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 three children: Felicity Annabelle, Bennett Leo, and Oscar Sam. We are thrilled to be having another girl, but I am so indecisive about settling on a name!
I love too many names, and have a hard time saying THIS is the name.
I tend to like longer antique or classic names for girls, that aren’t too popular, like Eleanor, Adeline, Josephine, Evangeline, Genevieve, Elizabeth, Vivian/Vivienne, and Juliet. But I love sweet short names like Nellie, Molly, Sally, Betsy, Stella, and Eliza, too.
The middle name will be Faith and last name is Is@@c.
My husband is not too opinionated about the names, but we do like the same style.
The ones we have vetoed for various reasons are:
- Adeline – too popular and too many crazy spellings
- Eleanor – close friend’s child
- Nellie – good friend’s name
- Josephine/Josie – have a nephew Joseph
- Eliza – LOVE it and would use it in a heartbeat, but its way to close to our last name
- Stella – husband doesn’t like
The names we are considering are Elizabeth called Betsy, Molly, Vivian, and Evangeline. But is Evangeline too religious paired with middle name Faith?
Alexander called Zander is our top boy name, in cause the doc was wrong! I also love Felix, Anderson, Maxwell, Graham, and Elliott.
Any more suggestions or critique would be appreciated.
Please read on for my suggestions, and leave your helpful thoughts in the comments!
Dear Marie –
There’s a have-your-cake and eat it too, solution here – a longer formal name with a nickname. It’s a way to have the best of Eleanor and Molly. If you’re torn between two styles, I’d always suggest opting for a nickname-rich name.
Elizabeth called Betsy seems exactly, 100% perfect. Elizabeth Faith. Is it classic? Yes. Overused? Maybe in raw numbers, but it doesn’t feel overused to me. Plus, very few Elizabeths these days are called Betsy, so I think you’d find her everyday use name a standout.
Let’s look at some other possibilities:
Adelaide – Adelaide sidesteps the many, multiple spellings of Adeline. Like Felicity, it’s a longer name that is likely to be used in full. It seems very much in keeping with your style, too.
Caroline – We’ve overlooked Caroline in favor of her cousin, Charlotte. But Caroline reminds me of Adeline in style, but without all of the spelling confusion. Will you meet a Karilynn or two? Sure. But the spelling hasn’t splintered the same way. Caroline feels every bit as classic as Elizabeth, but perhaps slightly less common.
Louisa – I’m not sold on Louisa I@@c, and yet, I do love Louisa. The name manages to combine the classic with the underused, and there are plenty of Louisa nickname options. Another choice that reminds me Louisa and Louise, but is slightly more mainstream? Eloise. I mention it because you have Elizabeth and Eleanor on your list already.
Margaret – Speaking of Elizabeth and Eleanor, Margaret claims just as much classic status, plus an almost bottomless number of nicknames. But it’s not quite as popular, and that might make it feel a little more appealing to you. Though I’m not sure Margaret has the same vibe as Felicity. But her French cousin, Marguerite? That’s a name worth considering!
Matilda – I can imagine Felicity with a sister named Matilda. Nicknames like Mille and Tilly are baked in, but not necessary.
Veronica – Veronica feels like a quirky classic. The name boasts history galore, and while the name cracked the US Top 100 in the 1980s, it doesn’t scream “80s Name” to me.
Overall, my sense is that Elizabeth Faith, called Betsy, makes the perfect sister name for Felicity, Bennett, and Oscar.
The question of Evangeline Faith depends on your personal tastes. It strikes me as religious, and I wouldn’t be surprised to learn that the parents of an Evangeline Faith chose it for spiritual meaning. But I think Evangeline is popular for lots of reasons – the sound, the overall style, and, of course, the literary associations with the name. So I don’t think the combination is necessarily a dealbreaker – unless you want it to be.
I should also ask this: do you imagine you’ll have a fifth child? If the answer is maybe, then disregard this next part. But if you’re confident that your family will be complete, I wonder if you might consider Alexandra for a girl?
But I so know how you feel! Great possibilities abound, and it’s tough to shorten your list. In fact, I’m not sure I’ve helped by adding new options!
Readers, what do you think? Is Elizabeth “Betsy” Faith Is@@c the name? Or would you suggest something else?
Thank you all for your wonderful positive comments! This was a delight to read thru. Plenty of food for thought.
Yes, we are stuck on Faith as middle since we are using our parent’s names (or variations) as middle’s and that’s the only one left! Plus I love it.
I agree that Elizabeth is a little too popular\mainstream for my tastes too, but it has been a favorite since childhood and I can’t quite get it off my mind! Plus I must clarify that if we do use it, she will be called by both Elizabeth and Betsy, Elizabeth is too beautiful to only use cute Betsy!
I really do like Adelaide, but wish it flowed off my tongue a bit better.
Another good friend just had a Margaret, so that one’s out too 🙂
Caroline is in the family already, else I’d really consider it.
Kelsey D says
I love love love Veronica. Nn Vera or Roni or Rooney (Like Rooney Mara).
What about Meredith?
I love Abby’s suggestion of Marguerite.
I love names like Elizabeth, Margaret, Eleanore. What about Juliet or Brigitte. We have a Juliet and love her name.
Vivienne/Vivian is beautiful. My favourite off your list.
Jennifer Harrison says
Vivienne Faith is beautiful. Evangeline Faith, absolutely GORGEOUS !!! Good Luck and Congratulations!
I agree with Liza’s comment completely, in which case allow me to go completely Jane Austen on you and suggest: Lydia, Catherine nn Kitty, Georgiana and Marianne. Some don’t go with faith as a middle but I am sort of swooning over Lydia Faith Is@@c right now.
Mrs. RPF says
Such great names for your children, and such a great list for this little girl! I vote Juliette/Juliet or Vivian/Vivienne.
Amanda L. says
If you love Elizabeth called Betsy, go for it! Elizabeth is a little too popular for my taste, but it is a lovely name. I also do like Vivian from your list, (or maybe Viviana.).
Felicity is a virtue name. Are you really set on Faith? Because I’d at least consider using another virtue as first name (Verity, Mercy, Charity, etc) for parallel, but that might be a bit much with “Faith” as a middle.
I think Evangeline Faith sounds beautiful, but agree it has a religious feel to it. Which is another reason to ask if you’re sure about Faith. Evangeline with a different middle makes me think of the poem. Evangeline Faith seems to have stronger religious connotations, and I’d assume the parents did that on purpose.
I love many of the suggestions that have been made, especially Caroline, Adelaide, Emmeline (I have an Emmeline Faith), and Margaret/Marguerite.
Your tastes make me think British/English because of Elizabeth Bennet in Pride and Prejudice- and Felicity and Oscar feel English too. So, I wish Beatrice was a contender cause it seems perfect. But, to me the other names that have the same feel are Caroline and Juliet. I also think Elizabeth is a great name and you can never go wrong with it.
My name is Elizabeth and I’ve always gone by Betsy, never Elizabeth. My Dad always called it a “happy name”. I think it fits me and even in my medical profession have never felt the need to go by Elizabeth. My Mom wanted me to have a “formal name” in case I “grew up to be the president”.
I would suggest Ellen or Helen. Or maybe Georgia, Calista, Estelle, Miriam or Gwendolen?
Of all names mentioned, I like Juliette Faith. It evokes the same feeling as Felicity and sounds like a perfect sister set. Congratulations to you and your family.
Marguerite! I thought. Then Veronica came up, and that got double !! from me. Veronica Faith. Felicity and Veronica. Swoon.
Sorry, I missed the part about vetoing Beatrice.
However, here are a couple other ideas…
Mallory nn Mali or Molly
Amalia or Amelia nn Mali or Molly
Here are a few ideas…
Beatrice nn Betsy
Susannah nn Susie, Anna or Zanna
Emmeline nn Emmy, Emma, Lina or Meli
The Mrs. says
Persephone called Poppy might be a fit.
Amity dubbed Amy (how many baby Amys do you know?) could work.
Charity nicknamed Cherry is very retro (the classic Cherry Ames series gives it some sleuthing spark).
Elsinore (I think someone already mentioned this) with Elsie or Nora charms.
Geneva known as Genny or Eva would be sweet.
Rosamund with Rosie is darling.
My favorite? Junia. Junia Faith. Nickname of June. *Sigh*
Best wishes to you and your family!
LOVE the suggestion of Adelaide! Love it in full, but would use Ada as a short form to bypass Addy. Do not love Addy, but Ada fits with the short, sweet names you like. Both of these are delicious:
Felicity, Bennett, Oscar and Adelaide. Or
Felicity, Bennett, Oscar and Ada.
Glad to see Betsy getting some love. We have one, but she’s ‘just’ Betsy. Have you thought about Bernadette or Elisabet instead to get to Betsy? I especially love Bernadette!
My only hesitation would be repeating an initial, but that doesn’t seem a concern for your family. I love the suggestion of Marguerite.
Shannon B. says
I love your kids’ names! I think Elizabeth nn Betsy is a very sweet name and if it’s what you love, go for it. I think Betsy is charming with Oscar and Bennet, but it doesn’t match Felicity as well for me (style-wise). I really like Evangeline from your list.
I’d also suggest Cecelia, Margaret, and Georgia/Georgiana.
I don’t think you could make a bad choice from your short list or Abby’s suggestions!
Love Veronica. Clementine with the nickname Emmie or Emmeline would also be nice.
C in DC says
Elizabeth feels more mainstream than the other 3 names. I love Evangeline in this sibset, and don’t feel it’s overly religious. How about Elsinore, Alessandra, Carolina, Francesca, Cassandra, Calliope, Penelope, Isabeau, Elspeth, Serena, Simone, Muriel?
This could have been my husband I when naming our daughter! She is Emmeline (Emma-leen) with the full time nickname of Millie. Both are quite close your suggestions of Adeline and Molly.
Amanda L. says
I also have an Emmeline called Milly
Love, love, love Elizabeth called Betsy. It was the runner-up name for our sweet Faye. I also like the suggestion of Margaret called Margot, Maisie, Meg or Greta. Or even just Margot or Greta on their own.
Sarah Elizabeth says
These classic names are so my style when it comes to naming! Adelaide and Genevieve are two of my very, very favorite names!
I’m not crazy about Elizabeth, but I love Betsy so I’d go with that. Otherwise, I like the suggestion of Margaret (Peggy!).
Great lists! I might suggest a few other tailored feminine names: Marianne, Evelyn, and Cecilia/Cecelia.
Great suggestions. I like them all. 🙂