(I’m playing catch-up, so you’ll be getting a couple of these a day for the next few days!)
My name shares a direct connection to two of my female ancestors.
My first name, Lauren, came at the suggestion of my mum’s mum Margaret Goulding. She was a bit of a film buff, and her favourite actress was the beautiful 1940s starlet Lauren Bacall, and so it was after her that I was named. My mum liked it because it’s hard to shorten. It was quite an unusual choice at the time, though it’s far more common now.
My middle name, Fay, was my dad’s mum’s name – Fay Rayner. However, I never heard her called that. She was always known in the family as Pat. Apparently her father gave her the nickname – she was, although beautiful, rather a dumpy figure, and so he thought Fay, coming as it does from the French for fairy, didn’t really suit her. This always makes me feel a little sorry for her. Fay is also used by an aunt and a younger cousin as a middle name as well.
Generally speaking though, there aren’t traditional family naming patterns for the females in my family – at least not ones that endure today. There are some that seem to have been used across generations earlier in my tree. Amy, Marion and Ellen were popular in one branch and Honor is an unusual one that crops up a few times on another branch. There are an awful lot of Marys and Mary Anns as well, but I suspect that isn’t confined to my family!
There are some beautiful female names in my tree. I hope to use some of them for my own daughters one day. These are my favourites: Amelia, Bess, Comfort, Edith, Hannah, Isabella, Louisa, Marion, Matilda, Miriam, Nellie, Phoebe, Stella, Violet and Victorine. I might have to whittle them down a bit though – I don’t intend on having fifteen children!