Monday, August 1, 2011

A rose by any other name

Lately, I've been pondering names.

In 1985, the year that I was born, the name Natalie ranked #58 on the list of popular baby names in the United States. Kristina was #57, Victoria #59, and number one was Jessica. In 2010, Natalie rose in the ranks, coming in at #14. In my high school graduating class, there were three Natalies: I sat next to one in English class, one in math class. I am facebook friends with one of them and keep in touch with neither of them.

Natalie Cole, the daughter of Nat King Cole, was a famous singer, songwriter and performer. I'm not a famous performer, but I did have a dog named Nat King Cole.

From the couple of resources I've looked at, the name Natalie comes from the Latin name Natalia, which means "Christmas day," or "born at Christmas." I wasn't born at Christmas, but it is my favorite holiday.

My middle name is Dawn ("the first appearance of light"). Dawn peaked in popularity in 1971 where it ranked number 14, thanks to the hippie generation. In 1985 it came in at #165. My aunt Gloria's middle name is Dawn; thus, I assume I was named after her.

Johansen is Danish. The -en ending indicates a Danish origin, whereas an -on ending would suggest a Swedish origin. Literally, the last name Johansen means son of Johan. the surname of Johan's daughers would have been Johandatter; following the same tradition, then, my surname would be Curtisdatter. Cool. Sadly, the female surnames weren't passed down, because their children would receive their last name from their father, not mother, thus creating an unfortunate lack of -datter names. Maye I'll change my surname to Curtisdatter.

So here I am: Natalie (born at christmas) Dawn (first appearance of light) Johansen (son of Johan). christmas sunrise posterity-of-johan.



Gaviota said...

Ja ja ja ja...Este es un post muy interesante!!!

Curt and Ronda said...

Beautiful name, beautiful girl!

Berty Bell said...

HOLY COW!!!! I finally got caught up on your blog - been busy studying my brains out with chemistry. Oh Natalie, by any other name - I love reading all your posts. my favorite in this line up was the customer service post. Hilarious! I have mostly worked customer service and I can vouch for the stupidity of people, but then I have been one of those stupid people at times and I just try to remind myself, but it's hard at times. ANY WAY....Keep up the posting can't wait to see/read more about your trip to Seattle - love it up there!!!!!!!!!!!