A Fourth of July fireworks display at the Wash...

If you celebrate the Fourth of July, I hope you had great weather for cooking out, fireworks, and all sorts of festivities.  This year, we also got to celebrate Canada Day – which my American kids spent playing with their Polish cousins in Toronto.  It was quite the summit, and oh, how I loved quizzing my cousins-by-marriage on current baby naming trends in Poland.

Here’s an intriguing thing about Polish names:  there’s not a lot of choice when it comes to diminutives.  In the US, Margaret could be Maggie or Greta or Peg.  And she might grow up to be Margaret, or maybe only her husband will call her Meg.

But in Poland, Malgorzata is Malgosia if you’re friendly, and Gosia if you’re close.  End of story.

Or maybe not.  There appear to be some regional differences.  And I have to believe a trace of individual preference factors in, at least some of the time.  But even when parents choose foreign names, the same process of creating diminutives holds.

Elsewhere online:

  • It’s been a beautifully, bountifully floral kind of week.  This post ran at AppMtn on Friday, plus Names for Real spotted a Daisy Milagros, and a Briony Lois.  Plus, I just finished reading Sisterland, where the twin sisters are named Violet and Daisy.
  • Speaking of Sisterland, Curtis Sittenfeld’s name has always fascinated me.  It’s actually her middle – she’s Elizabeth Curtis Sittenfeld.  With Hadley and Harper so much in vogue, could Curtis follow?
  • I ask this question all the time.
  • My favorite name on this list?  I’ll go with Elettra, but there are lots of possibilities.
  • And another intriguing E name: Evalince,via NamesDaily on Instagram.
  • Hello, June babyberries!  Arlo, Augusten, Laszlo, and oh so many more …
  • For all of you missing Bewitching Baby Names, Bewitching 2.0 can be found here.  Isadora, we’ve missed you!
  • There’s naming your children after sports figures, and then there’s this.  Zidane is intriguing, but ten names from one World Cup team?  Yikes!
  • I’m not crazy about Aaron, but I love the Scottish Arran, as spotted in this British Baby Names birth announcement round-up.  Would Arran forever have to spell and explain his name?  Probably …
  • Thanks to Megan for this find – Rainbow Rowell on her unusual given name.

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. Briony Lois is the exact combo hubby & I are thinking for our babygirl. Briony because I love it, Lois after his grandma.

  2. So cool to see Rainbow Rowell mentioned. She graduated from my college a few years before me.

    1. I love her books and she seems like a very cool person. She’s totally changed my perception of the name Rainbow!