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Monday, May 17, 2010

Middle Name Challenge: Emile ____ Guthrie

Kaci writes:
Hello. My name is Kaci Guthrie and my husband's name is Dustin. We are due in June with our first child, a boy. We already know that his first name will be Emile. We are struggling and can't come an agreement on the middle name. If we ever have a girl, her name will be Mae Adele (Adele is my middle name). If we have another boy, his name will be Ira Keller (Keller is my mom's maiden name). Why we can't decide on Emile's middle name is beyond me! Here are some thing ideas we have been rolling around but are not set on:

Emile Allen (Dustin's dad's middle name)
Emile Holden (from Catcher in the Rye)
Emile Sinclair (b/c they are both French names)

Do you or your readers have any suggestions? Thanks so much for your help!

I agree, Emile seems to be a particularly difficult name to find a middle name for. Maybe Emile Dustin?

Because of the popularity of girl name Emily, and because the kre8tive spelling trend, I'm inclined to go extra-masculine for the middle name. Allen, Holden, and Dustin all seem good; Sinclair is a boy name but actually now that I think of it would be a very pretty girl name. I think the "clair" part gives it a feminine sound I'd avoid with Emile, even though I think you're right that the rhythm is very good. Another one I like is Emile Jean-Luc, but again I wonder if Jean is too girlish-looking. Maybe Emile Lucas?

Some more French possibilities:

Emile Jerome
Emile Phillipe
Emile Sebastien

I think my favorites from my list are Emile Lucas and Emile Sebastien, and my favorite from your list is Emile Holden.

Name update! Kaci writes:
We ended up naming him Emile Tobin Guthrie. The original question was about what middle name to select, but then the discussion turned to whether Emile sounded like Emily. I had some really encouraging words from someone who left a comment about how her husband's name was Emile and she loved it. I think maybe it didn't have an e at the end. Also, I am a teacher and I have a student who is a girl, her name is Dylan. I talked to her about it. She said that usually on the first day of school, her teachers think she is a boy. They realize that she is a girl and they move on with life. They know she is a girl from that day forward. I think that is how it will be with Emile too. Hopefully he will be a confident enough person to handle the inevitable teasing about being called a girl. Thanks all!


mir said...

I'm wondering why you don't want to use Keller as the middle name here? I think that would sound great: Emile Keller.

Kaci said...

I don't want to use Keller because I think there are too many L sounds in Emile Keller.

StephLove said...

I was wondering the same thing, why not Keller?

I like Theodore with Emile. Emile Theodore Guthrie. Or how about Alexander? Emile Alexander Guthrie.

beyond said...

From your list, I like Emile Holden best. In fact, I like it a lot. It has a great flow to it.
How about:
Emile Harrison
Emile Henry (love!)
Emile Hudson
I guess I like an H-middle name for Emile...
Good luck!

Adey said...

I DO like the name Emile - but I admit when I first read it I wondered if it was supposed to be for a guy or a girl "Emily" with creative spelling.

I definitely think you need to go with a very masculine name if you're going that route!

I like the idea of Holden for a middle name. I also like Kellar and didn't think it was too make "L" sounds.

Hope T. said...

Swistle's suggestion of Emile Phillipe jumped right out at me. It sounds just right to me.

Kaci said...

Here's a new question. Do you think spelling it Emil instead of Emile would be a better choice?

robin said...

My husband's name is Emil, and I LOVE the name. His middle name is Israel, after his father, and I think "Emil Israel" has a good flow to it. Israel as a name is definitely not for everyone, though. I'm definitely for the spelling of "Emil" rather than "Emile". I think it makes the masculine nature of the name more evident. It is a hard name to combine! If it were me, I would go with "Emil Augustus", but you probably won't like that with your last name (too many "gu-" sounds). Emil Edward? Emil Arhur? What a stumper!

Adey said...

Hmmm... Emil ... I don't mind it! Definitely different.

The baby name book I have has the following: Emil, Emiel, Emilek, Emile, Emilio - All quite unique!

For middle names:

Emil Alexander Guthrie
Emil Jeremiah Guthrie
Emil Remington Guthrie
Emil Rylan Guthrie

Emil Ryan Guthrie
Emil Timothy Guthrie
Emil Xavier Guthrie

One of my favourite websites is You can put in Baby's first and last name and it will generate 3 middle names at a time... I usually flip through it while watching a show... Lots of neat features on that site!

Good luck!

Anonymous said...

I was definitely confused by the 'e' at the end, so I think going with Emil would be a bit better.

Emily S. said...

I think I like Emil a little better than Emile. Either way, you will have some people saying Emily, but they'll figure it out eventually.

SM said...

How are you pronouncing it? I read Emile as "em-eel" but I read Emil as "em-ill". Emile Holden is my pick from your list. Good luck!

Anonymous said...

We named our baby Emil and we pronounce it "em-eel" even though I believe that spelling is more commonly pronounced "em-ill" in Europe. But we're in America and so far he's been called Eh-muhl, Ee-mill and E-mail.

I like Emile Sebastian Guthrie.

Caitlin said...

I somehow missed this the first time around, but I LOVE Emile for a boy's name! I first heard it when I worked for a man named Emile years ago, and thought it was such a beautiful name! COngrats!!