T(h)erese/a in honor of Patricia?

This is really kind of weird, but sort of recently I came across at least two different places online where I saw Theresa or Teresa or Therese (I can’t remember which) listed as an honor name for Patricia (I know that it’s at least two, because if I saw it just once I would have assumed it was just some weird thing … but two means more than one person consider it to be so, which I find baffling). One of them might even have been someone saying they couldn’t use Theresa for a daughter because there’s already a Patricia in the family. But in the last couple of weeks I have googled and googled various terms trying to find the posts (I think one was at the Baby Name Wizard, and I don’t remember where the other one was — maybe Swistle?) because I wanted to post about it here, and I canNOT find any mention of it anywhere! So you’ll all just have to humor me for a moment and assume my memory is correct — have any of you heard of this? T(h)erese/a for Patricia?

I’ve thought a lot about it because my first reaction was wha??? so I really tried to see how it could be, and then I realized it’s not that far off, for these reasons:

— Tricia/Trish and Theresa have really similar sounds

— I have a friend with a sister named Patricia and he’s always said it pah-TREE-shah (big emphasis on the TREE) whereas I have only known it to be pah-TRIH-sha, short i. But, if pah-TREE-shah is more common than I realize, then TREE-shah and teh-REE-sah are really very similar

— My mom always calls her Theresa friend TREESE — rhymes with Reese — like a contraction of Theresa and drop the a. Or like how some people say Therese (teh-REZ and teh-REESE are both acceptable). TREESE and Trish (especially in a pah-TREE-shah scenario) are also very similar.

So I guess I can see how this happens, but I’m wondering how prevalent this idea is (if it even exists and I didn’t totally imagine it). Have any of you heard of Theresa or Therese or Teresa as an honor name for Patricia, or even considered a variant?

Updated to add: I did find this obituary for a Patricia who apparently went by Teresa …

31 thoughts on “T(h)erese/a in honor of Patricia?

  1. My first name is Charlotte Patricia, and certain family members/friends pronounce it “pah-trih-sha” while others pronounce it “pah-tree-sha.” (I much prefer the first.) So while I’ve had that pronunciation, I’ve never heard of it being related to Theresa, even as a nickname. After reading your points I can see how they’re similar, though I don’t think I’d ever use Theresa/Therese as an honor name for Patricia or vice versa. Not similar enough for me.

    Liked by 1 person

      • Thanks! And I do! It’s Anne. “Charlotte Patricia Anne” is a long name, but I’ve grown fond of it.

        Speaking of “Anne,” funny story… I recently thought of you and this blog because of a crazy Saint Anne connection. In the beginning of the year, I was trying to think of things I could do to help myself (I had serious health issues that led to losing my job and having to move from NY to NC with family and I already struggle with depression, so things were rough and I needed to figure out ways to stay afloat) and one of those things was to pick a saint for the year. I chose Saint Anne and said a little prayer. I also wrote down some goals for the year. One of my biggest life goals is to write a book, and I knew that working on it would help me stay sane while dealing with all the health stuff, and so I really, really wanted to get started on it. But of course, it was daunting and I couldn’t think of where to even start. Eventually, after reading this blog all the time, I *really* wanted to pick out meaningful/beautiful names for characters in my book, and once I started that, writing became less intimidating and I’ve actually been managing to do it. Writing has totally helped me out. In an otherwise lousy year, it’s been a saving grace, plus it gives me purpose.

        And it hit me: Picked Saint Anne for my saint of the year -> became convinced that writing would help me -> struggled to get motivated to write -> found this blog -> Saint Anne becomes patron of this blog -> all the name stuff motivates me to start coming up with characters -> writing actually happens!

        What a coincidence! Except… I might sound nuts but maybe that is not at all a coincidence??

        Liked by 2 people

  2. “Patrice” reminds me more of Teresa/Therese (with the “ees” pronunciation) than Patricia. I’ve also known a Pa-TREETZ-io (male Italian version?) and I can totally see that connecting to Teresa?

    Fascinating that you found a connection!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Interesting! I would have never ever thought of them as actually connected. I would find them in the same style because they’re both names that were popular in the 40s/50s/60s in America but that’s the only connection I would think of. I’ll have to think about it some more.

    Maybe that Patricia can go by Trisha and Theresa can go by Teri? Teri and Trisha are pretty similar.

    Love both names though!

    Liked by 2 people

  4. My middle name is Teresa and I have never heard of any stated connections between the names, but since you are talking honor names – that can be very subjective. It is not that much of a stretch to notice possible similarities if one wanted to connect them. Tracy is another diminutive of T(h)eresa which I see being similar to Tricia/Trisha. Treese

    Patrice (pah-TREES, nn Trice or Trece) is another variation I am familiar with through some acquaintances. Also in Spanish or Portuguese the pronunciation will be more with the EES sound: pah-TREES-ah or pah-TREES-ee-ah. It seems most of the Patricia variations from European countries have the EESE (or EES-ee-ah) pronunciations which mirror the T(h)eresa sound. Patricie (Czech), Patrizia (German and Italian)

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I googled ‘Patricia Theresa’ and the first two pages of results yielded obituaries of three different Patricias called Theresa. Maybe it’s just something that happens because of the similar sounds.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Really?? I want your google!! I must’ve googled it a thousand times and all I could find was that one obit I linked to. Thank you Virginia! You’ve confirmed I’m not totally crazy! 🙂


  6. Through a very fast google search (not very in depth), I found a lot of women named “Patricia Theresa” and “Theresa Patricia”….interesting that they could be connected in some way, and be a common combination.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Now…back to this fun conversation about Theresa and Patricia…I never heard of it 🙂

    However, it puts me to mind of a conversation I was part of in an Irish store this past summer. I can’t remember the names right now, but there was a reference made to someone but they went by another name. And then, the lovely shopkeeper went on to tell another couple of similar stories including her own. The one about her own name made me chuckle because it had to do with her own name and her parents calling her by a different name! 🙂 🙂 🙂 Her comment to her folks was something like, “Mom, Dad…if you named me this, then why do you call me that?” As I recall, she seemed to indicate that her folks did not see any unusual nature to the situation!) So funny to hear her tell the tale. But she was speaking about several Irish families in the examples she was citing…name was one thing, but called by a different name. Whew…that was a lot to say just to be able to make the comment that it seemed to be an “Irish” thing based on the particular instance I am telling you about. So…since the question at hand is Theresa as an honor name for Patricia, and Patricia is the feminine for Patrick…bingo, Irishness! So, just sayin’, perhaps this is what happened…named Theresa, but did not want to leave out honoring St. Pat? ( Devotion to the Little Flower is also popular in Ireland)

    When I find my note about those funny name alterations, I will write them up for you all [or y’all! ;)]…very funny!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I have been searching too, but nothing. I did discover that Pat, Patty or Patsy are a common nicknames for Martha (and Matilda) though. That strikes me the same way as Patricia-Theresa — they have nothing in common so where did that come from? Though is sounds like it comes from the rhyming with Matty/Mattie. Anyway, I had not known that before.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I found four obituaries for Patricia (Theresa) and one for Patricia (Teresia) on Google, which is a small but sufficient enough number to confirm that Theresa and its variants are used as an honor name or nickname for Patricia. Since the names don’t share any etymological roots or historical Christian connection, the strongest explanation seems to be that the connection is based on phonetic similarities. It’s still a rather baffling connection, but I suppose it makes more sense with some of the European pronounciations, where there’s no “sh” sound and the vowels are elongated, like PatREEseeah.

    Liked by 2 people

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