Baby Name of the Day: Noor

Diamond copy of the famous Koh-i-Noor in its c...

Diamond copy of the Koh-i-Noor; Image via Wikipedia

Want something more subtle than naming your daughter Diamond, less expected than calling her

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Hi! Is there any way you could make the rest of this article visible? I’m very interested in this name right now and would love to read the rest of the post 🙂

I had never heard this name before reading this, and then today I see that a little girl named Noor will be going to my son’s preschool in the fall. Her Mom’s name is [email protected], so it appears to be an Arabic family. Can’t wait to meet a little Noor!

It’s a very pretty name, but would sound horrible in an Australian accent (most N names do), and I hope nobody is offended, but I think it wouldn’t sound nice in most American accents either. (We really need audio files attached to this so people can upload how names actually sound when they say them aloud).

My middle daughter’s middle name is Nurit, which is Hebrew but linguistically related. Specifically nurit is a type of Israeli wildflower, an extremely hearty species of buttercup. But the name of the flower, and thus the name given to girls, refers to light or fire just like the Arabic Noor. If you google image search “nurit flower” you will see why, they are stunning and bright red. Anyhow, her name is pronounced Noor-EET, with that gutteral “r” in the middle.

Love this name! Another recent (and tragic) namesake is Noor Almaleki, a Muslim-American woman who was the victim of an “honor killing” by her father. Might turn some people off to the name, but her story is the first place I heard it and I’ve liked it since then.

I think it’s pretty, and it would make a great, unexpected one-syllable middle name, especially for a more common first name: Elizabeth Noor? Sophia Noor? Hm…

I love it. It was on our shortlist for the girl who became Mila. Or should I say it was on *my* shortlist – never could convince my other half! I think it would be easier to pull off if we had some kind of Middle Eastern heritage, but I’d still try and wriggle it back in as a middle name if we had another girl.

I find it interesting that it means “light”, since sound-wise it makes me think of Noir. I generally don’t like “frilly” names, so I think Noor’s simplicity is stunning. It would work well as a middle name, especially between two more “complicated” names.

That’s a nice point, Julie – Noor is far more exciting than, say, Ann, or another name added just because.

Does Noor rhyme with ‘moor’, or is it almost two-syllables–‘no-OR’? I have to say, I think the second is prettier. The exclusively-feminine form Nura is just lovely, though!

Okay, yes – I’ve listened to it a few places, including – and it rhymes with moor/more BUT there’s a sort of rolling bit to the final R sound that I cannot describe – but that adds a little something to the name. I liked Noor when I wrote this post; I would LOVE it if I only I could say it like that!

Thanks for the link Abby – that’s exactly how I pronounce Noor, with a little roll on the final R. I agree that it definitely adds to the name 🙂

Wow, I had no idea Noor had such an illustrious history related to jewels. Can’t say how that makes me feel about the name. I don’t like jewel names, but Noor doesn’t hit you over the head with it like Crystal. I do love the meaning of light, it’s just so wholesome and good 🙂

Nura is my paternal great-grandmother’s name, but then my cousin was named Nura after her and let’s just say that my cousin has pretty much sullied the name Nura for me and my immediate family. But Noor could still work, since she’s a nod to my great-grandma but is still separate enough from my disastrous cousin. Don’t you hate how certain people ruin names for us? Nura works so much better with DH’s last name, *sigh*

Claire, your comment is part of what gives me pause about Noor. Since the name rhymes with sure and not door, is Noor the best spelling? And since we don’t roll our r’s in English, Noor doesn’t quite roll off the tongue as liltingly in English. Oh well, I still think she’s pretty and is firmly on our list 🙂

It’s interesting that you say Noor rhymes with sure — how do you say sure? I pronounce it like “shur”, when you say it does it rhyme with lure? Because I would say that Noor rhymes with lure (which I also pronounce slightly differently from moor).

Yes Charlotte, I think rhyming with the word “lure” is a better approximation of how I believe Noor to be correctly pronounced, though “moor” is also close. I guess “sure” is probably more often pronounced “shur”, and Noor most definitely does not rhyme with “door” 🙂

Vowels are so tricky, aren’t they? If I stop and think about it, I probably rhyme Noor with shore – as in Jersey.

Vowels are tricky! However, I think the difference in the way I pronounce lure and moor comes down to the r. I give lure a softer, more rolling r, whereas when I say moor the r sounds quite hard and North American.

Is everyone on vacation already? I’ll throw in my two cents. I hate the name Noor. It’s not a pretty sound and it sounds too much like “nor”. I neither like it nor want it. And I can’t imagine a typical caucasion kid with this name. It just doesn’t feel usable or feminine. Personally, I say stick with Claire. 😉

Don’t forget the amazing and heroic Noor Inayat Khan, a British secret agent during World War II, who worked with the French Resistance, was caught and interrogated by the Gestapo and ultimately executed at Dachau concentration camp. She was awarded the George Cross — the highest possible decoration — for her bravery. A really extraordinary woman.

Penny, thank you so much for that addition – you’re absolutely correct, she’s an inspiring namesake!