Sunday, November 08, 2009

Coming Clean

(This is the post I would have done on Friday if my computer hadn't been kidnapped.)

As most of you know, I use my real name here, and also my husband's name, but except for Arwen, who uses her real name at her blog -- which I think is how most of you got here-- I've been using pseudonyms for the rest of my family. Since Arwen has been using real names on her blog bit by bit, and all my kids are active online, in the interests of simplicity I'm going to give you "The Name Post."

In order of appearance my children are:
Arwen Elizabeth (you knew that ;-) ) ,
Branwen Elanor ("Rosie" -- Rose is her confirmation name, and her husband "Anthony" is really Larry),
Miriel Margaret ("Maggie"),
Brandon Ransom ("George" -- confirmation name again),
Tirienne Anne ("Katie" -- confirmation name Catherine) and
Kelson Reuel ("Tommy" -- our last name is Thomas.)
I actually have been using our grandchildren's real names, so Daniel, Camilla, Matthew and Blaise they remain.

The names are mostly all from Tolkien and Lewis. "
Arwen Elizabeth" scans the same as "Arwen Undomiel". (And if you're not a total Lord of the Rings geek and don't know this already, "ennorath" in Arwen's blog URL is Quenya (Elvish) for "Middle Earth".)

The name Branwen is used a lot in the Brother Cadfael novels of Ellis Peters, and is the name of a major character in the Wrinkle in Time books. Elanor is both Samwise and Rose's daughter in LOTR and a tiny white flower of Middle Earth.

Miriel was both an Elf (the mother of Feanor - Silmarillion)) and the last ruling queen of Numenor (read the appendices of LOTR). Margaret just sounded good with that, AND we were trying to give the kids one "normal-sounding" sorta-kinda-saint's name to use if desired. (Elanor sounds like Eleanor).

Brandon's name snuck in there when we weren't looking -- we wanted something that sounded good with "Ransom" (Elwin Ransom is the main character in Lewis' Space Trilogy. The name became popular about 17 seconds after we picked it!

Tirienne is named for Tirian, the last King of Narnia. We loved it, but didn't think you could do that to a boy, so we feminized it. It's pronounced "Tee-ree-ENNE". (Or, as we told my dad when he struggled with it, think of a letter N crying -- a "teary N".)

Kelson is the main character in the first-written trilogy of Chronicles of the Deryni by Katherine Kurtz. And Reuel is for John Ronald REUEL Tolkien. I guess we'd given up on the "normal" by then, although Reuel is a Biblical name meaning "Servant of God."

I realize this is a lot of information packed into a small post, but I thought I'd head off the most obvious questions in advance. Feel free to comment, and be aware that I'll be using real names from now on!


Sarah in Ottawa said...

I confess - reading Arwen's blog and Twitter, I have figured out most of the names over the past few months, but I must say - they are all just lovely. I love when names are meaningful!

My parents ran into a situation similar to the Brandon one with my name - Sarah Helen. Both are family names; both can be easily said by the English and French Canadian side and the Italian side. But in 1977, my parents knew 2 Sarahs. And that's the year that Sarah entered the top 10 most popular female names, a position it relinquished only about 5 years ago. In university, there were so many Sarahs that we ended up with nicknames based on our last names - I was "Smac".

Teddy is actually Edward Vincent, named for two of his great grandfathers (and several saints). I LOVE both names, but am worried that, due to the Twilight phenomenon, there will be an influx of little Edwards over the next few years!

A'Dell said...

I love unique names. As the owner of one, I can say that I LOVE LOVE LOVE having a name that nobody else has.

And a whole family of unique-ness? That is awesome.

Miriel said...

Hooray! It was getting confusing trying to remember who I was on which blog :-p

Renae said...

I love that you put such thought and meaning into your children's names. And they are such beautiful names! My husband is diehard LOTRs fan and we have entertained both Arwen and Eowyn for future children's names.

Also, just a note to let you know you are in our thoughts and prayers with your move, home purchase and all.

AmyRobynne said...

Thank you for the explanation! My husband has been set on naming a daughter Elanor and was so sad when one of his coworkers named his daughter that (even with the spelling) a year ago. He keeps throwing out other LOTR names but nothing else seems reasonable.

Kate said...

Very interesting! And congrats on your blog :-)

Lisa said...

Hi there, came over from Arwen's blog -- love the names! I hope my husband and I will be as thoughtful as we name our future children. I have a very ordinary name, but my husband's name is highly unusual and I do think it adds a sort of uniqueness to him. And it is definitely memorable so people never forget his name!

Lisa said...

I'd been wondering about the boys' names since they haven't yet appeared in Arwen's blog. Very interesting and beautiful line-up of names.

Amy said...

I love them all. When I read LOTR I thought he named things - everything!- so beautifully! I especially love Arwen.

My daughter's name is Aislinn (say eyes + lynn). It's an Irish Gaelic name (pronounced in Ireland "ash-leen" but we say it the way it looks) and people ask all the time if she's named for Aslan. That had never occurred to me until after the first person asked!

Lindsay said...

I forgot about Branwen in The Wrinkle of Time! I always thought you named her after Bran and Branwen... huh. Is her name pronounced as Bronwen?

And I have no idea how to pronounce Reuel.

I really love that you chose unique names, though. I've always preferred them. We'll forget the Brandon thing, because he clearly made it popular. Everyone wanted to be like him. :o)