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

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Popularity of the Baby Name Fearnot

Posts that Mention the Name Fearnot

Choose a Hero for Dionysia Ravenscroft


Remember Dionysia Savage Ravenscroft from the rare names in early Boston post?

Let’s forget for a minute that Ravenscroft is Dionysia’s married name.

Instead, let’s pretend she’s single. Let’s also pretend she’s the main character in a neo-medieval romance. (She’s certainly got the name for it!)

This being the case, what should be the name of her dashing hero?

I’ve picked out 20 contenders — Archdale Palmer, Bagworth Endicutt, Broughton Gedney, Emmorold Wheer, Fairbanck Mattock, Fearnot Shaw, Ffitz-John Winthrop, Grafton Feveryear, Grimstone Bowde, Kinsman Avis, Salmagrave Claxton, Seaborne Cotton, Scarborough Gridley, Skipper Maverick, Tregoweth Tilbort, Trueworthy Folsom, Vigilant Oliver, Wigglesworth Switser, Zibiah Cravath, and Zurishaddai Browne — all from the same early Boston records.

What’s your choice?

Dionysia Ravenscroft shall live happily ever after with...

View Results

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For extra credit, leave a comment about what you think Dionysia’s romance should be about. Does it involve dragons? Pirates? Feudal lords? Garden hermits? A magical dulcimer? An astronomical clock?

Rare Names in Early Boston (1630-1805)

Embroidered by Rooksby Creese
Embroidered by Rooksby Creese, 1700s

Yesterday we looked at popular baby names in early Boston, so today let’s check out some rare names.

Those two books I discovered with the early Boston birth records also included lists of Boston baptisms, marriages and deaths. I scanned all of these lists to come up with the names below:

A: Admonition, Aftar, America, Amiable, Amorel/Amorill, Androse, Aniball, Angola, Annice, Anstis, Apfier, Archdale, Arimnel, Atterlanta, Avery, Avise, Azor

  • America, full name America House, was born in 1660. Could she have been the very first New World baby named America? I can’t find anything earlier…
  • Avery was a baby girl born in 1645. This could be the earliest girl-Avery I know of.

B: Bagwell, Bagworth, Bant, Barbary, Belcher, Benaniwell, Betteris, Bezaliell, Bickford, Blish, Bossenger, Boylston, Bozoun/Bozoon/Bozoune/Bozon/Boozone, Brattle, Broughton, Budd, Bulkely, Buny, Buttalph/Buttolph, Byfield

  • Bagworth‘s full name was the Hobbit-like Bagworth Endicutt.
  • One of the Belchers had the unfortunate full name Belcher Noyes.
  • The Bozoun-group refers mainly to one person: Capt. Bozoun Allen (d. 1652), an immigrant from England who was active in early Boston politics.

C: Caylance, Cazneau, Cerston, Chanterlin, Chuzziah, Civil, Cletord, Clorinda, Coneniah, Consider, Constancy, Cord, Crumil, Cumbey/Cumby, Custin/Custine, Cutting

  • Could Chuzziah be a version of Josiah?
  • Cord‘s full name was Cord Cordis.
  • Cutting‘s full name was Cutting Bean.

D: Decline, Delicia, Derlow, Dermin, Desire ye Truth, Dickery, Digory, Dinisha, Dionysia, Dixe, Dosithea, Dowsabell, Drewry

  • Desire ye Truth gave her daughter the exact same name in 1666. The “ye” here would have been pronounced “the,” as the letter y actually represents the letter thorn.
  • Here’s more on the derivation of Digory.
  • Dionysia‘s full name was the very romantic Dionysia Savage Ravenscroft. (Savage was her maiden name; Ravenscroft was her married name.)

E: Electa, Eleshaway, Eliphall/Elliphall, Ellener, Emmin, Emmorold, Estick, Ethlan, Evos, Exercise

  • Exercise‘s full name was Exercise Blackleech.

F: Fairbanck, Fathergone, Faur, Fearnot/Fearnott, Febee, Ffitz-John, Foreland, Fortescue, Fortune, Freeborn, Freegrace, Freelove, Frizzel

  • Here’s the story behind Fathergone.
  • Fearnot is a Puritan name that needs to make a comeback, I think.

G: Gartright, Gatliffe, Gedny, Gee, Gier, Goodith, Grafton, Gravingham, Griffyn, Grimstone, Grindall, Grizzel/Grizzell

  • Gartright could be a version of Gertrude.
  • Goodith is probably Judith.
  • Grimstone! I love any name that features the word “grim.” I remember Grimsley popping up in Idaho a few years back…

H: Habbakuck/Habbakuk, Habbiah, Hananeel, Hanniball, Harborne, Harbottle, Hazelelponi, Hazelpanah, Heiborne, Hennerina, Hopefor/Hoptfor, Huldy, Humilis, Humility, Huxtable

I: Ibroke, Indego, Ireland, Isanna

J: Jaleham, Jamina, Jarratt, Jeffs, Jehosebath/Johoshabeath/Josabeth/Joshabeth, Jolley, Jolliff, Joylieffe/Joyliffe

K: Kellon, Kinsman, Knight

L: Laomi, Lately, Leech, Lettysse, Lilingston, Love, Lucrana, Lucresia, Ludwick

M: Macartey, Mackworth, Mauditt, Maverick, Maybe, Meddlecot, Mehalaliell/Mahalaleel, Melatiah, Meribah, Metsathiell, Milam, Milcha, Mindwell, Minot, Mordica, Moremercy, Mungo

  • Maverick, born at the end of the 1600s, got his mother’s surname as a first name.

N: Nabby, Nebery, Neezer, Neverson, Newgrace, Niot/Nyott

  • I’m guessing Neezer was derived from Ebenezer.
  • Nyott‘s full name was Nyott Doubt.

O: Onner, Opportunity, Orchard, Oulando, Oxenbridge

  • Opportunity‘s full name was Opportunity Lane.

P: Palfrey, Palsgrove, Palti, Parnell, Parthenia, Pepperrell, Perciful, Perring, Phaline, Phesant, Philadelphia, Philippe/Philippi/Philippy/Phillipee/Phillippi, Pilgrim, Pittie, Pool, Posthumus, Pouning, Preserved, Pyam

  • Perciful looks like Percival under the influence of “merciful.”
  • A number of women had names like Phillippi, which is curious…
  • Posthumus was once kinda trendy.
  • Pilgrim, despite his name, had nothing to do with the Mayflower Pilgrims. (He’s buried at Granary, btw.)

R: Ranis/Ragnis, Recompense, Redemption, Redigon/Redgon/Reddigan/Redigun, Reforme, Rely, Rich-Grace, Ronas, Rooksby/Rooksbey/Rooksbee/Rookby, Roop/Roope, Ryal

  • The Redigon group represents one person (female).
  • The Rooksby group represents several people, all female. You can see embroidered chair seats sewn one of them, Rooksby Creese (1703-1742), at the MFA in Boston.

S: Salmagrave, Salphin, Sarahjah, Satisfaction, Savel/Savell/Savil, Scarborough, Scissilla, Seaborne, Secunda/Secundas, Sendall/Sendell, Shippie, Shoreborne, Shove, Shrimpton, Sibbella/Sibla, Sivil/Sivill, Skinner, Skipper, Smyth, Snell, Spiller, Story, Strange, Sucky, Supply, Sweet

  • Sucky is an regrettable rendering of Sukey, a diminutive of Susanna.

T: Tacey, Teasant, Torshel, Tregoweth, Tremble, Trine, Tristram, Trueworthy, Turfry, Tuttle

  • Tacey has the same root as Tacita: the Latin verb tacere, meaning “to be silent.”
  • Torshel was the twin of Harborne (see above).

U: Union, Unite

V: Verrin, Vigilant, Vsal

W: Waitawhile/Wayte-a-while, Wentworth, Wheelwright, Wigglesworth/Wigleworth, Winborn, Woodbery, Woodmansie, Woodward

  • Waitawhile (female) had the birth name Waitawhile Makepeace. Sounds like a 2-step process for conflict resolution, doesn’t it?

Y: Yelverton

Z: Zerubbabel, Zibiah, Zuriell/Zuryell, Zurishaddai

…So, which of the above names intrigue you the most?

Sources: Boston births, baptisms, marriages and deaths, 1630-1699, Boston births from A.D. 1700 to A.D. 1800

Puritan Names

puritan baby names

The Clapp family of 17th-century Dorchester, Massachusetts, was headed by parents Roger and Johanna, both of whom had been born in England. They married in 1633 and welcomed at least 14 children, some of whom were given moderately eccentric Puritan-era names:

  • Samuel, born in 1634
  • William, b. 1636
  • Elizabeth, b. 1638
  • Experience, b. 1640
  • Waitstill, b. 1641
  • Preserved, b. 1643
  • Experience (#2), b. 1645
  • Hopestill, b. 1647
  • Wait, b. 1649
  • Thanks, b. 1651
  • Desire, b. 1652
  • Thomas, b. 1655
  • Unite, b. 1656
  • Supply, b. 1660

After coming across the Clapp family, I was inspired to search for other over-the-top Puritan baby names. Here are a bunch of examples, all from England:

  • Abstinence Pougher, baptized in 1679
  • Abuse-not Ellis, bap. 1592
  • Accepted Frewen, bap. 1588
  • Aid-on-hye Vynall, bap. 1596
  • Anger Bull, died in 1680
  • Be-steadfast Elliard, bap. 1636
  • Be-strong Philpott, bap. 1592
  • Be-thankfull Gyles, bap. 1601
  • Continent Walker, bap. 1594 – here, continent refers to the adjective, meaning “exercising self-restraint, especially sexually.”
  • Deliverance Fennyhouse, bap. 1605
  • Depend Outtered, bap. 1587
  • Doo-good Fuller, died 1628
  • Faynt-not Browne, bap. 1585
  • Faith-my-joy Grey, 1600-1602
  • Fare-well Hamlen, bap. 1589
  • Feare-God Couper, bap. 1588
  • Fear-not Browne, bap. 1589
  • Flie-fornication Andrewes, bap. 1609 – born out of wedlock
  • Forsaken Walton, bap. 1598 – born out of wedlock
  • From-above Hendley, bap. 1582
  • Free-gift Bishopp, bap. 1621
  • Give-thankes Cunsted, bap. 1587
  • God-helpe Cooper, both father and son, 1600s
  • Godly Fauterell, bap. 1579
  • Goodgift Gynninges, bap. 1633
  • Handmaid Johnson (married name), 1600s
  • Hate-evill Greenhill, bap. 1660
  • Have-mercie Stone, bap. 1613
  • Help-on-high Foxe, 1600s
  • Hope-full Wheatlye, bap. 1604
  • Hope-still Peedle, bap. 1611
  • Humiliation Hinde, both father and son, 1600s
  • Increased Helley, bap. 1587
  • Joye-in-Sorrow Godman, bap. 1595
  • Lament Foxe, bap. 1594
  • Lamentation Chapman, 1500s
  • Learn-wysdome Ellis, bap. 1589
  • Live-well Chapman, 1600s
  • Love-God Walker, bap. 1596
  • Magnyfy Freeland, bap. 1591
  • More-fruite Stone, bap. 1587
  • Much-mercie Harmer, bap. 1598
  • My-sake Hallam, bap. 1586
  • No-merit Vynall, bap. 1589
  • Obey Larkford, bap. 1587
  • Peaceable Sherwood, bap. 1597
  • Praise-God Barebone, born in 1598
  • Preserved Holman, bap. 1588
  • Purifie Presse, bap. 1584
  • Refrayne Wykes, bap. 1595
  • Rejoyce Lorde, bap. 1621
  • Renewed Hopkinson, bap. 1588
  • Repentance Benham, bap. 1597
  • Repent Boorman, bap. 1586
  • Safe-on-Highe Hopkinson, bap. 1591
  • Sin-denye Tebb, bap. 1592
  • Sory-for-sine (Sorry-for-sin) Coupard, bap. 1589
  • Stand-Fast-On-High Stringer, 1600s
  • Stedfast Bell, bap. 1587
  • Thankfull Frewen, bap. 1591
  • What-God-will Crosland, both father and son, 1600s

Which one is your favorite?