Name Help is a series at Appellation Mountain. Every week, one reader’s name questions will be discussed.
We’re relying on thoughtful comments from the community to help expectant parents narrow down their name decisions. Thank you in advance for sharing your insight!
We have a three year old daughter named Margot Irene. I love her name – the meaning, the sound, the way it’s traditional, but still feels fun.
Because we found out gender early, we never really talked about boy names with Margot. I’ve always liked Henry, but now it seems like the most popular name ever.
Other names we’ve talked about:
- Archie – maybe too cute? my husband isn’t really on board
- Callum – the M runs into our last name
- Hank – saw this suggested instead of Jack, but can’t decide if it works
- Jack – just too popular
- Jasper – doesn’t sound good with our last name
- Luca – love it, but we’re not even a little Italian
- Milo – too close to Margot
- Wells – the ‘S’ in Wells isn’t good with our last name
Our last name sounds like Mizz-ner. While I love the way Margot Mizz-ner sounds, I don’t think we want another M name. Besides, our friends have a Max, so I’m not sure there’s another M name I like for a boy anyway.
Please read on for my response and leave your thoughtful suggestions in the comments.
Congratulations on your new son!
It’s always tempting to look at a list of maybes and see if anything leaps out. Sometimes we like a name – but when other people love it, that changes the way we see it, too.
I do think Archie works completely fine as a stand-alone name.
My first instinct was to suggest Archer instead. Except that’s not great with your surname. Would you consider Arch? There’s a supporting character on The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel named Archie, often shortened to Arch, which makes me think it works really well. (And, of course, Arch Manning is the latest quarterback in the famous football family, named for his grandfather.)
But Archie seems like the best choice on your list so far … except that your husband isn’t wild about it.
Hank has potential, too – precisely because it’s so similar to Jack.
And I’m not sure if you have to be Italian – or even like pasta – to name your son Luca. The Pixar movie was all about friendship and bravery, so it has plenty of positive associations. That said, if you’d be annoyed every time someone asked if you were Italian? Then yes, give it a miss.
So let’s start fresh.
A BROTHER FOR MARGOT
Because vowel-ending names appeal to you, would you consider Asa? It’s familiar, but not nearly as common as Luca. I do think the ‘s’ in the middle of Asa works well with your surname. A little bit of repetition makes a name memorable.
Because you like Henry and Hank and Jack, would you like Charlie? Not Charles … that’s another (likely) conflict with your surname. But just Charlie is casual, cool, and still complete.
Like Margot, Everett counts as a vintage favorite. But it’s very much a twenty-first century name, too.
Callum’s final M sound does run into your M last name. But I think N-enders have potential. Holden has that same sophisticated, prep school energy as Margot.
Reverse the vowel sounds in Margot, and you’ll arrive at Jonah. It’s perfectly balanced as a brother name.
Julian comes in at three syllables, but it doesn’t really feel like a long or overwhelming name.
I wonder if another name with the long O sound would appeal? I’ll suggest Owen, a name that straddles the current/classic line – just like Margot!
Rowan is a modern unisex choice and surname name, too. Like Margot, it’s rising steadily in use, but still not at Liam/Noah/Oliver levels.
Overall my favorite is Jonah. Like Margot, it combines traditional status with a modern sound. But Everett fits that same category, and sounds great with your surname, too.
Margot and Everett versus Margot and Jonah? I think the latter is more your style, but both are amazing.
I’m not sure how you’re choosing middle names, but is something related to your name an option? Everett Nico, maybe or Jonah Nichol? And, of course, Henry could be a perfect middle name, too. Jonah Henry might be my top pick.
You have lovely options! The first name that popped into my head was Mortimer. I like Grant, Clark and Kent too.
I think a few of these have already been suggested but how about:
Margot and Simon
Margot and Wallace (nn Ace)
Margot and Arthur
Margot and Logan
Margot and Angus
Margot and Felix
I wouldn’t be afraid of alliteration. I ‘d like ti hear M@rgot and….
Nathaniel – Nat, Nate
Edwin, Edward – Ned
I know the stats don’t necessarily support Henry being uber-popular but I know…six? or so? So I think it really depends on the community you’re in. It’s a lovely name but I hear ya. Anyway, Julian is a real winner in my book, especially with the nickname Jules. Jules Mizz-ner is wonderful on its own and with Margot. Julian Henry & Margot Irene.
Really like the suggestion of Anton. Joanna Goddard’s son Anton has made the name grow on me!
Yep- Henry called Hank seems like a winner to me! I love that, it’s darling
My grandfather’s middle name was Henrik, the Scandinavian version of Henry, as in Henrik Ibsen. You could also name him Henry and call him Hal, which is a bit more uncommon. Henry was probably the first name that pipped into my head when I saw Margot. Popularity is also relative. There aren’t as many boys named Henry as you might think and it’s unlikely to repeat in a classroom of 26 kids.
There’s also Harold or Harald, also Scandinavian, also with the nickname Hal or Harry, and increasing in use.
Or Harris, Harrison.
I might also suggest going really old school with: Anton, Carl, Edgar, Edward, Edwin, Ernest, Franklin, Frederick, George, Graham, Guy, Howard, Kenneth, Lloyd, Neil, Philip, Ralph, Richard, Stephen, Vincent, Wallace, Warren.
Well, my Margot Ottilie Irene (impeccable taste, I must say!) has six brothers, and while I’m not going to list them all out, perhaps a few of their names/middles and names we considered would help…
I knew a Margot and Casper sibling pair.
Christina Fonseca says
Hank is/was traditionally a nickname for Henry. I think you have a winner with Margot and Hank, regardless of which name goes on the birth certificate.
I also thought of Cormac! I think it is an awesome name! Margot and Cormac!
I also loved Abby’s suggest of Owen. Margot and Owen.
I like the long O sounds for you and the 2 syllables. But you seem to be leaning to more A sounds and to also like the single syllable… Callum, Jack, Hank etc. So what about Grant? Margot and Grant? Nathan/Nate?
Ooh what about Peirce? Margot and Pierce? Uncommon yet known and dashing.
Best of luck!
Erin Beth says
Some of my favorite ideas for you:
I think Charlie is a great suggestion, because it rearranges Archie’s sounds into a name that has a Henry-feel to it.
I was also going to suggest Callan instead of Callum, so second that. Colin is another possibility (which, actually, would be a subtle honour to you, as Nicole and Colin derive from the same source).
I like Ari for you, as an alternative to Archie. Although it sounds very similar, it feels sophisticated and not at all cutesy.
An out-of-the-box idea: Ajax. Rhymes with Max, sounds like Jack, sounds very cool with Margot.
And finally, I’m not sure if you know that Hank is traditionally used as a short form of Henry. Because that absolutely seems like the best of both worlds – put Henry on the birth certificate, but use Hank everyday to differentiate him from the other Henrys he might encounter.
Or, to take it a step further, use Henrik nn Hank! I love this with Margot.
I really like the suggestion of Cormac!
Name Enthusiast says
Inspirations based off your list:
Judah, Dean, Cal, Clark, Lee, Simon, Landon, Darren, Grant
Though not looking for M options, Mark and Martin pair nicely. As does Graham with the the tiniest of pauses between Graham and surname.
I have a Callum and would have loved Hank for our second son but we went with Lachlan. Since our style might be similar, other boy names on my list were:
Hank, Jack, and Archie made me think of Nate or Nat. Or Zachary “Zack”
Archie and Jasper made me think of Oscar “Ozzy”
Callan instead of Callum maybe? Or Callahan or Calvin
Jude instead of Jack
Ezra instead of Luca
Arlo or Leo instead of Milo
Hayes instead of Wells…I don’t think the S sound conflicts with the surname 🙂