Berta

August 2, 2015 § Leave a comment

ORIGIN:
Variation of “Bertha“; or a diminutive form of names like “Alberta”, “Roberta“, etc.

VARIATIONS and NICKNAMES:
Alberta, Albertina, Albertine, Auberta, Berchta, Berdi, Berdie, Berdy, Berdina, Berhta, Berit, Bert, Bertha, Berthe, Berti, Bertie, Bertille, Bertina, Berty, Birdi, Birdie, Birdy, Burti, Burtie, Burty, Elberta, Elberte, Elbertina, Elbertine, Elbertyna, Hrothbeorhta, Hrothberta, Hrothbertina, Hrothnerta, Perda, Perde, Perdi, Perdie, Perdy, Pirda, Pirde, Pirdi, Pirdie, Pirdy, Purda, Purde, Purdi, Purdie, Purdy, Perchta, Perta, Perte, Perti, Pertie, Perty, Pirta, Pirte, Pirti, Pirtie, Pirty, Purta, Purte, Purti, Purtie, Purty, Roberta, Robertia, Robertina, etc.

REFERENCES IN LITERATURE:
Great Aunt Berta, Lily’s elderly relative and Becky’s sister, who is aware their nephew died of heart failure months ago, but has kept the news from her sister, in Sleeping Arrangements, by Laura Cunningham (published 1989, set in the 1950s).

WRITERS:
Berta Behrens (1850-1912), German novelist who published under the pen name “Wilhelmine (W.) Heimburg”.
Berta Bojetu Boeta (1946-1997), Slovene actress, poet, and writer.
Berta Golob (b. 1932), Slovene librarian, poet, teacher, and writer.
Berta Hader (1890-1976), American children’s book author and illustrator.
Berta Ruck (1878-1978), British memoirist and novelist.
Berta Zuckerkandl (1864-1935), Austrian critic, journalist, and writer.

Linda

July 22, 2015 § 1 Comment

ORIGIN:
Meaning “soft” or “tender”, a diminutive of names ending with “-linda” or “-linde”: e.g., “Belinda”, “Melinda”, “Rosalinda”, “Sieglinda”, etc. Also associated with the Spanish word, meaning “pretty”.

VARIATIONS and NICKNAMES:
Lin, Lindall, Lindell, Lindie, Lindsay, Lindsey, Lindsie, Lindy, Linette, Linn, Linne, Linnet, Linnette, Linnie, Linsay, Linsey, Linsie, Lyn, Lyndee, Lyndi, Lyndie, Lyndsay, Lyndsey, Lyndsie, Lynette, Lynn, Lynna, Lynne, Lynnette, Linza, Lynda, Lynzee, Lynzie, etc.

REFERENCES IN LITERATURE:
Linda, 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).
Linda, one of the other “irregular” children at Lily’s school, so deemed because of her pink plastic prosthetic arm, in Sleeping Arrangements, by Laura Cunningham (published 1989, set in the 1950s).

Toni

July 18, 2015 § Leave a comment

ORIGIN:
For girls, a shortened version of “Antonia” (a feminine form of “Anthony“, etc.). For boys, a Croatian, Finnish, or Hungarian diminutive of the same.

VARIATIONS and NICKNAMES:
For girls: Antia, Antica, Antoinette, Antonela, Antonella, Antonia, Antonie, Antonietta, Antonija, Latonya, Nela, Nella, Nia, Tania, Tanja, Tanya, Teuna, Toini, Tonia, Tonie, Tonina, Tonja, Tonka, Tony, Tonya, etc.
For boys: Akoni, Anakoni, Andon, Andony, Antal, Antanas, Ante, Anthony, Anto, Antoine, Anton, Antonello, Antoni, Antonie, Antonij, Antonije, Antonio, Antonis, Antonius, Antono, Antony, Antoon, Doncho, Teun, Teunis, Theun, Theunis, Ton, Tone, Tonci, Tonino, Tonio, Tonis, Tono, Tony, Toon, etc.

REFERENCES IN LITERATURE:
Toni Bloom, an older girl who is also attending Camp Ava during Lily’s disastrous summer there, in Sleeping Arrangements, by Laura Cunningham (published 1989, set in the 1950s).

WRITERS:
Toni Cade Bambara (1939-1995), American activist, author, film-maker, and professor.
Toni Braxton (b. 1967), American actress, musician, philanthropist, producer, and singer-songwriter.
Toni Childs (b. 1957), American singer-songwriter.
Toni Cucarella (b. 1959), pen name of Spanish author Lluís Antoni Navarro i Cucarella.
Toni Halliday (b. 1964), English lyricist, musician, and singer.
Toni Morrison (b. 1931), American editor, novelist, and professor.
Toni Rothmund (1877-1956), German biographer, journalist, novelist, poet, and short story writer.
Toni (T.K.F.) Weisskopf (b. 1965), American editor and publisher.
Toni Wine (b. 1947), American songwriter.

Katarina

December 3, 2014 § Leave a comment

ORIGIN:
Variation of “Catherine” / “Catharine” / “Katherine” / “Katharine“, etc.

VARIATIONS and NICKNAMES:
Cadi, Cady, Cait, Caitlin, Caitlyn, Caity, Caren, Carina, Casia, Cat, Catalina, Cate, Catey, Catharine, Catherine, Cathie, Cathleen, Cathrine, Cathryn, Cathy, Catie, Cato, Catrina, Catrine, Catriona, Caty, Catya, Ekaterina, Ina, Jekaterina, Kady, Kaia, Kaisa, Kaitlin, Kaitlyn, Kaity, Kaja, Kalena, Karen, Karin, Karina, Kasia, Kat, Kata, Katalin, Kate, Katenka, Katerina, Katey, Katharina, Katharine, Katherine, Kathi, Kathie, Kathleen, Kathrine, Kathryn, Kathy, Kati, Katie, Katinka, Katja, Katka, Katri, Katrina, Katrine, Katy, Katya, Kay, Kaya, Kit, Kitti, Kittie, Kitty, Kylee, Kyleen, Nienke, Nina, Rina, Riona, Tina, Tineke, Trina, Trine, Yekaterina, etc.

REFERENCES IN LITERATURE:
– Katarina Fürst Ottenburg, Fred’s mother, and heiress to a brewing empire herself, in The Song of the Lark by Willa Cather (written in 1915 and set in the 1890s).

Andor

November 15, 2014 § 1 Comment

ORIGIN:
From Norwegian, meaning “Thor’s eagle”, or a Hungarian version of “Andreas” / “Andrew“.

VARIATIONS and NICKNAMES:
Anaru, Ander, Anders, Andras, Andre, Andreas, Andrei, Andrej, Andreu, Andrew, Andrey, Andria, Andries, Andris, Andro, Andrus, Arnor, Arnorr, Bandi, Dand, Endre, etc.

REFERENCES IN LITERATURE:
– Andor Harsanyi, the Chicago concert pianist Thea goes to for lessons, in The Song of the Lark by Willa Cather (written in 1915 and set in the 1890s).
– Andor Harsanyi, Jr., the musician’s young son, in The Song of the Larkby Willa Cather (written in 1915 and set in the 1890s).

Si

September 13, 2014 § 1 Comment

ORIGIN:
Shortened form of “Silas“, “Simon“, etc.

VARIATIONS and NICKNAMES:
Sie, Siem, Sim, Sy, etc.

REFERENCES IN LITERATURE:
Si (Simon) Carfax, Gwenny’s father, a Cornish miner lured into Essex to work Reuben Huckabuck’s secret mine, in Lorna Doone, by R.D. Blackmore (written in 1869, set in the 1670s-1680s).

Simon

September 13, 2014 § 3 Comments

ORIGIN:
Greek version of the Hebrew “Shim’on”, meaning “he has heard”.

VARIATIONS and NICKNAMES:
Jimeno, Shimel, Shimon, Si, Sim, Siem, Siemen, Simen, Simeon, Simo, Sy, Symeon, Symon, Szymon, Ximeno, Ximun, etc.

REFERENCES IN LITERATURE:
Simon Carfax (sometimes called “Si“), Gwenny’s father, a Cornish miner lured into Essex to work Reuben Huckabuck’s secret mine, in Lorna Doone, by R.D. Blackmore (written in 1869, set in the 1670s-1680s).

WRITERS:
– Simon Evans (1895-1940), Welsh broadcaster and writer.

Alexander

August 22, 2014 § 14 Comments

ORIGIN:
Latin version of the Greek “Alexandros”, meaning “defender of men”.

VARIATIONS and NICKNAMES:
Ace, Al, Alasdair, Alastair, Alastar, Ale, Alec, Alejandro, Aleks, Aleksander, Aleksandr, Alessandro, Alex, Alexandre, Alexandros, Alexis, Alick, Alisander, Alistair, Alister, Ally, Eskandar, Iskandar, Lexi, Olek, Oleksander, Oleksandr, Sacha, Sander, Sandor, Sandy, Sandro, Sascha, Saunder, Sawney, Sender, Shura, Sikandar, Skender, Xander, Xandinho, Zander, etc.

REFERENCES IN LITERATURE:
– Middle name of James Alexander Creighton (1849-1852), one of the three young Creighton boys who died of “paralysis” the year Jethro was born, in Across Five Aprils by Irene Hunt (1964; set during the American Civil War, 1861-1865).
Alexander Herron, Ruth Jameson’s grandfather, “who made a concession”, in The Harvester (1911) by Gene Stratton Porter.

WRITERS:
– Alexander Brown (1843-1906), American historian and writer.
– Alexander Hamilton (1755 or 1757- 1804), American essayist, economist, and political leader.
– Alexander King (1899-1965), Austrian-American humorist and memoirist.
– Alexander Mollin (b. 1947), pen name of English author Jim Williams, who also publishes as “Richard Hugo”.
– Alexander Pope (1688-1744), English poet.
– Alexander Pushkin (1799-1837), Russian author and poet.
– Alexander Ross (c.1590-1654), Scottish writer.
– Alexander Scott (c.1520-1582/83), Scottish poet.
– Alexander Scott (1920-1989), Scottish poet and scholar.
Alexander Tayler (1870-1937), British author and historian who published under the pen name of “Alasdair Tayler”, and often published jointly with his sister, Hetty.
– Alexander Wilson (1893-1963), English writer and spy.

Marian

August 11, 2014 § 3 Comments

ORIGIN:
An alternate spelling of “Marion” or “Marianne“, French diminutive forms of “Marie”, ultimately derived from “Maria“. Sometimes used as a masculine form of “Maria“, or as a version of “Marianus”.

VARIATIONS and NICKNAMES:
For girls: Mairenn, Mairin, Mairwen, Manon, Manya, Mari, Maria, Mariamne, Mariana, Marianna, Marianne, Marie, Marielle, Mariette, Marion, Mariona, Marise, Marjan, Mary, Marya, Maryana, Maryann, Marzena, Maureen, Maurine, Miren, Mirjana, Mirjane, etc.
For boys: Marianus, Marion, Mariano, Marius, Merrian, Merrion, etc.

REFERENCES IN LITERATURE:
Marian Butter, Anthony Butter’s sturdy and strong-willed wife, who nursed Lady Margaret from childhood, in “A Brother to Dragons” (written in 1886, set in 1586), from A Brother to Dragons, and Other Old Time Tales (1888), by Amélie Rives.
Mistress Marian Every, Lady Elizabeth’s adopted daughter, who grows up with Lady Patience and Lord Ernie, in “Nurse Crumpet Tells the Story” (written in 1887, set circa 1630s-1669), from A Brother to Dragons, and Other Old Time Tales.
Marian Gray, the youngest of the Gray girls, fun-loving and strong-willed, in A Little Country Girl (1885), by Susan Coolidge.
Marian Selwyn, a well-bred young lady who is a good role-model for the girls around her, in “An April Fool”, from Nora Perry’s A Flock of Girls and Boys (1895).

WRITERS:
– Marian Engel (1933-1985), Canadian novelist.
– Marian Keyes (b. 1965), Irish author.

Fan

August 6, 2014 § 2 Comments

ORIGIN:
Shortened version of “Fannie” / “Fanny“, diminutive of “Frances“, “Francisca”, “Stefania”, etc.

VARIATIONS and NICKNAMES:
Chica, Cissie, Cissy, Fannie, Fanny, Fran, Franca, Franci, Francie, Francka, Franka, Frankie, Franky, Frannie, Franny, Franzi, Paca, Paquita, Sissie, Sissy, etc.

REFERENCES IN LITERATURE:
Fan (Fanny) Fletcher, a friend of Jessie Delano who needs dancing lessons, in “An Ivy Spray and Ladies’ Slippers”, from A Garland for Girls, by Louisa May Alcott, 1887.
Fan (Frances) Wentworth, Will’s conceited, snobbish cousin in “That Little Smith Girl” from Nora Perry’s A Flock of Girls and Boys (1895).

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