

By Philippa The First (not verified)
May 5, 2010 8:27 PM

I had a student once named Basel. He was from.. Romania, I think? Maybe the parents are Eastern European. Or maybe it's a tribute to Basel, Switzerland.

By Manda (not verified)
May 5, 2010 9:56 PM

I guess I'm in the minority. I've never heard it pronounced SOY-er.

By hyz
May 5, 2010 11:42 PM

Linnaeus, I actually did visit Dresden in March of this year. Yes, they're doing a lovely job with the reconstruction, and I know the name is starting to get some use, but I personally don't understand it. We've discussed the name here before, and I know it's also associated with china and certain quilting patterns, but for me, I hear Dresden and I think firebombs, devastation, horrible burning deaths of tens of thousands of civilians, including innocent children and babies, and then of course the horrors that led allied forces to feel that such a massacre could be justified. So I just can't understand the appeal of Dresden as a name, despite its pleasant sound in the abstract. For all I know, Dachau, Hiroshima, and My Lai are all lovely these days too (I haven't visited any of them), but I'd still never choose to associate my child with them. They each stand in history as emblems of humans' terrible ugliness to one another, and I don't think it's a stain that can/should be erased or forgotten.

As for Colt, Quentin, and Sing, at least each of those have primary meanings and associations apart from the gun and the prisons (now if the kids were named Colt .45, San Quentin and Sing Sing, that would be a different story).

May 6, 2010 12:33 AM

@zoerhenne Autumn is in April for half of the planet, as I'm sure you know.

Additionally, I myself find it odd to name children after the month/season that they were born in. :)

May 6, 2010 2:48 AM

emilyrae: thanks! (i haven't watched much Lost...)

knp: very interesting about Mako seeming feminine!

May 6, 2010 3:26 AM


I'm with you . I always found it a little bit cheesy (some people like cheesy, so that's not necessarily a bad thing) to name your kid after the month/season they were born. Whenever I came across kids names April or Autumn - I just thought the parents liked the name! Shows you what little I know.Plus, if the family ever immigrated, then the parent's naming the could after the season they were born in would have been for nothing !

I found it interesting that you included Jesse in that set. Whenever I see the male Jesse - I think of Ruth's grandson in the Bible , who was King David's father. Or, I think of Jessie (girl) which is considered by some to be vintage as a first name or a nickname for Jessica.Though, I suppose it could be short Jessabel,Jessamine etc So, while I get a lot of people consider it a 'bad boy' style name - it doesn't ring true for me.

By knp
May 6, 2010 3:55 AM

Larksong-- zoerhenne grouped it with those names because Jesse can be seen as a cowboy/western name-- as in Jesse James an outlaw. Or at least I read it that way, because that is the only way I could make it fit with those names. I also don't see Jesse as an outlandish name at all.

Stryker: While I can see Ryker as used by many (the sound is just kinda cool, in addition to the star trek character-- I have no real connotation with the prison), I agree that the verb here limits its use-ability.

Vomiting and larksong-- I also find it weirder when names after the actual month/season/holiday you were born and think your birthday shouldn't necessarily have a relationship to your name. I'll name my child Natalie if I like the name whether she was born in May or December (well, I wouldn't really name my child Natalie I don't think, but you get it).

May 6, 2010 6:53 AM


I completely understand why she grouped them that way. She actually makes a lot of sense . Put together, the names do have a certain link in style . I actually have a bit of a thing for Jesse James, which probably isn't that good considering he was an outlaw (I'm not talking about his descendant- Mr Bullock's soon to be ex)! To be honest, all of the names to me are completely normal - they just fit very well in a certain style.

Another one that when I think about, I can separate is Ace. It most definitely fits in the style of the names zoerhenne listed (I've read books where there was a cowboy named Ace!) but I can make another reaction in my mind. I also think of how can 'ace' something.So, I also think of someone who succeeds in whatever he does. Who works & studies hard.

Stryker : plus, the fact that you could be a person who strikes another (a 'striker'), the violence part is a bit off-putting. I don't mean a Stryker would be violent - but if you look at the literal meanings of what 'striker' is. I normality pat attention to what names profess

I just read a name that I think is a bit of a mouthful : Nothazamile Buyiswa Eunice Roro (Roro is the surname). It does sound pretty w hen you say it, but it definitely grabbed my attention because of the length !

May 6, 2010 6:59 AM

I see Stryker as paying homage to both Will Riker of Star Trek and Strider from Lord of the Rings. It's the ultimate sci-fi fantasy name without being obvious.

May 6, 2010 8:20 AM

I netflixed the first 5 seasons of Lost and am now watching season 6 "live". I also haven't heard of Ryker as a prison but have watched all the episodes of Star Trek the Next Generation so Will Riker is definatley who comes to my mind.

As far as Stryker being too violent plently of men's names are violent - I'm thinking here of my youngest son Mark. Who unfortunately at 4 does seem to live up to the "warlike" connotation of his name which for us is a sharp contrast to his older brother Paul who as many teachers have noted doesn't have a mean bone in his body.

May 6, 2010 8:49 AM

knp and others-For some reason I DO find it odd to name a child born in April-April. Otoh, I find it makes perfect sense to me to name after the season or surrounding it. In fact my DD is Natalie. She was due around Christmas but arrived a bit earlier. It also has other meaning for us. Additionally, we considered Noelle and Nicole. I understand if you feel that it is cheesy though. Everyone's different.

My reasoning behind the sibset of Ryker, Ace, Cannon, and Weston/Westley. Ryker=prison, Ace=like shooting or flying ace, Cannon=gun, Weston/Westley=reminds me of Wesson the gun manufacturer and also says West for wild west. Jesse would in fact be for Jesse James of the wild west and so I thought it fit. Linnaeus made excellent additions in Quentin, Sing, and Colt although I would never name a child Sing. It is too much like a word for me. Maybe Singe if it was a girl in this sibset-Sindy for short.