Independent baby name blog & directory, est. 2006.
How popular is the baby name Pascal in the United States right now? How popular was it historically? Find out using the graph below! Plus, see baby names similar to Pascal and check out all the blog posts that mention the name Pascal.
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Next Sunday in Rio de Janeiro, 30-year-old identical (and alliterative) triplets Leila, Liina, and Lily Luik of Estonia are expected to run the women’s marathon. This will make the “Trio in Rio,” as they call themselves, the first set of triplets to compete in an Olympics.
In comparison, about 200 sets of twins have competed in the Olympics over the years. Here are some of the Olympic twins with similarly alliterative names:
Åke & Arne (Sweden) [not technically alliterative; see JJ’s comment]
Uniquely named female film stars were inspiring debuts on the baby name charts as early as the 1910s, starting with Francelia in 1912.
But the first male film star to inspire a baby name debut didn’t come along until the 1930s.
That film star was actor Franchot Tone. He shot to fame in 1933, the year he appeared in seven films — including one with Jean Harlow, another with Loretta Young, and two with Joan Crawford (his future wife).
The name Franchot debuted on the SSA’s baby name list the very next year:
The usage of Franchot peaked in 1936, the year Tone appeared in the very successful 1935 film Mutiny on the Bounty. (Movita, Marlon Brando’s future wife, was also in the film.)
Franchot Tone’s birth name was Stanislaus Pascal Franchot Tone. Franchot, pronounced fran-cho, was his mother’s maiden name. It’s one of the many names (and surnames) that can be traced back to the Late Latin Franciscus, meaning “Frankish” or “Frenchman.”
The image below, of the Boulevard du Temple in Paris, was captured in early 1838 by Louis Daguerre, inventor of the daguerreotype.
It may be the earliest surviving photograph of a person. Two people, actually. Both are in the lower left:
Here’s a close-up:
The standing man is getting his shoe shined, and the other man (partially obscured) is doing the shoe-shining.
Of all the people on the sidewalk that day, these were the only two to stay still long enough (about 10 minutes) to be captured in the image.
Now for the fun part!
What would you name these two Frenchmen?
Let’s pretend you’re writing a book set in Paris in the 1830s, and these are two of your characters. What names would you give them?
Here’s a long list of traditional French male names, to get you started:
For some real-life inspiration, here are lists of famous 19th century and 20th century French people, courtesy of Wikipedia. Notice that many of the Frenchman have double-barreled, triple-barreled, even quadruple-barreled given names. (Daguerre himself was named Louis-Jacques-Mandé Daguerre.)
I’ve posted about plenty of babies named after the boats on which they were born (e.g. Australis, Burgess, El Nil, Jesse Roper, Numidian) so here’s something new — a baby born on a boat, but named after the holiday on which she was born:
La Champagne, like the Cedric, had a pleasant voyage and reported, as her principal contribution to the news of the day, the fact that on Easter Sunday there had been born on board the liner a little girl to Mme. Boyer, one of the cabin passengers. The baby was named Pascaline.
A much better choice than “Champagne,” certainly.
Pascaline is related to the adjective paschal, which refers to both Passover and Easter. Many babies born around the time of Easter/Passover have been given some form of this name (Pascal/Pascaline, Pascual/Pascuala, Pasquale/Pasquala, etc.)
Source: “Liners’ Good Weather.” New York Times 20 Apr. 1903: 3.
One nice thing about these is that several together probably wouldn’t scream “star names” to the average person. Unlike, say, a group of flower names. (Though I’m sure stargazers would catch on pretty quickly.)
And here’s what we have for non-galactic suggestions: