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Surnames as First Names: Baby Name Trends
Over the past several years it has become increasingly popular to use last names as first names. Celebrities have influenced this trend (as they so often do) choosing surnames for their babies. Russell Crowe’s son Tennyson, Terry Hatcher’s daughter Emerson, and Brooke Shields’ daughters Rowan and Grier are perfect examples of putting a last name first. Many surnames of days past have become so common as first names that people do not even realize they once were last names. Ashley, Hailey, Paige, and Justin all had their start as surnames.
Using a last name as a first name can stir up debate in some groups. Some people feel it’s a misuse of surnames, preferring that each name stay in its “proper” place. But surnames have been used as first names for centuries, and the line has always been somewhat blurred. Others feel that surnames should stay in the family, and object to a child being named after an unrelated bloodline. But in this day and age, when it comes to baby naming, anything goes. If you are fond of a name that happens to be a surname, use it! It's your baby and your choice in name.
When choosing a surname to use as a first name, consider what names have meaning to you. Have you always loved Whitman’s poetry or admired the Kennedys? If you want to pay homage to a grandmother or mother, consider a maiden name. Look at the meanings of surnames you like to see if the meaning is something you want to bestow upon your child. Many surnames have lovely meanings. Bellamy means “beautiful friend” and Lane means “warrior.” There are also many surnames that have awful meanings, so be careful what you choose (Tolkien means “foolhardy”).
Here are some examples of surnames that sound cool as first names:
Surname boy names:
What do you think about surnames as first names?
Surname girl names: