This week my Monday Moan is all about Baby Names …
To start though … You will earn my sincere respect if you can provide the FULL title of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s third child. What was the birth date? What
position does the infant have being inline for the Royal throne? (Answers below)
Grandparents have virtually no say when it comes to naming their
grandchildren. One can only imagine the reaction of Granny and Grandpa to
hearing that Bob Geldof and Paula Yates had named their daughter Fifi
Trixibelle. How about Bruce Willis and Demi Moore with three, named
Tallulah, Scout and Runner and Jamie Oliver and Juliette Norton who called
their daughter, Poppy Honey Rosie. The Beckham’s four children are certainly
not going to worry traditionalists with their names: Brooklyn, Romeo, Cruz
Baby Names from Around the World
Outside the world of celebrity parents other rules apply. In China, parents
will consider the number of brushstrokes that form the name to ensure a
balance of male and female energies (yin and yang). That’s the easy bit.
Chinese reverse their names with the last name first followed by the given
name. There are around 100,000 characters in Chinese script. It is considered
bad practice to copy a celebrity name.
Catholic parents focus on biblical names and will often use those of parents
and grandparents. The Catholic church encourages the use of names from the
African baby names often reflect parental aspirations. The name ‘Barack’,
which comes from the Arabic root for ‘blessings’, was contained to East
Africa until a certain US President increased its universal appeal.
Muslim Baby Names
Muslim cultures will often honour their Prophet Muhammad which is the
most popular boy’s name in the world. It gained even more prominence
when a certain boxer changed his name to Muhammad Ali. There are four
accepted ways of spelling the name.
Jewish tradition places great importance on the name selected for a child. A
Hebrew boy might reflect the conditions present at the birth. This is
demonstrated by ‘Isaac’ which means ‘he will laugh’. According to Genesis
Abraham fell to the ground laughing when the angel told him that his wife
Sarah (well past childbearing age) would give birth: son Isaac arrived.
Another popular Jewish name is ‘Moshe’ which translates to ‘Moses’. It is
Jewish practice that children born in the Diaspora (the exiling of Jews
worldwide) were, and are, given two names. One reflects their Jewish
heritage and the other the name of the country in which they were born.
Top Baby Names 2018
Back to being grandparents. The five most popular names in 2018, to-date, are (girls): Emma, Olivia, Ava, Isabella and Sophia. (Boys): Liam, Noah, Oliver, Logan and Mason.
My name is ‘Tony’ except in China where I have travelled extensively. Most hotel receptionists can’t say their ‘T’s. “Hah, Mr Pony”, they cry as I arrive.
Perhaps the final word should go to US novelist James Salter (d.19.6.15) who said:
A name is like a piece of clothing. It gives you an impression right away.
His Royal Highness Prince Louis Arthur Charles of Cambridge
23 April 2018
Fifth in line (behind Prince Charles, Prince William, Prince George and Princess Charlotte).
Read more of Tony’s Monday Moans .