How popular is the baby name Evelina in the United States right now? How popular was it historically? Find out using the graph below! Plus, see baby names similar to Evelina and check out all the blog posts that mention the name Evelina.

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Popularity of the Baby Name Evelina

Number of Babies Named Evelina

Born in the U.S. Since 1880

Posts that Mention the Name Evelina

The Baby Name Louvima (a 3-in-1 Royal Tribute)

Lord Francis Knollys was a close friend of the British royal family. So close that he served as as Private Secretary to the Sovereign under both Edward VII (from 1901 to 1910) and George V (from 1910 to 1913).

It’s not too surprising, then, that both of Knollys’ children were named in honor of the royals. His daughter was named Alexandra Louvima Elizabeth (b. 1888) and his son was named Edward George William (b. 1895).

Alexandra, Elizabeth, Edward, George, William — these are all names we know.

But “Louvima”? Where did that come from?

Turns out it’s an acronym. Edward VII (who was still “Albert Edward, Prince of Wales” back in 1888) and his wife Alexandra had six children: Albert Victor, George (later George V), Louise, Victoria, Maud, and Alexander John. “Louvima” was created from the first letters of the names of Edward’s three daughters:

Louvima = Louise + Victoria + Maud

louvima
Louise (b. 1867), Maud (b. 1869) and Victoria (b. 1868)

The papers picked up on the interesting birth name right away. Here’s an article that appeared in a New Zealand newspaper in July of 1888:

Few people have noticed the second name bestowed on Sir Francis Knollys’ little daughter, who was baptised on May 5. Sir Francis, as every one knows, is the energetic and popular private secretary of the Prince of Wales, and in a torrent of grateful loyalty he has called his firstborn “Louvima,” a marvellous amalgam of the Christian names of the three young Princesses of Wales, “Louisa [sic], Victoria, Maud.” Since the expectant Mrs. Kenwigs invented the name of Morleena we have had nothing quite so good as this.

(Morleena Kenwig is a character in the Charles Dickens novel Nicholas Nickleby.)

Here’s a second-hand account printed in Notes & Queries that same month:

Louvima, a new Christian Name — It is stated in the newspapers — but it may not be correct; for, as Theodore Hook said to the credulous old lady, “Those rascally newspapers will say anything” — that Sir Francis Knollys, private secretary to H.R.H. the Prince of Wales, has named his first-born Louvima, which is an ingenious amalgam of the names of the three daughters of the Prince — Louise, Victoria, and Maud.

After the news of Louvima Knollys got out, the rare name Louvima was given to baby girls in England (and other English-speaking regions) considerably more often. This lasted until the late 1910s.

Here are some of the Louvimas I found:

  • Hilda Louvima Pritchard, born in 1888 in England
  • Evangeline Louvima Brumbley, born in 1888 in England
  • Louvima Perline Ann Cunningham, born in 1889 in Arkansas
  • Lilian Louvima Daisy Blake, born in 1889 in South Africa
  • Louvima Primrose Massey-Hicks, born in 1890 in South Africa
  • Nina Louvima Shann, born in 1892 in New Zealand
  • Louvima Evelina Youell, born in 1893 in England
  • Louvima Griswold, born in 1894 in Idaho
  • Annie Louvima Brooksband, born in 1895 in England
  • Rita Louvima Faulkner, born in 1898 in Canada
  • Louvima Marie Crosson, born in 1901 in Florida
  • Louvima Naylor, born in 1902 in Iowa
  • Laura Louvima McKenzie, born in 1902 in Michigan
  • Florence Louvima Major, born in 1908 in Canada

I also discovered more than a few horses and boats named Louvima during this period.

One of those horses, in fact, belonged to the royal family itself. Which makes me wonder: who came up with the name originally? Was it Francis Knollys’ invention, or did he get the idea from someone in the royal family? Maybe one of the sisters? (The Romanov sisters — Olga, Tatiana, Maria and Anastasia — referred to themselves by the acronym “OTMA.”)

Louvima Knollys grew up very close to the royal family. In the photo below, taken in 1897, she’s posing with Queen Alexandra. The Queen is dressed as Marguerite de Valois, wife of Henry IV of France, and Louvima is dressed as a pageboy.

louvima knollys and queen alexandra

Louvima married twice, and had a son with her first husband (who died during WWI). Through her son she had four grandchildren and at least six great-grandchildren. As far as I can tell, Louvima’s unique name has not (yet) been passed down to any of her descendants.

Sources:

  • Bede, Cuthbert. “Louvima, a New Christian Name.” Notes & Queries 7 Jul. 1888: 6.
  • Dutt, William Alfred. The King’s Homeland. London: Adam and Charles Black, 1904.
  • Francis Knollys, 1st Viscount Knollys – The Peerage
  • Ladies’ Gossip.” Otago Witness 6 Jul. 1888: 33.
  • Legge, Edward. King George and the Royal Family. London: Grant Richards Ltd., 1918.
  • “Society Wedding.” Straits Times 20 Dec. 1911: 7.

Images:

  • “The three daughters of King Edward VII and Queen Alexandra” (1883) by Sydney Prior Hall
  • Photo of Queen Alexandra and Louvima Knollys from the National Portrait Gallery

[Does Louvima remind anyone else of Luzviminda?]


Baby Name Needed – Old-Fashioned but Not-Too-Popular Girl Name

A reader named Debra wrote to me a few days ago about her situation:

I’ve loved the names Sophia and Olivia for about 10 years, but now as I am about to have my own baby girl, these names are very popular. I’m looking for girl names that are old fashioned, a tad unusual, and don’t clash with our names, Nathan and Debra. So far Silvia/Silvie is my front runner but my husband is not in love with it. I’d love suggestions.

Many expectant parents seem to be in the same boat regarding names like Sophia and Olivia (…and Isabella, and Hannah, and so on).

Luckily, there are plenty of other old-fashioned names out there. For instance, none of the following are super-popular on a national level right now (though a few, like Valeria and Lydia, do have the potential to become popular in the next few years):

Aurelia
Augusta
Camilla
Celia
Cora
Coralie
Cordelia
Dorothy
Elodie
Eloisa
Evelina
Flora
Georgia
Harriet
Helena
Josephine
Lelia
Lydia
Matilda
Melisande
Octavia
Phoebe
Ramona
Rosa
Rosella
Rosina
Rowena
Sabina
Sibylla
Stella
Theresia
Valeria
Viola
Violet
Willa

I’d intended to exclude all D- and N-names (for a distinct first initial)…but Dorothy I kept. I like how it both begins with a D (as Debra does) and includes a Th (as Nathan does). A cute way to pay tribute to Mom and Dad, maybe?

Let me know what other names you would suggest!

Update: The baby is here! Scroll down to the last comment to find out which name Debra chose.

Old-Fashioned Female Names that Still Sound Old-Fashioned

Sophia, Isabella, Hannah, Olivia… these names were once considered old-fashioned. Now that they’re the 4th, 7th, 8th and 9th most popular baby names in the nation, though, they are quite in fashion. This is an unfortunate turn of events for those who once loved the “antique” sound of these names.

Now the big question is: Are there any good, old-fashioned names left out there? Ones that don’t look like they’ll be skyrocketing in popularity anytime soon?

I think so. Here are a few I’ve come up with:

Most of these are fashionably dense with vowels, making them more sonorous than the likes of, say, Myrtle and Mildred. Still, they’ve remained under the radar. (Think any of them will ever catch on?)