sibling for Nathaniel

I am pregnant with my second child.  We do not know the gender.  Our son is 3 and named Nathaniel H*ll H*nger, and he goes by Nate.   We chose  the first name chiefly because we liked it, but it is also a family name.  His middle name is a family name on my husband's side. We live in the South and tend to like classic names that aren't too popular (Nathaniel is now more popular than what we'd probably pick, but we love my son's name).  However, we are open to any names that go well with Nate's name and are not markedly dated or too far afield.  Our names both begin with the letter C, so we'd like to avoid a C name to avoid being too cutesy, but I may be too worried about that.  We'd also prefer not to name both children names that start with the letter N for the same reason.  My mother's maiden name is St*ne, so we are considering using that as a middle name.  We prefer to have names that have a couple potential nicknames if possible, but that is not necessary.   Our second choice boys' name for Nate was Benjamin, but it's too popular.  Edward is a family name, but I don't like the Twilight connection.  Another family name I considered using is James, but a friend has since named her little boy James and again it's popular.  We are considering Duncan, Oliver, Theodore, Dashiell, and Sebastian with middle names Arth*r (my maiden name), St*ne, Charles (my dad), Edward, or Conrad (my great grandfather).   Our favorite girls' names when we were deciding on Nate's name were Charlotte, which was my favorite and would honor my dad Charles, as well as Eleanor  and India.  However, I know quite a few little Charlottes.  I'm also not entirely sold on Eleanor or India, even though I think they are  lovely.  My middle name is Susan, which is a family name, and I have considered using Susannah.  However, I know a fair number of older Susies.  Ny husband's grandmother is named Joan and goes by Jo.  We have considered using Josephine to honor her, but that seems a bit attenuated for a namesake name.  I like the names Louisa and Beatrice, but my husband isn't too fond of either.   Margaret is also in contention.   Thanks for any suggestions!


September 2, 2012 8:41 AM

Duncan Stone H*nger seems to choppy, though i like Duncan, i don't think it goes well with your last name.  . how do you feel about Arthur Stone H*nger? i really like that combo best for a boy. i'm presuming the H*nger is your last name and not Nate's double middle, right?  i wouldn't do Oliver Stone because of the movie connection. Dashiell Stone is also nice, but my favorite keeps going back to Arthur, if that is acceptable, if not, Dashiell would be my choice.  for a girls name, would hubby consider Lois or Eloise?  just checking. Josie is a great compromise, and a lovely name. how do you both feel about Marjorie or Margaux or Marguerite? Marjorie i picked because of jo being part of it. Suzette is an alternative, as either a middle or first, too. Reactions on these suggestions?

September 3, 2012 8:26 PM

If Benjamin is too popular for you, maybe you would like Bennett better.  Bennett always makes me think of Brendan, so I'll throw that out there too.

I like the idea of an honor name for Joan/Jo and think Joseph/Joe sounds nice with Nathaniel.  Since you'd be doing an opposite gender namesake, changing the name seems like less of a stretch.  Similar to Charlotte/Charles, I think.

Of the names on your list, I like Theodore the best with Nathaniel.

Of your girl names, I think Charlotte and Margaret are the best fits with Nathaniel.  Susannah is also nice and if you are worried about the nickname Susie, you could also use Anne or Annie.  Joanna would be another way to get to the nickname Jo, and I like that it also includes an element of Susan/Susannah.

Some others I think would work well include Amelia and Katherine. Despite it's popularity, Elizabeth would also be a good fit.  With so many nicknames, it's popularity might be less of a concern than other names.

September 5, 2012 1:09 PM

Thanks for the great suggestions!  Yes, Hanger is the last name.  I agree that Duncan Stone Hanger is too choppy and also wouldn't do Oliver Stone Hanger due to Oliver Stone.  I like Arthur as a first name, but my husband isn't a fan.  I love Bennett and Eloise, but friends have already used those names for their kids, and the names are distinctive enough that it would be weird for us to use them.  We are leaning toward Theodore or Dashiell for the boy's name.  The girl's name is still up in the air.  Your suggestions are very helpful!  Thanks.

By mk
September 5, 2012 5:36 PM

Edward is a classic name, so I don't think there is an automatic connection to Twilight unless you went on to name future kids Bella, Jacob, Alice, etc. I like Theodore the best of your choices for boys. What about William?

Louisa works very well with Nathaniel (Nathaniel Hawthorne's sisters were Louisa and Elizabeth).

Margaret also works very well











September 7, 2012 4:47 PM

Hm!  My husband's name is Nathaniel, and his late sister was Emily.  "Nathaniel" was in the running for us as a son's name (or possibly a middle name); the other boy names in contention were:





and the girl names were:




Those are all quite classic and some of them -- Raymond, Margaret, and Stephen -- are not very common.

September 26, 2012 3:06 PM

Thanks so much!

October 9, 2012 4:49 PM

So, we had narrowed our top girls name down to Eleanor Charlotte.  I told my mother the name, and she had a bad reaction to Eleanor Charlotte.  While it's ultimately up to my husband and me, her reaction did make me reconsider.  What does everyone think of Susannah (family name on my side) Leigh (family name on my husband's side)?  I don't like any of the nicknames for Susannah and am afraid Leigh is dated, but it could work.

October 9, 2012 5:18 PM

Oy. I can imagine how hard it is not to tell other people, but so often that causes more trouble than it solves.

Did she object more to Eleanor or Charlotte or the overall name combination? (Just wondering why you abandoned both the first and middle names for completely new choices. Was it to preserve honouring both your and your husband's family? For example, although it has a lot of letters, Susannah Charlotte has nice auditory flow.)

Personally, I like Susannah and my favourite nickname for it is actually Zannah. Leigh, well, it's very trendy as a second syllable (e.g., Kyleigh), so it wouldn't seem odd, even if it's not used so often as a stand-alone name.

By hyz
October 9, 2012 5:19 PM

Hmm, sorry to hear about the wrench in the works.  If your mom's reaction was stylistic rather than personal (i.e. it's not that she has some negative personal association with the name(s), etc.), then I'd suggest it is something that she will be able to get over quickly once she meets the child.  But if there's some insurmountable issue, it may be worth choosing another name for the sake of unity.  In that case, I will say that I quite adore the name Susannah (esp. with that spelling), and I do also like some of the nns (Susie (Q.), Zuzu).  I knew a Susannah in college who went by her full name, never a nn, and that didn't seem to cause her any probelms.  I found (and still find) the name to be lovely and unexpected and sweet, although this particular Susannah was a bit of a Pollyanna (to mix references), which I think encouraged people to make "Oh Susannah" references and consider the name to be a bit naive/hickish.  Food for thought, I guess.  I've known other Susannahs (or Susanas) who did not elicit this response at all.  I would still use the name despite the song.  I am not as crazy about Leigh--it doesn't have any strong connotation for me, except mostly as a "filler" middle name, so it is fine and inoffensive but not very exciting to me personally.  I think, though, since it is a family name, that counteracts a lot of the issues I mentioned and it could be quite meaningful for your family, and it sounds nice with Susannah __ H@nger.  I understand why you might feel it is dated (I think it is right up there with Ann and Marie for mns in my generation), but it is simple and solid enough that it doesn't feel strongly dated to me (as opposed to something like Ashleigh or Ryleigh, which definitely would).    

October 14, 2012 2:12 PM

I would find out what it is that she objected to about Eleanor Charlotte. Was it one of the names, but not the other, a personal association, maybe she just isn't familiar with them? Unless there is a good reason she doesn't like them then I wouldn't abandon them. 

FWIW, I really like Susannah. My personal favourite nn is also Zanna/h.  I think Susannah Charlotte works well.

Leigh I also like, although it is quite a different style to Eleanor, Charlotte and Susannah. I think it may be more dated than the other choices but it is still a popular sound so I don't think it would sound out of place.

November 1, 2012 6:09 PM

Thanks!  For some reason, my inlaws and my mother all think the name Eleanor is too old and ugly.  I love the name and wouldn't have necessarily chosen the names my parents and inlaws selected for my brother, my husband's siblings, or me.  My father in law has started calling the baby "Eleanor Rigby," and my mother in law keeps telling me about a mean neighbor named Eleanor that she had as a child.  As much as I'm tempted to stick with the name, I think it's out.  Ugh.

November 4, 2012 3:00 PM

I think this is just a case of your mother and your in-laws being out of touch with current naming trends. Eleanor is FAR from old and ugly-sounding. It's actually gaining in popularity and there are a ton of Ellie-variant names out there as well as Nora's and the full Eleanor.  

It's probably the equivalent of a friend saying to you they plan to name their new baby Deborah, Karen or Linda. None of those names are ugly or old but they aren't names that are fresh or new to most people who are currently having kids.  Eleanor probably sounds to them like something that is a bit out of date, when in fact it isn't.

Maybe look up the name in your state and see that it's actually not that out of fashion, you might be able to convince your in-laws, but even if you can't, it's still a great  name and they will come around when they meet thier baby grand-daughter named Eleanor.

October 28, 2012 11:06 AM

Forget about popularity, and choose the name you love.

November 1, 2012 6:08 PM


December 22, 2012 7:57 PM

Theodore Charles Hanger And Nathaniel H*ll Hanger go well together.