Go 17
Image via Wikipedia

What a week! First there was Harper Seven Beckham, and chatter galore about the name. (Mainstream sites dismissed Harper as weird, while we name fans more accurately pegged Harper as far more ordinary than her brothers’ names.) Then Kate Hudson, mom to Ryder Russell Robinson, welcomed a son she’s calling Bing, short for Bingham Hawn Bellamy. So very exciting, and both sets of parents were kind enough to reveal their thinking, too.

Elsewhere online:

  • Nancy explores baby names inspired by the Spanish-American War. I know a little Maceo – great name!
  • I’ve come across this sibet before, but if you haven’t, check out Mer de Noms post about the Taylor family – Columbus, Cassius, Eloise, and Estella;
  • ForReal spotted a Syndle. Is it another spin on the ever-so-rare Cindal?
  • Are you following Nook’s series on Harry Potter names? She mentioned two minor characters with great names hereOrion and Hesper;
  • Bewitching has been profiling Harry Potter names, too. Loved this post on Firenze;
  • Mer de Noms also translated some popular nature names into French, with appealing results: Lis, Laurier, Vrai;
  • In her Friday digest, Elea at British Baby Names mentioned the cluster of boys named Doctor in the nineteenth century – and at least one girl named Doctoressa. Interesting;
  • Nancy’s list of top baby name debuts in fascinating;
  • Niki was kind enough to share this map: Most Popular Names by European Country. I’m not certain about the data set, but it is worth a look;
  • Big debuts at Nymbler in June were Aleph (no surprise), Tyla, and Suomi. My head whipped around at that last one. Suomi is Finnish for Finland – and seems like an implausible baby name, no matter how popular Finn might become.

For last week’s Nameberry post, I wrote about the workaday identities of superheroines. They’ve worn some great names when they’re not in their capes and tights – Natasha, Kitty, Tandy, Tessa, Selina. Tomorrow’s post is another one for the girls, but with far more exotic appellations on deck.

Let’s end where we started, with just a few more tidbits from the rich and famous:

  • Maternity concierge and reality TV star Rosie Pope’s boys are called J.R. and Wells, short for James and Wellington. I’m intrigued by Wells and Wellington – I wonder if Rosie has a story about choosing those names?
  • Have you read this commentary regarding Natalie Portman‘s choice of Aleph for her firstborn? It’s from Deborah Kolben, editor of Kveller.com, a parenting website and resource for Jewish parents;
  • There was lots of talk about the name Orlando Bloom and Miranda Kerr chose for their son, Flynn, but Kerr recently revealed that Flynn’s middle is equally meaningful – Christopher, after her high school boyfriend who was killed in a car accident;
  • Jewel and husband Ty Murray welcomed son Kase Townes Murray. I don’t love Kase, but if your dad is a professional bull rider, it seems appropriate. And he’s definitely one of those little cowboy names that is quite popular these days.

That’s all for this week. As always, thank you for reading and have a great week!

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.

You May Also Like:

What do you think?


  1. Suomi could grow on me, as a smoosh of Sue and Naomi (two family names). We’re not in the least bit Finnish, but after yesterday’s Tour de France finish, one has to cheer. 🙂

  2. Totally off in left field here… but would Llewellyn be crazy on a girl? It sounds like Lou-Ellen, a Southern double name, but has history as a Welsh boys name. Could this be the next Meredith? I had a dream that I had a little girl named Llewellyn and she was beautiful.

    1. I might go with an Americanized spelling to make it clear that she’s a girl, but otherwise I think it would be nice. Luellen or Lewellen might work. (From someone who toyed with the idea of Magellan for a girl, so…)

      1. Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington, “rose to prominence as a general during the Peninsular campaign of the Napoleonic Wars” and was awarded titles in Portuguese nobility. His descendants are still titled Duque da Vit

  3. Case is a brand of farm equipment. Jewel and Ty are sure to know that, so Kase is an interesting choice for them. I read somewhere that Townes is likely in honor of the “songwriter’s songwriter” Townes Van Zandt. Steve Earle’s son Justin Townes Earle is also named after Van Zandt.

  4. Great summary, as always! (I’ve still been reading, even if I haven’t been commenting as regularly.)

    I don’t think you posted the link to the article about Natalie Portman. It just goes to her IMDb page. Thanks!

    1. Same here. Hard to reply whilst holding baby George. Still love reading though. 🙂