August 2, 2014 § 13 Comments
Diminutive of “John“, from the Hebrew meaning “Jehovah has been gracious.” Used during the Middle Ages as slang for “man”; hence “jack-of-all-trades”, etc.
VARIATIONS and NICKNAMES:
Jackie, Jackin, Jacks, Jacky, Jak, Jake, Jakey, Jakie, Jakin, Jaks, Jankin, Jax, Jenkin, Jock, Jocko, etc.
REFERENCES IN LITERATURE:
– Jack, a worker and Jansen & Co., Paper Manufacturers, in “In a Rag-Bag”, from The Youngest Miss Lorton, and Other Stories by Nora Perry (1889).
– Jack Blackball, who promises to look after young Master Rawdon while at school, in Vanity Fair, by William Makepeace Thackeray (published in 1847-48, but set in the 1810s-20s).
– Jack Brooks, Laura’s older brother, who sneers at her new friends until he learns to judge them better, in “Esther Bodn”, from Nora Perry’s A Flock of Girls and Boys (1895).
– Jack Coverly, a forward young fop who is a good friend of Lord Merton, Lady Louisa’s fiancé, in Evelina, or, The History of a Young Lady’s Entrance into the World (1778), by Fanny Burney.
– Jack (John) Elliott, Edith’s cousin, who Dolly embarrasses herself in front of, in “Dolly Varden”, from The Youngest Miss Lorton, and Other Stories.
– Jack Fahrway, Eddie’s brother, also a friend of the junior George Hurstwood, in Theodore Dreiser’s Sister Carrie (published in 1900; set 1889-1890s).
– Jack Jingly, the giant woodsman who is second-in-command to the outlaw chieftain Captain Cully, in the fantasy novel The Last Unicorn (1968) by Peter S. Beagle.
– Jack Moody, Tom Moody’s son, in Vanity Fair.
– Jack (John) Reed, one of Jane’s spoiled, mean-spirited cousins, in Jane Eyre, 1847, by Charlotte Bronte.
– Jack Richards, Anna’s brother, in “An April Fool”, from A Flock of Girls and Boys.
– Jack Roden, the Englishman who decides to try raising horses at Caryston Hall in Virginia, in Virginia of Virginia, written by Amélie Rives in 1888.
– Jack (Johnny) Rosenfeld, a florist’s delivery boy who lives down the alley near the Page’s house, and who works his way up to the position of chauffeur for Palmer and Christine Howe, in K. by Mary Roberts Rinehart (1914).
– Jack Spatterdash, subject of one of Rawdon’s sporty stories in Vanity Fair.
– Jack Stirthepot, a local chair-mender, who is suggested to (and summarily rejected by) Keren Lemon as a possible husband, in “The Farrier Lass o’ Piping Pebworth” (written in 1887, set circa 1600), from A Brother to Dragons, and Other Old Time Tales (1888), by Amélie Rives.
– Jack Anderson (1922-2005), American author, columnist, and journalist.
– Jack Beeching (1922-2001), English poet.
– Jack Bickham (1930-1997), American author.
– Jack Black (1871-1932?), pen name of an anonymous American author with great influence on the later Beat Generation.
– Jack Brooks (1912-1971), Anglo-American lyricist.
– Jack Caddigan (1879-1952), American lyricist.
– Jack Cady (1932-2004), American author.
– Jack Chalker (1944-2005), American author.
– Jack Clemo (1916-1994), English poet and writer.
– Jack Cope (1913-1991), South African editor, novelist, poet, and short-story writer.
– Jack Davies (1913-1994), English actor, editor, producer, and screenwriter.
– Jack Davis (1917-2000), Australian activist, playwright, and poet.
– Jack Douglas (1908-1989), American humorist and writer.
– Jack Dunphy (1914-1992), American novelist and playwright.
– Jack Finney (1911-1995), American author.
– Jack Foner (1910-1999), American historian.
– Jack Gelber (1932-2003), American playwright.
– Jack Germond (1928-2014), American author, journalist, and pundit.
– Jack Hemingway (1923-2000), Canadian-American conservationist and writer.
– Jack Henley (1896-1958), American screenwriter.
– Jack Higgins (b. 1929), pen name used by English author Harry Patterson, who also published under the pen names “Hugh Marlowe”, “James Graham”, and “Martin Fallon”.
– Jack House (1906-1991), Scottish broadcaster and writer.
– Jack Jevne (1892-1972), American screenwriter.
– Jack Jones (1884-1970), Welsh miner, novelist, playwright, and politician.
– Jack Judge (1872-1938), Anglo-Irish entertainer, lyricist, and songwriter.
– Jack Kahane (1887-1939), English publisher and writer.
– Jack Kent (1920-1985), American cartoonist and children’s book author and illustrator.
– Jack Kerouac (1922-1969), American novelist and poet.
– Jack Kirby (1917-1994), American comic book artist, editor, and writer.
– Jack Lindsay (1900-1990), Australian editor, translator, and writer.
– Jack London (1876-1916), American author, journalist, and social activist.
– Jack Micheline (1929-1998), American painter and poet.
– Jack Natteford (1894-1970), American screenwriter.
– Jack Rosenthal (1931-2004), English playwright and screenwriter.
– Jack Schaefer (1907-1991), American author.
– Jack Sendak (1923-1995), American children’s book author.
– Jack Spicer (1925-1965), American poet.
– Jack Trevor Story (1917-1991), English novelist.
– Jack Townley (1897-1960), American screenwriter.
– Jack Vance (1916-2013), American author, who also published under the pen names Alan Wade, Ellery Queen, Jay Kavanse, John van See, and Peter Held.
– Jack Whittingham (1910-1972), English critic, playwright, and screenwriter.
– Jack Woodford (1894-1971), American author.
– Classic nursery rhymes such as “Jack and Jill“, “Jack Sprat“, “Jack Be Nimble“, and “Little Jack Horner“. Probably the most popular boy’s name for nursery rhymes. Used for nearly every man jack of them.