Names (was Re: Help wanted: arthurian novels)

Jon Noble jon_p_noble at
Tue Sep 23 19:30:34 EDT 2003

--- JOdel at wrote:
> << My elder daughter's boyfriend is a Jason born in
> 1969, another early 
> example of the species. >>
> One of the local fans made the observation back
> around 1970 that every 
> hippie's kid was named Jason or Laura, or some
> variant thereof. She was just about 
> right, too.
> My own name seems to have been very popular about
> 10-15 years before I was 
> born -- in the black community. I don't think I ran
> across more than two other 
> Joyces of my own age the whole time I was growing
> up. ANd then I went to work 
> for the City and ran into about half a dozen of
> them. All about 10-15 years 
> older than I, and black. I was bemused.
> (Can anyone think of an African-American -- or maybe
> European -- celebrity in 
> the early-mid 1930s?)
> --

The only Joyces I can think of (other than James) are
Joyce Grenfell, an English actress (1910- 1979) and
Joyce Carol Oates (1938- ) so it is possible that one
started the trend and the other is an example of it,
but I wouldn't have thought Joyce Grenfell well enough
known outside the UK. There is an Australian
catchphrase dating from the early 1960's "its a joke,
Joyce" which in its original context would suggest
that Joyce was a typical name for women born early in
the twentieth century.
All this talk of names makes want to dig out my copy a
great little Aussie humour book by Patrick Cook called
"Names for Boys and Girls". The entry on "John" states
that the name means "that one over there" and that St
John is the patron saint of stand-ins.


Do you Yahoo!?
Yahoo! SiteBuilder - Free, easy-to-use web site design software
To unsubscribe, email dwj-request at with the body "unsubscribe".
Visit the archives at

More information about the Dwj mailing list