Posts Tagged With: Fred

Names Like George

I think the name George is fantastic, and many here in England&Wales seem to be on my wavelength, as he ranked at #12 in 2011.

So of course, it seems apt to put together a list of similar-ish names, should you not be enthralled by the idea of using a popular name. The majority of the names on the list fit into the old-timey-esque one syllable category.

Fitz

Once upon a time the nickname for names such as Fitzroy, this name has been used by itself since the 19th century. It derives from Old French, and means son.

Floyd

A relatively common surname, turned first name. The name itself derives from Lloyd: the slightly altered English version of Welsh name Llwyd which means grey.

Fred

Originally a short form of Frederick, but also of Alfred, Wilfred etc.

Fritz

A nickname for Friedrich, the German form of Frederick. During the First World War it came into use as slang for German soliders, just as the British soldiers came to be nicknamed Tommy.

Gage

More usually an English surname, it derives from Old French and means fixed measure. I remember being asked about gages in my driving test.

Gale

Another adoption of a surname as a first name, with Gale first being used as a first name circa the 18th century. The name derives form Old English and means light, pleasant, merry. It could also have links to Norman French word gaoile, which means gaol (or jail).

Gray/ Grey

Two spellings for the colour which is a mix of white and black.

Gregg

The name Gregg is usually taken as a short form of Gregory: the English form of the Latin name Gregorius, which means to watch.

Mal

Short form of Malcolm, and indeed the name of my very own Grandad.

Ray

Another name once simply a nickname, Ray has been used independently since around the 19th century. For me, this name is wonderful, not least because someone commented that I was a little ray of sunshine only the other day.

 

Categories: Alternative Names | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

John Smith

He’s the nom de plume of Doctor Who, and he’s also the man opening the London Olympics tonight:

Well, maybe not 😉

As it so happens, the guy whose hands wave around at the beginning, and voice exclaims John Smith nearer the end is Osama from yesterday. This video was filmed by me at the technical rehearsal on Wednesday, and look out for the exploding balloons in the bottom right hand corner. I’m still impressed with my luck of getting a practically front row ticket too 🙂

The name John Smith is in theory one of the most popular names out there, given that Smith is one of the most popular surnames in the English speaking world and the name John having centuries of popularity under his belt.

Perhaps in these more modern days, here in the UK he would actually be Jack Smith instead – especially for the under 20s given that Jack reigned as the most popular name in England&Wales from 1996-2008.

The name is often used as a generic name to represent the everyday man, given the commonplace of both names.

An interesting exchange in Doctor Who sums the attitude to this name up nicely for me, when the Doctor gives his name as John Smith to a character, who retorts along the lines that nobody’s called that anymore.

One could see this as hinting towards a drive many parents have these days for a more unique name.

It’s also worth talking about the phenomena of the slightly different Alan Smithee. This was the official name used in films by directors who had disowned the film, and thus didn’t want their name in the credits. It was coined in 1968 and discontinued in 2000.

The downfall of the name has often been attributed to a film released in 1997 called An Alan Smithee: Burn Hollywood Burn. It is regarded as one of the worst films of all time, and thus brought harsh negative publicity towards the name Alan Smithee.

Other names like this include the name Joe Bloggs/Fred Bloggs, often used the the UK, Australia and New Zealand, and John Doe, the USA and Canadian equivalent. In both cases, the surnames are more distinctive, whilst the first names remain popular picks.

Other cultural versions of these names include:

  • Israel Israeli, israel
  • Jan Kowalski, poland
  • Jean Dupont, france
  • Jonas&Petras, lithuania
  • Luther Blissett, artists and activists in Europe and America
  • Matti & Maija Meikäläinen, finland
  • Max & Erika Mustermann, germany
  • Medel-Svensson, sweden
  • Ola & Kari Nordmann, norway
  • Seán Ó Rudaí (Sean O’Something), ireland
  • Tadhg an mhargaidh (Tadhg of the markplace), irish version of Average Joe
  • Tauno Tavallinen, finland
  • Tommy Atkins, the British army (dates from the World Wars)

I don’t suppose anyone actually knows a John Smith?

Categories: Olympics | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Create a free website or blog at WordPress.com.