I love the name Maisie, for a variety of reasons, and despite not being a fan by any means of similar-sounding sister Daisy. Mais also happens to be one of my favourite French words – it means but. I remember a French teacher of mine trying to coax us out of the standard ‘oui, mais’ response when engaged in a debate.
Maisie does originally derive as a nickname – she’s one of the many Margaret offshoots, along with the aformentioned Daisy. Strictly speaking, she comes from Margaret’s Scottish form of Mairead. However, I had my mind on another name the other day, and realised she too could shorten to Maisie – fantastic! And thus I went in search of more:
I’m suggesting this name on what I shall dub the Bob-principle, that is, whereby Bob evolved as a nickname for Robert as a slight alteration of his short form – Rob. Plenty of Anastasia/e’s are likely known as Stasie, which rhymes with Maisie, unless you re-jig things to make Stasie sound just like Stacy. The name Anastasia comes from the Greek anastasis which means resurrection.
Maisie is composed of 5 different letters, all of which make a slightly jumbled up appearance in the name Artemis. Shortening Artemis to Maisie rather tickles me somewhat, given that as a child I was confused about the gender of Artemis thanks to Eoin Cowlfer, but Maisie is, frankly, all-girl. Artemis is the Greek Goddess of the moon and hunting and she had a twin brother named Apollo.
The same 5 letters make yet another appearance in a name belonging to a completely different style of names, and this one certainly feels more-girl to me than Artemis, but that’s probably more down to personal opinion than anything else. I don’t think shortening this name to Maisie feels completely natural to me – Jessie probably takes that honour – but it remains another option one could further explore. Jessamine herself evolved as a variant of the name Jasmine, another name which also exists as a possibility but she has the same number of syllables as Maisie, which always makes me question the worth of the nickname.
The name that inspired this post. I stumbled across the name Mazarine about a fortnight ago, and she’s remained on my mind ever since. I recognise that I like her as a name, but couldn’t imagine myself not shortening her to something, so have been dedicating time to exploring the options. Maze was certainly one thought, as were Rin, Azure and Ari. The Azure thought certainly tickled me, since Azure is a shade of blue – and so is Mazarine.
Hello once more to our favourite 5 letters. Like Jessamine, this name doesn’t easily lend itself to the nickname of Maisie, so little Melissa may well end up as a Mel despite your protests. It is a great, if even modern, take on Melissa – as she’s a name one would more likely associate with children of a previous decade, but given that Maisie is certainly enjoying peak popularity right now, she’s certainly a name one would more likely associate with today’s children. I do love the meaning of Melissa – honeybee.
There are plenty of short forms for Rosemary – Romy, Rosie, Marie etc. so there’s plenty of competition if you wish to view it as such. If you think about it, the names Mary and Maisie are pretty similar sounding. There’s also a herb called Rosemary, whose name means dew of the sea. Also, if you switch Rose and Mary you get Mary Rose, the name of Henry VIII’s prized warship for which the common explanation for the name is that is was named after the Tudor Rose and Henry VIII’s sister Mary. It’s currently on display in Portsmouth after being salvaged in the 1980s.
A last minute brainwave of mine was Thomasina, and one I’m reasonably proud of. I then realised whilst writing about her that the similar name Jamesina could also apply which is why these two have been lumped together as one. Both a feminisations of male names which have never enjoyed the popularity of their male counterparts – Thomas and James were both in the Top 10 for 2010 in England&Wales. I’m probably more of a fan of the name Jamesina than Thomasina, although I’ve met few who’ve liked either which likely explains why neither feature highly in the popularity charts.