J.D. Salinger

Origin: Greek
Gender: Male
Meaning: "Sacred name"
Pronunciation: juh-ROME
Other forms: Jeronim, Hieronymo/us, Jeroen, Jerónimo, Ieronimus, Jérôme

This name is one that I would consider an underused classic. It has been in use since at least 1880 (And probably in England since the 12th century), and has never once been out of the top 1000. In 2012 it was at #706, the year before, #745. Jerome comes from Greek Hieronymos, which means "sacred name"; and if you switch that last "O" out for a "U", you have the name of Hieronymus Bosch, an artist from the Netherlands who painted the famous triptych, "The Garden of Earthly Delights".

Saint Jerome created the Vulgate, which is the Bible translated into Latin, in the 5th century, and would later become a Doctor of the Church. J.D. Salinger, author of "The Catcher in the Rye", was Jerome David Salinger, born 1919 in New York to Marie, who changed her name to Miriam to pass as Jewish, and Sol Salinger, a kosher cheese maker. Salinger attended a private school, McBurney, where he managed the fencing team, acted in plays, and wrote for the school paper. He had problems fitting in at McBurney, and took to calling himself "Jerry". He was later enrolled at Valley Forge Military Academy in Pennsylvania, where he was a mediocre student, despite being in the Glee Club, French Club, Aviation Club, and the Non-Commissioned Officers Club.

Salinger married Claire Douglas, who had been a Radcliffe student, before he insisted on her dropping out only four months away from graduation, and had two children, Margaret and Matthew. Margaret believed that he wouldn't have married Claire had it not been for the teachings of Lahiri Mahasaya, who talked of enlightenment through the path of becoming a "householder", someone who married and had children.
Salinger did not like being famous, and lived as a recluse. He once said "There is a marvelous peace in not publishing...I like to write. I love to write. But I write just for myself and my own pleasure." His final interview was given in 1980. One version says that the interviewer, Betty Eppes, told him that she was an aspiring novelist, and recorded audio of him and took a few photos without his knowledge. A person walking by recognized him, and attempted to shake his hand, at which he became enraged. Another says that she made it fully clear that she was a reporter. Despite the many eccentricities he had, it is without doubt he will go down in history as an incredible author, and that his novels will be treasured for many more years to come. J.D. Salinger died in New Hampshire in 2010 of natural causes.


Popular posts from this blog



From Tzeitel to Bielke: The Five Daughters of Tevye