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I was reading a story about the Victorian Era and I couldn’t help but notice how many times people were addressed using their title. All those ladies and gentlemen made me feel like my head would explode! It got me thinking that there must be some way to avoid this situation without going back in time. Here are seven ways you can make your name more modern and less formal:
In addition, some people prefer not to give anyone their personal information at all when they meet someone new. If this is something that feels right for you, then consider adopting an alias so that it’s easier to keep things private! I’m going to start calling myself Timmy because my real name isn’t any fun to say.
The best way to find out what will work for you is experimenting! Try a few different things and see how they feel in your mouth or on paper before settling on one that feels right. You may also want to do some research into other cultures’ names, because this can help give you new ideas. For example, I found the Japanese name “Sachi” after looking at my family’s genealogy and it ended up being perfect for me so now I’m Sachi Quinn instead of Timmy Larson–cool!”
This takes the idea of an alias even further by suggesting titles like ‘lady’ or ‘gentleman’. Some people prefer not giving anyone their personal information
-I’m a girl, and my name is Caitlin. I’ve always hated how it’s spelled with an ‘i’ instead of the traditional spelling used by most girls nowadays Caitlyn.
My family was never really into first names like Evelyn or Penelope so we settled on something simple: Allison. The problem? After hearing messages from friends who said they wanted to change their names to something more feminine because “Evelyn” sounded too old for them, I realized that a lot people have strong feelings about what words sound good in relation to gender. It made me think if there were any other similar situations where some parts of language might be assigned one thing when another would be better suited.
I think there’s something to be said for the effect of naming conventions on our self-image. We’re taught from a young age that long, old-fashioned names are..well..most often female and short, modern ones usually belong to boys. And as children we grow up with certain expectations about what others will call us based off those preconceptions–namely how people might react when they know your name is Caitlin or Allison instead of more gender neutral sounding alternatives like Casey or Alex.
In other words: Caitlyn Jenner would have had an easier time if her parents had just called her Bruce! In fact, you can probably find at least one example in every generation where choosing a name feels like a capitulation to gender norms.
Regardless of your own particular feelings about the meaning behind names, there are plenty who would agree with me that we’re too quick these days to abandon tradition for novelty and in doing so, let go many treasured female appellations from our vernacular names which have been all but lost as more parents decide their daughters will be called Lucy or Sophia instead of Elizabeth or Sarah.
The proliferation of male-sounding first names is also an issue when it comes to children’s literature; heroes can’t always be “Tom” anymore if they want girls on equal footing. And while some may argue this is just another manifestation of kids’ books being written for boys, I would counter that there are many female protagonists who have been written in a way as to not be traditionally girly.
It is important to remember this when naming your kids there were plenty of “boy names” which used to only go on girls and vice versa; think about the likes of Frances for men or Edith for women. If you’re looking for something more under-the-radar, strong female surnames like O’Brien or Daly might be just what you need!–or if you want something with an etymology closer to home, why not use one of these Irish girl names?
When it comes to finding an Irish girl name with a history of being masculine, there’s plenty out there. The most famous example is probably the legendary Kathleen; this in fact was originally a man’s name and would be anglicised as Cathlin or Catherine. It became feminine only when it crossed over from Gaelic into English usage–due not just because of its gender-neutral meaning but also the popularity of Queen Katherine Parr.
When we think about some more traditional male names that have been used for females throughout history, one might turn to something like Margaret (which comes from “margarita,” Latin for pearl) or Clare (from “clara” which means clear). Other excellent examples include Eleanor and Francesca
The Victorian era was a time of strict social and behavioral codes, which put limitations on everything from the clothes women wore to how they spoke. For most people during this period, life as they knew it consisted of an endless cycle of work and rest broken up by church-going or family obligations.
For parents living in the middle class with modest means, their children were usually less than two years apart in age: one might be born after another sibling’s first birthday. Middle class parents also expected their eldest son would inherit his father’s business or farm while younger sons could become clergymen, doctors, lawyers or teachers; daughters traditionally married into other families (notably wealthier ones) so that she could maintain
The sheer weight of these names can be exhausting, and it’s not just because they’re ridiculously long.
When you have a moniker like Victoria Adelaide Mary Louisa Anna from Saxe-Coburg Gotha for instance – which is the full name of Queen Victoria – there are all sorts of rules about how to write your letter or calligraphy so that everyone knows who you are talking about. And this isn’t even tackling the fact that when people refer to her as “Victoria” in conversation, without saying her last name first, they often mean another woman with an entirely different lineage!
This confusion becomes clear if you read through any correspondence between Mrs. Thackeray Ritchie and Lady de Tocqueville. It turns out that they were both Mrs. Thackeray Ritchie, and the only way to differentiate them is by referring to one as Lady de Tocqueville or Mrs. Thackeray Ritchie (née) Charlotte Clarke-Thornhill respectively! It’s no wonder then why Queen Victoria never wanted her children to have these sorts of names even though some of today’s most prominent figures are named Diana Frances Spencer for example, which are progressively more manageable in comparison but still a mouthful when used every day! The long list goes on with William Arthur Philip Louis Rudolph Henry George Albert David Nicholas Patrick Benedictus Charles Octavius Hubertus Stephen Humphrey Francis Xavier Aloysius Agapetus