Thursday, February 12, 2009

What's In A Name?

Sometimes I just think about things.

I think about random things.

When I'm bored I make lists.

Random lists.

Lists of who I'd have to invite to my wedding.

Lists of cousins, aunts and uncles.

Lists of what I need to do, or what I need to buy.

Lists of all the home groups I've been involved in.

Sometimes, I just think.

Today I am thinking about names. What's in a name? Well, I think that names say a lot about people. In our culture we've become so creative and spontaneous with giving names to our children, that often times the actual meaning of the name is never really considered in light of the sound or the uniqueness of the name. I myself have had a daughter's name chosen for years (one that actually HASN'T been used yet!) that I haven't told a soul, simply because I love the name. Funny thing is, it has no meaning. None. I've searched dozens of times and I assure you that it doesn't. I've even considered making up my own meaning if and when the time ever comes!

When my best friend Naomi gave birth to my godson, Cameron, I was thrilled. Cameron is a really cool name - shortened to "Cam". The meaning: Crooked Nose. Really?

Shakesphere said....well... actually it was Juliet who said it: ""What's in a name? That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet."

But is that true?


But in my deep down guts I honestly believe that finding out the meaning of names can tell you a lot about a person. Well, in most cases.

If you search Google images for "Heidi Ervin", this is what you get:

Apparently Heidi Ervin has written a rather popular musical called "Underwear: A Space Musical"

Right, well then. I can't say that I've seen that Musical but I'm sure it's, um, entertaining?

As for me, I was named after my Mom's youngest sister. She was born "Heidi Marie Becker". She was as beautiful as a porcelin doll. Sadly, she only lived but a few days. My Mother, the oldest of 10 children (14 had the other 4 survived), fell in love with Heidi and eventually had one of her own, me!

Heidi: German diminutive of the Adelheid. Heidi means "noble one". Of noble birth or heritage.

My middle name is Ruth. Named after my Grandmother, my Mom's Mom. I never got to meet her.

Ruth: Hebrew name. Ruth means "loyal friend, companion" Interesting enough just now I have learned that when Ruth was translated into English, it changed also it's meaning and added "compassion, sympathy, mercy".

Names are fun.


Allison said...

I've actually thought a lot about this in the past couple years. The Chinese have a totally different way of naming their children - each syllable has a specific meaning, and the syllables together can form almost a poem sort of thing. One woman I met had a name that meant something like "bird that flies over the mountain in winter and becomes a flower". Her parents named her that because they had been having a long-distance relationship (it involved planes, apparently), she was born in the winter, and she was their little flower. Why can't we make names like that?