She’s a literary invention and a shortbread cookie. Her most popular year was 1941, when names like Barbara and Judith, Shirley and Geraldine were all the rage.

She reminds me of names like Norma and Edna, but somehow I find her lighter. Maybe it’s RD Blackmore’s 1869 romance, complete with mistaken identities, a lost heiress, the bad getting their comeuppance and true love conquering all.

Or maybe it is the cookie.

In any case, I thought our Week of Boys could benefit from at least some discussion of a girl’s name.

So I ask you, readers: Lorna, Yea or Nay?

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. God, no! That name is so Barbara, so Nancy, so Donna, so Norma, so Doreen. Not for me! Now, Laura, however (one consonant off), is a different story. Nice! 😉

  2. My Auntie’s name is Lorna. She must be in her 50s. I like the name – probably because of the positive association with my Auntie and that she’s the only person I’ve ever met with the name. (Which is always a bonus for me.)

  3. I LOVE the name Lorna! For some reason I have noticed it in several chick-lit books by British authors. I was actually surprised a couple of years ago when I went to look it up in Baby Name Wizard and there was no entry. It also gets pretty dismissive descriptions on most name sites. I think its a great name!

  4. Meh. It beats Lauren and Laura I guess. I like Laura in theory but Lauren has been (and continues to be) done to death and I find it hard to separate the two.

    My only personal association is a lovely Maori woman in her late 20’s. I’ve never heard it on anyone else.

  5. Maybe. I think she sounds fresher than some of the older names you mentioned because of her similarity to Laura and Lauren. Lorna makes me think of a hip but retro cross between Lauren and Daphne.

  6. so old Hollywood, should be dating a member of the Rat Pack, wears black cigarette pants and stays in bed until noon. Love it.

  7. There was a time I had a big L obsession. Lorna was a name I really liked alongside Leona and Lorelei. But I actually like Lorne more.

  8. Hmmm, I disagree with Joy, I think Lorna’s a lovely name! But then, I’m a fan of Lorne too.

    For that matter, I’m quite fond of Geraldine.

  9. It’s too forlorn. Very close to Lora. Worn by Lorna Luft, daughter of Judy Garland. Feminine form of Lorne, which brings to mind Lorne Michaels and Lorne Greene. Nothing lovely about this name unless it’s your beloved grandmother’s name, and your other grandma’s name is…Bertha.

  10. I know a Lorna! Because it’s such an unusual name I’ve got a very clear image in my mind as to what a Lorna should look like, so I doubt I’ll ever use it. It’s a lovely name though. I think the “r” and “n” juxtaposition is a little dated-sounding, but maybe in a few years it’ll be ready for a comeback.