First names seem to have certain fashions, where many boys are named Jason or Tarquin and girls today are often named Tallulah, Brooklyn or even Cincinnati (as a wee tot dressed as an angel but throwing an almighty tantrum at the supermarket yesterday was thus named).
In the sensible and pragmatic Scottish clan of my father, many of the women were called Annie or Ann, with several Catherine’s and a clutch of Jane’s or Janet’s.
The eldest male in the family for several generations had been named Samuel or Samuel Boyd, with the exception of my own Dad who was called Kenneth Boyd. The Boyd name originally entered the clan as the surname of Catherine Boyd, who married Hugh Wallace in West Kilbride in 1842 and has been included as a first name ever since.
Once in Australia, these Master Mariners often married young Irish emigrants and the family tree is scattered with at least 3 Mary Anne’s, an Honorah, several Mary’s and a Bridget.
Mum carried on a tradition in her family of including May as a middle name (Ivy May) which I discovered had been her Dad’s infant baby sister who only survived a few months at the end of the 19th century.
Have you spent time wandering around an old cemetery locating the tombstones of early relatives and wondering about the choice of first names? What family names have been recycled in your generation? Has your family used the surname/s of wives as first names? Does anyone in an earlier generation have your exact combination of names?
Why not have some fun and trace back a couple of generations just looking at recurring names?