Spelling variations on Anaïs

I was looking around for any official variations on the name Anaïs.

I LOVE this original spelling but happened upon the variant spelling Anays.

Is this an official alternative (like Rebecca/Rebekah/Rebeca for my name in English & Spanish)?

Or, just my wishful thinking? :grimacing:

Reason: I’m hoping to match my other daughters’ MN of 5 letters, a “y” and ending in “s” sound:

Amaré Elyse
Sélah Carys
Noémi Anays

My husband is really not a fan of yooneek spellings…but if it’s official, he’s OK. :slight_smile:

Any French speakers want to weigh in? :sweat_smile:

According to this website on French names there are 84 women/girls in France called Anays: #ANAYS : prénom de fille - histoire, origine et statistiques du prénom Anays

That’s compared to over 127,000 named Anais:

So it’s not impossible for this name to be spelled Anays in French, bit it is very rare. Also, all of those women/girls named Anays were born after the year 1990 so it isn’t a traditional spelling.

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:crazy_face::grimacing: hmm maybe cutting it close, but then again, we did use Elyse instead of Elise, so maybe it’s doable!

And thank you for doing a quick search! :two_hearts:

It wouldn’t be pronounced the same in [name_u]French[/name_u], as far as I’m aware. I would say it more like ah-nehs, not ah-nah-ees (not fluent but with my general knowledge of [name_u]French[/name_u] after 5 years of it and living here for the last 7 months).


Ahhh, :pensive:. Thanks for weighing in.

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Sorry to ask this specifically to @xoDelphine — but, have you heard/seen [name_f]Anaïs[/name_f] spelled (and still pronounced) Anays?

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[name_m]Hi[/name_m] [name_f]Rebekah[/name_f] ! Good to speak with you again :smiling_face_with_three_hearts: I appreciate that you mention me here ! :heart::sparkles:

I have to say I’ve never seen Anays. I’m sure it exists, even in [name_f]France[/name_f], but have never personally met an Anays in my years ! The thing about the “ï” in [name_f]Anaïs[/name_f] is that it does a lot of the heavy-lifting for the name – think about the word naïve & how it’s pronounced “ny-EEVE” rather than “NAYVE” – that’s thanks in part to our friend “ï”. It adds the E sound that [name_f]Anaïs[/name_f] has. [name_f]My[/name_f] brain sees “Anays” and wants to pronounce it as “ah-NASE”, which is still quite pretty but not quite as beautiful as “ah-NEYE-ees”/“ah-NEYE-is” in my humble opinion. :blush:

Whichever you choose, it’ll be perfect for your fille. :heart::sparkling_heart:


@xoDelphine thank you for explaining so clearly! Totally get it now, and the correct [name_f]Anaïs[/name_f] pronunciation is what I see as beautiful too! [name_f]Noémi[/name_f] is not the same with ah-naze.

Hmm :thinking: just how much will my crazy mind want a y!? Enough to change the actual name pronunciation? :joy: I will mull it over.

Again, thanks! :two_hearts:

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I speak [name_u]French[/name_u] and I hope I can help.

Anays wouldn’t be pronounced the same and many people wouldn’t recognise it. I personally would avoid this spelling.

[name_f]Anaïs[/name_f] is correct and it sounds like ah-na-ees. It has three syllables. The trema on the i has a purpose in separating sounds. The ï means that the letter is supposed to be pronounced separately. So it has three syllables.

[name_f]Anaïs[/name_f] was very popular in [name_f]France[/name_f], especially in the 90s so it doesn’t feel super current anymore. It peaked at #4 in 1993. But it is still a nice and beautiful name and I always liked it. [name_f]Anaïs[/name_f] is classic, Anays looks very trendy to me.

Go with [name_f]Anaïs[/name_f], that would be my suggestion. Good luck!

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Yes! So great to have this confirmed & thank you for explaining so well!

Here’s a question that is most likely dumb, but I’ll check anyways…pride to the wind! :sweat_smile: In English, we use y as a “bonus” vowel at times…as a long i or e, or as a short i (like Crystal). If I were to put a trema on the y, like Anaÿs — would that cause ppl to pronounce it correctly (with the An-uh and —eese separated)? I realize it would be trendy, but would it cause that original pronunciation? Or, are tremas not used on y at all?

Thanks if you take the time to answer. :two_hearts:

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They are usually not used on Ys, at least I can’t think of a single word or name.

However, I googled it and it seems to be done but very very rarely and it’s old fashioned (was done many many years ago). Here is an example: Pierre Louÿs - Wikipedia But he picked that name himself (he was born Louis). As far as I know it is not done now but people have done it in the past. Also rarely used in place names: L'Haÿ-les-Roses - Wikipedia But very very rare.

I think if people would see it they’d still be a bit confused but they’d be more likely to say it correctly. Just keep in mind that Anaïs was extremely common France and this spelling was pretty much always used so she’d always have to say “with a Y”. Depends on whether that would bother you.

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That is very helpful! Thank you.

As I’m considering MN, and I rarely use it except on name announcements, name plates in their bedrooms, and/or official documents (that frustratingly & oddly don’t honor accents, tremas or any “extra” in the US anyways), I don’t think it’s a big deal of I have to teach her to say “Anaïs with a y”. I am Rebekah which is neither a stretch or unusual, but I have to clarify every time I go anywhere, as ppl assume it’s “cca” in the states because that’s the most common. I don’t find it annoying or offensive. I just realize there are different ways, one more common than the other. I suppose if I were to present it this way growing up (and she would rarely have to do this in comparison to how much I do, as a FN), she’d probably be OK with it. I guess we all take guesses on our kids!

It’s helpful to know it’s not common, but could be considered technically correct.

My second daughter we chose to use what many would argue is more of a decorative accent to match her elder sister who had an actual necessary accent agui on her name. So, I’m not totally against stretching a bit. But I don’t want to make it odd.

Thanks for all your advice & time in explanation. :raised_hands:

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If you love Anays then that’s the one you should use! All the best! :slight_smile:

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This was very helpful. I researched a bit too and it does seem it’s OK on a y for a proper noun. I saw this again & again.

It seems Anaÿs would be a proper noun that would work, though rare today: https://polyglotclub.com/wiki/Language/French/Pronunciation/Accents-(advanced-level)

This has been very interesting.

Thanks again!

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