Namespotting: Elizabeth Bauttista

I saw in the credits of a show I was watching the other night the first+middle combo Elizabeth Bauttista and of course I was immediately like Joyful Mystery name!!!!!!!! Isn’t that awesome?? And so meaningful!! I mean, seriously — her parents must have had St. Elizabeth and St. John the Baptist in mind, right?

The spelling Bauttista isn’t one I’ve come across — I’ve only seen the similar Bautista, and every one of the Baptist names are listed as masculine on behindthename, but they all seem so perfect for girls that I was surprised their usage is given as exclusively masculine. Which made me all the happier to see Elizabeth Bauttista — I knew they must have feminine usage!

I’m totally dying over the idea of Elizabeth + a Baptist name — whenever I think of the Baptist names I think of pairing some form of John with it, but pairing a form of Elizabeth with it is so great! I started toying with other combos and loved how pretty and unexpected combos like Elsa Baptiste, Isabella Bautista, and Elisabetta Battista would be.

Do you know anyone with a form of Baptist in his or her name?

22 thoughts on “Namespotting: Elizabeth Bauttista

  1. My two times and three times great grandfathers were both called Jean Baptiste. They were French Canadian and the name quickly became just John. Interestingly, I think they were also both Protestant.

    I think there are a fair number of variants in Catholic countries. The Italian is Giambattista, the Spanish is Juan Bautista, the German is Johann Baptist, etc. All of them can be and have been used in feminine forms, like Jeanne-Baptiste, Juana Bautista, Johanna Baptist, Gianna Battista, etc.

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    • I picked most of that up from looking through a lot of genealogies stretching back centuries when I worked on my family tree. I think the feminine versions of the name were more rare, but they did exist and Baptista was used in combination with other first names too.

      Another one I found on my grandmother’s family tree was a many times great grandmother called Xainte, apparently the French version of Saint. Then, being a name freak, I found all the different variants, like Sancho/Sancha/Sanchia. The English used Sens or Sense as a variant. It’s probably also where the Game of Thrones name Sansa came from.

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      • Ooh I love this!! Xainte!! Wow!! So interesting about Sansa too — at first I thought George Martin had just taken familiar names and changed/deleted/added a letter here or there — like Eddard, Davos, Catelin — only to find out later that they were all or almost all existing names that I hadn’t heard before. So makes total sense about Sansa!

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      • Huh, I can’t reply to your comment above about Martin’s names, but that’s what this comment is for — I’m actually in the process of writing a book chapter on how medieval are the GoT names! In many cases you are right — Eddard is definitely “take a familiar name and change a letter”. But around a third of the names used in GoT are medieval, or plausible variants of medieval names, and many more are implausible variants of medieval names. Unfortunately I can’t go into much detail in the chapter since it’s limited to 4000 words, but my co-authors and I are thinking of writing an expanded version for another context once we’re done with this!

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      • I’ve read some suggestions about where Martin came up with his names and my guess is he used a variety of sources. Sansa sounds pretty close to Sancha, Sancta, etc., but it may not have been used in exactly that form. It may also be Hindu. But if anyone is a Game of Thrones fan, they could use Sansa and also say it means Saint. It’s close enough.

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    • I have two French Canadian great great grandfather’s named Jean Baptiste too! My grandma says they were both just called John too. We can trace that side of the family back to Canada in the late 1500s, and as far as I know, Catholic all the way. Xaint is awesome too.

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      • The French Canadians kept good records. I traced every branch of my grandmother’s family back to the 1500s or 1600s. Maybe we’re related and it’s the same Jean-Baptiste! His surname was Guedesse. They were probably Catholic at some point. I am also distantly related to Madonna and Angelina Jolie, probably along with half of Quebec.

        Xainte was actually Marie-Xainte, so the name was in honor of a Saint Mary. It was written in the records as Zainte, Sainte, Xaint, etc., so probably pronounced with a Z sound. Her maiden name was Clauthier.

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  2. Hmmm, I know/know of a few families who have the last name Bauttista/Bautista! There are a lot of baseball players with the last name.

    I love that Elizabeth is pretty common (again, as I said before in the best way), and Bauttista is very out there! It’s a good balance!

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    • “a good balance” — yes! I love familiar paired with unfamiliar/less common. Also, I’d forgotten about it being a last name — good point! I guess the Elizabeth Bauttista I saw might have been her first name and her maiden name instead of first and middle … but what a coincidence that would be!

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  3. I haven’t heard of a woman having any of the Baptist names, but I have heard of quite a few men named Maria Battista, which sounds feminine to our modern ears. As a classical musician, I have come across lots of less familiar composers from centuries ago, and it’s interesting to see how names were used then. The delineation between masculine and feminine seemed less pointed than now.

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  4. Kate, have you ever heard the connection between Queen Esther and Our Lady, specificallyou Our Lady of Fatima? I think you’d be interested by it! Maybe a name of the day kinda post? (Seemingly unrelated, I know, but the above talk about family trees got me thinking. Esther is a family name for me!)

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  5. I understand there is a part of France called Batiste that is named after St. John the Baptist…Batiste sounds like a masculine name and Batista sounds soft and feminine…not too much different from what you said…
    Certainly fun names to combine “mystery names”…Gabriel or Joachim..Simon or Simeon Batiste…or actually even Anna (or Eva) Batiste or Mary Batista or any of the names of the Apostles…sounds to me like a great name for sacred combinations…

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