Archive for January, 2009

Conventional naming wisdom says that names tend to become popular in 100-year-cycles.  A generation has to die off before the common names of that generation can sound new and fresh again.  This is why many of our great-grandparents’ names (like Clara and Emma) sound cute, but our grandparents’ names (like Barbara and Norma) or parents’ names (like Deborah and Patricia) sound dated and very unfashionable.

However, there are some names that seem to transcend these trends and maintain relatively consistent popularity throughout the years.  I like to think of these as “timeless names” because one could imagine them suiting a person born any time during the last century. (more…)


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Much Ado About: Tova

It’s an appealing foreign name with ties to two different religions and cultures… so why isn’t it seeing more use in the U.S.? (more…)

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What do you get when you throw a name nerd into an Old English graduate course? A list of Roman and Anglo-Saxon names she insists would be perfectly usable on a modern child (much to her husband’s chagrin). (more…)

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People often ask if there are rules for picking a good middle name. Well, there are and there aren’t. There certainly are rules to follow if you merely want to get a name combination that sounds pleasing to the ear. However, it is okay to break some of these rules, especially if you are trying to choose a middle name that honors someone special, has a particular meaning, or would allow you to compromise with the child’s other parent.

Because of that, I prefer to think of these as general guidelines instead of rules, to be used when they are useful, but thoughtfully discarded when they are not. They take into account the rhythm of the names, the sounds within the names, and the names’ overall “feel.” So without further ado, here are my guidelines: (more…)

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Welcome to my blog!  I’m brand new at this, so it might take me a while to figure out how all of this works.  I should start posting in the next few days.

If you have any suggestions for things you’d like to see featured in this blog (such as advice on certain topics, ideas for name lists you’d like me to research, etc.) feel free to email me at bonniebrownhair@yahoo.com.

Otherwise, feel free to just comment and say hi!

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