Posts Tagged With: Ruby

Family Tree Alternatives

Usually when people ask for alternatives of other names, they tend to look at similar-sounding names. However, in this post we’re delving into names related to popular names and picking out some intriguing possibilities for alternative names.

1. Harry and Amelia

Harry was born as a nickname for Henry, and these days is living it large in the #1 spot. Another offshoot of Henry is the Scottish variant Hendry.

Whilst choices were plentiful for Harry, the pool of potential names is smaller for Amelia and basically revolves around the same letter combinations, e.g. Amalia, Amélie etc. Perhaps the best bet is Emelia.

2. Oliver and Olivia

There are plenty of weird and wonderful international variants of Oliver, but I’m rather partial to Noll, which is an old medieval diminutive for the name.

Oliver and Olivia are interrelated, and my favourite other female name in the family tree is almost certainly Olivette.

3. Jack and Lily

There were quite literally a bazillion choices for both names here; in terms of Jack I’m thinking either the Welsh Ianto, or the French Yannick. The name Ianto is a diminutive, like Jack, of Ifan which is the Welsh form of John. As for Yannick, he comes from Yann which is the Breton form of John.

However, a last minute acknowledgement must go to the name Manech: he’s the Basque form of Jean, and Jean is of course the French form of John.

Then we have Lily, and my initial thought was the Scottish form of Lilian: Lillias or Lileas. Or go psuedo-chemistry with Lilium.

4. Alfie and Jessica

The complete opposite of the above pair of names, in that both Alfie and Jessica have few options. Alfie is, of course, a nickname for Alfred, and my best suggestion is Avery: a medieval form of Alfred.

Jessica is a toughie for the simple reason that she has few cousins, however Iscah is an intriguing possibility, being a possible source of the name Jessica.

5. Charlie and Emily

Charlie is a nickname for Charles, and in France they have Charlot. Anyone familiar with the French language will note that the t is silent, thus the name does not sound like Charlotte, more like SHAR-lo.

With Emily we encounter the same problems as with Amelia; there is a tenuous link between Emily and the Welsh name Emlyn, but alas, Emlyn is technically a male name. Best suggestion is likely to be either Emmy, Émilienne or Aemilia.

6. Thomas and Sophie

The Welsh short form for Thomas is Twm (said something like tuwm), or alternatively there is the Scottish variant Tavish.

As for Sophie, in Scandinavia they use Vivi as a nickname for Sofia.

7. Jacob and Ruby

There are, again, a plethora of options to choose from here, but I’m opting for the short’n’sweet option with Jeb.

Being a word name makes Ruby difficult, but the French for Ruby is Rubis and the German is Rubin.

8. James and Grace

For James, I would opt for Jem, which is an old and now rarely used nickname for James.

Ditto Ruby when it comes to Grace; once more turning to French we have both Grâce and Joliesse as translations. The former isn’t so practical, given that the French pronounce it to sound more like grass than grace.

9. Joshua and Ava

We’re venturing into the Arab world for Joshua, with the name Isa; the Arabic form of Jesus.

As for Ava, Chava is undoubtedly a wonderful suggestion – being the Hebrew form of Eve – but she’s mostly reserved to parts of the world not inflicted with the word chav. There is also the option of Hungarian name Évike.

10. William and Isabella

With William, I’m thinking maybe the German and Dutch dimiutive, Wim. Aside from him, we also have the option of Wiley, or even the Dutch Pim.

As for Isabella, being related to Elizabeth gives us plenty of options. As for the ones vaguely similar to Isabella, we have the German name Ilsa, which is a diminutive of Elisabeth.

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Spot of the Week: The Eccentric Local Village

Before I get stuck in with various names I’ve seen out and about of late, there’s some housekeeping which I need mention. As you may be aware the Paralympics kick off this week and my first batch of shifts kicks in earnest off this Friday until the following Tuesday. They all begin at 6am. Soooo, there’s a good chance I may go M.I.A. during that time because I’m not a morning person by any means and the shock of having to alter my sleep-wake cycle to accommodate this change will likely stamp out any and all enthusiasm for writing about names that I possess.

There’s another piece of exciting news from my life that sets up the first name I’ve seen out and about this week. I passed my driving test many months ago now, but have finally got around to buying a car to complement my licence. The name of the guy who sold me my gorgeous is-it-green-is-it-blue Corsa was Shamus, which is of course the English spelling for Seamus.

Now, for something completely eccentric that is happening at a village down the road from me:

Scarecrow festival

Yup, scarecrows have taken over. The local primary school had it’s charges colour in pictures of scarecrows, and then name them. Here’s a quick rundown of the names chosen by the younger generation, plus a picture taken of my favourite name:

Albert; Barney; Bill; Billy; Boby; Fifi; Freddie; Freddy; Hardy; Neddy; Olly; Rainbow; Sammy; Sid; Werzel.

Scarecrow festival

Notice how almost ALL of them were nicknames? Yup, me too. As for the names of the children:

Ashanti; Bradley; Callum; Emily; Freddie; Kara; Katie; Kenny; Leo; Leyton; Lily; Luke; Matthew; Megan; Rose; Ruby; Zak

Finally, here’s a cheery scarecrow duo:

Scarecrow festival

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Weekend Post: Good, Fresh, Uncomplicated Names

Eat’s ethos

Since I shared this photo in last week’s Spot post, I’ve been thinking about the Eat ethos, which is good, fresh, uncomplicated food.

What would be the naming equivalent?

Let’s break it down.

FRESH

Fresh is often used (and I’m particularly guilty of this one) as another way to say unusual, but one could also see it as a name that hasn’t been overexposed.

In the end I settled for 4 set criteria for a name to pass this category and go on to the next category. For a name to be fresh in my eyes, it must not be:

  • A name that has been in the Top 100 for 10 years at some point in time
  • A name that ever been #1
  • A name that has been given to a high profile celeb offspring
  • A name that has risen more than 100+ places in the Top 500 since 2000

Taking this into consideration, names that fail this category include:

  1. Amber
  2. Amelie (up 1420 since 2000)
  3. Chloe
  4. Harry
  5. Jack
  6. Kayden (up 1326 since 2000)
  7. Lexi (up 1949 since 2000)
  8. Oliver
  9. Suri
  10. Thomas

GOOD

For a name to be good, I believe it has to have little negative connections such as an evil forebearer (whether fictional or not) or less-than-lovely meaning.

8 names that would fall down at this hurdle, but would’ve passed the previous category include:

  1. Adolf – self explanatory
  2. Azrael – aka The Angel of Death
  3. Bellatrix – think Harry Potter
  4. Dolores – means sorrows + think Harry Potter
  5. Gretel – Hansel&Gretel tale
  6. Louhi – name of a death goddess in Finnish mythology
  7. Memphis – the US city known for crime
  8. Mordred – rival of Arthur in Arthurian legend
  9. Nuala – the Nuala in Irish mythology was less-than-nice
  10. Persephone – means murder /to destroy

UNCOMPLICATED

What makes a name complicated? One could say it is a name which causes little spelling/pronunciation issues, such as James and Ruby.

8 names that fail this test, but passed the previous two include:

  1. Caoimhe – pronounced KEE-va
  2. Ceridwen – pronounced ke-RID-wen
  3. Eluned – pronounced EH-lee-ned
  4. Heliodoro – just generally a mouthful of a name
  5. Joachim/Joaquin – just generally a name that causes me a headache when it comes to pronunciation
  6. Schuyler – pronounced SKY-ler
  7. Solveig – pronounced SOL-vay
  8. Xanthe – pronounced ZAN-the

So, without further ado, here’s the list of  some of the names I think  pass all three tests:

BOYS

  1. Angus
  2. August
  3. Barnaby
  4. Bruno
  5. Caspian
  6. Cosmo
  7. Ever
  8. Ezra
  9. Fergus
  10. Gray
  11. Indigo
  12. Ivor
  13. Rio

GIRLS

  1. Avalon
  2. Blossom
  3. Coral
  4. Gwen
  5. Hero
  6. Ingrid
  7. Josie
  8. Lux
  9. Nova
  10. Orla
  11. Roma
  12. Rosemary
  13. Vera

Do you dispute any of these choices? Are there any names you think qualify too?

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Spot of the Week: Jubilee Weekend

You may be wondering where I was yesterday and why I didn’t post this yesterday (although with the magic of blogging, this post will appear to have been posted on Sunday, as it should have been). I was in London, sadly not stood in the rain waving a Union Flag enthusiastically in the rain. I’m just not that into the whole concept of getting soaking wet. Where was I?

Here:

Games Maker Training HQ

Yes, I am now officially volunteering during the Olympics, well, strictly speaking I’m on Paralymic duty, but I’m still chuffed to bits because I’ll be hanging out at the Olympic Stadium itself. Fun fact: My Dad is at the Olympic Stadium to volunteer during the frickin’ Opening Ceremony. Jealous.

But anyway, it’s almost a good thing I held off until today to talk names because I have plenty to talk about.

First up, on the way to the Olympic Park last night to meet up with my Dad, I shared the tube train with several sodden Brits who had braved the weather. One particular family caught my eye because they’d obviously come prepared with spare jumpers. The name of the two kids? Bernie and Teddie. I can’t confirm as to whether they are Bernie and Teddie or Bernard and Theodore, but either way kudos to the parents, I love their names.

At my actual training day event thingie, I was sat between a  20-something Ruby and a Christos. Both were Uni students, one studing medicine, the other finance. A word on Ruby though, she was a Chinese girl I believe, and Ruby is just her English name. Her real name? Lok. It reminded me of my sister’s Chinese friend, and her English name is Yoyo.

Oh, and one of the less enjoyable parts of the day was that I tackled the M1 for the first time, ever. Normally I take the train to London, but since I’ve just recently passed my driving exam, the motorway was my method of travel. For those not familiar with the whole driving licence scheme is the UK, it boils down to this:

  • Age 17, one can apply for a provisional licence, which allows you to drive with an ‘L’ plate.
  • With a provisional licence you cannot drive on the motorway (which are the big daddies of the road system) and you must be accompanied by someone over 21 years of age, who has held their licence for more than 3 years.
  • If you pass driving an automatic, you can only drive an automatic, i.e. your licence does not allow for you to drive a manual. If you pass driving a manual (like me, woop!) then you can drive both.
  • You must pass the driving theory test before sitting the practical driving test.
  • Once you’ve passed, it is optional to display ‘P’ plate, which signals that you’ve only just passed your test. It’s like a call for other drivers to play nice, as you’re still new to the road.

What this has to do with names is that I passed in a Vauxhall Corsa, so have naturally been thinking about the name Corsa? Yes, it’s the name of a car, but it reminds me of sweetly Cora. I may be tooting an unconvinced audience, but it made me ponder for thought.

As for pictures, I joyfully introduce you to the name of two London Underground/Overground stops, one is for ye who likes place names-with-an-x-in them:

Hoxton Overground Station

The other is for those who secretly crush on the name Dolly:

Dollis Hill Underground Station

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Waterloo Road

l-r teachers Chris, Helen, Grantly and Max, from revellation.co.uk

Last week we spent two days covering names from Downton Abbey, and I’m acutely aware that I still owe you all part. III of that particular series. However today,  in classic lou-style, we’re going in a completely different direction. Waterloo Road.

Those who do not live in the UK may not be familiar with the program, as it is another show of British origin and transmission. Like Downton Abbey, the name of the show is also the name of the setting – but this time the setting is a rather more modern one; a rather more chaotic one. It’s also award-winning – it won the most popular drama at the National Television Awards in 2011, and at the 2012 ceremony that title was taken from it by Downton Abbey.

Waterloo Road airs on the BBC, whilst ITV is the home of Downton Abbey, and it’s setting is a failing school in a not-so-affluent part of Greater Manchester.

Needless to say, some of the names on the show fit the surroundings. This is just a small selection of some of the names which have appeared on Waterloo Road since it’s inception in 2006.

Any name with an (*) next to it implies my belief that the name may be a nickname.

TEACHERS ET AL.

Bridget

Anglicised form of the name Brigid, means might and power.

Candice

Alternative spelling of Candace, which was once a title of the Queens of Ethiopia in ancient times.

Clarence (parent)

From the Latin title Clarensis – the dukedom of Clarence was created in the 14th century for Prince Lionel, son of King Edward III.

Eleanor

variant of Alianor, which is most likely a medieval Provençal form of Helena.

Estelle

derived from the Latin stella, which means star.

Grantly

presumeably a variation of Grant, which either derives from the Old English gránian which means to groan/murmur, or the Old French grant, meaning great, big.

Izzie*

likely to be a short form of Isabel, which is a medieval form of Elizabeth.

Janeece

an interesting take on the name Janice, which is a modern elaboration of the name Jane – she herself a feminine form of John.

Jez*

the name of a male character, could be short for James, Jared or Jeremy…or indeed, something else entirely.

Lorna

feminine form of the name Lorne, an ancient district in Scotland.

Maggie*

nickname of Margaret.

Nelson

originally an English surname, means son of Neil.

Ruby

a popular gemstone name for girls these days – Ruby was #1 in 2007 in England&Wales.

Steph*

usually a short form of Stephanie, the feminine form of Stephen – a name which means crown.

STUDENTS

Aleesha

a variant spelling of Alicia, a name that derives from Alice, who means noble. (more Aleesha)

Bex*

I know several girls named Bex, and for all of them it is a short form of the name Rebecca.

Bolton

the name of an area in Greater Manchester.

Denzil

a variation of the name Denisel, a medieval form of Dennis.

Earl

an aristocratic title, originally from the Old English eorl, meaning nobleman.

Harley (m)

derives from the Old English hara and léah, meaning hare clearing.

Jodie

a variant of either Judy or Josie.

Jonah

a Biblical name meaning dove.

Madi*

most likely a short form of either Madison or Madeline.

Marley (m)

derives from the Old English mearth meaning weasel or pine marten.

Mika (f)

in Japan, this is a feminine name meaning beautiful fragrance. Mika Newton represented Ukraine in Eurovision 2011.

Phoenix (f)

a legendary bird, this name is considered unisex.

Rhona

possibly an adaptation of Rona, the name of a Scottish island. It could also come from Rhone, Rhondda or Rhonabwy – or even a smoosh of Rhoda and Anna.

Ronan

an Irish name meaning seal.

Ros*

I know a Rosamund and a Roisin who both go by Ros.

Ruth

derived from Hebrew and means friend.

Sambuca

the name of an Italian anise-flavoured liqueur; character often went by the short form, Sam.

Trudi

the name Trudy derived as a nickname of Gertrude, a name which means spear of strength. (more Gertrude)

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Weekend Post: Girlish Nicknames on Boys

Tiff Needell, from wikipedia.org

Last week we talked Boyish Nicknames on Girls, and Anna suggested that we make it a two-parter and look into Girlish Nicknames on Boys. It’s certainly a trickier subject to attack, since there are parents who will refuse point-blank to use a name once it goes to the girls on the grounds of bullying. Since I view the future as unpredictable timey-whimey, I don’t particularly view this argument as having solid grounds on which to abandon names you love.

I see nothing wrong with using slightly more feminine names for males, only the other day I was thinking about the plus sides of using Piper as a male name, and still thinks the lads can rock the name Harper. Personally, I know that if I ever were to use the name Cassius, he’d end up being referred to as Cass or Cassie. And Jenson? I’d rather use the cheery Sunny than the slightly less-upbeat spelling of Sonny.

Tiff Needell and Ruby Walsh are two sportsmen who go by less-than-masculine nicknames, but that hasn’t hurt their careers one bit. Tiff is a former racing driver who came into this world as Timothy, whilst Ruby started off life as Rupert and is a jockey.

Some say that not gender-specific names breed confusion, and I can’t argue against that. It does. I was given the book Housewife on Top last Christmas, or was the one before that? It could even have been a cheeky christmas/birthday present, come to think of it. It’s the third book in the series, so how was I to know that Helen lived in the appartement below a gay couple. Especially when they were called Paul and Sally. I spent much of the book wondering why Sally appeared to think she was a guy, and why Helen had the hots for her, and then it dawned on me that Sally was short for Salvador.

Then we have my brother, Jack – who is more often than not referred to as Jackie/Jacqui or even Jacqueline. This is because, like me, he has curly hair which grows faster than is really natural. There have been times in our childhood where his hair has been roughly the same length as mine – I kid ye not, so there must be people out there who think I have three sisters. Or a sister and two dwarfs for siblings, since the two ‘legit’ sisters are frequently referred to as Happy and Dopey.

There is some overlap between male and female nicknames. Allie can be short for both Alexander and Alison, and I wouldn’t bat an eyelid if you call little Charlotte or Charles by the name Charlie. There are times, though, when a little less vagueness in gender of the name occurs. Like Olly is more likely to be short for Oliver than Olivia, Ruby is more likely to be a female name than short for Reuben. I won’t lie, the idea of using Ruby in this capacity intrigues me. It especially works when you think that the German word for Ruby is rubin, which sounds like a cross between the names Robin and Reuben.

Speaking of our favourite O- names: Oliver and Olivia are top of the pecking order in England&Wales. Both could shorten to Olly, both could also shorten to Liv. Steve Tyler of Aerosmith has a daughter named simply Liv. In a similar vein, William could easily shorten to Lil; Daniel to Nell; Samuel to Mel. I also know of a Lenny whose name has morphed over time to Lainey.

One name that has been growing on me as of late is Beck. Normally given as a short form of Rebecca, he could easily transfer over to be associated with Becket(t), or maybe even Benedict. My sister informs me that there is a male character named Beck in the tween show Victorious.

Speaking of the box, there was a man named Jody on the news this morning. The name Jody is a legitimate short form of Joseph – although most men named Joseph seem to prefer to go through life as Joe instead.

The name Scout is emerging as a female choice, thanks to my sister’s favourite book, To Kill A Mockingbird, but he still has potential for the lads. I have a friend who suggested him as a short form of Sebastian. It’s certainly an eclectic option, but worth a look into.

Let’s end the post on a bold suggestion: Cleo, which I’ve genuinely been thinking about of late. It starts off with a French play, L’Avare, which has a male lead character called Cléante. The name is roughly said as CLAY-ohnt, so maybe say it CLAY-oh, not CLEE-oh? The name itself could possibly come from Cleanthes, which itself could come from the Greek kleos, which means glory and is also exactly where we get Clio from.

Not such a crazy idea after all.

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Names Tipped For Stardom

What names are looking like they might explode over the coming years.

Well, one of the major factors in a names popularity depends on the current trend in names. For female names at the moment, people are choosing between the girly (Isabella, Ava) and the not-so-girly (Harper, Finley). Currently, it’s the girly names that dominate the top spots. But, could all that change? As for boys, well, there are names that are consistently in the top spots each year (James, Matthew) and then there are the wildcards (Aiden) that appear due to a sudden preference for that name.

What characteristics will place a name in a likely position for a comeback? Well, if the name is similar to another popular name (Such as how Maribelle is similar to Isabella) it will begin to rise in the name charts, as parents who love the top name look for alternatives.

Another is that of names that have been unpopular for decades, and are beginning to look much more appealling nowadays to parents. These are names such as John and Mary. These names were once top spot names; they have since fallen very much down the name charts. Does this place them in favour for a comeback?

Also, sounds are very important in name, especially for girls. We like how Sophia sounds, so will that mean we’ll begin to like Sylvia soon too? We love Jack and Jacob, so will this mean we’ll start to go crazy about Jake too?

So, here are a list of names I believe are poised to become popular:

Eve, an alternative to Ava and Eva. It has biblical roots, which could help for when people start to turn from the made-up names towards more traditional names once more.

Amelia, it’s similarity to top names Emma and Emily mean it’s bound to start climbing. Amelia is already in the top 20 in Europe, and European trends tend to be a few years ahead of American ones this name looks set to storm the USA.

Violet, Floral names such as Lily are popular, and this name is certainly enjoying more popularity than before.

Lila, the two ‘l’s make it a perfect replacement for Ella. It’s also similar to Lily, another name currently big in Europe.

Verity. We love Grace at the moment. Could this be its successor?

Ivy, another floral name.

Nancy and Wendy. Old-school favourites. Perhaps ready to make a comeback?

Sylvia or Sylvie. Both similar sounding to current favourite Sophia.

Ruby, like Amelia, this name in hot in Europe at the moment.

Leonie, a hot favourite in Germany, could this name’s popularity spread?

Matilda, this name has a lot going for it. It can be shortened to either a boyish nickname such as Mattie, or a girly one such as Tilly.

Harper and Scout. The novel ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’ could help boost both these names. These names are both part of the trend of giving girls more boyish names, and the literary association can only boost their popularity further.

Camden, it’s similarity to Charles and Charlie may place it in a good spot to become their replacement. It’s also a place name.

Milo, could the ‘o’ ending place this name in favour? The similar sounding name Leo has recently started to climb, will the same happen for this name?

Theodore, this name has been low for a few years now, it’s nickname of ‘Theo’ means that this name has the potential to start climbing.

Xavier. The ‘x’ at the start of this name gives it a rather unique feel to it. Names such as Felix and Max are climbing, perhaps due to their ending of ‘x’, so Xavier should start rising as well soon.

Ryder and River. Ryder is a surname that has started to leap up the name charts for boys, as names such as Harper and Sawyer start to drift towards becoming feminine, this puts Ryder in a good position to replace them. River is a name with links to the natural world, as the world’s population face Climate Change, people are starting to become more ‘in-tune’ with the world around them. Could this translate into names?

Kai. It has roots in many cultures, and as people are more likely to have a partner of another race due to the surge in movement of people between countries, its likely that names that appeal to many cultures will become more popular.

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