[Piazza Navona, Rome, Italy] (LOC)

Happy last Sunday of 2013!  If you haven’t read them yet, I’ve done some crystal ball gazing for 2014 baby names, and also rated my 2013 predictions.

Regardless of what we all decide to name our children next year, I do have one rock-solid certainty: 2014 will be a great year because of each and every person who comes to read, comment, and talk about baby names here.  Thank you for being a part of the community!

Now, on to the name news:

  • It’s a little choppy to read in translation, but this La Stampa article on baby naming in Italy is interesting, especially for the notes about what it means for an immigrant family to choose an Italian name for their child – or not.  (And that’s a snapshot of Rome’s Piazza Navona, just for fun.)
  • Did you see Nancy’s post on the most regional names in the US?  It’s a fascinating jumping-off point for speculating – why Ryker?  Why Dalton and Ayla?
  • Isn’t Bradamante lovely?  Once Upon a Times Baby Names calls her a “reverse damsel-in-distress.”  I like that.  She’s also kind of a Katniss, or maybe more of a Hermione.
  • An unexpected Bel- name, and a very seasonal choice: Belen, as featured at The Beauty of Names.  I wrote about her a while back – you can read that post here.
  • Love this video on the story of the word true: “… a single word itself can tell an entire story.”  Swap “name” for “word” and it is no less true.
  • Canada’s Prince Edward Island isn’t exactly New York City, but they do track their baby name stats – and the #1 name for girls is Brooklyn.  I can’t decide if that’s astonishing or not.  I see Brooklyn’s appeal – both as a place and a sound – but the most popular baby name?  Hmmm … Astonishing might be an overstatement, but it is something of a surprise.
  • Call me crazy, but I’m already excited for the Winter Olympics.  The competition, the pageantry … the names of the athletes.
  • We started with prognosticating for the year ahead.  Let’s end there, too, with Elea’s reflections on trends for all baby names of the British variety.
  • Wait – a footnote – we’re spending some time over the holiday with friends who are English, and it really drives home how rich and complex – and different – American and British English are.  Some words that I’d never noticed before are inexplicably gorgeous in another cadence, with slightly different vowel sounds.  It’s a small planet, but language is huge and mysterious.

That’s all for this week.  As always, thank you for reading – and happy, happy New Year!

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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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  1. I know what you mean – we have friends from the south-west of the US, and it’s fascinating how their accent changes certain names. My husband’s name sounds rather weak and whiny in an Australian accent, but in an American accent it sounds soft and warm and attractive – he likes his name much better now.

    Thank you very much for another great year of fascinating name blogging, and have a wonderful new year!

  2. I agree with your statement that ” language is huge and mysterious”; it’s also fascinating how it influences naming.

    Thank you for all the effort you put into each post throughout the year. It’s always a pleasure to read all the details you find on each name.

  3. I made the same comment on Nancy’s article, but my friend has a Ryker (I think he’s 13?) that she named after a place called Rykers Ridge in Madison, Indiana. So it’s possible that Ryker is a popular place name/surname in Utah.