Thursday, April 14, 2011

Names of the Week

I've decided to even further indulge myself in my love of names and write about a different boy's and girl's name every week! I'll have fun with this.
This week, I'll do a theme (I may continue going with a different theme each week, but we'll see), and it's... *drumroll*
Yipee! So, let's get started.

Origin: Greek
Meaning: "help"
History: Ophelia was the name of the lovely (and suicidal) and mad lady in Shakespeare's "Hamlet." Her father was killed by Hamlet, the man she loves, and she goes mad. When her brother Laertes (also an excellent name) finds out, drama ensues. Ophelia eventually goes so mad that she drowns, but really commits suicide, in a lake.
This tragic tale of Ophelia may seem like a good reason to turn away from the name, but I'd have to disagree. I think that, although it's sad, this literary connection is a great one. Shakespeare always used such great names in tragic plays, and so many are underused.
Why you should use it: As mentioned before, the great literary connections are a major plus. Also, this name has such a pretty sound to it, feminine yet not fragile (if that makes sense). Ophelia could make an interesting alternative to Sophie, due to similar sounds, which is gaining in popularity. Plus, Lia and Ophie would be very cute nicknames.
Why you might not want to use it: I've heard of many people associating Ophelia to pedophelia, and other bad things that end in -ophelia. This could be a major turn off. Another reason, same as the plus side, the literary connection. Some just don't like that association.

Origin: Greek
Meaning: "liberator"
History: One of the main characters in Shakespeare's "A Midsummer Night's Dream," Lysander is love with a woman who he shouldn't be with (isn't that always the case?). Lysander is in love with Hermia, unfortunately, Hermia's father disapproves of this relationship and wants her to marry someone else. Yet, true love prevails, and Lysander and Hermia escape to the forest to be together. Wow, that's true love. Only in literature...
Why you should use it: Obviously, the Shakespeare thing is huge. Plus, this older name has a new, fresh feel to it. The letter Y is all the rage (seriously, just take a gander at any misspelled name) and in this name it is used correctly. The sound of Lysander is so masculine, yet soft at the same time. It's a winner all around.
Why you may not want to use it: This lovely name may still feel old and stuck in the attic to some. Other than that, there are no negatives I can see.

So there's that! Ophelia and Lysander. Stay tuned, next week another name post shall come.

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