Mash-up names

I was reading last night a tiny bit about Bl. John Piamarta, who I’d never heard of before. I was immediately drawn to his last name, Piamarta, as I assumed that it was a mash-up of Pia (the feminine of Pius, Latin for “pious”) and Marta (a form of Martha). I don’t know if it is, but even if that’s not the origin of Bl. John’s last name, one could decide to make such a combo a first name for a girl, and what a pretty name it would be. (I’ve always loved the idea of Pia, but I think it take some thick skin for a child to have that name today, because of what else it sounds like. Adding it onto another name is a nice way to get around that though, I think.)

Bl. John Piamarta made me think of other mash-up names I’ve heard. The first that came to mind was Maristela, which I had not heard of until someone suggested it for Simcha. I of course was familiar with Stella, and Stella Maris, but what a lovely way to reconfigure the name with Maristela! (Or Maristella.)

I’ve also always loved the name Maite, which is a contraction of Maria Teresa. Gorgeous on its own, or as a nickname for Maria Teresa. Maricruz was a character on the TV show Prison Break.

I had a hard time finding a listing of more like that. A search for “contraction baby names,” which is how Maite was described (a contraction of Maria and Teresa) gave me info on labor contractions. Try again! A search for “mash-up names” resulted in an article about Bettylou and Maryjane-type names — but I didn’t mean two separate names connected with no change (which, yes, is what Piamarta is, but still). I tried “compound names” and came up with a really fun article about contracting a longer name down to a shorter, like Anastasia–>Asia, which is really fun for nicknames and a technique I myself have suggested, but it’s not two names contracted together.

It would be fun to make some up, like … John Paul–>Jopa. Okay, maybe not. Maristella and Maricruz sound so reverent to me, probably because the elements aren’t so hidden, so it’s easy to see what names they came from. So then maybe I’m being crazy, because we have so many beautiful names like that already.

What mash-up/combo names are you familiar with? What are your favorites?


26 thoughts on “Mash-up names

  1. I find that I am checking your blog each day to see what new name fun is going on…a mash-up of names is not really something I have thought much about. The only thing that I can relate it to is when folks are called by their initials…like JP or DJ or KC.
    I’d be interested to hear more about this…


  2. There are some mash-up nicknames, such as Polly, which is short for Margaret Mary (a mash-up of their nicknames Peggy + Molly). I know I’ve heard of others but that’s the one that’s coming to mind right now.


  3. I’ve never quite known how to categorize our daughter’s name, Julianne. It’s technically a feminine form of Julian, although it also has the appearance of a compound name (and many assume it is a compound name, and try to spell it Julieanne or Julie-Anne, etc). I haven’t checked BehindTheName, but wonder also about the make-up of Rosalie (a family name on our Polish side that has recently been associated more with Twilight than anything else!).


    • Sarah, I just checked behindthename, but it also only categorizes Julianne as a feminine form of Julian. It’s probably just what you want it to be — actress Julianne more did actually put Julie and Anne together to make her professional name, so it could be a compound name, or you can just say it’s for your Uncle Julian or whatever. As for Rosalie (which I do love, Twilight notwithstanding), behindthename says it’s the French and German form of Rosalia, which is described as a “Late Latin name derived from rosa “rose”. This was the name of a 12th-century Sicilian saint.” Pretty!


  4. Ps. I love Maite! I had never heard if it before. I wonder if there are more contracted or compound names with Spanish origin? Piamarta sounds lovely too.


    • Ooh yes, that’s a good one! I would have thought Mary + Ella/Ellen/Eleanor or similar, but behindthename says it’s an Italian diminutive of Maria, and the comments show that it has some old usage (like a book published in 1927 had a character called Mariella Fyfe).


  5. i know this is an old post but I’m searching your site for more ideas and wanted to mention that I once knew a Mavi (Marie Victoria) and I liked it.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Interestingly, Maite is a name in Basque also, but is not a contraction. It is means beloved or dear.

    The contractions/mash-ups I am familiar with are all Hispanic. And generally associated with girls. I think there might be some boy names but none are coming to me. Will ask a friend.
    Here are a few more, in addition to those you mentioned:
    Marisol – Maria and Soledad
    Maribel – Maria and Isabel
    Maricel – Maria and Celia
    Dorolinda – Dorotea and Linda
    Marilu – Maria Luz
    There are more I have seen but would generally be viewed more as combos – where these are actually contractions and drop letters.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Beautiful, I love all these. And now that you say that about Maite, I do remember reading that it’s also a Basque name with that meaning, which I thought made me extra fabulous.


  7. Some additional ones I found:
    Actress Marilu Henner was born Mary Lucy Denise Henner
    It is common for a person to be known by 2 first names: José Luis, María Teresa, Juan Carlos, etc. Combining the 2 names into one is another common way to form a hypocorism:

    María Teresa → Maritere, Mayte, Maité, Marité
    María Luisa → Marisa, Marilú, Malú
    María del Carmen → Mayca, Mame, Mamen
    María Isabel → Maribel, Marisa
    Luz María → Luzma
    María Fernanda → Marifer, Mafer
    María Salvadora → Marisa

    María José → Coté, Marijose, Marijo, Majo, Ajo
    Juan Carlos → Juanca
    Juan Esteban → Juanes
    Juan Manuel → Juanma
    Juan Miguel → Juanmi
    Juan Pablo → Juanpi
    José María → Chema, Josema

    Jean-Michel → Jean-Mi
    Marie-Charlotte → Macha
    Marie-Josée → Marie-Jo
    And in Basque there is common male name:
    Jose Mari (Joseph Mary) which is sometimes written Josemari or Joxemari (x in Basque has “sh” sound)

    Liked by 1 person

  8. In know some people (male & female) with these kind of names. It’s quite common in the Netherlands. Not that you stumble upon these names, but there are many examples.

    Most of them won’t work in English though, I guess, like : ANNELIES (Anne + Elisabeth), ANNEWILL (Anne + Wilhelmina), ISAMIJN (Isabella + Wilhelmina or Marina), LISANNE (Elisabeth + Anne), MARLIES (Maria + Elisabeth)

    But these might work in English :

    – female –

    Milou = Maria + Louisa
    Ammie / Ammy = Anna + Maria
    Angelotte = Angela + Charlotte
    Elsenore = Elisabeth + Eleonora
    Rosephine = Rosa + Josephine

    – male –

    Leco = Leonard + Conrad
    Maxander = Maxilimian + Alexander

    Liked by 1 person

  9. When looking at German names after that particular post, I came across some Hans combos – but they aren’t exactly mashed – really just combined: Hansjoachim and Hansjurgen. Thought you might be interested in the Joachim one.

    Liked by 1 person

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