Duana Names: International Understandings

July 23, 2013 16:58:34 Posted at July 23, 2013 16:58:34
Duana Posted by Duana
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Our younger daughter is going to arrive very soon and I have just found a name that my husband approves: "Adelina Lelle". Adelina means noble, Lelle means soul in Hungarian (it's not prounounced like Elle, it's more like Halle or Lel-leh). We call her Lelle, but I think it's not serious enough for a grown woman and it may be complicated to pronounce in other languages, that's why I chose Adelina as a more international first name.

However, I fear it might be a little over-feminine or too sweet. I'm also considering "Bíbor Lelle". Both names are old, pagan Hungarian names, Bíbor (bee-bor) means purple. My husband worries it would sound weird if the child ended up living in a foreign country. Which one do you think would be better? Our 2-year-old daughter is called Erdélyi-Cserép Léna Franciska, her nickname is Léni. We use the Eastern name order as we are Hungarians. I'd love to hear your opinion!

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Wow, these names are GORGEOUS. Sounds like, unlike in North American culture, the middles actually get a bit of use, which is nice. Adelina Lelle is gorgeous, and you’re right, it’s a little more easy for the international tongue to understand.

However, if you’re in the habit of nicknaming, and your older daugher is often Leni – is it possible you’ll wind up with Leni and Lina? (Also, how great is Leni as a nickname?) A little matchy, you know? I’m allowing for the possibility that I’ve not got the pronunciations exactly right, but it still seems like it could get a little too similar.  Judging by the number of parents who say they confuse names and call the wrong kid even when they’re called John and Jessica, it might be something you want to avoid.

And while I agree that it’s a little on the sweet side, it’s not cavity inducing.

However, however. Bibor is fantastic.  Unusual, feminine but not alarmingly so, and relatively easy to understand – my usual gauge for names that are not commonly heard in North America is whether the spelling helps or hinders it, and in this case, Bibor looks exactly the way it’s supposed to be pronounced, so your husband’s fear would be somewhat unfounded. Also, if what I hope is true and you regularly say the two names together, “Bibor Lelle” is just ridiculously cute.

So that’s my vote, but if I lose out, there’s nothing untoward about Adelina, either.

Let me know what happens!

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