Names with Mae as a nn

I love the idea of a baby girl called Mae, but I always feel like it's just a nickname and it needs a "full" name behind it. I know Mabel could work, but my husband isn't wild about it.

What other names might generate the nickname Mae?


December 12, 2012 9:02 AM

i think any m name works like kay for k names.  

December 12, 2012 9:04 AM

Mae is traditionally a nickname for Margaret or Mary. You could do any of the variants of Mary, like Marianne, Marilyn, Marion, etc.

August 31, 2014 5:18 AM
  • mae is my name
December 12, 2012 2:20 PM


August 31, 2014 5:18 AM

lets leave the mae alone

December 12, 2012 10:55 PM

What about the Irish/Gaelic spelling of Maegan or Maeghan?

I know some would still pronounce this Meh-gan but I would say it more like May-gan. If you were into creative names you could change the spelling of Mason to Maesyn or something. There's also Maisie.

August 31, 2014 5:18 AM

or we could just go with mae

December 15, 2012 7:36 PM

Mavis, Matilda, Madeleine, Meredith?  Many names beginning with Ma-, Me-, or even other vowels would work.

I know a Mairead who is sometimes Mai (pronounced like Mae/May).

August 31, 2014 5:19 AM

mae is an actually name

December 17, 2012 12:52 PM

What about Maelle (pronounced may-ELLE)

August 31, 2014 5:19 AM

what about no. mae is a name.

December 18, 2012 10:29 PM

We have a little Mae (or Mamie), her full name is Maria.


Other ideas Marjorie, Mollie, Megan, Marika, Amabel, Marin, Mathilda.

December 19, 2012 12:12 PM

I have to take issue with one of your suggestions: Marika is a Hungarian diminutive of Mary/Maria, but it really can't shorten to Mae/May, because it doesn't have that vowel sound in it anywhere. Google Translate can say it for you:, click the little speaker icon at the lower right of the left-hand box. (I find it amusing that it translates it as Molly. Accurate in some sense, but I doubt anybody answers to both.)

December 19, 2012 1:05 PM

Maybe it's the Mary/Merry thing, but to me Mary doesn't have the Mae/May sound in it either, so if it works for Mary, why not Marika?

December 19, 2012 2:12 PM

It might be since Mary does have the Mae sound for me (though merry doesn't). However, I wouldn't ever think to pronounce Marika as Mary-ka since it isn't a name of English origin... (EDIT: oh, and A before R doesn't always become "ay", which never occured to me as a pronunciation because I'm so un-merged!). I knew a North American Marika of Scandinavian descent who said her name as mə-REE-kə. Though it seems like the emphasis is typically not on the middle syllable, the vowel pronunciation holds.

December 19, 2012 5:52 PM

I'm completely marry-Mary-merry merged*, and Mary et al. definitely have the same vowel as May. In Hungarian, I'd write them as Méri and Méj, respectively, and I think it's the absence of the "éj" sound at the end of any names in Hungarian that makes me object to the thought of Mae as a nickname for Marika. (The sound does occur: "éj" is a somewhat-poetic word for "night".)

The -REEK- pronunciation of Marika rubs me completely the wrong way. Hungarian always stresses the first syllable, without any exceptions whatsoever.

*A California upbringing combined with Hungarian vowels leads to some pretty severe oversimplification of English vowel nuances.

December 19, 2012 5:57 PM

But what if the person isn't Hungarian? The girl I knew was definitely named from a different naming tradition.

(And it's subtle but there is thankfully a difference between REE-kuh and REEK-uh :) Her name sounded like paprika.)

December 19, 2012 6:05 PM

Yeah, I'm completely merged myself with Mary/Merry, and there is no Mae sound for me. 

May sounds like ray, say, weigh, tray, etc.

Mary is more like Mehr-y, not May-ry. I can't even say May-ry out loud without breaking it up.


Oh no, Marika wouldn't be Mary-ka to me either. My thought was that if May can be for Meh-ry (and I have two grandmothers names Mary pronounced the same way, and a friend named Merry prounounced the same as theirs), then why not May for Marika?

December 19, 2012 6:19 PM

It's really hard to explain but Mary, for me, isn't as drawn-out and AY sound as May, but it's definitely more in that direction than merry is. It's more or less like the recording made by petaluma here.

August 31, 2014 5:20 AM

thats nice but she could also have been called 'Mae'

By mk
December 19, 2012 1:04 PM

I think any name that starts with M is fine.

Or you could go with Esme, though I dislike nicknaming that name.

August 31, 2014 5:21 AM


August 31, 2014 5:22 AM

I made an acount just to say this. MAE IS A NAME. I AM CALLED MAE. CALL YOUR CHILDREN MAE ITS GREAT. Its not a nickname its easy to remember and spell. It's just great on every front. Just great. SO EVERYONE STOP ACTING LIKE I'VE GOT HALF A NAME.


August 31, 2014 9:29 AM

Mae, I'm sorry that this is such a hot button for you, but if you spend your life objecting to basic historical facts, you're bound to end up unhappy.

The fact is, the personal name May (in whatever spelling), in English, originates as a nickname for Margaret or Mary. Now, it is also a fact that many nicknames -- May among them -- eventually become names in their own right. However, this doesn't change their origin. Many people (myself included) prefer full names that don't have (or have lost) that diminutive/informal/nickname-y feel. As you can tell, May/Mae still retains that feel for most people. This is not a value judgement: that endearment-like quality can be exactly what *attracts* some people to a name. But styles differ, and some people prefer to reserve the endearments for spoken, at-home use, with a more formal, often longer name for public consumption.

August 31, 2014 1:53 PM

Agree that Mae is a good name on its own.   However the poster wants it as a nn...

my my suggestion is Maelys (pronounced May-lees I believe)

August 31, 2014 3:34 PM

Note that Ms. Mae resurrected a two-year-old thread for her little, um, rant. The child in question is probably starting to talk already.

(I'm sure I'm not the only one who'd love an update from the original poster, though...)