Sunday Summary 7.16.15By the time you read this, I might already be winging my way over the Atlantic Ocean. I’m off to England with my family for a week. It’s the longest flight that our children have ever taken, so please think positive, travel-happy, short customs-lines thoughts for us!

Blog posts are (mostly) scheduled, and my trusty MacBook is packed for the trip, so I won’t be offline. But I’m not positive just how connected I’ll be over the next week.

I will, of course, be namespotting. Because, London! And sharing any great names that I discover along the way.

Sadly, I won’t be able to make the name meet-up. Which slays me because, really, what are the odds that I’d even be on the right continent? But I’ll be miles away from Oxford in Dorset at a family celebration. But if you are anywhere near Oxford, England – go! And please take pics and tell me what you talk about!

Now, on to the name news:

  • Jupiter, Linden, Sorell and more great place names from Australia, thanks to – who else? – Anna at Waltzing More than Matilda!
  • Congrats to Evie and Raquel of The Name Game – you know them from Facebook and Instagram – on the launch of their new website.
  • Love the name Lowenna! Names that mean happiness are great.
  • Congrats to Hallie Lord on the birth of baby #7, Maximilian Joseph! And a special thanks to Kate for sharing (with permission) the names of all six of Max’s siblings. They even have a Zelie – swoon!
  • Cage, Jor-el, Lyfe, Karisma, Gezebelle – some eye-popping choices from Names 4 Real’s Wisconsin round-up.
  • Nancy asks what will happen to the baby name Atticus, now that a very different version of Scout’s dad was revealed in Go Set a Watchman. It seems like a good time to repeat that there’s also a saint, a philosopher, and several other historical figures by the name. There’s a Downton Abbey character and another in The 39 Clues. And yet, I do wonder if the news about Finch’s re-formulation is enough to send parents looking for another name.
  • Speaking of powerful associations, Laura makes a good point about celebrity name “ownership.”  It’s tough to hear Miley and not think Cyrus. But Mila, Scarlett, and Kim? Perfectly wearable.
  • Interesting word names for boys, from the mainstream Victor to the well-why-not Viridian.
  • Have you named your fantasy triplets? The comments on this post are completely amazing! And there were 199 when I last checked …
  • From the wayback machine: this post from July 2008 on French Names for Girls is still among the most-read posts here ever.
  • Names from the J. Crew catalog: Ryder, Gemma, Elsie, Peyton, Sloan, Ava, Cece, Colette, Campbell, Crosby.
  • I’ve binge-watched my way through Witches of East End and Empire this summer, and loved the names in both series. The very last episode of Season One of Empire had a great naming moment – did you catch it? (Not really a spoiler!) Gabourey Sidibe plays the executive assistant to the powerful, charismatic Lucious Lyon. Her character’s name is Becky. Yup, Becky. It’s unremarkable at first, but Becky is a generic term for a white girl – and it’s not exactly nice. (What generic slang term is?!) I can’t pin down where it comes from, but I’d put my money on Sir Mix-a-Lot’s 1992 smash hit Baby Got Back. (A Valley Girl-esque character starts the song by saying, “Oh my God, Becky. Look at her …” You know the rest.) Hakeem Lyon says, offhandedly to Becky, “What kind of a black girl (is) named Becky?” She replies, “Oh. My mom’s white.” It’s a little moment, but a fascinating one, too.

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.

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What do you think?


  1. We need a few meet ups in the US! Have fun, Abby! (And happy belated birthday!)

  2. Abby!! Have an awesome time!! I’m totally with you on how crazy-making it is that you’re so close to the name meet-up and yet still too far! It would be so fun to do one here. 🙂

  3. Have fun! I want to go back to London someday. We namebloggers should get together and take a trip. 🙂

  4. Have a wonderful time in England!

    I guess the problem with Atticus is that most of them weren’t named after the saint, the philosopher or the Downton Abbey character …. they were named for Atticus Finch. This mother has decided that the “new” (or rather old) Atticus Finch makes her son Atticus’ name even better:

    I love the name Lowenna, and was surprised that it was one of the least favourite names in a recent poll I did. I still can’t figure out why people didn’t go for it.

  5. That names meet-up sounds awesome! Alas, I’ll be on holiday in Wales, and even if not Oxford is a good 5 hours away.