Sibsets of the Week: The Pankhurts

Emmeline Pankhurst, from

We’re going for a blast from the past this week. Emmeline Pankhurst has a very special place in my heart; she’s the reason why I’ll be able to vote come the next election because she was a prominent member of the suffragette movement in the UK which succeeded in giving women the right to vote in 1918. I always use her name when people ask me for my middle name, because I’ve just never clicked with my ‘true’ middle name, which isn’t too far removed from Emmeline anyway.

My littlest sister actually caught me writing this, and insisted upon me including this song about the suffragette movement from Horrible Histories, a show she adores which makes a change since it actually teaches her something rather than maiming her brain as Spongebob Squarepants has been accused of in recent weeks. I know for a fact that I knew pretty much nothing about the suffragettes when I was her age, so good on Horibble Histories:

Well, that’s most of the hard work done for me when it comes to explaining what the suffragettes were fighting for. There’s a statue of Emmeline just around the corner from the Houses of Parliament these days, and she’s been voted as one of the most important people of the 20th century. Albeit not as important as Diana according the BBC’s voted for list of the 100 Greatest Britons, which places Diana at #3 and Emmeline at #27.

Since it’s late for me here in Blightly because I make the mistake of swanning off to work before I finished this post, let’s crack on with the names of her children with husband Richard Pankhurst; of which all three of her daughters also got involved with the suffragette movement:

Christabel Harriette

Estelle Sylvia, known as Sylvia

Adela Constantia Mary

Francis Henry

Henry Fransis

The last son is named in honour of the first son who had passed away prior to his birth. Overall, I could see this sibset easily being re-created by the modern mamma, and there’s a nice ‘el’ theme running with the girls names that isn’t immediately obvious.

Categories: Sibset of the Week | 5 Comments

Post navigation

5 thoughts on “Sibsets of the Week: The Pankhurts

  1. Ooh I like these historical sibsets!

    She definitely liked the -ell sound for girls, and I expect if she was around today she may very well be one of the many parents who give their daughter a “Bella” type name.

    Your little sister is very bright to be interested in the suffragettes, even in song – I’m sure I didn’t know much about them at her age (if anything).


  2. I love Emmeline Pankhurst! We learned about her in my History of Britain class last semester and I could not get over how beautiful her name was or how amazing she was! Her kids’ names are definitely compatible with modern sounds. Every time someone says they want to use Emma but it’s too popular I suggest Emmeline and tell them who she was, she’s a great namesake for a little girl!


  3. Love the Pankhursts — had been planning to waffle on about them sometime too :). My favourite Pankhurst is Sylvia, the artist, though I’ve always had a soft spot for Adela as well (the one who ended up in Australia).

    The names have always epitomised to me the British intelligentsia around the turn of the last century. Love ’em.


  4. Pingback: Names of the Week: Cloud and Nuala « Mer de Noms

  5. Pingback: Christabel | Mer de Noms

Join The Conversation

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

Blog at

%d bloggers like this: