Posts Tagged With: Embla

5 Alternatives to Freya

I seemed to be inadvertently working my way through the most popular names in England&Wales list with these posts, but that matters not.

The name Freya hit the Top 100 in 1998, and has resided there ever since. In 2011 she ranked at #19, exactly the same as she did in 2010. Freya is an interesting name; she comes from Norse mythology where she is the Goddess of love, beauty and fertility.

When it comes to selecting names for these posts, I like to look at the aspects of the name that makes it so fantastic and match up those qualities with those of other names; hence, the names I’ve collected together are either similar in sound or have similar qualities to Freya.

1. Elska

Like Freya, Elska also has Norse origins: she means love in Old Norse. With no non-English characters, such as å, to deal with, this makes the name more accessible and indeed she has potential to cross into English-speaking use as Freya has done so before her.

2. Feya

Not a Norse name, rather, a Russian name meaning fairy. I added this name in for it’s similarity to Freya in sound.

3. Chaya

This name is from Hindu mythology, where Chaya was the name of the hand maid of Surya. In Sanskrit, the name means shade, shadow, play of light. Also, Chaya exists a a feminine form of Chaim, a Hebrew name meaning light. Like Feya, this name makes an appearance on the list as she shares the ay-ah sound.

4. Embla

Another Norse Mythology name, Embla comes from Old Norse and means elm tree. In Norse Mythology, Embla is the name of the first human female. Like Elska before her, Embla also has potential to cross into English-speaking use (she also happens to be an anagram of Mabel).

5. Iona

Long popular in Scotland and the name of an isle there, this name means yew. Finding the right name for the #5 spot was hard, but for some reason Iona felt like the right name to throw into the mix. Like Freya, she isn’t popular the world over, moreover, only appears in Scotland’s Top 100, so is familiar in the English-speaking world, but only really used widely in one part of the world.

The near-misses: Fauna; Fuschia; Anya; Enya; Astrid; Feray and Elsa.

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Scrabble Names

The names of the eldest 4 kids of the Dutch couple

It may have been a few weeks since news broke about the Dutch couple with five kids, who all have four-letter names using the same four letters (Alex, Lexa, Axel, Xela & Xael), but it continues to remain at the forefront of my mind.

That said, it can get a little forced with an increased number of children. Below is just a selection of attempts at the conundrum by myself and those over at Formspring, with some combinations seeming to work better than others:

  • Aidan: Nadia, Diana, Adian, Andia
  • Alice: Celia, Lacie
  • Amy: Mya, May
  • Dolly: Lloyd, Dyoll, Doyll
  • Eden: Dene, Ened, Nede, Need, Ende, Edne
  • Enzo: Zeno, Nezo, Ezon, Onez
  • Inez: Nezi, Enzi
  • Jonah: Onjah, Johan, Johna
  • Leah: Hale, Aleh, Elah, Hael
  • Leia: Alie, Ilea
  • Lena: Nela, Lane
  • Leon: Elon, Noel, Nelo
  • Leona: Elona, Enola, Laneo, Noela, Neola
  • Lia: Ali, Lai, Ila
  • Lucas: Claus, Lacus, Calus, Culas
  • Lyra: Aryl, Lary, Raly, Alry, Ryla
  • Mabel: Belma, Ambel, Embla, Melba
  • Milo: Lomi, Moil, Ilmo, Moli, Imli
  • Myra: Mary, Ramy, Amry
  • Ria: Ira, Rai, Ari, Air
  • Vera: Reva, Raev
  • Zane: Neza, Ezna, Anez, Azne

Anyone have any further contributions?

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Weekend Post: The World Beyond Ella Pt.II

 

Kala and Tarzan, from dvdizzy.com

As previously mentioned, I’m not a big fan of the name Ella, but I do find myself fond of several similar names to her. A few weeks ago, I wrote Pt.I of this series which discussed names similar to Ella, in that they too began with the letters El. It therefore seems apt to devote Pt.II of this series to names which end -la, as Ella does.

But this could get a little complicated since many -la names are also -ella names. Think Gabriella, Arabella and so forth, so I’ve resolved this by excluding all such from this list for fear of clutter. It’s not exactly the perfect solution, but frees me up to devote more time to other -la names worthy of attention. This is by no means a complete list, rather a selection of familiar and less-familiar names which end in -la, you may also query as to whether some could truly be alternatives to Ella, but that isn’t really the aim of this post. The aim is to explore names with similar characteristics to Ella, which are of the following do have:

Alaula – Hawaiian name meaning either sunset glow or light of the dawn.

Beulah – Biblical name meaning married. There’s a similar looking name, Betula, which comes from Latin and means birch.

Calendula – A botanical name for the English marigold.

Casmilla – A variant of the name Camilla. There’s also the name Milla, which is a short form of the latter name.

Carla/Carola – Both originally derive from the name Charles, which means man.

Delilah – Biblical name means delicate, weak and thin.

Embla – A name from Norse Mythology, where Embla was the name of the first human female, formed from an elm tree.

Fionnuala – Irish name meaning white shoulder. Variations include Fionnghuala, Finnguala, Finuall and, sigh, Fenella. She also shortens to Nuala, noo-la.

Iola – Likely to be a variation of the name Iole, which is a Greek name meaning violet. The name Viola is worth a mention here, too, alongside the Romanian name Viorel which also means violet.

Kala – Hawaiian version of Sarah, and a Sanskrit name meaning art form, virtue. Also the name of Tarzan’s mother in the Disney film.

Kamala – Sanskrit name meaning lotus.

Lila – She means play in Sanskrit, but may also be taken as a variation of either Leila or Lily. Lila is also the German word for purple. Slightly similar, but not entirely ending -la is the name Lillai, which is a Romani name meaning spring and summer.

Lola – Spanish pet-form of the name Dolores, which means sorrows.

Nahla – Arabic name meaning either drink or bee.

Orla – Also spelt Órlaith. She’s an Irish name meaning golden ruler – I sometimes see the meaning is altered to golden princess.

Perla – Italian form of the name Pearl

Petula – An elaboration of the name Petal, notably seen on British singer Petula Clark.

Thekla – Contracted form of the name Theoclea, which means God’s glory.

Theophila – Feminine form of the name Theophilus, which means friend of God.

Tuathla – Old Irish name meaning ruler of the people. Sometimes seen anglicised to Tuala.

Tula – Sanskrit name meaning balance, scales and likeness.

Twyla – Of uncertain origins, but she has been linked to the name Étoile and Twilight as possibly being an offshoot of either of them. Also spelt Twila.

Ursula – Latin name meaning bear.

Vela – The name of a constellation, originally part of Argo Navis which was later divided into three pieces, creating Vela, Carina and Puppis.

Willa – Feminine form of the name William.

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