What's in a Word | All Blogs


What’s in a name?

By Debra Dobbins

In quite a few countries the name Dave has been the rave for centuries, but in its formal form: David.

We have all heard of the victory of young David, armed only with a sling, over the giant Goliath. According to www.behindthename.com, David went to become a great Israeli king who ruled in the 10th century BC.

His name comes from a Hebrew word meaning beloved. Other time-honored names have specific meaning, too. Peter means rock. Alex means defender of men.

Donna means pretty, and Margaret means pearl. According to Webster’s, Mary stems all the way back to an ancient Aramaic word meaning rebellion, and Elizabeth comes from a Hebrew word meaning God is (my) oath.

Surnames can have special significance, as well. People with the last name Miller can likely trace their genealogical roots to someone who ran a mill. Those with the last name Carlson, Peterson or Paulson know that someone way back in their family lineage was named Carl, Peter or Paul.

The significance of one’s name is worthy of reflection. Even we are simply named for Aunt Grace (pleasing quality) or Grampa Frank (a free man), our names have personal significance within our families, and there are often honored memories attached to them.

These days it seems that parents are coming up with more and more nontraditional names, everything from Archer to Zanadu. It’s fair to consider, though, that someday these new names will be considered traditional. With each name choice, families reflect the history of mankind and/or write a new notation in it.

 

 

 

 


 

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