Thursday, December 21, 2017

Names from William Blake

Hello, readers!

While researching the name Albion, I came across this interesting set of names from the mythology of William Blake. This eighteenth-century English writer wrote a series of books advocating for his own political and spiritual ideals through the exploration of invented gods and goddesses. While this series sounds a bit too complex for me, the names themselves are fascinating!

According to Wikipedia, many of these names were taken from writings of Geoffrey of Monmouth and John Milton, as well as individuals involved in Blake's 1803 sedition trial. (I wonder if his books included as disclaimer to avoid further legal action?) While I won't delve into the mythology, here are some of the character names!

The Four Zoas and their Emanations:

Tharmas (m) - The name sounds like a combination of Arthur and Thomas, but seems too clinical to have real potential for a modern name. 

Enion (f) - Only one letter off from "onion," so I'm going to pass on reviving this. 

Urthona (m) - Though this character is supposed to represent inspiration, I'm not quite convinced by Urthona...

Enitharmon (f) - Just complex and creative enough to pique my interest. Perhaps Ennis or Enid would be a bit easier to wear daily?

Luvah (m) - The name was supposedly chosen because of its aural similarities to "lover," but Luvah feels a bit excessive. Levi or Love, on the other hand, are fantastic!

Vala (f) - While this name has been recorded regularly since 1921, Vala seems unfinished. I'd recommend alternatives like Vera, Calla, or Valerie

Urizen (m) - Definitely not my favorite. Horizon, on the other hand, feels like an excellent modern choice. 

Ahania (f) - Euphonic names are big right now, and Ahania might fit right in. Somewhere between Hannah, Alana, and Anya?

Sons of Albion:

Hand - Nope. 

Hyle - I suppose if Lyle and Kyle can manage, Hyle's not too different. It was recorded for boys once in 1919. 

Coban - Hello, bell-tone boy's name! I'm genuinely surprised this name hasn't been recorded yet, being it sounds so similar to Colby, Cohen, and Robin

Guantok - This does sound like some Vietnamese or Thai names I've come across, but Guantok doesn't seem quite as accessible as other cross-cultural picks. 

Peachey - As a pet name, I wholeheartedly recommend Peachey, Peach, and Peaches!

Brereton - The extra syllable in the middle doesn't add much. Bretton or Brighton are lovely in and of themselves.

Slayd - This sounds like the name of a superhero! Slade has gotten some attention, but I don't think changing the spelling makes the name any cooler (Slade is inherently cool). 

Hutton - An uncommon surname choice, Hutton comes from Old English for "ridge settlement." With Sutton and Houston gaining fans, Hutton could work well on modern playgrounds. 

Scofield - Another surname pick, but not quite as friendly as Hutton

Kox - Being that this name's homophone could cause some issues, I'd go with Knox

Kotope - Sounds a bit like a scientific instrument. "Pass the kotope, Doctor Scofield!"

Bowen - The first name in this post to rank in the top 1000, Bowen is currently at #478 for boys. Handsome, Celtic in origin, with the cute nickname Bo - what's not to love?

Daughters of Albion:

Gwendolen - A fabulous Welsh name - whose spelling variant Gwendolyn currently ranks in the top 500 - with a ton of nickname possibilities, Gwendolen is positively gorgeous. 

Ragan - Maybe it's Germanic, maybe it's made up - Ragan (I'm reading it as "Ray-gahn") sounds like a spelling alternative for Reagan for parents who like the sound but aren't as fond of the president. 

Sabrina - Audrey Hepburn immediately comes to mind - a definite plus!

Gonorill - This looks a bit like Goneril, King Lear's eldest daughter. Can't say I love the name or the namesakes. 

Mehetabel - Ooooh, a rare and lovely Hebrew name (I'm writing this post while traveling Israel). While it's certainly different, it may be worth the work. And Bella works as a nickname!

Cordella - I can't decide if Cordelia is better, or if Cordella is an entirely new kind of name. Readers, what do you think?

Boadicea - I've come across this one in "name nerd" posts - beautiful rhythm, not really accessible. 

Gwiniverra - I'm a proponent of Gwenivere, but Gwiniverra takes Jennifer just a bit too far. 

Conwenna - It seems that this name was invented by Geoffrey of Monmouth. It almost feels like a feminization of a surname, which isn't something I've seen before. 

Estrild - Not even once. 

Gwinefrid - Oh boy. 

Ignoge - Again, nope. 

Cambel - A simplification of Campbell, perhaps? Pretty, simple, and sweet. 

Tell me your thoughts in the comments!

No comments:

Post a Comment