I don’t know about you, but I was eager to find out more about these two names, especially Roxan(n)e, in light of Simcha’s baby announcement. (I write “Roxan(n)e” because the first post I saw with the baby’s name had two n’s, and the second had only one. Not sure yet which is the typo, or if they haven’t totally decided yet on the spelling.)
I spotlighted Cornelius here, in which I discussed Cornelia; further, behindthename.com says, “In the 2nd century BC it was borne by Cornelia Scipionis Africana (the daughter of the military hero Scipio Africanus), the mother of the two reformers known as the Gracchi. After her death she was regarded as an example of the ideal Roman woman.” According to the Name Voyager, it peaked in popularity in the 1880s, and fell below 1000 on the charts — and thus off the charts altogether — in the 1970s. So if Simcha’s hope was that it would be a name not many of her classmates would have, she was certainly spot on. Cordelia, maybe, what with all the Anne of Green Gables fans (so many of us!), but not Cornelia. In addition to the Corrie, Lia, and Nell I’d listed as nicknames, others offered between the entry and the comments are Nele (which is German, so I think it’s said like Nella), Neely, Nelly, Cora, and Cokkie (which the comments tell me is said like coke-y), and seeing Corrie again made me dig a little deeper and … yes! Cornelia was Corrie ten Boom‘s given name! Now that is cool. Maybe Corrie just bumped up a bunch of notches on my list of favorite Cornelia nicknames. It’s certainly a pretty great namesake (as are the Sts. Cornelius).
Now for Roxan(n)e. The variant that had the most info on behindthename.com was Roxana, which is the “Latin form of Ρωξανη (Roxane), the Greek form of the Persian or Bactrian name روشنک (Roshanak) which meant “bright” or “dawn”. This was the name of Alexander the Great’s first wife, a daughter of the Bactrian nobleman Oxyartes. In the modern era it came into use during the 17th century. In the English-speaking world it was popularized by Daniel Defoe, who used it in his novel ‘Roxana’ (1724).” Roxane was also the name of Cyrano de Bergerac’s love, which is sweet. Of the various versions given, I’m really digging the Polish Roksana and the Italian Rossana.
Do you know anyone with the names Cornelia or Roxan(n)e? Do they like their names? What nicknames do they go by, if any?