Baby name consultant: 20s/30s and/or Brit/European-inspired names needed for fifth boy

Liz and her husband are expecting their fifth baby — and fifth boy! She writes,

In general I would say that my husband and I both prefer first names that are old fashioned (popular in the 1920s and 30s) and currently uncommon. We also tend to like names with a British (or otherwise European) flare. Also, there’s got to be a saint in there somewhere (first or middle name).

We don’t like “made up” names or weirdly spelled names. I don’t prefer common/traditional names as first names, but I am fine with them as middle names (Michael, Sam, Katherine, Rose, etc).”

(I love that: “a British (or otherwise European) flare.”)

Their older boys are:

John-Paul Joseph (“I realize that John-Paul is common in Catholic circles and I specifically said uncommon, but we love St. John Paul so much that we were set on this name before we were even married. Outside of Catholic circles it is pleasantly uncommon and often people think we’re just big Beetles fans. Haha! Joseph is in honor of my grandpa as well as St. Joseph“)

William David (“I like that William is strong and it’s got a British sense to me… Prince William and all that. It is, however a bit too common. That bugs me. He was almost Oliver but I think we just chickened out. Oliver was still weird in 2008 and we didn’t have the guts to be weird, I guess. I’m over that now. 😉 Or maybe it was just intended to be saved for the next kid. David is [a family name]“)

Oliver Francis (“This is probably my favorite of all of the names we’ve chosen. I just love it. Refined, (was) uncommon, old fashioned, a touch Brit. Oliver was not quite so common as it is now when he was born in 2010. I kind of hate that it’s more popular now, but what can I say, we must be trend setters. 🙂 Francis is after Francis of Assisi“)

Theodore Anthony (“We always call him Teddy. We actually named him Theodore specifically to use Teddy. Teddy seems uncommon and old fashioned. Anthony is after St. Anthony with whom I am tight“)

(“Anthony is after St. Anthony with whom I am tight”!!!! I love it!!! 😂❤)

Names they’re currently considering include:

August
Beau
Otto (“Husband is on the fence about this one but he hasn’t vetoed it completely“)
George
Edward
Louis (“French pronunciation“)
Atticus (“I actually haven’t ran this one past the husband yet, but I really like it“)

And names that they like but can’t use for one reason or another include:

Max
Arthur
Kolbe
Henry

Additionally,

I am fine with very common/traditional middle names, I’d prefer to avoid them as first names. We don’t have any middle names in mind yet! … We like nicknames, so feel free to suggest those if a good one strikes you.”

Alrighty, so I found this consultation to be somewhat of a challenge, which I love! It’s so fun to have to dig deep to find names that seem to fit. But it also means that I’m not as confident that I’ve done a good job here – some of my ideas are spot on I think, but others require explanation because I think otherwise Liz and her hubs might dismiss them right away.

First, I love their boys’ names! I think their taste and mine have a good deal of overlap—William, Oliver, John Paul, and Theodore are all names I love and have considered!

Second, reading Liz’s email made me feel like I was chatting with my sister-in-law—I think they’re name twins! My SIL loves Oliver, Beau, George, Henry, and Arthur—how funny is that? It might be worthwhile to check out the consultation I did for her and my brother, and the name they ended up choosing.

Okay! As you all know, I almost always start a consultation by looking up the names the parents have already used and those they like/are considering in the Baby Name Wizard as it lists, for each entry, boy and girl names that are similar in terms of style/feel/popularity. Based on that research and my own namey head, these are my ideas:

(1) Bennet(t) or Elliot(t)
I was really excited to suggest Bennet(t) to this family! I was trying to think of names that I think of as similar to John-Paul (it doesn’t have its own entry in the BNW), and Benedict is always one, but even though Mr. Cumberbatch has made it so fabulous and British, I suspected brothers John-Paul and Benedict would be a bit much. Which is when I thought of Bennet(t)! It’s a medieval variant of Benedict, so it retains the saintly and papal panache, but in a more hidden way, and it’s got oodles of Brit awesomeness because of the Bennet sisters in Pride and Prejudice!

I’m listing Bennet(t) and Elliot(t) together because they’re pretty similar to me—both medieval variants of holy names (in Elliot(t)’s case, it’s Elijah), both with literary last-name connections (T.S. Eliot). Elliot(t)’s also a style match for Oliver.

(2) Walter
Liz listed several old-man names that she and her hubs like (Otto, George, Louis, Arthur), and they made me think of Walter, which is also a favorite of my sister-in-law, so I thought they might like it! Wally, Walt, and Wat(t) are all traditional nicknames for it—so fusty-fresh!

(3) Edmund
Edmund’s peak of popularity was in 1914, and it’s Brit as Brit can be. Like Edward on Liz’s list, it can take the nicknames Ed(die) and Ned (I suspect they might really like Ned). St. Edmund Campion’s an awesome patron for a little boy. Buuutttt … I’m just thinking now that Eddie and even Ned are probably too close to Teddy right? Drat! But wait! JP2’s brother’s name was Edmund and he went by Mundek! Ooh I love that!

(4) Jasper
I loooove Jasper! It’s the name traditionally given to one of the Wise Men (you might also see its variants Casper and Gaspar instead—they’re all the same name). It’s a style match for Oliver, and it reads really Brit to me.

(5) Robert
Robert was big in the 20s and 30s and I’ve been loving the idea of Rory as a nickname for it, which leans toward Liz’s affinity for Brit/European names. Another possibility is Bo, which nods to the Beau on her list. (Relatedly, this sweet little girl was going to be Robert Boethius nicked Bo if she had been a boy! Swoon!) Robert is also St. Robert Bellarmine, which ties in nicely with the heavy-hitting John-Paul.

(6) Stephen
When I saw Stephen listed as a style match for William, it felt right as a suggestion for Liz and her hubs right away. It’s super classic and of course biblical and saintly. I think using the full Stephen rather than Steve will help it seem more 20s/30s. I’m sure they have their own way of choosing middle names, but if they’re looking for ideas, Catholic Digest Editor Danielle Bean has a son named Stephen Matthias, which I think is ah-MAZ-ing!

(7) Patrick
Finally, Patrick. It’s got a similar popularity arc to Stephen I think, and it’s got the European flavor if they want to think of it that way (Ireland), but as with so many of my other suggestions here, it was the offbeat nicknames that clinched it for me as a suggestion for them. Pat and Paddy are certainly common and solid, but I’ve recently been hearing Packy and Patch, which I think are adorable!

And those are all my suggestions! What do you all think? Am I close? Or totally off? I’m worried especially that Robert, Stephen, and Patrick are too “common/traditional,” even though they’re otherwise good style matches … I’d love to hear your suggestions for the little brother of John-Paul, William, Oliver, and Theodore!

122 thoughts on “Baby name consultant: 20s/30s and/or Brit/European-inspired names needed for fifth boy

  1. Gorgeous sibset, I love every single one of those names and have used several of them myself. 🙂

    My first thought for them was Gilbert. True, Chesterton isn’t a saint (YET) but he’s certainly a noted Catholic writer! (And there actually is a St. Gilbert.) They could even go with Gilbert Keith. Gil and Bertie are both adorable nicknames.

    Another thought for them was George, but perhaps George is getting too popular now what with the new little prince.

    The name Peter has actually dropped in popularity since the year 2000, so that might be a good choice too. Peter Edward (or, if you want to go full-scale Narnia, Peter Edmund) would be great.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. These are so great! I’ve been just dying to name someone Beau Benedict, but my husband (Benedict) can’t get on board. These suggestions are right up my alley. We have a Theodore Robert (Theo), Harrison Rock, and Henry Reinhard (Hank). I hadn’t considered Walter but I’m sort of loving that suggestion!

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  3. I read this consult and instantly thought of the (super fun) challenge in finding a wonderful traditional name with an uncommon, plucky nickname. Like the one you listed of Edmund nicknamed Ned. And Jasper could be a Jaz. Other examples – Christopher nn Topher or Kit; Benjamin nn Jem or Benji; Nicholas nn Nico or Cole; Robert nn Bertie or Hob (Gilbert could be a Bertie too, very cute!).

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  4. I love this sibset and all your suggestions Kate!! Also, I love Liz’s clear sense of humor re: being tight with St. Anthony 😀

    The first name that came to mind for me was the name Simon! It seems super British and old fashioned to me. And I feel like it would fit so well with their other names and is slightly more common (though not super uncommon).

    Little out of left field with this one, but the name Hugh struck me for this family. It’s super British to me (thanks too all the British actors named Hugh), uncommon (at least here in America) but still totally known. There are a few saints named Hugh. I feel like something like Hugh Benjamin could be perfect for the family. I really want to suggest Benjamin for a first name but it’s probably too common for them now.

    Frederick also seemed right for them, though they’d have to avoid the nickname Freddie because Freddie and Teddy is a no-no, so this might not work for them, but maybe a middle name!!

    Lastly, the name Emmett came to mind for no reason besides me really liking it with their names!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I know this family in real life and I think both Simon and Hugh hit the right notes for them. I do believe I’ve suggested Hugh to Liz before, when she was expecting her last little boy, but they didn’t go for it. Still, maybe this time! Plus they love nicknames and Huey would fit with what they call their other boys. Harder to think of a nickname for Simon, but I think it’s an even better match for their set! I wish I’d thought of it during the many, many name conversations we’ve had!

      Liked by 2 people

  5. I was surprised by August and Beau!! I think Otto, George, Edward, and Louis are perfect based on what they’re looking for. (And I love Jasper – when I read that they wanted an English name that’s the first thing that popped into my head – Edmund is great too.) I agree they’d need to either decide to call a baby Edward/Edmund by his full first name or figure out a different nickname – unless a Teddy and an Eddy doesn’t bother them. In which case I’d also suggest Alfred or Frederick nn Freddie for any future son. 😀

    I also like Henry, Sebastian, and Xavier. But I don’t know whether those are popular or not? And I really, really like Hugo. Oscar would also work well – it kind of reminds me of Arthur and Otto, since they can’t use Arthur and aren’t sure about Otto yet.

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  6. I just thought of another one! What about Lawrence/Laurence? It might be too “Little Women” with Theodore but I do love “Little Women” so maybe that’s not a bad thing.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. My favorite ideas for this family are Edward and Edmund! So British and old-fashioned! And they could use the full name instead of a nickname. Or Eamon for Edmund!

    Liked by 2 people

  8. So I went to the SocSec data for the 20s, and one name that popped out at me was Charles; two others wree Edward and Donald. If not Edward, how about Edmund? Or Ronald?

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Loads of great suggestions so far. One more I thought of, Dominick. With the final k, it feels so Brit.

    I also second the suggestion of Bertie as a nickname for Robert.

    Finally, Archie could be a good option for this family. Maybe short for Arthur or something like August Charles.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Nice ideas! Dominic’s a fave, and adding the K is cool … and Bertie for Robert! I’ve seen Archie as a nickname for Arthur recently, which I thought was great, but I like Archie as a nickname for August Charles even more! Nice!

      Liked by 1 person

  10. While reading I also thought Gilbert would be a great name! I see from the above comments that I am not alone. (We have a little Gilbert and we have not met another:) also Roland would fit as well! I’m partial to interesting nicknames and Roly is just adorable sounding:)

    Liked by 2 people

      • Isn’t Roly just simply adorable?! We actually know an older man with that name and he happens to have a brother Gilbert.
        Haha I’m the Katie, momma to the twins Zelie and Louis who you helped ease my naming jitters. They are our Gilbert’s little sibs. And his Big Bro is Fulton Lawrence.
        I love your name ideas in this post. I guess we are for fond of British/ European inspired names as well. We will def have to be in touch about name ideas for future babies;)

        Liked by 2 people

  11. Actually why not name the boy Benedict, since she already has a John Paul and Francis? 🙂

    I really love James, I’ve always thought it as a classic European name (and takes jimmy as a nn naturally). Lately some parents have been naming their daughters James but this name will forever be one of the most handsome boys name to me.

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    • I was just about to throw that out there, too! I have a James myself and we know this family in real life, so I never thought to suggest my own children’s names to her. But looking at it as more of an observer, it seems fairly obvious that James is a style match for them! Plus Jimmy is so uncommon these days as a nickname but would go so well with the nicknames they already use.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Although my particular hang-up with Brit-sounding names goes back to my literature-infused childhood, my first professional ambition (to be the Queen of England), etc. But I still think the article has sway.

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      • I’m serious! When you ask preschoolers what they want to be when they grow up and they say, “firefighter”, “cowboy”, “cook”, “teacher”, “doctor”, “mama/daddy”, etc? Mine was, literally, “Queen of England”.

        I remember saying it, and I remember thinking it was possible!

        Liked by 1 person

      • When I realized that the only way for it to be possible was to marry Prince William, who is my little brother’s age (yuck!), and that as an American it would both highly unlikely and massively frowned-upon, it really put a damper on things for me.

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      • I mean, hmm, Book of Common Prayer, beautiful, poetic English vernacular liturgy vs. invalid sacraments. Hmm. Kind of hard to decide, but not really. Lololololol

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      • Grace, I find it very funny that you wanted to be the Queen of England and that you like British names, because your naming style really reminds me of the Belgian royal family, instead of the British royal family. King Phillipe and Queen Mathilde of Belgium have 4 children:
        Élisabeth Thérèse Marie Hélène,
        Gabriel Baudouin Charles Marie,
        Emmanuel Léopold Guillaume François Marie and
        Eléonore Fabiola Victoria Anne Marie.
        So, specially when in comes to girls names, you really remind me of Queen Mathilde of Belgium, not the Queen of England!

        Liked by 3 people

      • Mary-Agnes, you are too sweet! What a beautifully-named royal family! A lot of people do think that I have a “continental” naming style because of the Elisabeth spelling, and the possible middle name option of Thérèse. However, I disagree! We went with the “s” spelling of Elisabeth because of a college friend named that and how pretty her name looked in print with the “s”. She has a quintessentially British noun surname, as do we, so although the “z” spelling is definitely the English-language spelling of the name, we still pronounce Elisabeth the English way and I consider it to be an English choice despite a less-common spelling. Obviously James and John are anglicized versions of Greek names, and Fiona is all British isles. The Thérèse decision is because dear St. Thérèse has worked some miracles for me in the last 5 years and I consider her one of my best friends. I just feel compelled to name a child after her and the anglicized Theresa isn’t a favorite of mine. (In fact, I don’t really consider the name Thérèse to be a style “match” to my taste, but just that I want to honor a saint who has been a true friend to me during my hardest days.)

        Liked by 2 people

  12. I vote for Becket. A friend named their little boy that & I absolutely looove it… so British too. St. Thomas Becket is a pretty awesome patron too.

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  13. To be honest, I live in the UK and have never even heard of a Jasper, ever. Just like Italians are never really called Enzo but people think it’s a super common Italian name 🙂 Also I understand this family likes to think some names are less common than others, but it’s probably based on people they know rather than statistics. Like, Francis would have been a more original choice than Oliver, even in 2010. Nothing wrong with that! I actually really love this sibset (oliver and theodore are especially amazing). I would LOVE August for them, Atticus is also really cool but a little too hipstery. How about: Sebastian, Nicholas, Vincent, Julian. I would use George or Louis as a middle name.

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    • I was just thinking … the “Brit/European” type name that many of us like is more of a *feel* rather than an actual statistical thing … like Jasper *feels* like a Brit name to many an American ear, whether or not there are any current boys/men so named in the UK … I definitely think it’s an American thing … I wonder what names seem really “American” to non-Americans? Maybe the Jadens?

      Liked by 1 person

      • Maybe names like Wyatt, Wayne, Zane, Duke, Wilder, Ryder…trying to think of “cowboy-ish” things because I get the impression from non-American media that there’s an impression that “cowboys” live all over the US. Or maybe things like Brad?

        Liked by 1 person

      • I work with children and I was quite surprised to find jaydens, braidens and such up here in scotland! and I’m talking 10 years olds, not babies, so the trend arrived early on. I can’t speak as a brit, but in italy we still think americans are all named jessica, samantha, jason and maybe michael. I don’t think we know of the jaden’s trend.

        But yes, Jasper does sound british to me as well, but also quite scandinavian? Then again I actually live in Scotland which has its own names, so maybe the south of england is full of jaspers 🙂

        Liked by 2 people

      • When you look at the list for Scotland, it’s about the same as the list for England & Wales, but in a different order, and with many fewer Arabic names. But Jayden is there, along with Aiden and various spellings of these. I’m guessing that the appearance of names like Jaden and Braiden really had a lot to do with ways to elaborate on Aidan, which is a British isles name. So there’s no reason to assume it would only be an American phenomenon.

        It’s interesting that your perception of American names are Jessica, Samantha, Jason, Michael, worriedshoe…there are a lot of Americans named these names, but they are adults now! Most of them are probably between 30-50 years old at this point!

        Liked by 1 person

      • Also interesting to note: Jayden, Aiden, Kaiden, Aidan, Kayden, and Hayden, as well as the Jasper variant Kacper, all appear on the Scottish top 100 before Alasdair, which would, to me, be a quintessentially Scottish name (regardless of statistics). Jasper is also on the Scottish list, but much lower down (#252) than on the English/Welsh one (#107), which somewhat proves the theory that it’s probably most popular in a specific population in the south of England. 😊 (Probably the same urban hipsters who are also using Felix, Jemima, and Axel.)

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      • all the boys’ names that end in -en and the girls names that end in -lee!!!! They have taken over sg too! #accusatory #lolnotreally

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    • Oh yes, I’ve also found that most of us base our ideas of common/uncommon on our experience rather than the stats … Emma’s #1 but I know exactly one Emma in real life and she’s 11. I do think it’s a thing that when most of us say we want an uncommon name, we mean uncommon in our circles … because it doesn’t matter if Nicodemus isn’t even in the top 1000 according to the SSA, if every other boy in your neighborhood is named Nicodemus you’re going to feel like it’s too popular! So funny.

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    • Sorry to keep commenting! I just thought of another thing that I think is helpful — I think a lot of times when we say “uncommon” we mean “fresh” — something we don’t hear too often. So Francis might be less popular statistically than Oliver, but it doesn’t feel as fresh to a lot of people because I think historically (in the recent past — last 100 years) it’s been used more than Oliver.

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    • So, it looks like Jasper was the #107 ranked name in England and Wales in 2014, the most recent year for which statistics are available, whereas it was only #218 in the US for the same year.

      Obviously demographics come into consideration, just as in the US. Wealthy city-dwellers are usually naming from a different list than poor rural folks or immigrants. Tina Fey made the comment, raising her daughter in New York City, that large families with children named after kings and varieties of fruit (I’m imagining she means names like Clementine and Apple?) are commonplace, but they wouldn’t be in, perhaps, small-town America. So of course, you’re right that it all comes down to where you live and who you know. For example, many American Catholics have met a little Zelie, but it remains very uncommon across the US as a whole. (See Kate’s post here: https://sanctanomina.net/2016/05/06/popularity-of-zelie-in-2015/)

      I agree with what Kate has said here in the comments about Americans who want Brit-sounding names are looking for a “feel”. We’re talking about the names with which we don’t have as much overlap between the two countries. When I look at the US top 1000 names and the England & Wales top 1000 (Scotland and Northern Ireland are compiled separately), I see lots of similarities—many spellings for Jayden, names like Noah, Olivia, Jacob, and Ava. But names on the UK list like Alfie, Isla, Poppy, and Theo stand out as they are MUCH less used here. Hopefully this gives you another way of looking at it, worriedshoe.

      Liked by 1 person

      • http://www.britishbabynames.com/blog/2016/05/uk-birth-announcements-9516-15516.html

        When I think of names that “sound” British to me, I’m thinking of sibsets like Matilda Violet Pendrill, Archibald Charles William (“Archie”), and Felix Edward Henry or Isabella Florence Rose, Sophia Beatrice Elizabeth, and Camilla Antonia Bee. Other names, also featured in this post, like Noah Lewis or Everley Victoria don’t come across as that different from what my American peers would use, so they don’t stand out.

        Liked by 2 people

      • Random comment, I love seeing birth announcements because it lets us get a peak at real life naming! Like on the list grace posted, there’s a new little Isabel Elizabeth Katherine, which I find interesting because Isabel’s root name is Elizabeth, while I love them together as sisters, I always am like “is it weird?” but maybe it wouldn’t be weird to the general public!

        I also just like the lists of names, lol.

        Liked by 2 people

      • Yeah, I can’t really get past Elizabeth and Isabel either, but it’s nice to see that maybe people wouldn’t care about Caroline and Charles, which don’t particularly bug me but seem to bug other name people!

        Liked by 2 people

  14. Kate’s sis-in-law here…. Since their naming style is so similar to ours, I went back to my “master list” to see what might fit in addition to what Kate suggested! … Other names they might like are Simon and Sebastian! Another name that is both from the 20s/30s and British is Timothy! I’m a fan of the show Call the Midwife and the boy on the show is Timothy and just the cutest ! But…. Beau might still be my favorite 😉

    Liked by 2 people

  15. These are amazing name suggestions from everyone. I feel like everyone’s been hitting the nail on the head!

    For names that haven’t been mentioned, how about Alfred (nicknamed Alfie) or Roland? Alfie is cute and it’s super popular in England, but it’s not even in the Top 1000 in the US (Alfred is 920 and Roland is 586).

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  16. This is a fun consult challenge – kind of reminds me of the mid-century one from earlier in the year.

    I think the choices you are worried about for them for being still too common (Robert, Stephen, and Patrick) really are great options – especially Robert. William and John are very similar in heights of early century popularity but still not uncommon,a dn Oliver has resurged. Could easily happen with one they pick now – can’t predict that.

    Ironically two of those are my brothers Robert and Steven. I feel like I very rarely hear that on young boys, even though Robert is still in top 100. Because of the two main spelling variants on Stephen/Steven I think that pulls it up into top 100 also. Stephen/Steven does seem slightly more popular as a 1950/70s name. Robert definitely was at height of popularity in time frame they are suggesting. It was number # 1 in US from 1924-39! And around #10 in England at that time. There are so many great nicknames for Robert as well – and one is very British to me and I don’t remember being suggested – Robin.

    I swear when I first read this post it said something about “think of when your grandparents were in diapers” but now I don’t see that. Anyway, I had to go with parents, since I am older and those years fit them. I immediately thought of my father’s sib set – born between 1916 – 1932.
    John (Johnny)
    Alvin (Al)
    Clifford (Cliff)
    Gregory (Greg)
    Edward (Eddie)
    David (Dave)
    Jacob (Jackie)

    They already have a John variant and Edward is on their “like” list and has been suggested numerous times. I think it (Edward/Edmund) is a great fit. I also wondered about Clifford – English, popular in both US and England in 20s/30s, currently very uncommon but not weird, very classic. To me it is a very old man name but maybe is ripe for that comeback like a Theodore and Oliver would be.

    I like Simon, too, which has been suggested, then looked at it with their sib set and wondered about the Theodore…Simon with a Theodore (and throw in one of my uncles, Alvin) and you could be heading down the Chipmunks path. LOL Obviously the Chipmunks are a very 20s/30s named group.

    I also looked at lists of top 100 baby names from England & Wales from mid 20s and mid 30s. Arthur really struck me, but they have that on the can’t use list – otherwise I think it is a great fit. Some others that jumped out to me as very British and not mentioned so far: Graham, Percy, Reginald, Duncan, Clive, Dennis. Then there was Bernard that was on both the top US and top British lists for that time period (around #50 and at it’s peak) and is very uncommon now (not in top 1000). Love St. Bernard of Clairvaux but does Bernard make people think too much of the dog still?

    Liked by 2 people

    • So many great ideas here! I especially like your super Brit ones: Graham, Percy, etc. (That “your grandparents in diapers” phrase was in Simcha’s article — that’s probably where you saw it!)

      Liked by 1 person

    • skimac!!! 😍😍😍😍😍 This is a great comment! All of your suggestions are so super! Like Kate, I love your super British list—Graham, Percy, etc. Especially Clive!! If anyone I know could pull off a Clive, it would be this family! (Btw, do you know this family?) I also loved your suggestion of Clifford! I’m sad that you spotted the Chipmunks connection with Simon and Theodore because Simon (or James) is my favorite for them, but I’m sure now that it’s been pointed out, it’ll make the name a no-go for them. On the other hand, so many people didn’t think of the connection (myself included!), that maybe the Chipmunks thing has faded from a lot of people’s consciousness?!

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      • grace – thanks! When you said you knew the family in real life I had to check. I feel like I should know them because of all the mutual facebook friends, but I don’t. Guess I haven’t been to enough north events.

        I don’t know if the Chipmunks thing should make a difference. It honestly didn’t dawn on me either at first. It was only after I was thinking of Alvin from my uncle list as a possibility, that it hit me all three were connected. So if they stay clear of Alvin maybe just Simon and Theodore wouldn’t click with people. And Clifford is a big red dog, for goodness sake. I think it was the combo of thinking of Alvin, Theodore, Simon and Clifford that struck me. And while we are at it Donald has been mentioned as well – quintessential 1930’s cartoon character. You can tells these were the “in” names of the times (30s-60s).

        Liked by 2 people

    • I think they could pronounce it BERN-erd and it wouldn’t sound doglike. Or Bertram still gets you to Bertie…

      Clifford and Roland were my great-grandfather’s two brothers! My GGfather himself was Reuben, which we used. Is that too German, or is it Brit, too?

      I love the Lewis spelling more than Louis. Have they considered that?

      How about Cecil? Or Leon? Or Walthen (there’s a St Walthen)? Marcus? Malcolm?

      Liked by 1 person

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