Names from The Oresteia

Perhaps not the most cheerful associations for names, but I’ve been diving into some of the Greek tragedies lately, especially the Oresteia, and there are some fascinating names in there. I don’t think I’d use most of these, but I think some of these are lovely or at least very interesting I would love to hear your thoughts on them! I’ve done my best to include a pronunciation guide, though it may not be 100%.

GIRLS
[name_f]Clytemnestra[/name_f] (CLY-tem-NESS-truh)
Oresteia (or-es-TIE-uh)
[name_f]Cassandra[/name_f] (cuh-SAWN-druh)
[name_f]Iphigenia[/name_f] (iff-uh-jen-EYE-uh)
[name_f]Electra[/name_f] (ee-LECK-truh)
[name_f]Athena[/name_f] (uh-THEE-nuh)
Chrysothemis (chris-OTH-uh-miss)
Cilissa (sill-ISS-uh)

BOYS
Agamemnon (AG-uh-MEM-non)
Aegisthus (eh-GISS-thus)
[name_m]Troy[/name_m] (troy)
[name_m]Apollo[/name_m] (uh-PAWL-oh)
[name_m]Orestes[/name_m] (or-ESS-teez)
Argos (AR-ghose) (“ghose” is like ghost without t)
[name_m]Ajax[/name_m] (ey-JACKS)
[name_m]Odysseus[/name_m] (oh-DISS-ee-US)
Menelaus (men-uh-LAY-us)
[name_m]Hermes[/name_m] (HUR-meez)

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I like [name_f]Athena[/name_f], [name_f]Electra[/name_f], and [name_m]Apollo[/name_m] a lot! I’m also intrigued by Aegisthus- it’s quite lovely to say out loud.

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Athena is my #1 girls name actually! [name_m]Apollo[/name_m] is a big GP of mine as well and many of these others are growing on me too, including Aegisthus.

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So interesting to see this! One of my relatives was an 0reste—not named after the Oresteia :grin: but it was a trendy name in [name_f]Italy[/name_f] when he was born.

I really like [name_f]Cassandra[/name_f], [name_f]Iphigenia[/name_f], [name_m]Apollo[/name_m], [name_m]Orestes[/name_m] and Menelaus.

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This one is growing on me too! [name_m]Can[/name_m]’t think of any good nicknames for it, otherwise it would probably be a GP name.

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Do you like [name_f]Gen[/name_f], [name_f]Effie[/name_f], [name_f]Ginny[/name_f], [name_f]Idgie[/name_f] (normally an [name_f]Imogen[/name_f] nickname I think?)

I love [name_f]Ginny[/name_f]!

Such a fun idea! I can help with some of the (Greek, they might be different in [name_f]English[/name_f]) pronunciations too.
[name_f]Clytemnestra[/name_f] - clee-tem-NEE-strah - A cool name but I think it might be too much to carry
Oresteia - I LOVE this! I know a male Orestis but I’d love to meet an Oresteia. Pronounced or-ES-tee-ah. Could have the cute nicknames [name_u]Ori[/name_u] and [name_f]Tia[/name_f]!
[name_f]Cassandra[/name_f] - cah- SUN - dra - It’s a shame it’s so dated in the [name_f]English[/name_f]-speaking world, it’s actually considered a very witchy and mystical name in Greece.
[name_f]Iphigenia[/name_f] - iff-ee-JEN-ee-ah - This with the nn [name_f]Ginnie[/name_f] would be so cute! [name_f]My[/name_f] mother has a friend called [name_f]Iphigenia[/name_f], it’s such a unique-sounding name
[name_f]Electra[/name_f] (your pronunciation is correct!) - This is so spunky and underrated. I’m surprised I don’t see it on NB more often!
[name_f]Athena[/name_f] - Your pronunciation is correct in [name_f]English[/name_f], though in The Oresteia they would have pronounced it as uh-thee-NAH. So bold and beautiful, and I love the goddess.
Chrysothemis - I adore [name_f]Themis[/name_f], and this longer form of it is great! I’ve never actually heard of the name so I don’t know how it would be pronounced. Still love it! A more usable [name_f]Chrysanthemum[/name_f]
Cilissa - I’ve never heard of this either so I don’t know how to say it, but it has a pretty sound! Reminds me of [name_f]Cicely[/name_f] and [name_f]Circe[/name_f].

Agamemnon - Correct pronunciation! A very grand name, I wish it had some nicknames.
Aegisthus - Also correct! I prefer Aegeas but the -thus ending is cool.
[name_m]Troy[/name_m] - Like the place? It’s actually called Tria in Greek so I think of it more as a female place name lol. It sounds dated in [name_f]English[/name_f] which is a shame
[name_m]Apollo[/name_m] - I love love love [name_m]Apollo[/name_m]! In Greek it’s Apollon, but both versions are handsome. He’s my favourite Greek god too. Such a fun and light-sounding name
[name_m]Orestes[/name_m] - Like I said earlier, I know one! It’s a very handsome, gentle and soft name. It’s pronounced more like or-ESS-tees than or-ESS-teez
Argos - Correct pronunciation! This has a lot of potential in the [name_f]English[/name_f] speaking word I feel like. It’s like an edgier [name_u]Atlas[/name_u]!
[name_m]Ajax[/name_m] - It’s so interesting how they translated this one, because in Greek it would be Aias pronounced Eas! There’s a very popular cleaning product called [name_m]Ajax[/name_m] in Greece so that’s the only thing I can think of, but the sound is definitely cool
[name_m]Odysseus[/name_m] - oh-diss-EH-us, but in [name_f]English[/name_f] your pronunciation definitely makes more sense! I love this name, it’s considered one of the most attractive male names in Greece as well. The character is a great namesake!
Menelaus - men-EH-lah-us - Same as [name_m]Odysseus[/name_m], it’s considered super attractive!
[name_m]Hermes[/name_m] - I think this would be HER-mees in [name_f]English[/name_f], but in Greece we say (h)er-MEES. Super fun quirky mythological name

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Thanks for the added perspective!! This is super interesting. I’m American and speak [name_f]English[/name_f], and can confirm that in [name_f]English[/name_f] some of these pronunciations are definitely different. I may be working on a digital reading project of the Oresteia next year, and so if it happens, feedback like yours is SUPER helpful and greatly appreciated :blush: thanks for taking the time!!

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