Mara, Maura

[name_f]Do[/name_f] you say these two differently or pretty much the same?

[name_f]Do[/name_f] you have a different image of what one is like as far as personality/looks/or what names go with it?

Would one strike you as prettier or more unusual than the other?

I would pronounce [name_f]Mara[/name_f] “MAH-ruh” and [name_f]Maura[/name_f] would be “MOR-uh.” That might just be my accent though. I could see [name_f]Maura[/name_f] sounding more like “MAW-ruh” but it is hard for me to say.

I see them as very similar, but [name_f]Mara[/name_f] feels more like a bookish little girl with pigtails, and [name_f]Maura[/name_f] feels like it has a bit more spunk.

I like them both quite a bit. Very pretty, serious names, but they also seem very bright. I would say [name_f]Maura[/name_f] would be the more unusual of the two, but not by much.

I pronounce them both pretty much the same. I prefer [name_f]Mara[/name_f] though, because the u seems unnecessary, and in this case the simplistic approach looks nicer in my opinion.

lol, I think I have a bit the opposite problem. I think due to my accent, when I say them, they both sound a lot like MAWR-uh unless I’m very careful to give [name_f]Mara[/name_f] a MAHR-uh sound.

I have what my husband (who has a totally different accent, from another country) calls “phantom W syndrome” where w’s appear in words like “coffee” (cawfee) etc.

I pronounce them differently, the same as you do actually. I would choose [name_f]Mara[/name_f] because [name_f]Maura[/name_f] seems dated to me mostly because of [name_f]Maureen[/name_f].

To me [name_f]Mara[/name_f] is MAHR-ə and [name_f]Maura[/name_f] is MAWR-ə. [name_f]Mara[/name_f] has a biblical spunky feel to me and [name_f]Maura[/name_f] has a sweet, but serious Celtic feel.

[name_f]Maura[/name_f] I would pair with [name_f]Siobhan[/name_f], [name_f]Fiona[/name_f], [name_m]Declan[/name_m] and [name_m]Patrick[/name_m]
[name_f]Mara[/name_f] I would pair with [name_f]Phoebe[/name_f], [name_f]Daphne[/name_f], [name_m]Julian[/name_m] and [name_u]Seth[/name_u]

You’re not wrong. But this made me laugh, because one of us is fairly spiritual and into Biblical names, and the other is Irish and loves Celtic/Gaelic names.

He likes names like [name_f]Saoirse[/name_f], [name_f]Niamh[/name_f], [name_m]Eoin[/name_m] and [name_u]Finn[/name_u]. And yes, [name_f]Siobhan[/name_f].

I like names like [name_f]Tamar[/name_f], [name_f]Shoshana[/name_f], [name_m]Ezra[/name_m], and [name_m]Gideon[/name_m]

I didn’t realize quite how closely we were hewing to type. Though I must say, [name_f]Mara[/name_f]/[name_f]Maura[/name_f] (either, really) seems like it could be a great bridge between styles.

I totally agree with this. I pronounce [name_f]Maura[/name_f] much like I pronounce [name_f]Moira[/name_f], but I pronounce [name_f]Moira[/name_f] with even more emphasis on the AW in mAWr-ə

EDIT: if I were more competent at expressing pronunciation, I would have said Moira= Moy-ra. Clearly not a linguist

[name_f]Moira[/name_f] is MOI-ra. The first part rhymes with [name_m]Coy[/name_m] or [name_f]Joy[/name_f]. [name_f]Moira[/name_f] and [name_f]Maura[/name_f] are both anglicized forms of [name_f]Maire[/name_f] which is the Irish form of [name_f]Mary[/name_f]. It’s really interesting how one name can have so many variants.

http://www.behindthename.com/name/mary
http://www.behindthename.com/name/ma10ire
http://www.behindthename.com/name/maura-2
http://www.behindthename.com/name/mara-1

I think this is all so funny to read. I also say “caw-fee” instead of coffee! I would say [name_f]Moira[/name_f] like MOY-ruh, and I love it, but it’s also so hard for me to emphasize the MOY that I think I’ll never be able to use it.

To elaborate on what I said before, I think the bookish feel from [name_f]Mara[/name_f] comes from [name_f]Matilda[/name_f] - the actress who played her in the movie was [name_f]Mara[/name_f] [name_m]Wilson[/name_m]. [name_f]Maura[/name_f] does feel spunky but still serious, a little Irish girl running around the cliffs by the sea.

The way I’ve always heard it, [name_f]Moira[/name_f] has an oy sound in it, as in “[name_m]Oy[/name_m] vey!”

A different sound than [name_f]Maura[/name_f], I thought? Though I know they both have the same etymological [name_f]Mary[/name_f]-based roots.

[name_f]Maura[/name_f] feels a bit softer to me than [name_f]Moira[/name_f]. I could be pulling that out of the air, though.

That’s how I say Coffee too! People say it’s my [name_m]New[/name_m] [name_m]York[/name_m] accent, but I really don’t have an accent which is odd.

I’m from [name_u]Philadelphia[/name_u], the accent is fairly similar to at least some of [name_m]New[/name_m] [name_m]York[/name_m]'s.

[name_m]How[/name_m] I say coffee and water is a never-ending source of amusement to many of my friends from other areas. Bastards. :wink:

I’m Australian but to me [name_f]Maura[/name_f] is still Maw-ra but Coffee to me is Coff-ee.

I pronounce them differently, but I think it’s probably an accent/regional dialect sort of thing. Where I’m from, [name_f]Laura[/name_f] tends to be pronounced like [name_f]Lora[/name_f], not [name_f]Lara[/name_f], so I say [name_f]Maura[/name_f] like [name_f]Mora[/name_f], not [name_f]Mara[/name_f]. I think [name_f]Laura[/name_f] and [name_f]Maura[/name_f] definitely have to rhyme, whichever way you say it. Other people pronounce my daughter’s name both ways, though, which doesn’t bother me at all. I actually like both names/pronunciations.

I personally don’t think [name_f]Maura[/name_f] is as dated-sounding as [name_f]Maureen[/name_f], but apparently others have different opinions on that. We sort of used [name_f]Maura[/name_f] as an updated version of [name_f]Maureen[/name_f]. But, I suppose it’s also true that my husband’s and my taste tend to be more old-fashioned/dated rather than modern/trendy, as evidenced by my signature.

[name_f]Mara[/name_f] and [name_f]Maura[/name_f] do feel different to me, just a little bit, but I’m not sure that I can describe how or why. I think I’m having trouble because I want to say [name_f]Mara[/name_f] sounds more sophisticated yet spunky at the same time, but my [name_f]Maura[/name_f] is pretty darn spunky, so…LOL! [name_f]Maura[/name_f], as a name, seems softer and more down-to-earth to me, which is why I preferred it. I also think [name_f]Maura[/name_f] appears more Irish (which was important to my husband) because people are familiar with [name_f]Maureen[/name_f].

[name_f]Mara[/name_f] and [name_f]Maura[/name_f] are usually listed as having the same meaning, “bitter” and associated with the name [name_f]Mary[/name_f] (my husband is Catholic, so obviously [name_f]Mary[/name_f] is an important name to him). [name_f]Mara[/name_f], though, is sometimes also associated with other, darker origins (you can read a little about it in the comments for [name_f]Mara[/name_f] (1) on Behind the Name). That sort of thing doesn’t really bother me, per se, but the [name_m]Christian[/name_m] and Irish association was specifically important for us.

Really, I don’t think you can go wrong either way. [name_m]Both[/name_m] are lovely, and both are uncommon yet familiar.

Well in my Kiwi accent, I say Mah/muh-rah for [name_f]Mara[/name_f], and mohr-rah for [name_f]Maura[/name_f]. i really like [name_f]Mara[/name_f], it has a fresh vibe to it.

[name_m]How[/name_m] do you say water? I say it sort of with -uh sound and I don’t pronounce the ‘t’. I never realized that I don’t say the -er or the ‘t’.

We are a Jewish/Irish inter-marriage, if that makes any difference.

Last name is Irish. Husband likes many but not all Irish names - he’s not very fond of the -eens. ([name_f]Eileen[/name_f], [name_f]Maureen[/name_f], etc.)

Was interested in the [name_f]Mary[/name_f]-variations because husband’s [name_f]Nan[/name_f] was a [name_f]Marie[/name_f] ([name_f]MAR[/name_f]-ee, not the more popular m’[name_f]REE[/name_f]).

[name_f]Marie[/name_f] sounds strange with our last name and she had a lot of issues with pronunciation clarity that don’t make us want to use it directly. If we did, we’d probably end up using m’[name_f]REE[/name_f], which wasn’t really how she said her name at all, [name_f]Maura[/name_f]/[name_f]Mara[/name_f] with an ee sound on the end is closer, if that makes sense.

We don’t really want to use [name_f]Mary[/name_f] directly, and [name_f]Molly[/name_f] is adorable and we both love it but it sounds a bit funny with our surname. [name_f]Miriam[/name_f] is out because surname starts with M. The only other diminutive we both like is [name_f]Mae[/name_f]/[name_f]May[/name_f] and we can’t agree on spelling, haha.

Oh, people are going to laugh at me, they always do. I’m alllllll [name_u]Philadelphia[/name_u] on the w-word, I say “wooder.”

What about Rosemary, Rosemarie or Marianna?

ETA:
Maren and Maris.