My dad came out to visit us in Colorado recently. He loves geology, so we made sure to take him to several different places with impressive rocks/terrain.
One place we visited was Garden of the Gods in Colorado Springs. In this park we spotted the above sign, which described how the park got its name back in the 1850s:
As they looked over this area of cathedral-like rock spires, one man, Malancthon Beach, commented that the spot would be a great place for a beer garden someday. His friend, a poetic young man named Rufous Cable, replied that it was a place “fit for the Gods.”
It’s a cool story, but, to me, that first name “Malancthon” is way more interesting than the origin of the park name. Where did it come from?
My best guess is that Malancthon is a tribute to 16th-century German theologian Philipp Melanchthon, one of the leaders of the Protestant Reformation. His surname at birth was Schwartzerd (“black earth” in German), but as a young man he Latinized his name to the classical equivalent Melanchthon (“black earth” in Greek).
We also saw some names at Red Rocks, which is both a park and a famous amphitheater.
The amphitheater was constructed from 1936 to 1941 by men in the Civilian Conservation Corps, a work relief program that existed during the Great Depression. One display included a photo of 124 of the men in the local CCC. Here are their first names, sorted by frequency:
Poland’s top baby names of 2013 were announced a couple of weeks ago.
According to provisional data from the country’s Ministry of the Interior, the most popular baby names last year were Lena and Jakub.
Here are Poland’s projected top 20 girl names and top 20 boy names of 2013:
Baby names that increased in popularity last year include Antonina, Iga, Liliana, Maksymilian, Stanisław and Zofia.
The rare baby names mentioned in the press release were Jessika, Leah, Nathalie, Raisa, Vivian, Collin, Jack, Philipp, Yasin, Elif, Emi, Kenza, Zoya, Mieczysław, Siemowit, Witalij and Wadim.