Brother for Joseph

Hello! We have a son named Joseph and are having trouble deciding on a name for his baby brother due in November. Joseph goes by Joseph. I do love the nickname Joe, so I'll be perfectly happy if he decides to go by Joe in the future. I want to like both the full name and the nickname(s) of the name we choose for baby brother. We'd like either a Biblical name or a saint name.

Our last name begins wtih Ke- and ends with -er. We'd like to avoid first names ending with "-k" or "-er"

Following are the names we have considered:

Augustine - pronounced a-GUS-tin; was my favorite, now not sure; pretty sure people would have difficulty with pronunciation; don't like Gus or Augie

Thomas - my dad's name (died when I was three, will use as middle name if not for first name), don't like Tom

Samuel - feel awkward saying Samuel, love the nickname Sam

Simon - go back and forth; feels more hip than I'd like

Peter - like and like Pete, but ends in "er" like our last name

Benjamin - just doesn't feel like the name

Peter - like the name and like the nickname Pete, but ends in "-er" like our last name

Thanks for your help!


August 4, 2019 12:49 AM

I have a Joseph too. We’ve mostly switched over to Joe now (he’s 2.5 yrs old) but still love the full name! 

First name to come to mind was Andrew, nickname Andy. Judah (Jude), Matthew (Matt/Matty), Philip (Phil), Jesse (Jess), Clement (Clem), Daniel (Dan), David (Dave), Gregory (Greg). 

August 4, 2019 5:42 PM

I love that you also have a Joseph/Joe! I love Andrew but can't use it because a nephew already has the name. Thanks for the other ideas! Clement seems to be getting more popular these days and I have recently started liking Daniel a lot.

August 4, 2019 1:20 AM

I like Thomas, Samuel and Simon. Benjamin is nice too. Does Peter sound ok with the surname, I think it would be ok 

Other names Andrew, Aaron, Caleb, Daniel, David, Levi, Eli, Micah, Isaac, Isaiah, Nathaniel, Reuben, Stephen, Zachary, Timothy

August 4, 2019 5:45 PM

Thanks for your thoughts on names we have considered and for your new ideas! Daniel and Isaiah are going on the list. :)

August 4, 2019 5:55 PM

August, Charles, Henry, Gabriel, Michael, Richard


I get what you mean about Samuel having a little bit of a funny mouthfeel.  I would love it otherwise!  Benjamin is super, super handsome.  I love Peter too but agree that it's best not to repeat -er names.  Augustine is really great but feels different from Joseph and does have pronunciation problems.  I like Simon but it doesn't seem like the best fit for you.  That leaves Thomas - is Joseph named after a relative?  If he is, then I think Thomas is a great choice.  If he isn't, I would prefer that you leave Thomas for the middle.

August 6, 2019 8:02 PM

Thanks so much for your suggestions and really helpful thoughts! I have toyed with August, Henry, and Gabriel. August and Henry feel different from Joseph style-wise to me, but it is good to know they might fit! I have a weird thing about using a J name and a G name, not sure why. Am I the only one? I am with you on preferring Thomas in the middle. Thanks again!!

August 6, 2019 9:52 PM

I definitely get the E/G issue! I have synesthesia to do with letters, names, numbers and colours. E is always blue, so E names are usually blue (my daughter is Emilia), and J is also blue but Joseph can be blue or red. They worked as a set in my head because of the blue, but if we were to have a third it would “need” to be either red for balance or purple because that’s what blue and red make. Our minds can work in such funny ways sometimes!

August 6, 2019 9:54 PM

Or maybe your issue is that G sometimes makes a J sound? 

August 6, 2019 10:02 PM

That is so interesting! Our minds truly are incredible. My Joseph talks about certain things being colors (I can't think of an example right now...pregnancy brain), so I've wondered at times if he has synesthesia. 

On a different note, Emilia is beautiful!

By rfb
August 6, 2019 4:47 PM

Peter is on your list twice - maybe that means that you actually like that name so much that you could get used to the sound of Peter Ke***er? Or otherwise maybe Peter as a middle, eg. Thomas Peter Ke***er?

I’d second Daniel and Gabriel, and would also suggest Raphael if Samuel feels awkward.

And what about Benedict instead of Benjamin?

Other than that, you have a nice list; maybe it’s time to let go of a few of these names (Simon, maybe Augustine) to narrow things down?

August 6, 2019 8:07 PM

Haha! Good catch! I think I was actually just really tired, as I wrote this late at night after a busy day with a crazy 3.5 y/o.

Thanks for the additional votes on Daniel and Gabriel. People might think we're a bit crazy if we use Gabriel, as I'm Mary, Joseph is Joseph, and Gabriel plays a very important role in the birth of Jesus. :)

I like Benedict and have thought about it. I like Ben and Ned could grow on me.

Thanks so much for your wonderful thoughts and helpful suggestions! I do sometimes need permission to let things go. :)

August 7, 2019 2:20 AM

i think Mary, Joseph and Gabriel wouldn't be a problem. I think Benjamin goes better than Benedict. 

August 7, 2019 4:10 AM

Bennet and Reuben also get you to Ben, if that's what you are ultimately aiming for.

You can also get to Sam via Samson or Solomon.

On your list, I actually really like Thomas for you, especially since you lost your dad so young.  Like Joseph, it totally works as a full standalone name - not too formal - but Tom/Tommy is always there for something really short, sweet, and fun.  If you don't like Auggie or Gus, I think Augustin is too risky.  And I agree Peter with an -er surname won't work (although coincidentally, my cousin's sons are Joseph & Peter!)

Other names in your vibe that come to mind are Nathan/Nathaniel, Stephen, Mark, James, Silas, Lucas.

August 8, 2019 10:26 PM

Thanks so much for your thoughts on Thomas! Part of me really wants to use it and part of me really does not want to use it. I was reading about Thomas recently and the article mentioned Tom Riddle from Harry silly to let a book ruin a name for me, but I can't get past it.

My husband has recently mentioned Nathan and Nathaniel. Maybe I need to open myself to those possiblities! I met a Silas about a year ago and the name has steadily grown on me. I love Luke, but can't use it because of our last name...I'm trying to decide if Lucas feels as right.

Thanks again for your thought and wonderful suggestions!

August 9, 2019 12:38 AM

Silas, Seth, Nathaniel and Lucas would be good. Thomas is nice too 

By rfb
August 7, 2019 1:32 PM

I think you should definitely stay away from Jesus (or Jesús), but I wasn’t worried about that anyway :)

Given that it’s your son whose name is Joseph, not your husband, I wouldn’t worry too much about Gabriel either.

August 7, 2019 8:22 PM

what about Adam, Elijah, Ezra, Paul Saul Simeon

August 8, 2019 10:21 PM

Those are good ones. I really like Adam. Does it seem too boring to you? I also like Elijah and have been thinking about Isaiah. Not sure I'm brave enough for either! 

August 9, 2019 12:41 AM

No Adam is good,  Elijah and Isaiah are great. Go for it

August 9, 2019 2:22 PM

Adam would be a great choice!   If anything, Joseph is more boring than Adam.  But regardless of that, if Adam is too boring and Elijah too adventurous, there are approximately 3 names that match your ideal level of boringness! ;)

I like Daniel for you too, I forgot to comment on it in my earlier post.

August 8, 2019 10:18 PM

Haha! Love it. :) And I appreciate your perspective on Gabriel...thank you!

August 9, 2019 12:45 PM

I think Peter with an -er surname would roll off the tongue really nicely and make his name easier to remember - don't discount it too quickly! If you don't like Tom I'd avoid Thomas for a first name since these days there's a very slim chance that he wouldn't decide to shorten it; personally a lover of the name Simon but that may be bias because he's the main character in one of my favourite books; more Biblical names I'd recommend are Stephen, Reuben and Lucas

August 13, 2019 9:31 PM

Thanks for your perspective on Peter! I hadn't thought about it that way. Simon is great! Finny has long been a favorite of mine because he was one of the main characters in one of my favorite books...good books are so powerful! Thanks for your wonderful thoughts and new suggestions!

August 14, 2019 3:54 PM

It worked well for Peter Parker! Very zippy. (Says mom of a Peter Joseph.)

By EVie
August 13, 2019 10:26 AM

I named my first son Thomas, also after my dad who died before he was born (I was already an adult, though). For what it's worth, he's always been the full Thomas, never Tom or Tommy, and we've had *almost* zero trouble enforcing that (the one holdout being a very stubborn relative who insists on calling him Tommy). Quite the opposite of what the poster above said, more little boys these days are going by their full names than not. I know tons of little boys named things like William, Matthew, James, Andrew, all names that would have been nicknamed in our generation, and even three-syllable names like Anderson, Jonathan, Gabriel and Sebastian, all going by their full names. My mother-in-law even commented the other day, "These little boys these days are so formal!"

August 13, 2019 9:46 PM

Thanks so much for weighing in! I don't know why I'm so worried about Thomas ending up as Tom or Tommy. Thomas in full is such a great name, I'd hate for that to be lost with a less awesome nickname. Our Joseph is Joseph and that is how it is; I'm sure it would be the same for another child. And, now that you mention it, I have met more little boys going by their full names than by nicknames. Always helps to have someone point it out.

Just out of curiousity, do you have other boys? What are their names?

Thanks again for sharing!!

August 13, 2019 4:52 PM

I looooove Peter, Gabriel, Ambrose, Benjamin, Gideon, Paul, Anselm... so many good ones out there. 

August 13, 2019 9:33 PM

Anselm is new to me! Do you know anything about the name's origin/history?