Saturday, July 5, 2008

Naming the same

In this country, it is very common (well, common enough that you see it a lot) for fathers to name their sons the same name. Once commonly comes across "James A. Smith IV", etc. The "III"'s in particular are frequent enough that there are not one but two common nicknames, Trip and Trey, which holders of these names use.
I'm rather surprised that it hasn't already dawned on me, but I realised today that I can't name a single, not a single example of a woman whose name follows the same rule!
More than surprised --- both by the fact, and the fact that I hadn't noticed it before...

Please, do prove me wrong by listing hundreds of famous examples.

Yours, astounded.


Cornish Dreamer said...

When my Mum started researching the family tree, she discovered a long tradition of fathers naming their sons after themselves. I'm not sure when that stopped, but the tradition of giving the first born girl the middle name "Mary" is still going, sort of. I am led to believe that that was quite common. If one trad. was transported across the ocean, perhaps the other one was too?

Joke said...

Actually -- at least in our little corner -- we don't see that father/son naming thing. NOS is actually Joke IV and, God bless him, he has vowed his first son will be Joke V.

My wife, howe'er, was named after her mother but owing to the fact she hates her given name (and that we haven't issued any daughters and are not on track to doing so) that's likely to end there.


awareness said...

I think you're right, N. It is common up here with nicknames too. Middle names for girls seems to be common.

Perhaps it has something to do with the fact that historically women have basically given up their identity by taking on their husband's last name. It's all very patriarchal.