The tulip, inches above the rest! Could it be a sign for the Netherland's naming style?
I got thinking about the Netherland’s names about a year ago, actually. My dear friend Semna was visiting with her father who was on a student exchange here in America. Before she went back to Amsterdam, she had a few of her friends from home come to visit her. By coincidence, both of their names were Isa! Being an Ysa, I thought it most peculiar to have a sudden onslaught of girls sharing my name, when I had ever only known one other Isa. Well, turns out Isa is nearly the counterpart to Isabella here in America, popularity-wise. Take a look at the top names:
Well, it hasn’t reached Isabella status yet. But #11, I never knew! So let’s look at the boys, too.
It’s pretty clear that there is a huge using short, sweet nicknames for full ones trend going on there. From the girls- Sanne for Susanne, Lotte for Charlotte, Isa for Isabel, and I believe Tess is a nickname as well. For the boys, we’ve got Daan which seems like it should be from Daniel, Tim for Timothy, Finn for one of his many full names, Bram I assumed to be from Abraham, Nick from Nicholas, Max from Maximillian or similar, and Sam from Samuel. Phew! I really like some of these short forms of names, and I would use them in a flash (Sanne and Lotte come to mind), but only as nicknames for their full counterparts. But you know, this gets me thinking. What do people think of names like Molly, Ruby, Kate, and Lily which used to be nicknames as well, but are now used as is? The nicknames for names sector has expanded in America, too.
It was interesting to see names like Lisa and Amber up there, which are thoroughly dated in America, right up next to modern sounding Jayden (Gah! That one stuck out like a sore thumb! Tryndeeeee!), Jasmijn, Iris, Noa and Finn, also alongside ancient Maud and Bram! It’s a very interesting compilation of sweetness from a variety of time periods.
I thought that the Dutch and Scandinavian names on the list were some of the most charming. If only I could use something like Daan or Luuk, with their interesting double vowels… sigh. I find Lars to be super cool as well, along with Sven, which sound like they could pass as some sort bird. Anouk was my very favorite on the girls list. She manages to be enchanting while ending in a “k” sound, which I’ve never seen a name pull off (I think? It’s fairly rare). She’s the Dutch form of Anna/Anne. How funny, then, to see both Anna and Anne on the list, yet both significantly more popular!
I read a very interesting source on the patterns of naming in the Netherlands, which is right here:
It’s very interesting, and if you’re into linguistics I would definitely take a look. Here is are the naming trends according to their survey and calculations (all very fancy stuff):
12% Traditional Dutch
6% History and Culture
This corresponds to the top names quite well. In addition, my own Netherlandic friend, Semna, has a Foreign name, too- her parents say it’s Egyptian. I can’t verify this, since Google has failed to find it’s origin and meaning (ah, how lazy I am). If it’s true, she certainly fits into the 24% with foreign names!
Thank you for reading!