Okay, are you ready to be blown away?
Zara Phillips and husband Mike Tindall announced their baby name. It’s a little girl named Mia Grace...
There is nothing wrong with this name at all. Mia is rising in popularity, which isn’t a surprise because it slides down the chain from Maddie through Maya ...to Mia. And Grace – well, as you know, it’s a royal name and all – Grace van Cutsem was the hilarious grumpy flower girl at Will and Kate’s wedding
But as a middle name it is, to put it mildly, well-used. Nevertheless, the name is pretty, and certainly familiar – Mia is in the top 10 here and in the UK. So…not a "wacky celebrity name", even though royals are not the same thing as tabloid staples.
But…but…weren’t you expecting something else? I mean, Zara Phillips is refreshingly normal. Her mother rejected a royal title on her behalf, she went to the Olympics on her own steam, and her husband’s rugby career is also not exactly aristocratic. She’s been clear that her daughter is not having a title either, despite being 16th in line to the throne.
I’m not being snarky for the sake of it. I don’t hate the name. Mia, to me, is the kind of name that would be a beautiful nickname for Miriam (which is where it originated) or Melinda or even Emmeline. Zara, too, is a lovely and unusual name that was elevated precisely because it was given to a princess’ daughter.
I’m not a royal watcher on the level of Lainey or some of our other friends but isn’t this a clear indicator of the importance of the lineage to some – even those who were born to it? There’s no name that’s more "of the people" than one that lives in the popularity pocket, so does this mean farewell to the likes of Arabella and Eugenia? Or is it a bigger style shift, where the more "common" the aristocratic names are, the more elaborate the rest of our choices will be?