Names, Was: Hexwood's Goon

Gross Family argross at
Mon Mar 11 06:10:05 EST 2002

> > lizzie, who has read _far_ too many baby name books from cover to cover
> > (I've read _Beyond Jennifer and Jason_--all three editions--all the way
> > through)

Sallyo replied:
> I collect them! My current favourites is probably The Name Game that gives
> the social connotations of names - unfortunately, some of it doesn;t work
> Aus. I'm waiting for the definitive ANZ baby name book! So far we just
> lists with an essay or so. I want the total social and historical
> background. I want. I *want*.

Hey, I collect them, too!

I agree we don't have name books as you describe them in Oz; but I do have
one that isn't bad: _Baby Names for Australians: Over 12000 names" by Anne
Matthews. It has a section at the back called "Names by Ethnic Origin" as
well as inserts throughout the book, such as "Fashions in names", "Names
from Shakespeare's plays", "Australian actors and entertainers" and so on. I
know it's not what you're really after, but I quite like it.

One thing that annoys me about most name books is that they aren't always
accurate, as far as I'm concerned. For instance, "Elizabeth" and "Anne" (to
just name two examples) *aren't* really Hebrew names. They are English
*forms* of Hebrew names. The original names in Hebrew are, respectively,
"Elisheva" and "Chana". The majority of names cited as "Hebrew" names are
likewise only forms of the Hebrew from various other languages.

Ros (who named her daughter "Zoe" because it was apparently used by Greek
Jews as an equivalent to the Hebrew "Chava", whose English form is "Eve". My
son is "Joshua", which is the
English form of the Hebrew "Yehoshua". "Joshua" itself is not Hebrew.)

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