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French names - Page 3

post #41 of 60
Thread Starter 
I understand the hyphenated names are "out of fashion". But we are looking for something rather old fashioned, as it's going to be a middle name, and 2 names gives him more options.
Thanks for all the great suggestions, and the links!! We're still working on the name though. DH has really been no help, I don't think he realizes how soon this little guy is coming!
post #42 of 60
Men are useless with names-except to reject whatever we suggest lol!

No, my point is that because the French naming rules have improved, there are fewer hyphenated names since fewer are "forced" to do it, in order to have the name they really want. They can now simply give their child that name.

Since so many people have these double names, it's part of French tradition. I'm sure it'll come back in style at some point but for right now, I simply see more single names, both when I had my kids and at schools and daycares. Just make sure it doesn't have a strong association, even a good one. If you go with "Jean-Jacques", for example, your child will be forever hearing "like Goldman". Just check with a French friend before you hear about it later!

I had to laugh at the "Kevin" story. I was waiting for the elevator and talking to the neighbors whose son is named "Kevin". I said "Oh my son has an Irish name too". Ronan is both Breton and Irish, since both are Celtic. They looked at each other. "No" they cautiously told me "It's American". I laughed "Well, I'm American and I can confirm with you, it's a very typical, common Irish name!"

They looked crestfallen. Was I being tactless? No, just honest, but a bit brutally. It served her right, the way she parked in front of the building and let her boys run wild on the stairs when my babies were asleep.

What was really funny, was that their last name starts with an "O", a typical North African Jewish surname. So at first glance, his name looks really Irish. Of course I told them this. They didn't look happy but then I added, I'm 1/4th Irish myself (so they didn't dare complain lol!)
post #43 of 60
Thread Starter 
Ok. For now we're going with Quinn Denis-Leon. Leon is FIL's name, and we just like Denis. Of course, he might get here and change our minds entirely! Thanks for all the great ideas!
post #44 of 60
mntnmom, the first name you have chosen is my DD's name and french people we have encountered casually (since obviously friends and family know her name ) always seem to think her name is "Queen" and have reacted with surprise when they hear her name. It's kind of annoying, because when people ask, I want to say "It's Quinn, not Queen, that's a different word!" but I can't, so there are French people out there who think I named my kid Queen. Don't mean to complicate matters further, but it is what it is!
post #45 of 60
I get what you are saying but there are loads of french (well maybe not loads but certainly a few) that name their child Reine Sara or whatever first name they feel like, there are two at our dd's school!!!
post #46 of 60
Thread Starter 
Odds are we won't be living in a French speaking area when he gets old enough to care. And all the Quebecois family speak English too. But I can easily see how that could happen! Do you know a lot of girls named Quinn?
post #47 of 60
Originally Posted by Plaid Leopard View Post
I don't think we should not use a name just because someone somewhere might not get it, or understand it or pronounce it wrong.
Since the OP is talking about a middle name, I agree with you. If it was a first name, I'd disagree. My first name is commonly mispronounced and it is super annoying to either respond to a name that is a butchered version of mine or to correct people DAY AFTER DAY AFTER DAY... And there isn't just one correct way to say it, so it isn't that some people are ignorant - there are many correct options!

Originally Posted by Plaid Leopard View Post
I don't really understand how a hyphenated name would be a burden.
Having had one for the first eleven years of my marriage, I can tell you that it is a HUGE pita... However, again, the OP is wanting this for a middle name so still annoying (and the second part of the middle name will likely be dropped or not accepted by computerized systems) but not a deal breaker.

Quinn is a boy's name where I live, but there is a female character named Quinn in a tween tv show. I still consider it a boy's name when I hear it IRL though.
post #48 of 60
found this on meilleursprenoms.com, about Denis

À noter : Denis se rapporte à Dionysos, dieu du vin dans la mythologie grecque. Il est aussi appelé Bacchus par les Romains. Missionnaire en Gaule au IIIe siècle, saint Denis est le premier évêque de Paris. L'empereur Domitien le jugeant trop influent, il le fait décapiter sur le Mont des Martyrs (aujourd'hui connu sous le nom de Montmartre). Saint Denis est le patron de la France.

Fréquence : ce prénom est très répandu. Il est peu attribué actuellement.

Tendance 2007 : en décroissance modérée.

Caractérologie : équilibre, détermination, influence, famille, sens des responsabilités.

= given to middle aged people and older rather than to babies nowadays

+ the first associaton that comes to mind is with that name is "Denis la menace", from the cartoon
+ in the late 70's there was an old lady from Brittany who agreed to pose for a comercial for a brand of washing machines so "La mère Denis" is something still talked about but nothing negative in that association
post #49 of 60
+ Denis peaked at over 4000 per year for about 10 years in the late fifties-early sixties

another quote from the same site :

Au début de l'année 2006, 127.921 Français portaient ce prénom.

DENIS est le 65ème prénom le plus attribué du XXème siècle, et se positionne en 394ème position pour l'année 2006. De 1900 à nos jours, son année record d'attribution est 1963, avec 6.155 naissances.
post #50 of 60
as for Leon, after the year 1935 or so it was given to less than 1500 babies per year, and less and less with each passing year, with a curve reaching nearly zero in the seventies & for about 20 years.

it' s having a revival now but very few per year still, considered "ahead of the trend" so could pick up popularity or flop and die down again, who knows ...

another quote from the same site:

Au début de l'année 2006, 30.197 Français portaient ce prénom.

LEON est le 92e prénom le plus attribué du XXe siècle, et se positionne en 248e position pour l'année 2006. De 1900 à nos jours, son année record d'attribution est 1910, avec 3.659 naissances.
post #51 of 60
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the information, I hadn't waded through any French sites. Our goal is to give him options. Quinn is a little uncommon, but Denis is common enough that he can use it instead if he likes. The fact that it's a Saint's name makes it an easy sell with the family... but vetoed it as a first name because of Dennis the Menace!
post #52 of 60
... so ... if he comes in contact with French people at some point in his life, he could hear "Bonne fête" on the 9th of October for Denis and on the 10th of November for Leon ....

in France, the next day Saint is announced at the end of the main weather forecast after the 8:00 pm new (+ if you are not in the printed calendar, there are lists that tell you on which days of the year which variation of which name is celebrated) ... I tend to often forget my eldest sister because "Mireille" is not on the printed calendar, and she's in for 15th of August with the all the "Marie".
We don't give a present but we either say or e-mail "Bonne fête" and people appreciate the thaught ...

Quinn is vaguely familiar for a french speaker .... if they watched that series with Jane Seymour a few years back ...
post #53 of 60
Originally Posted by mntnmom View Post
Do you know a lot of girls named Quinn?
No I don't know any named Quinn - so at least it's original - love to stand out from the crowd!! lol
post #54 of 60
Originally Posted by ewe+lamb View Post
No I don't know any named Quinn - so at least it's original - love to stand out from the crowd!! lol
Me, too, that's why I picked it! We just met another female Quinn, I think it is generally thought to be a boy's name, though. We chose Madeleine as her middle name for an aunt from the French side, so it's a similar English/French blend for us.
post #55 of 60
Originally Posted by paxye View Post
The OP¨asked about French names and Francophone moms and didn't mention France...

Both "French and Francophone" are valid here in Quebec as much as they are in France, though I admit, the accents and general attitudes are quite different.
Many people in France do not think the French spoken in Quebec or south Louisiana is French at all. They consider it another language rather then another dialect. Our dd has had some problems with her middle name since we left home 4.5 years ago. For some reason Cherie is difficult for people in FL to figure out, but it is a very common first and middle name in south LA. I also wanted to mention that double first names are very common in south LA and most times you will find them in a certain religious group. We don't have a name yet for ds3 coming in April so I was checking out this thread to see if any of the name caught my eye as we are working towards moving home where a French name would be considered normal.
post #56 of 60
In Australia, Quinn is usually a male name. It's also an Irish surname. But that doesn't mean it's gender specific across the whole world- for example I know many men named either Ashley or Kim.
post #57 of 60
Thread Starter 
We thought Quinn was pretty much a boy's name. I was just asking to be sure. But we thought the same for Ryan, and I've met girls named Ryan since we'd named our boy that!
post #58 of 60
I suspect there will be more little girls named Quinn soon, since it's the name of a female character on the tv show Glee.

Personally, I like names that aren't readily identifiable as female or male. DS has a name that is a common surname, and historically when used as a first name, it was for boys. In the 1990s, it became popular for girls. We know more males than females with the name, but these days, I think it's more commonly used for girls.
post #59 of 60
Originally Posted by ollyoxenfree View Post
I suspect there will be more little girls named Quinn soon, since it's the name of a female character on the tv show Glee.
Well, I guess it had to happen...I remember friends who'd named their daughter Brittany just before Britney Spears became popular, they were like "D'OH!" We did choose it for its gender neutrality, though, I liked the idea that as an adult, when DD sends in her resume, the recipient won't immediately know her gender. I think we might continue this gender-neutral theme for the next one.
post #60 of 60
If I met someone here in France with the first name "Quinn", I would assume they were of Breton origin. It sounds Celtic.

I actually have a gender-neutral first name and really, really hate it. Apparently I'm typical and worse with boys (who dislike being mistaken for a girls even worse than the opposite). I hate getting mail addressed to "Mr." or being asked why I have a "boy's" name. When I went to name my own children, it was really important that there be no doubt as to the sex of my children. Something to think about!

Getting back on subject, there are very few sex-neutral French names. There are though a ton of male/female versions of the same name, usually with an extra consonant and almost always with an "E" at the end. Some of those look kind of masculine like Axelle, Astride or Raephelle. One of these names would give her a truly female name, without it being instantly recognized on paper.
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