We are expecting our first child, a boy, in early June. Of course, we had a girl's name chosen, Emmaline Virginia, after my late grandmother. We will probably use this name if we have a girl in the future. Choosing our son's name has proven to be more difficult!
My husband and I are at least on the same page when it comes to style, so that's a start. We tend to like traditional, classic names. Most of the names in our list have a family connection as well.
Our last name is Mayberry, which has a positive connotation for most people, but of course, we don't want to burden our child with any names related to the fictional town (Andrew,Barney, etc..).
Here are some of the names we've considered. We would possibly combine these as a first and middle name.
Henry--this is my favorite! I somehow feel an attachment to this name for our baby. My reservation is with the "Y" ending in both the first and last name. Is it too much of a rhyme?
Thomas--I think this has a nice flowing sound with our last name.
William--not sure about the double "m" sound.
Benjamin--one of my husband's favorites
James--my father's name
Michael--my FIL's name
Additional names which may be a middle name:
We don't like surnames as a first name. Also, we want to call our son by his first name, not his middle name.
Here are a few combinations we've considered. We would love your input on these and any other names we may have overlooked.
Henry James--is the literary connection a turn-off? My sister says so, but she is an English teacher. Surely, it's not as recognizable as Edgar Allen. What do you think?
Thanks for your help, Swistle. We are so grateful!
I feel like you just CAN'T make a mistake here. All these names are so classic and traditional and go so well together, you could almost pick any two out of a hat and have a success. This can make things harder, as we look for one combination that rises above the others---but it can also make things more relaxed, because they're ALL good.
If I had to start narrowing it down, I'd probably start by crossing off James and William and Thomas. The -am- of James and the May- of Mayberry give me a slight tongue-stumbly feeling, and I think the problem intensifies with nicknames: Jamie Mayberry gives a mee-may transition my mouth doesn't like to say, and Jim Mayberry blends too easily into Jimayberry. I feel the same about the way the final M of William blends into the beginning M of Mayberry, and the way Will Mayberry slides together. I like Thomas Mayberry, but not Tommy Mayberry or Tom Mayberry. I still like all three names as middle name candidates.
One of my top favorites is Benjamin Mayberry. I think that has a wonderful sound. (Though maybe too many sounds in common with Emmaline? I can't tell.) The initials bother me, but I know from previous discussions that they aren't an issue for everyone.
But I'm very influenced by the way you talk about the name Henry. It sounds like that's the name you're most drawn to for this baby. I see the issue with Henry Mayberry, but I think it still works. It helps that the -ry of Henry has that strong N-sound right before it (Harry Mayberry would be more of a problem), and also that Mayberry has three syllables (Henry Berry would be more of a problem).
Henry James definitely makes me think of the author---but both names are so common (and the surname James is so familiar as a given name), I'd assume there was no connection. If your surname were James, I think I'd suggest avoiding Henry, but as a first/middle I think the author connection just makes the names sound even more natural together. Your example of Edgar Allen is a good one: those names are so much less common, which makes the association much stronger.
I also love Henry Michael Mayberry. I think the repeating M gives it a slightly whimsical sound that goes well with Mayberry. But if Mayberry is your husband's family name, I'm inclined toward using a name from your family for the middle name.
Henry Benjamin has the rhyming Hen/Ben, and I can't tell if that's an issue or if it's the very thing that makes the two names work together.
Henry Calvert Mayberry is so distinguished.
Henry Thomas Mayberry, YES. That's a great one.
If you use Henry, are there any names on the list you'd particularly like as brother names? I'd set those aside, and be less likely to consider them for the middle name. Are there any names on the list you'd rule out as brother names for Henry? I'd give those extra middle-name consideration, since they wouldn't otherwise be used. (Or if you don't choose Henry, I'd do this same exercise with whatever first name you do choose.)
I think my top favorite combination is Henry Thomas. What does everyone else think? What are your favorite combinations?
Name update! Anna writes:
We welcomed our precious baby boy on May 31st. We named him Henry Calvert Mayberry. Calvert is a family name, so we were happy to honor my dad in this way! Thanks to all for helping us narrow down the choices, and for some very positive feedback!