Name Spot of the Week: The Missing Notebook


It’s still nowhere to be seen, so I’m going to have to ad-lib some of this post from my frankly brilliant awful memory. But hey, these are clearly the best tidbits from last week if I can remember them.

First off, it it me, or am I seeing children with nicknames everywhere? Out of all the kids who’ve crossed my path of late, something like 80% of them answered to a name which one would consider a nickname; part of this is understandable – kids love giving each other nicknames, and I also know plenty of adults who use nicknames to show affection. That’s why I have friends called things such as Genesis and Wolf – their names may actually be Sean and Patrick, but frequently answer to either or.

That said, there is still a clear indication that nicknames are being given relatively frequently as first names. For example, I recently met a rather stressed looking mother in a grocers, who had 3 young children running circles around her. When she snapped at them, she called them Molly, Teddy and Connie. They could be Mary, Theodore and Constance, but I find myself doubting that given the popularity of nicknames these days. It’s interesting to note how similar the nicknames are, though. They all end in an ‘ee’ sound and all contain double letters in the middle. Last year I was on the train to Skegness, and sat near to a mother with five children: Maddy, Katie, Alfie, Gabbie and James. Only one child [James] wasn’t referred to with a nickname, and since the other names are generally relatively popular in their own right, he could be the only one with a ‘formal’ first name. If we were to assume that all five bore the most popular version of their name, they would be:

Madison (#67), not Maddie (#300), Maddison (#81), Madeleine (#140), Madeline (#223) or Maddy (#1815)

Katie (#40), not Katherine (#218), Kate (#210) or Katy (#315)

Alfie (#4), not Alfred (#154)

Gabriella (#105), not Gabbie (#5707) or Gabrielle (#229)

James (#10), not Jim (#1620) or Jimmy (#307) 

I also met a Beau and Belle twinset last week, and was initially non-plussed by the names. I’m surprised it’s the first real time I’ve met a twinset such as this, but even more so when I discovered that they were actually a Benjamin/Annabel. It was a rather sweet surprise. It’s also a good moment to mention how much I love the German pronunciation of Benjamin – they say the j like a y, so it’s Ben-yah-meen.

Now, here’s an interesting thought. I met a nice lady in Reading last week who mentioned her unexplainable hatred for the name Matt. She said she just couldn’t get her head around it. I understand what she means – I’m no fan of the name Daisy, whilst others go completely nuts for the name. I really can’t give you a good reason not to use Daisy, like many females I spent hours creating daisy chains as a child, but I just can’t bring myself to say I like her as a name, because I don’t.

In the celeb-world, Billie Piper is expecting her second child, a sibling for son Winston James. I’ll admit, the choice of Winston from her was a surprise for me, since she’s called Billie Paul (born Lianne, but her parents later changed their minds and re-named her Billie) and her siblings are Charlie, Harley (f) and Elle. It’s also worth noting how similar hers and her sibling names are: two rhyme and the other two share a double l in the middle of them. I still doubt that means Billie is considering the name Winifred, no matter how delightful the name may be.

Categories: Name Spot of the Wek | 5 Comments

Post navigation

5 thoughts on “Name Spot of the Week: The Missing Notebook

  1. I have to say, I love Annabel and Benjamin. Having them together as a twinset is sublime — and having Beau and Belle as the nicknames just rocks my world.


  2. namemuststay

    I get where you’re coming from with Daisy. If it wasn’t a beloved family name for me, I would probably go nowhere near it. I DO love Daisy, but I’m massively biased!


  3. Pingback: ‘Beatrix/Beatrice Has No Decent Nicknames’ « 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 )

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

Create a free website or blog at

%d bloggers like this: