Thursday, December 3, 2015

Throwback Thursday Series - American Given Names, A

Hello, readers!

For the next few Thursdays, I'll be focusing on a book I picked up recently - American Given Names, by George R. Stewart. Stewart was a professor in English at my alma mater, UC Berkeley, and published this book on names and name history shortly before his death. Since I'm always interested in onomastics, the study of names, I picked up a copy at the Berkeley library!

While it's unclear whether Stewart studied name statistics, he included some of the most common names in the United States (complete with opinions). These blog posts will focus on names I haven't heard of (or heard much of). So, in honor or fellow Cal Bear George, let's begin!

Abiel - "God is the father"

Abijah - "Jehovah is the father"

Admire - virtue name

Adonijah - "God is my Lord"

Agur - "gatherer"

Alethea - "truth"

Alfarata - modern invented name

Almon - "German"

Amariah - "God has spoken"

Amasa - "burden bearer"

Ammi - "my people"

Amzi - "my strength"

Antipas - "like his father"

Aquila - "acorn" or "eagle"

Archelaus - "chief of the people"

Artemas - unknown origin, possibly "gift of Artemis"

Asahel - "God acts"

Asaph - "collector"

Asarelah - "joined is God"

Asenath - unknown origin, possibly "devoted to the goddess Neith"

Ashbel - "man of Baal"

Azariah - "God is his helper"

Azel - "noble"

None of these are in the US top 1000! The ones most likely to make the list in my opinion are Abijah, Amariah, and Ashbel. My favorites are Amzi and Azariah

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