Posey: Baby Name of the DayLooking for simple, sweet names for girls? Posey might be the one for you.

Our Baby Name of the Day was inspired by this post.

Posey: Josephine

I first heard this name mentioned as a nickname for Josephine. That might seem odd or even awkward, but plenty of Joseph nicknames swap the ‘f’ for a ‘p’ sound. Think of  the Spanish Pepe or the Dutch Joop.

Perhaps it also evolved as an alternative to Rosie. British illustrator Rosemary Simmonds is known as Posy.

In our age of Sadie-not-Sarah and Molly-not-Mary, that would be enough to suggest this name works. But there’s so much more to Posey.

Posey: Pan-Botanical

A small bouquet, often given as a gift and sometimes worn, can be called a posy. I’ve also heard tussie-mussie and nosegay used to refer to the floral arrangements, and vintage holders abound on Etsy and Pinterest.

The term may owe its origins to the language of flowers – the idea that one could compose a thoughtful message by choosing blooms with specific meanings.

That puts it in the company of other pan-botancial names, like Flora and Blossom.

Posey: Poetry

Speaking of language, poesy originally referred to a short line of poetry. Think of the snippets we might engrave on something. Both poesy and poetry come from the Greek and Latin poesisPoesie evolved in Old French.

Poesy might make a wearable spelling of the name, one that places it with Story, Fable, and other literally literary choices.

Posey: Surname

Of course, Posey also appears as a surname. Think of actor Parker or Teen Wolf’s Tyler.

It’s likely German in origin, from place names like Posa and Poserna, but I’ve seen other theories, too.

Posey: By the Numbers

Of the three possible spellings, none currently charts in the US Top 1000. In fact, Posy and Poesy have never ranked. Posey appeared just twice in the nineteenth century, and only for boys.

Looking at the numbers from 2015:

  • In no single year have even five children been given the -oesy spelling.
  • Eleven girls received the -osy spelling.
  • The -osey spelling boasts the longest history of use. A smattering of boys received in the name into the 1950s. Since the 1920s, it’s seen sparing use for girls. As of 2015, 41 newborn girls received the name – a new high.

Posey: Pop Culture

If not from flowers or poetry or a family name, where might parents hear this name?

  • Children’s book Ballet Shoes includes a character by the name.
  • Supernatural television series Charmed gave the name to one of Paige’s twin daughters. They named her sister Pandora.
  • More recently, it’s the name of one of Gale Hawthorne’s younger sisters in The Hunger Games trilogy.

Posey: Underused Gem

Looking at the current rankings, Sophie and Daisy make the Top 200. Chloe and Zoe/Zoey are Top 50 favorites. Sadie rocketed into the US Top 50 a few years ago, and remains in heavy use. And P names aren’t just for television witches anymore. Penelope, Piper, Peyton, and Paisley all appear in the Top 100. And rhyming name Josie continues to climb.

This makes Posey an on-trend possibility. The -osey spelling seems slightly more common, though the -osy one appears in many a pop culture reference.

If you love sweet, simple names for girls, Posey belongs on your list. And if feels too short to be complete? Josephine might make a great formal name.

What do you think of Posey? Does this name stand on its own? Which spelling do you like best?

About Abby Sandel

Whether you're naming a baby, or just all about names, you've come to the right place! Appellation Mountain is a haven for lovers of obscure gems and enduring classics alike.

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What do you think?


  1. I suggested the name Posey to my husband for our second daughter (coming soon!) and I love the nickname Po or Poe, but he said it made him think of the teletubby named Po 🙁 So it is sadly off the list…

  2. Another popular culture reference is that Posey is the daughter of the main characters (she is American, he English) in the movie “About Time”. (2013 Richard Curtis).

    It strikes me as a Very British name.