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What Goes Into Naming A Child - Family - Nairaland

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What Goes Into Naming A Child by Chuky7(m): 10:15am On Oct 17
So my sister put to birth yesterday and I couldn't take the thought of how and why a certain name is given to a child.

like how do you come up with names on the spot and also importantly the meaning attached to it.

Do you backup name options before the child arrives or is there something am missing.

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Re: What Goes Into Naming A Child by dingbang(m): 10:19am On Oct 17
Even before you were born, I knew you. I just feel every name is inspired by God so it comes naturally either through the parents or even grandparents.

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Re: What Goes Into Naming A Child by mariahAngel: 10:20am On Oct 17
Chuky7:
So my sister put to birth yesterday and I couldn't take the thought of how and why a certain name is given to a child.

like how do you come up with names on the spot and also importantly the meaning attached to it.

Do you backup name options before the child arrives or is there something am missing.

Africans usually name a child based on the circumstances within when the child was born.

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Re: What Goes Into Naming A Child by HRHQueenPhil(f): 12:08pm On Oct 17
Give birth to yours, u will see how names will be rushing at u

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Re: What Goes Into Naming A Child by crackhaus: 1:10pm On Oct 17
Do you backup name options before the child arrives or is there something am missing.
Some people do this, plan/list names they intend to give their unborn child(ren).
Even I have been guilty of this, BUT after a certain experience, I now find that this method can be a wee bit contrived (for lack of a better word).

Personally, I now find it fascinating when children are given names that encompass the circumstances surrounding their birth – could be an experience during the pregnancy, or even an experience right there in the labor ward.

Some parents also choose names that are futuristic in expression, in the sense that they believe something about the child that will/may become that child's reality much later on – this also works.

Whatever method people choose anyway, the basic idea is to always know the meaning, origins, and history behind a name (assuming you don't want to give one that is based on a person experience).

I have noticed that a lot of people simply pick names that sound posh/hip/modern without having a deeper understanding of their meanings.

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Re: What Goes Into Naming A Child by pozehnani(f): 12:12am On Oct 18
Now, people bear their children names based on the following

circumstances sorrounding the birth of that child.

Events that happened in the parents life either for good or bad.
Events that happened generally. like the case of covid 19 where a woman in China named her twins covid something. Can't remember now. But it was covid related.

So, these and several other circumstances and situation are things that give rise to the name a child is given.

Like my native name was given me as a result of my mum having only girls. She now added us (twins) to the girls on ground. Hahahah... so my dad gave me, IS GOD THAT GIVES BABIES. lol..

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Re: What Goes Into Naming A Child by PureGoldh(m): 1:36am On Oct 18
Going Biblically : Jeremiah 1 Vs 5 made some tips on it

But logically,an African child is named with respect to the circumstance/happenings around his entrance into the world

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Re: What Goes Into Naming A Child by Ishilove(m): 2:10am On Oct 18
crackhaus:

Some people do this, plan/list names they intend to give their unborn child(ren).
Even I have been guilty of this, BUT after a certain experience, I now find that this method can be a wee bit contrived (for lack of a better word).

Personally, I now find it fascinating when children are given names that encompass the circumstances surrounding their birth – could be an experience during the pregnancy, or even an experience right there in the labor ward.

Some parents also choose names that are futuristic in expression, in the sense that they believe something about the child that will/may become that child's reality much later on – this also works.

Whatever method people choose anyway, the basic idea is to always know the meaning, origins, and history behind a name (assuming you don't want to give one that is based on a person experience)
I have noticed that a lot of people simply pick names that sound posh/hip/modern without having a deeper understanding of their meanings.
Makes me wonder why people give their kids names that they can't trace the origins.

2 Likes

Re: What Goes Into Naming A Child by naptu2: 2:32am On Oct 18
Ishilove:

Makes me wonder why people give their kids names that they can't trace the origins.

The naming system in virtually all cultures follow certain defined patterns. Almost all names fit into these patterns.


1) Circumstance of birth.

2) Virtue.

3) Virtue tied to an animal.

4) Virtue tied to another person.

5) A place name

6) A god/godess or virtue tied to a god/godess

7) A child's appearance at birth.

That's why there are some names that are translatable (e.g. Ibukun = Ngozi). Parents know the origins of names, but the person bearing the name might not know the origin if his/her parents have not told him/her.

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Re: What Goes Into Naming A Child by naptu2: 2:45am On Oct 18
The word Dan in Hausa means son.

Dantata = son of Tata.
Dangote = son of Gote

(The name of the nanny that took care of Alhassan Dantata was Tata and so people started calling him "son of Tata" = Dantata).


The word "Ap" means son in Welsh. Therefore:

Madog ap Rhys = Madog son of Rhys.


The suffix "son" is used in Icelandic. Therefore:

Gunnarsson = son of Gunnar

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Re: What Goes Into Naming A Child by naptu2: 2:48am On Oct 18
People also use animals to depict virtue.

Ekun means leopard in Yoruba.

Therefore, Kekere-Ekun = small leopard (this is to show that people bearing that name are as strong as leopards despite the fact that they are small).

Zaki means lion in Hausa. That is to show that people who bear the name Zaki are as strong as lions.

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Re: What Goes Into Naming A Child by naptu2: 2:51am On Oct 18
Prayer/wish/virtue

Ibukun/Ngozi to show that the person will be a blessing to the family.

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Re: What Goes Into Naming A Child by naptu2: 2:53am On Oct 18
Sometimes people use the name of the place that the child was born. That's why there are people named Lagos, Jos, Jimeta, London, etc.

3 Likes

Re: What Goes Into Naming A Child by BigSarah(f): 7:30am On Oct 18
You need a child , then you get a name..then you name the child!

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Re: What Goes Into Naming A Child by naptu2: 8:38am On Oct 18
Appearance.

Some times a child might be named based on his/her appearance at birth or the way that the parents feel about the child or want the child to look in future.


Ifeoma means beautiful in Igbo.

Kenneth means handsome in Gaelic.


A child could be given the name blue because of her blue eyes or because the parents were feeling sad at the time of her birth.

A child could also be given the name ginger because of their ginger coloured hair.

1 Like

Re: What Goes Into Naming A Child by Ishilove(m): 1:23pm On Oct 18
naptu2:
The word Dan in Hausa means son.

Dantata = son of Tata.
Dangote = son of Gote

(The name of the nanny that took care of Alhassan Dantata was Tata and so people started calling him "son of Tata" = Dantata).


The word "Ap" means son in Welsh. Therefore:

Madog ap Rhys = Madog son of Rhys.


The suffix "son" is used in Icelandic. Therefore:

Gunnarsson = son of Gunnar
Informative. Thanks dear

2 Likes

Re: What Goes Into Naming A Child by crackhaus: 1:27pm On Oct 18
Ishilove:

Makes me wonder why people give their kids names that they can't trace the origins.
Probably because the names just sound really good.

1 Like 1 Share

Re: What Goes Into Naming A Child by joseph1832(m): 1:37pm On Oct 18
naptu2:
People also use animals to depict virtue.

Ekun means leopard in Yoruba.

Therefore, Kekere-Ekun = small leopard (this is to show that people bearing that name are as strong as leopards despite the fact that they are small).

Zaki means lion in Hausa. That is to show that people who bear the name Zaki are as strong as lions.
so what does Ekundayo mean in Yoruba?
Re: What Goes Into Naming A Child by naptu2: 1:42pm On Oct 18
joseph1832:
so what does Ekundayo mean in Yoruba?

Difficulty/sadness has turned to joy.

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Re: What Goes Into Naming A Child by joseph1832(m): 1:42pm On Oct 18
crackhaus:

Some people do this, plan/list names they intend to give their unborn child(ren).
Even I have been guilty of this, BUT after a certain experience, I now find that this method can be a wee bit contrived (for lack of a better word).

Personally, I now find it fascinating when children are given names that encompass the circumstances surrounding their birth – could be an experience during the pregnancy, or even an experience right there in the labor ward.

Some parents also choose names that are futuristic in expression, in the sense that they believe something about the child that will/may become that child's reality much later on – this also works.

Whatever method people choose anyway, the basic idea is to always know the meaning, origins, and history behind a name (assuming you don't want to give one that is based on a person experience)
[b]I have noticed that a lot of people simply pick names that sound posh/hip/modern[/b]without having a deeper understanding of their meanings.
I believe there's absolutely nothing cool about naming a child Artanacious or Donatus. grin
Re: What Goes Into Naming A Child by joseph1832(m): 1:43pm On Oct 18
naptu2:


Difficulty/sadness has turned to joy.
easy thinking may be it's leopard as turned to dayo or something like that. Lol.

2 Likes

Re: What Goes Into Naming A Child by naptu2: 1:44pm On Oct 18
joseph1832:
easy thinking may be it's leopard as turned to dayo or something like that. Lol.

Well, the leopard can also be seen as a difficult and tough animal.
Re: What Goes Into Naming A Child by joseph1832(m): 1:45pm On Oct 18
naptu2:


Well, the leopard can also be seen as a difficult and tough animal.
yeah that's true. Thanks
Re: What Goes Into Naming A Child by crackhaus: 2:03pm On Oct 18
joseph1832:
I believe there's absolutely nothing cool about naming a child Artanacious or Donatus. grin
Some people might think it is, I can't say I know what they were thinking.

2 Likes

Re: What Goes Into Naming A Child by naptu2: 2:24pm On Oct 18
joseph1832:
I believe there's absolutely nothing cool about naming a child Artanacious or Donatus. grin


crackhaus:

Some people might think it is, I can't say I know what they were thinking.

I don't think it's about being cool. I think that's also about virtue.

The same way that some people name their kids after lions or leopards, to depict that they are as strong as those animals, so also do people name their children after other humans, especially people that are dead, with the hope that the child will imbibe the virtue of the person that they are named after.

So people name their children Solomon, with the hope that the child will be as wise as King Solomon, etc.


Athanasius was a bishop of Alexandria in Egypt and some people thought that he was wise. That might be the reason that they name their children after him.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Athanasius_of_Alexandria

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Re: What Goes Into Naming A Child by crackhaus: 2:49pm On Oct 18
naptu2:

I don't think it's about being cool. I think that's also about virtue.

The same way that some people name their kids after lions or leopards, to depict that they are as strong as those animals, so also do people name their children after other humans, especially people that are dead, with the hope that the child will imbibe the virtue of the person that they are named after.

So people name their children Solomon, with the hope that the child will be as wise as King Solomon, etc.


Athanasius was a bishop of Alexandria in Egypt and some people thought that he was wise. That might be the reason that they name their children after him.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Athanasius_of_Alexandria
I believe joseph1823 was just being funny... Although true to the fact, those names Athanasius & Donatus really don't sound cool, so you're right about the virtue angle.

However, there are definitely some names you hear, and you just know that coolness was a very good reason it was chosen.
Not at all minimizing and/or despite their virtuous meanings.

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Re: What Goes Into Naming A Child by Ishilove(m): 2:55pm On Oct 18
naptu2:






I don't think it's about being cool. I think that's also about virtue.

The same way that some people name their kids after lions or leopards, to depict that they are as strong as those animals, so also do people name their children after other humans, especially people that are dead, with the hope that the child will imbibe the virtue of the person that they are named after.

So people name their children Solomon, with the hope that the child will be as wise as King Solomon, etc.


Athanasius was a bishop of Alexandria in Egypt and some people thought that he was wise. That might be the reason that they name their children after him.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Athanasius_of_Alexandria
My love, imagine burdening an innocent child with a name like 'Athanasius'

Growing up, I had a neighbor named Longinus. His name was the butt of jokes.
Re: What Goes Into Naming A Child by Ishilove(m): 2:56pm On Oct 18
crackhaus:

I believe joseph1823 was just being funny... Although true to the fact, those names Athanasius & Donatus really don't sound cool, so you're right about the virtue angle.

However, there are definitely some names you hear, and you just know that coolness was a very good reason it was chosen.
Not at all minimizing and/or despite their virtuous meanings.
Oya mention a few.
Re: What Goes Into Naming A Child by Ishilove(m): 2:58pm On Oct 18
naptu2:


Difficulty/sadness has turned to joy.
I get you. It is just like oko and obo have a multitude of meanings in Yoruba language

1 Like

Re: What Goes Into Naming A Child by Ishilove(m): 3:00pm On Oct 18
joseph1832:
easy thinking may be it's leopard as turned to dayo or something like that. Lol.
Lmao
Re: What Goes Into Naming A Child by mariahAngel: 3:00pm On Oct 18
joseph1832:
easy thinking may be it's leopard as turned to dayo or something like that. Lol.

Ekun means tears in Yoruba.

Tears and leopard may have the same spelling, but different pronunciation.

2 Likes

Re: What Goes Into Naming A Child by mariahAngel: 3:01pm On Oct 18
Ishilove:

I get you. It is just like oko and obo have a multitude of meanings in Yoruba language

Of all the examples you could've used... cheesy

2 Likes

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