Friday, November 29, 2013

What's In a Name: Traditional #Irish Naming Patterns

            Traditional Irish Naming Patterns

             Sherlock turned in her direction, picking up his coat from the floor. “He is my friend.”
            “Liar, he’s Bailey’s best friend which makes him a threat to you and your family.”
            “I am trying the best that I can to protect you!”
            “Liar! You’re trying the best you can not to stir the pot because your so scared of Bailey you won’t do anything to turn against him. Sherlock, you’re the elder brother! That’s why you carry your grandfather’s name not Bailey. You have always acted like the youngest. When are you going to stop being so scared of Bailey and act like the man you really are, the heir of Kilmore!”
            “I’m the heir of nothing. Haven’t you heard, Mary, it’s illegal to be Irish in Ireland?”
                                                                           From Kathleen's Revenge by Allison Bruning

The RJ Mecredy Family Xmas 1901

Welcome back to my blog. The last time we spoke about Ireland I had introduced you to the white slave trade that occurred from the 15th through the 18th centuries. You can read more about that here: 

Have you ever wondered why a certain name drops down from generation to generation while other names seem to disappear? Naming patterns have a lot to do with that. A naming pattern is the traditional way a culture names their children. While a naming pattern is the norm for any given culture some parents do not always follow the naming patterns. For example, Countess Kathleen Turner and Countess Calico Collins in Bailey's Revenge were not named using the traditional naming pattern but their older brothers, Sherlock and Bailey, were. Every culture has their own naming patterns and this blog would be too long if we discussed them all. 

The traditional Irish family followed this naming pattern:

  • First born son named after his father's father
  • Second born son named after his mother's father
  • Third born son named after his father
  • Fourth born son named after his father's oldest brother
  • Fifth born son named after his father's 2nd oldest brother or his mother's oldest brother

  • First born daughter named after her mother's mother
  • Second born daughter named after her father's mother
  • Third born daughter named after her mother
  • Fourth born daughter named after her mother's oldest sister
  • Fifth born daughter named after her mother's 2nd oldest sister or her father's oldest sister

So if you look at this pattern and the passage I gave you from my new book you will see that Sherlock's grandfather was named Sherlock. Bailey was named after his mother's father. When Countess Kathleen  Turner and Countess Calico Collins were born their parents did not follow this pattern. I will not tell you why they carry the names they do. You will have to read the book.

How is that Calico from the series Children of the Shawnee carries the same name as Kathleen's sister? Because when Kathleen's daughter, Anne, gave birth to her twins she did followed the traditional Irish naming pattern for Calico but not with Rose. Although Kathleen was alive throughout her daughter's childhood, Anne had a horrible relationship with her mother. She had more of a  mother-daughter bond with Kathleen's sister. In honor of that relationship she named her first born daughter after the woman she considered her mother, the Countess Calico Collins. 

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