Puritan Names – Fly-fornication, Free-gifts, Faint-not, Dust

To follow up on the names of the 17th-century Clap children, here are a few Puritan-era male names from H.L. Mencken’s The American Language (1919):

Be-faithful
Dust
Fear-not
Faint-not
From-above
Free-gifts
Fly-fornication
Hope-still
Increase
Joy-again
More-trial
More-fruit
Praise-God
Stand-fast
Sin-deny
The-Lord-is-near

2 Responses to Puritan Names – Fly-fornication, Free-gifts, Faint-not, Dust

  1. Fly-fornication sounds like that bit from King Lear: “The wren goes to’t, and the small gilded fly doth lecher in my sight. Let copulation thrive!” I don’t have my copy of _The American Language_ to hand, and if I did I might not be able to look up any sources that Mencken cites. These are just bizarre enough that Mencken probably didn’t have to make them up.

  2. […] not all, but some — would invent a name using a word or phrase from the Bible. (Example: Fly-fornication.) Sikhs, on the other hand, determine the first letter of a baby’s name by picking a random […]

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