number 9
number 9 (Photo credit: the|G|™)

I had a fun conversation recently with a little 4 year old girl about whether or not Clio was a girl’s name.  There’s a little boy namedLeoin the same circle, so naturally she insisted that Clio had to be a boy.

It reminded me that we make gender assumptions based on what’s familiar to us – and at 4, this little girl has yet to encounter the Muses or, I suspect, Cleopatra.  I ended the conversation by pointing to Clio and saying, well, she’s a girl, so Clio is a girl’s name.  Ultimately, all assumptions about gender have to be dismissed when there’s a girl called Jack or a boy named Allisson in front of you.

Other random name thoughts from this week:

  • My kids’ school has a classical curriculum, which means they learn Latin starting in kindergarten.  This year, the second grade chose Latin names, too.  Aly is now Gregorius.  I love it because it sounds like gregarious, which seems like a positive attribute to me.
  • Speaking of ancient appellations, check out this family discovered in nineteenth century London by British Baby NamesHorace, Virgil, Julius, and more.
  • What do you think of these Fall baby names?  I love Sorrell, Rowan, and Saffron, but not all of these seem exclusively autumnal to me.
  • I really appreciated Isadora’s post about Jabari. We tend to be so dismissive of African American naming traditions, but it really is an incredible challenge.  What do you do if you want to celebrate your heritage, but you’re generations removed from knowing anything about your family’s past?  Names like Tyree, Tanesha, Deondre, and Hakeem may not have the long, unbroken histories of use that James and Elizabeth boast, but there’s a valid attempt to reclaim the past with these choices.  It’s no different than me shortlisting Dante and Giacomo, even though my ancestors left Italy decades back.
  • I know exactly how Nicknameless feels!
  • Want to be a girl detective?  Start with a great nameThursday, anyone?
  • Aletha was profiled at Upswing Baby Names this week.  Truly a great name …
  • Or maybe your literary tastes run towards Tolkein?  Nancy’s round-up of Middle-Earth Baby Names suggest that quite a few of us are finding inspiration in his works.
  • Lots of delightful choices in this post at For Real Baby Names, from Mae Frances to Reece Arthur to Zoe Violet SkyeFinn Hudson is great, too, but somehow I think the parents will be surprised when they’re asked if they’re big fans of Glee.

This week’s posts are courtesy of Lurker Week, and I’m really excited about them.  They’re just a great bunch!

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

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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. When I played Sims my two favorite names that I used were Gregorius and Georgius. I thought Georgius was fun because it’s close to gorgeous.

    And speaking of gorgeous, I love Virginia Julia Lucia Rosa Clementia, and siblings, if only for the length. Multiple middle names seem so darling and fun. I’d love to string together names like that.

    The lady detective names are great too; I especially loved Hildegarde, Maud (loving the name Maudine and Maudie at present), Theolinda, and Loveday.

    Loveday makes me think of Lovelace as I recently read a little about Ada Lovelace, “sometimes considered the world’s first computer programmer” (Wikipedia). I think Lovelace, or Ada, would make a great middle name for someone seeking a smart feminine name with a mathematical and technologically savvy leaning.

    😀 I’m fairly nerdy when it comes to fantasy so I enjoyed Nancy’s post immensely. One of my favorite boy combinations is John Reginald Raphael/Ross (JRR). And while I like Galadriel and Pippin/Peregrin, I kind of adore Gandalf with the Brit-beloved nickname Alfie. I also like Meriadoc “Merry”, which wasn’t mentioned but I find attractive, especially as it also offers up the adorable nickname Doc.

    Mae Frances has a sweet simplicity that is attractive. However, I also find Faiella Dorthean incredibly intriguing and attractive.

  2. I’ve only seen Thursday as a middle name, but it is interesting. I loved that list of girl detective names.

    I debated if I should use Finn Hudson on that list because it screams Glee to me because I watch the show, but I do like the name and I wondered too how many people will ask about Glee.

    1. I think Finn Hudson is probably the best character combo name ever – tremendously impressed by it, as well as the Finn & Quinn pairing. It is the modern equivalent of Jerry & Geri, or maybe Corey and Lori.