Spotlight on: Wenceslaus

My saintly friend for 2021 according to Jen Fulwiler’s The Saint’s Name Generator is … St. Wenceslaus.

Do you choose a yearly Saint? I admit, most of the initial thrill for me has always been the possibility of discovering a new, cool name to add to my list of Catholicky Catholic names! Haha!

St. Wenceslaus’ name is not one I usually see on little ones and doesn’t have the elements that tend to be attractive to today’s American parents. But his feast day is my wedding anniversary, and I really have come to love most names once I learn more about them, so here we go: let’s start by finding out more about the name Wenceslaus!

Behind the Name’s entry piqued my interest right away:

Medieval Latinized form of Veceslav (see VÁCLAV). The spelling may have been influenced by the Czech word věnec meaning ‘wreath, crown’.”

I love finding things out like “the spelling may have been influenced by the Czech word meaning ‘wreath, crown'” — to make a brief connection to Theresa’s guest post yesterday on “sorrowful” names, this reminds me of the name Tristan and how it’s the “Old French form of the Pictish name Drustan, a diminutive of DRUST. The spelling was altered by association with Latin tristis ‘sad'” (which is why it’s in my book of Marian names as a nod to Our Lady of Sorrows). In the case of Wenceslaus, I like that “wreath, crown” has a connection to Václav’s (Veceslav’s) meaning:

Contracted form of the older name Veceslav, from the Slavic elements veche ‘more’ and slava ‘glory’.”

So Wenceslaus could be thought of as meaning “crown of glory,” which is lovely, and fits in well with who St. Wenceslaus was: royal (“Good King Wenceslaus”) and martyr (“killed for political reasons [by his brother no less], but normally listed as a martyr since the politics arose from his faith”).

A very cool bit is that his grandfather is said to have been converted by Sts. Cyril and Methodius! St. Wenceslaus is the patron saint of the Czech Republic and his feast day is a national holiday, so his name would be a really great nod to one’s Czech heritage. He also had a wonderful grandmother, St. Ludmila, whose name I spotlighted nearly five years ago — using her name (or a variant) could also be a nice way to nod to St. Wenceslaus for a girl, as he is said to have been very influenced by his grandmother and her faith. He is also the subject of the Christmas carol “Good King Wenceslas,” making his name a Christmas name as well.

Some of its variants are intriguing, like the Czech Václav and its diminutive Vašek, the German Wenzel, the Hungarian Vencel, and the Russian Slava (if you want to consider these, be sure to look up their pronunciations!). If you went with the full Wenceslaus, it might be easiest in the middle spot (how handsome is a combo like John Wenceslaus?!); as a first name, nicknames might include Wence (reminds me of Wes — actually, Wes itself would work! That’s a really easy and familiar option!) and Wencel (reminds me of Wendell).

What do you think of Wenceslaus? Have you ever considered it (or a variant), or would you? Do you know anyone with the name Wenceslaus (or a variant)? Does he like his name? Does he go by a nickname?

Have a great Friday, and a great weekend!


My book, Catholic Baby Names for Girls and Boys: Over 250 Ways to Honor Our Lady (Marian Press, 2018), is available to order from ShopMercy.org and Amazon (not affiliate links) — perfect for the expectant parents, name enthusiasts, and lovers of Our Lady in your life!

Guilty pleasure names

Charlotte from To Harriet Louise mentioned her list of “guilty pleasure names” the other day and now I’m dying to know what they are! And yours too!

By “guilty pleasure” I mean names you kinda really love even though, for whatever reason, you could never see yourself actually choosing them for your own children. Mine include:

Maple
Tennyson
Gulliver
Jetta
Roisin
Jemima
Tarcisius
Sander

I know there’s a bunch more — I’ll add in the comments as I think of them. Let me hear what you have! I bet I’ll be adding to my own list after reading yours. 🙂

(Also — the Jennifer Fulwiler show went really well yesterday!! I was so nervous but once we started talking it was so fine. She’s a great host — she really directed the conversation and there weren’t any awkward pauses … she had great thoughts and questions … and I think she liked my ideas for her! If I make it into her highlights podcast, I’ll definitely post it when it’s available!)

I’m going to be on Jennifer Fulwiler’s radio show today

Before I address that ridiculously amazingly awesome post title, I just want to thank all of you who participated in the Zelie & Co. Charity Auction yesterday! A lot of money was raised for some wonderful, worthwhile causes. Special thanks to Theresa, our dear reader and the mama behind the Happy Nest Home Goods Etsy shop, for creating such a beautiful set for the auction, and for asking me to partner with her in the first place. It was an honor!

Back to that post title … aahhhhhh!!!!! Yes!!! It’s true!!! I’ll be on Jen‘s show this afternoon!!! I don’t even know how my life has taken the direction it’s taken — well, of course, I do know: it’s all God, every bit of it, He has blessed me something fierce — but I’m just saying, if you’d told me not that long ago that I would be on Jen’s show I would not have believed you. That’s for big deals, not for normal me and my fun name ramblings!

It should be a lot of fun — Jen’s asked me to give her a name consultation, which you know I love to do (!!), and I have some good ideas for her — I’m excited to see if she thinks I’m spot on or if I totally missed the mark. It’ll be a nail biter! 😀

Her show runs from 2:00-4:00 Eastern time, and I’ll be on around 3:20 (maybe a few minutes earlier, maybe a few minutes later) for about twenty minutes. Here are the details for tuning in:

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And I know not everyone has Sirius XM (myself included), so there’s this info also:

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Once Jen posts that free highlights podcast I’ll be sure to share it here if my segment makes the cut! (The other links from that image are here.)

So please say a prayer for me that I don’t make a huge fool of myself, especially because it’s *live* (eek!), and if any of you are able to listen, please let me know your reactions!

I hope you all have a holy and blessed Ash Wednesday!