Tess didn’t start out as Tess. Hardy often changed names when he was writing, and he tried out Love, Cis and Sue, using Woodrow as a surname, narrowing the name down to Rose-Mary Troublefield or Tess Woodrow before finally settling on Tess Durbeyfield.
But I’m now far too practical for whimsical names. I want to spare my kids the time wasted spelling their name slowly over the phone and correcting its pronunciation millions of times. So out the window went some of the iconoclastic names I loved, but which seemed difficult, along with two names I adored but couldn’t figure out how to spell in a way that would make their pronunciation obvious: CARE-iss and k’r-IN.
While some believed a central institution or figure had to be behind a skyrocketing trend — say, Kim Kardashian or Vogue magazine — researchers have discovered through a new Web-based experiment that doesn’t have to be the case. In fact, the study suggests that populations can come to a consensus about what’s cool and what’s not in a rapid, yet utterly spontaneous way.
The process to change your name is surprisingly lengthy, pricey and arguably outdated. People fill out forms, pay a $168 filing fee (there is also a fee to obtain a new birth certificate once the name is legally granted), get assigned to a judge, schedule a hearing date with the court and take out a statement in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel or the Daily Reporter three weeks in a row declaring intent of name change.
News websites are not approved for legal name change declaration, but this does not mean they couldn’t be someday, according to Milwaukee County Clerk of Circuit Court John Barrett.
“The process is very old and it hasn’t been changed in a long time, but that’s not to say it couldn’t be,” says Barrett. “The Wisconsin legislature decides that. Someone would have to have an interest in that change and take the time to make the argument that we’re in a changing world and publications shouldn’t be limited to print.”
If you work in startups, there’s a good chance you know Oscar. And Alfred. Benny, too. And don’t forget Lulu and Clara. These aren’t the prominent Silicon Valley people that techies know by first name (although those exist—think Marissa, Satya, Larry and Sergey, Zuck). Rather, Oscar, Alfred, Benny, Lulu and Clara are companies. The latest trend in startup names is regular old human names.
For students, especially the children of immigrants or those who are English-language learners, a teacher who knows their name and can pronounce it correctly signals respect and marks a critical step in helping them adjust to school.
But for many ELLs, a mispronounced name is often the first of many slights they experience in classrooms; they’re already unlikely to see educators who are like them, teachers who speak their language, or a curriculum that reflects their culture.
“If they’re encountering teachers who are not taking the time to learn their name or don’t validate who they are, it starts to create this wall,” said Rita (‘ree-the’) Kohli, an assistant professor in the graduate school of education at the University of California, Riverside.
Born on July 11, 1767 in Braintree, Massachusetts, he was the son of two fervent revolutionary patriots, John and Abigail Adams, whose ancestors had lived in New England for five generations. Abigail gave birth to her son two days before her prominent grandfather, Colonel John Quincy, died so the boy was named John Quincy Adams in his honor.
(Quincy, Massachusetts, was also named after Colonel John Quincy.)
The most popular baby names in Northern Ireland were announced a little while ago.
According to the Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency, the #1 names were Jack for boys and Sophie for girls.
Here are Northern Ireland’s provisional top 20 girl names and top 20 boy names of 2012:
Baby Girl Names
Baby Boy Names
16. Anna [tie]
16. Emma [tie]
16. Olivia [tie]
16. Jake [tie]
16. Oliver [tie]
The highest climbers within the top 20 lists were Aoife (15th to 10th) and Riley (18th to 9th).
Other high climbers were Bobby (124th to 59th), Blake (111th to 71st) and Olly (131st to 93rd) for boy names, and Miley (135th to 79th) and Layla (135th to 83rd) for girl names.
[Very curious about Bobby! Can anybody explain that one?]
Names that decreased in popularity include Calum (down 93 spots), Padraig (-49) and Conan (-28) on the boys’ list, and Ciara (-53), Victoria (-49) and Julia (-48) on the girls’ list.
Finally, here are some of the more unusual names registered in 2012:
This question has been bringing a lot of traffic to my blog lately, so I thought I’d post about it and see what everyone thinks.
Most of us know of Shea as a surname and/or a stadium name. Shea doesn’t currently rank in the top 1,000 for either boys or girls, but the name and its various spellings do appear further down on the SSA’s list:
Her husband is only on board with Avery, Caroline, Kristina and Michaela (he prefers the spelling Makayla).
The twins will have an older brother named Thomas Aiden (nn Tommy) and their surname will be similar to Damon.
Eva’s criteria reminded me of the twins named Charlotte and Dylan I wrote about a few years ago. I think the name Charlotte is a good option in this case, but Dylan plus that surname might be D/N-overload. Here are some other possibilities: