Alrighty! I’m going to use the same process I tried on Part 1, because it was actually super revealing, if long and time-consuming. I’ll tally up the votes for and against each name, and reflect on how that feedback makes me feel about the name, before deciding which to keep, which to question, and which to let go of.
Without further ado!
- Illyria - 12 votes for, and 0 against. Eeee! So excited for all this [name_f]Illyria[/name_f] love. I literally squealed out loud like a teakettle when I read @eattacosforbreakfast’s comment about this potentially being the One Perfect Name. Definitely staying on the keep list! Also @alatari here is the etymology info I found! Illyria - Wiktionary
- Inanna - 3 votes for, 0 against. Not as popular as other choices, but I did not expect her to be. I’m ambivalent on this name. I do find it incredibly powerful and spiritually resonant. I don’t know that I love the look and sound. I know that the concern about my family’s opinions should not matter, and I can choose to ignore them. I just don’t want my child to have to deal with constant negative messages about how their name is evil or demonic. I’m keeping this one on the list for now, but I’m definitely going to be thinking hard about it.
- Indira - 2 votes for, 1 against. I can definitely see your point @alatari. If I’m waffling, it’s probably not the right choice.
- Indra - 0 votes for, 1 against. That stings a little! I think it’s more about the fact that [name_u]Indra[/name_u] is such an amazing character, though. I’m like, “who wouldn’t want to be named after her?” rather than being in love with the name itself.
- Isadora - a whopping 17 yes votes, and 0 against! Wow! I was really surprised by all the [name_f]Isadora[/name_f] love, but in retrospect I probably shouldn’t have been. It’s as accessible as [name_f]Isabella[/name_f], but far less overused, and we each have at least one personal connection to the name. The enthusiastic response makes me wish I were as madly in love with [name_f]Isadora[/name_f] as I am with some of the others, but she’s definitely staying on the list for now.
- Ishtar - 2 votes for, 0 against. [name_f]Ishtar[/name_f] and [name_f]Inanna[/name_f] are definitely in the same category for me, though [name_f]Inanna[/name_f] has a bit more meaning via the Starhawk connection, while [name_f]Ishtar[/name_f] wins out in the look, sound, and feel. I’m just struggling with knowing that my child will never hear the end of it from my family. If they’re sensitive, like I was, shouldn’t I try to spare them that toxicity?
- Isolde - 4 votes for, and 2 against. I am going to side with the no votes here, having remembered a comment T made when I floated the combo [name_u]River[/name_u] [name_f]Isolde[/name_f] by them a few years ago: “The river is old?? No.”
- Ivy - 9 votes for, 0 against. I was again surprised by all the [name_f]Ivy[/name_f] love! I expected to feel more one way or the other in response to the feedback on this name, but I’m coming up a little blank. [name_m]Will[/name_m] ponder.
- Juliet - 10 votes for, 0 against! I was mildly pleased with all the positive feedback, and then I got to @alatari’s note about the duality and juxtaposition of soft/romantic/feminine with the fiery masculine sky father energy, and I went full heart eyes! I had not even thought of that, and it definitely makes me love this name more. I’ll have to see if T and S feel the same.
- Kestrel - 2 votes for, 1 against. This one stings a little, but I know it’s for the best. [name_u]Kestrel[/name_u] is just too much of a mouthful with our last name.
- Kimiya - 0 votes for, 1 against. I concur. I guess after staring at these lists all day, I’m a little more ruthless with my cuts.
- Kisaiya - 0 votes for, 1 against. Ouch, this one was hard to swallow. @alatari with the tough love. I guess it is still too close to [name_m]Caspian[/name_m] for comfort, and it could be a mouthful with the last name. I concede the points.
- Lamia - 0 votes for, 1 against. Good call, @alatari, comparing this one to [name_f]Lilith[/name_f]. I do prefer [name_f]Lilith[/name_f] by a decent margin.
- Lamorna - 0 votes for, 2 against. The no votes have a point, there are other names on my list that are just as drenched in mermaid vibes, but that are more my style in terms of look and feel.
- Lark - 9 votes for, 0 against. I’m pleased with all the [name_u]Lark[/name_u] love! This one is a solid middle option.
- Laverna - 2 votes for, 0 against. I’m so relieved to hear that no one else thinks of [name_f]Laverne[/name_f] and [name_f]Shirley[/name_f], and I hadn’t even considered the [name_f]Laverne[/name_f] Cox connection!
- Lavinia - 7 votes for, 1 against. I’m still parsing my reaction to this name. I love the look and sound, and I do get a little hint of synesthesia (lilac and antique lace). I just wish the connection was more than superficial.
- Lenore - 10 votes for, 1 against. @amal2970’s description of [name_f]Lenore[/name_f] as “modern witch vibes” and @PrincessShannon’s use of [name_u]Noor[/name_u] as a nickname both made me like this option even more!
- Lilith - 4 votes for, 1 against. I loved @alatari’s impassioned defense of this name, especially the part about standing up for herself and saying “no.” That’s exactly the kind of thing I want to teach my child, because it’s something I had to teach myself as an adult, and believe me, that was a brutal lesson. I also love that [name_f]Lilith[/name_f] could obliquely honor my mother and grandmother, since [name_f]Lily[/name_f] herself has proven problematic. Speaking of…
- Lily - 4 votes for, and 3 votes against. As much as I want to cling to every yes vote, I know the nos have it right. I need to respect S’s wishes and let this one go, consoling myself with using [name_f]Lilith[/name_f] or [name_f]Nerine[/name_f] if I want to honor these women. Sob…
- Lirael - 1 vote for, 1 against. I’m equally split. I am not sold enough to be sure, but not doubtful enough to feel right letting her go. I think part of it is that I really love this one with our last name. The combination is so musical.
- Lorelei - 6 votes for, 1 against. I was still on the fence about this name until I read @Bonfire_Eclipse’s comment about [name_m]Gilmore[/name_m] Girls. I’m so sorry, hon, because I know you meant this as a positive, but it was the nail in the coffin for me. I was never able to connect with that particular show, and remembering that [name_f]Lorelei[/name_f] is the name of one of the main characters was quite the turn off.
- Lucia - 11 votes for, 1 against. Lots of [name_f]Lucia[/name_f] love here! This is one of those names that’s been on the list for enough years that she’s lost a little of her shine for me, especially as more rare and exotic names have been added. I still love it, but I think I love others more.
- Lumi - 11 votes in favor, 2 additional votes for Lumiere, 1 additional vote for [name_f]Lumina[/name_f] / Luminara, and 0 votes against. Wow! I am truly blown away by how much love [name_f]Lumi[/name_f] and her long forms are getting here! I did not expect her to be popular for some reason. I got that delighted thrill on both of the Lumiere votes, so I think I will keep [name_f]Lumi[/name_f] as a middle or nickname and cautiously add Lumiere to the pool of options - cautiously only because I’m still surprised that the candlestick didn’t raise any objections. What would you think if you met a child named Lumiere nn [name_f]Lumi[/name_f]?
- Lunaria - 6 votes for, 1 against. [name_f]My[/name_f] heart gave a little leap with every yes vote, so I think I am more connected to this one than I previously realized. I also feel much more compelled to defend this name in response to @alatari’s very valid point that it could be considered a made-up smoosh name of [name_f]Luna[/name_f] and [name_f]Aria[/name_f]. Normally, any suggestion that a name might be construed as kree8tiv is enough to turn me right off, so the fact that I’m still clinging to this one despite that potential downside is more evidence that something in me really loves this name.
- Luthien - 1 very enthusiastic vote in favor, 0 against. I almost wish I had done this one before Lunaria, because immediately afterwards, the difference in the feelings I have about both names was really pronounced. I want to get that same sensation of dark Luciferian beauty that you do, @alatari, but it’s not quite clicking for me. The note about [name_f]Lucienne[/name_f] / [name_m]Lucian[/name_m] with a lisp is also fairly damning.
- Lysistrata - 0 votes for, 1 against. Yeah, I don’t know what I was thinking with this one, guys. Gonna chalk it up to pregnancy brain and move on, haha.
- Mairenni - 1 vote for, and 1 against. I don’t think I love this name enough or have enough of a connection to fight for it.
- Marzanna - 0 votes for, 1 against. That’s fair. Personally, I may be irresistibly drawn to icy dark goddesses of winter and death, but putting that on a child is starting to seem pretty presumptive of me.
- Meadowlark - 7 votes for, 0 against. I’m pleased with the positive reception, because this is definitely one of the more whimsical names on my list. I always feel like compound word names are extra risky, which is why options like Seawillow and Wintergreen didn’t make the Monster List. To answer your question, @findemaxa13, I used to have [name_f]Meadow[/name_f] on the list because I found her very warm and sweet and dreamy. Then I encountered a character with this name in Orange is the [name_u]New[/name_u] [name_m]Black[/name_m] who was a very spoiled, out-of-touch hippie type who protested because it was trendy, in the same way that she would go to Coachella. It really soured the name for me, because I didn’t want strangers to perceive my little one that way.
- Melusine - 4 votes for, 0 against. I was eagerly anticipating every yes vote, which confirms the already strong feelings I have for this name. It just feels so quintessentially mermaid to me!
- Merewen - 4 votes for, 1 against. Seeing this name right next to [name_f]Morwenna[/name_f] on a few people’s lists was kind of a “duh” moment for me. They look and sound so similar - why should I keep [name_f]Merewen[/name_f], when I don’t like the [name_f]Mary[/name_f] sound, and I love [name_f]Morwenna[/name_f] so much more? Silly me.
- Minerva - 7 votes for, 1 against. Pleasantly surprised to see [name_f]Minerva[/name_f] getting so much positive attention! I think I love this name more for the way it honors T’s energy (they are an engineer, blacksmith, and martial artist, and always give me huge [name_f]Minerva[/name_f] vibes) than for the name itself. Keeping it for now, but questioning whether it will make it to the end.
- Moon - 6 votes for, 0 against! Wow! This is another one that I was very surprised to see getting so much love. In the past, I’ve gotten a lot of criticism for it being too “out there.”
- Morwenna - a whopping 14 yes votes, and 0 against! I had a tiny little swoon of happiness with every vote in favor of this name. She’s so beautiful and deserves all the love! @Araminty that [name_f]Morwenna[/name_f] [name_u]Lark[/name_u] combo is just absolutely gorgeous. @findemaxa13 I totally don’t mind the suggestion! I’m not a fan or [name_f]Morrigan[/name_f] or [name_f]Morgana[/name_f], however. [name_f]My[/name_f] synesthesia really gets hung up on the harsh G sound, whereas [name_f]Morwenna[/name_f] has that smooth and lilting W.
- Mycelia - 2 votes for, though one was a bit lukewarm, and 0 against. I was beyond thrilled to get even one yes vote for this name, and delighted by @PrincessShannon’s inadvertent suggestion of [name_f]Celia[/name_f] as a nickname.
- Myristica - 0 votes for, 1 against. That’s totally fair. I feel like this one is going the way of [name_f]Lysistrata[/name_f]: beautiful and fun to say, but not even remotely practical for an actual child.
- Nanaya - 0 votes for, 1 against. Y’all, I think I’m getting a little punchy. I just looked at this name, and my brain said, “[name_f]Banana[/name_f],” in the Minion voice, and now that’s all I can see. @_@
- Nareli - 1 vote for, 1 against. I had completely forgotten this name until I saw it in someone’s yes list. Oops. But that’s telling, I think.
- Nashira - 1 vote for, 1 against. I get that the “good news” meaning may seem an oddly generic phrase to associate with the [name_u]Christian[/name_u] religion, but the denomination I grew up in was kind of its own weird thing, so there are some buzzwords that are completely innocuous to normal folks, but squick me out. I think I need to let go of this name.
- Nasrin - 1 vote for, 0 against. I was surprised to see this one get such little reaction. I guess it’s overshadowed by the others on the list. Liking the suggestion to keep it as a middle.
- Nephele - 0 votes for, 1 against. VERY surprised that [name_f]Nephele[/name_f] got no love. When I first joined Nameberry years ago, it seemed like she was on everyone’s list of magical, fantasy, or mythology names. Gonna have to ponder this one.
- Nepenthe - 0 votes for, 1 against. I’m having the “what was I thinking” feels again. I don’t know what I’d do without you, Berries, because at this point, I think The List is scrambling my brain.
- Nerine - 5 votes for, 1 against. It occurred to me to double-check the pronunciation of this name, as I’ve heard both NEHR-ih-nay and neh-REEN. According to the sources I could find, the latter is correct. I liked the former a little more, so I’m questioning this one, but not ready to let it go, since it could honor the family members who would have been honored by [name_f]Lily[/name_f].
- Nerissa - 1 vote for, 1 against. I think I like this name, but don’t love it. I like the [name_f]Merissa[/name_f] variant even less. This one may fall off the list this round.
- Nerys - 1 vote for, 1 against. I think I like this name better in theory than in practice. When I think about the name in general, it makes me happy. When I think about calling a little [name_f]Nerys[/name_f] to come in to dinner, it feels very forced.
- Nightingale - 5 votes for, 0 against. Yay! I got that happy little tingle with every yes vote, so clearly this is one I feel strongly about.
- Nimue - an incredible 12 votes for and 0 against!! I am so thrilled and relieved by all of this [name_f]Nimue[/name_f] love! I can’t even tell you how happy it makes me to see this name get such a positive response. So many strong feelings - I think it’s clear this one is near the top of my list.
- Noor - 7 votes for, 0 against. So pleased to see [name_u]Noor[/name_u] getting a positive response, and I love @PrincessShannon’s suggestion of it as a nickname for [name_f]Lenore[/name_f]!
WHEW. Okay. First round of edits for Part 2 is complete! Let’s see what we’re working with:
[name_f]Illyria[/name_f], [name_f]Juliet[/name_f], [name_u]Lark[/name_u] (middle only), [name_f]Lilith[/name_f], [name_f]Lenore[/name_f], [name_f]Lumi[/name_f] / Lumiere, Lunaria, [name_u]Meadowlark[/name_u] (middle only), [name_f]Melusine[/name_f], [name_f]Moon[/name_f] (middle only), [name_f]Morwenna[/name_f], Mycelia, [name_f]Nasrin[/name_f] (middle only), [name_u]Nightingale[/name_u] (middle only), [name_f]Nimue[/name_f], and [name_u]Noor[/name_u] (middle or nickname only).
Keeping, but Questioning
[name_f]Inanna[/name_f], [name_f]Isadora[/name_f], [name_f]Ishtar[/name_f], [name_f]Ivy[/name_f], [name_f]Laverna[/name_f], [name_f]Lavinia[/name_f], Lirael, [name_f]Lucia[/name_f], [name_f]Minerva[/name_f], [name_f]Nephele[/name_f], and [name_f]Nerine[/name_f].
[name_f]Indira[/name_f], [name_u]Indra[/name_u], [name_f]Isolde[/name_f], [name_u]Kestrel[/name_u], Kimiya, Kisaiya, [name_f]Lamia[/name_f], [name_f]Lamorna[/name_f], [name_f]Lily[/name_f], [name_f]Lorelei[/name_f], Luthien, [name_f]Lysistrata[/name_f], Mairenni, Marzanna, [name_f]Merewen[/name_f], Myristica, Nanaya, Nareli, [name_f]Nashira[/name_f], [name_u]Nepenthe[/name_u], [name_f]Nerissa[/name_f], and [name_f]Nerys[/name_f].
Out of 49 potentials, we narrowed this portion of the list down to 16 keepers and 11 maybes. Not quite cut in half, but still a huge edit compared to where we started! Once again, I owe you all a tremendous thank you. I don’t think I would be surviving this process without you, at least not with my sanity intact! Once again, I want to give special shout-outs to @katkabet for her reflective listening technique and @alatari for her in-depth analysis of each name and her extremely useful ranking system. But again, every single person who commented and every single bit of feedback you gave me were helpful and taken into consideration!
I’m going to give my brain a little rest before I tackle Part 3’s responses. See you soon!