August 4, 2014 § 2 Comments
VARIATIONS and NICKNAMES:
Bess, Bessie, Bessy, Betsey, Bette, Beth, Bette, Bettie, Betty, Buffy, Elspet, Elspeth, Pet, etc.
REFERENCES IN LITERATURE:
– Betsy, one of the Lexington girls clamoring to partner with Rab at the Silsbee country dance in Johnny Tremain by Esther Forbes (written in 1943; set during the years leading up to the American Revolutionary War, 1773-1775).
– Betsy Barnes, a housemaid who convinces herself that she has seen a ghost, in “Old Lady Mary” (1884), from Stories of the Seen and Unseen by Mrs. (Margaret) Oliphant.
– Betsy Horrocks, known as “Ribbons”, the saucy butler’s daughter who tries to parlay the attention she gets from Sir Pitt into wealth, status, and a ladyship (through marriage), in Vanity Fair, by William Makepeace Thackeray (published in 1847-48, but set in the 1810s-20s).
– Betsy Paramore, the girl Tom Faggus was set to marry before the financial failure that drove him to become a highwayman, in Lorna Doone, by R.D. Blackmore (written in 1869, set in the 1670s-1680s).
– Betsy Byars (b. 1928), American children’s book author.
– Betsy Colquitt (b. 1927), American poet.
– “Sweet Betsy from Pike” is an American ballad, written in the 1850s: “Did you ever hear tell of sweet Betsy from Pike / Who crossed the wide mountains with her lover Ike?”