Katy Perry and Orlando Bloom Welcome Baby Girl!

Katy and Orlando

Katy Perry and Orlando Bloom have welcomed their first child together, a girl who they named Daisy Dove. Bloom already has a son, Flynn Christopher, from his previous relationship with model Miranda Kerr.

On My Mind: 8-23-20

Jördis Triebel at the "Dark" Premiere

Julika and Jördis - A couple of weeks ago I finished my favorite series of all time - Netflix's "Dark". After getting past the emotional trauma of the finale I thought I would write about to of the most interesting names associated with Dark, that of Julika Jenkins and Jördis Triebel. 

Julika Jenkins plays one of the most mysterious and important characters of the show during middle age, Claudia Tiedemann. The daughter of a Welsh and German couple, Julika was born in Heidelberg, West Germany, in 1971. Julika is pronounced YOO-lee-kah, sort of like Yulia with a K, and is commonly a Hungarian diminutive of Julia. Jördis plays Katharina Nielsen, the mother of the Nielsen children, and she was born in Prenzlauer Berg, which was once the hub of East Germany's counterculture, which including the gay community, bohemians and Christian activists. The name Jördis is the German form of the more modern, Swedish, Hjördis, which in itself comes from the Ancient Scnadinavian Hjǫrdís! It means "sword maiden". I'm not completely sure of its pronunciation, I imagine it is something like "YUR-dis".

Briar Louise and Catherine May, to Name a Few - I just read the wonderful novel "Such a Fun Age" but Kiley Reid and highly recommend you do too! I found a lot of interesting names too, especially among one of the characters, influencer Alix Chamberlain's, friends. Alix herself has two girls, Briar Louise and Catherine May. Her friends have Payne and Prudence, Imani and Cleo, and Hudson. The protagonist is named Emira, which I've found is a Bosnian form of the Arabic Amirah. Amirah is the feminization of Amir, meaning "commander" or "prince". Her friends include Zara, Shaunie, and Josefa called "Sefa".

The Children of Maria of Austria-Este, Queen of Sardinia

Maria of Austria-Este and Victor Emmanuel with three of their daughters

Maria Theresa of Austria-Este was born Maria Theresia Josefa Johanna to Archduke Ferdinand of Austria and Maria Beatrice d'Este. She married Victor Emanuel I of Sardinia
Their children were:

Maria Beatrice Vittoria Giuseppina, " Princess Maria Beatrice of Savoy"

Maria Adelaide Clothilde Xaveria Borbonia, "Princess Maria Adelaide of Savoy" - Died in Childhood

Carlo Emmanuele, "Prince Charles Emmanuel of Savoy" - Died in Childhood

A Daughter Who Died in Infancy

Maria Teresa Fernanda Felicitas Gaetana Pia, "Princess Maria Teresa of Savoy"

Maria Cristina Carlotta Giuseppina Gaetana Elise, "Princess Maria Cristina of Savoy"

If You Like Sophia, Then You'll Love...

Sophia Loren

When I love a name that's sometimes just a little too popular for me I always wrack my mind trying to come with something similar, whether it be in style, sound, meaning, etc. So I decided to make a few posts detailing what I would choose if I wanted an alternative to one of these popular names! Enjoy, and tell me what you think of my choices.

Now, when I think of Sophia I think feminine, classic, and elegant, and I believe these names deliver that same feeling.

Carina - This lovely Latin name is one I've been really liking lately. It has all the sounds that should make it popular, yet it hasn't graced the US name charts since 2010. Coming from the Latin cara, which means "dear" or "beloved", Carina is also the name of a 4th Century Saint and Martyr, giving it Catholic appeal. When talking about the star Carina, which was originally apart of the constellation Argo Navis, the ship of Jason from Greek Mythology, it comes from a different Latin source, one that means "keel".

Amaia - Amaia, the Basque form of the Spanish Amaya, means "the end", and was used as far back as the 1870s, when it was used by author Francisco Navarro-Villoslada. Other theories about its meaning abound, with one theorizing it comes from the village of Amaya. The village gets its name from the Indo-European am or ma, meaning "mother". It has only appeared on the US charts one year, 2018, when it was ranked #767, making it a beautiful but unusual choice.

Simone - Sleek and sexy Simone is simply the feminine form of Simon, used in France, Germany, the Netherlands, Denmark and Portugal, giving it that coveted Pan-European flair. Simon comes from the Hebrew name Shi'mon, meaning "He has heard", and is the name of several important Biblical figures, including the man who carried the cross for Jesus and the Apostle Simon, who was given the name Peter by Jesus. It brings to mind the lovely Simone Signoret, and taps into any old Hollywood glamour that drew people to Sophia, and currently sits at #732.

Flora - Youthful Flora is blooming in the UK and France, but last appeared in the US in 1972. Flora is derived from the Latin flos, meaning, you guessed it, "flower". In Roman mythology she is a fertility Goddess of flowers and Spring and is married to Favonious, also known as the wind God Zephyr, and is a companion to Hercules. There are statues of her in Rome, Valencia, and even Szczecin in Poland, and she has always been a popular subject among artists, most notably in the painting "Primavera" by Botticelli.

Bianca - This Italian cognate of Blanche, meaning "white", was used by Shakespeare twice, once in "The Taming of the Shrew", and the other in "Othello". It's been used since at least the 13th-century in Italy, gracing many an aristocrat, from Bianca Lancia, mistress to Frederick II, to the Holy Roman Empress Bianca Maria Sforza. More recently it's been featured in two soap operas, Brooklyn Nine-Nine, and as a vampire in Anne Rice's "Vampire Chronicles". In 2018 it sat comfortably at #403.

The Children of Princess Margaretha of Luxombourg

Princess Margaretha and Prince Nikolaus

Princess Margaretha of Luxembourg was born Margaretha Antonia Marie Félicité to Jean, Grand Duke of Luxembourg and Princess Joséphine-Charlotte of Belgium. She married Prince Nikolaus of Liechtenstein
Their children are:

Leopold Emmanuel Jean Marie, "Prince Leopold of Liechtenstein"

Maria-Anunciata Astrid Joséphine Veronica, "Prince Maria-Anunciata of Liechtenstein"

Marie-Astrid Nora Margarita Veronica, "Princess Marie-Astrid of Liechtenstein"

Josef-Emanuel Leopold Marie, "Prince Josef-Emanuel of Liechtenstein"


Navarana Mequpaluk

Origin: Greenlandic
Gender: Female
Meaning: "One Who Alternates Between Parties"
Pronunciation: N/A
Other Forms: Navaranaaq, Navarapaluk, Navagiaq, Navarat

Recently I've developed a fascination with Greenlandic names, mostly because they are so underrepresented, and also because of the beautiful meanings, for example Qupanuk (snow bunting), Sikkersoq (bud, sprout, or blossom), Tukuummeq (wild thyme) for girls and Aqissiaq (ptarmigan chick), Nanoq (polar bear), and Uvdloriaq (star) for boys. This name is no exception, and comes with a fascinating story, too.

Navarana, an Inuit Greenlandic woman started out life as Mequpaluk, which means "little feather", before choosing to call herself Navarana. Navarana comes from naverar, "to trade", "to borrow", but, in more poetic fashion, is translated as "One Who Alternates Between Parties". 

A hard worker who had known famine and heartbreak, Navarana had lost a little brother during an epidemic which left her people starving and ill. Her mother, still nursing the brother, had lost her milk because of it, and eventually killed the little boy, seeing no hope to keep him fed. Navarana would eat grass and chew on animals skins in desperation, until she was taken in by her grandparents. In 1910 Danish explors Knud Rasmussen and Peter Freuchen would establish the Thule Trading Station in Cape York, Greenland. Peter, seeing Navarana and thinking her poor and hungry, gave her a piece of bread which she later paid him back by sewing him a pair of gloves. In 1911, when Navarana was 13, she married Peter Freuchen, and would later accompany him on his many expeditions, and give him two children, a boy, Mequsaq (little feather), and a daughter, Pipaluk, (little possession). Unfortunately, Navarana died during the Spanish influenza, aged only 23. Freuchen would go on to name a fjord in far northern Greenland after her.

The name Navarana is apparently from Inuit mythology. The Navarana of myth was a woman who alternated between two tribes which brought, eventually, brought discord. In Greenland, the two tribes are commonly Greenlanders and Norsemen.

The Children of Grand Duchess Alexandra Iosifovna of Russia

Alexandra with her five eldest children

Grand Duchess Alexandra Iosifovna of Russia was born Alexandra Friederike Henriette of Saxe-Altenburg to Joseph, Duke of Saxe-Altenburg and Amelie Therese Luise, Duchess of Württemberg. She married Grand Duke Constantine Nikolaevich of Russia.
Their children were:

Nikolai Konstantinovich, "Grand Duke Nicholas Kontantinovich of Russia"

Olga Konstantinovna, "Grand Duchess Olga Konstantinovna of Russia", later "Queen of the Hellenes"

Vera Konstantinovna, "Grand Duchess Vera Konstantinovna of Russia"

Konstantin Konstantinovich, "Grand Duke Konstantin Konstantinovich of Russia"

Dmitry Konstantinovich, "Grand Duke Dmitry Konstantinovich of Russia"

Vyacheslav Konstantinovich, "Grand Duke Vyacheslav Konstantinovich of Russia", or "Slava"

On My Mind: 8-10-20

Katherine Langford as Nimue in "Cursed"

Nimue - I've been watching and loving Netflix's "Cursed", a new take on Arthurian myth that follows Nimue, a Fey sorceress who comes to own Excalibur. I've always loved Arthurian mythology and Nimue is one of the most beautiful names from it. The origin of this name is unknown, with some conflating it with the Celtic Nemain, the Irish Goddess of war, which means "venomous", and others with the Greek word Mneme, "memory". I've always pronounced it as "NIM-oo-ay" but in the show they pronounce it "NIM-way". If you love mythology and fantasy with the added bonus of a female lead and a diverse cast, you should check it out!

Harriet, Called Hal - I recently read "The Death of Mrs. Westaway" by Ruth Ware, one I've been meaning to get to for some time. I loved it (you can read my review for it here), and I also loved what a big part names played in the mystery. The main character is named Harriet, but goes by Hal, which I thought was adorable. Other great names in the book include Margarida, Maud, Harding, Abel, and Ezra.

Noé, Mie, and Osip - Another book I read was "The Book of Beasts" by Audrée Wilhelmy (read that review here), which tells of Mie who can enter the minds of animals and her secluded life at a lighthouse. I wasn't exactly sure where it was supposed to be set, but Mie is a Danish and Norwegian nickname for Marie, and her mother's name, Noé, is a French, Spanish, and Portuguese form of Noah, and in the Netherlands a woman's name. Mie's uncle is named Osip, a Russian form of Joseph. The story was one I both liked and disliked, but I enjoyed all the unusual names very much.

The Children of Maria Luisa of Parma

Maria Luisa of Parma

Maria Luisa of Parma was born Luisa María Teresa Ana to Philip, Duke of Parma and Louise Élisabeth of France. She married Charles IV of Spain
Their children were:

Carlos Clemente - Died in Childhood

Carlota Joaquina Teresa Cayetana, "Doña Carlota Joaquina of Spain"

Maria Luisa - Died in Childhood

María Amalia, "Infanta María Amalia of Spain"

Carlos Domingo - Died in Childhood

María Luisa Josefina Antonieta Vicenta, "Infanta María Luisa of Spain", later "María Luisa, Duchess of Lucca"

Carlos Francisco de Paula and Felipe Francisco de Paula - Died in Childhood

Fernando Francisco de Paula Domingo Vincente Ferrer Antonio José Joaquín Pascual Diego Juan Nepomuceno Januario Francisco Javier Rafael Miguel Gabriel Calisto Cayetano Fausto Luis Raimundo Gregorio Lorenzo Jerónimo, "Ferdinand VII of Spain"

Carlos María Isidro Benito, "Infante Carlos, Count of Molina"

María Isabel, "María Isabella of Spain"

Maria Teresa - Died in Childhood

Felipe Maria - Died in Childhood

Francisco de Paula Antonio, "Infante Francisco de Paula of Spain"

In addition to these children Maria Luisa also had ten other pregnancies that ended in stillbirths.