Would you ever give your child a place name without having been to the place?

Okay, so I’m not talking names like [name_f]Charlotte[/name_f] or [name_u]Logan[/name_u], which would not necessarily be associated with the cities.

I’m thinking names like [name_u]London[/name_u], [name_u]Paris[/name_u] etc.

Personally, I really like [name_f]Adelaide[/name_f] and [name_f]Vienna[/name_f]. I’ve visited [name_f]Adelaide[/name_f] and it was sort of a dull city, but a pretty nice place to chill out and I had some great experiences too. (It was really hot when I was there though, and no offense to anyone loving [name_f]Adelaide[/name_f]) I do feel like based on my experiences with the city, I wouldn’t mind naming a daughter [name_f]Adelaide[/name_f]. I’ve never visited [name_f]Vienna[/name_f] however, and personally I would not name a child after a city without visiting first… But that’s just me.

What’s your guys’ take on this? :slight_smile:

Opinions? :slight_smile:

I don’t think I would (knowingly) use a place name for somewhere I hadn’t been especially in tribute to the city.
I think [name_f]Adelaide[/name_f] is a name as much as it is a place. I love the name, but I haven’t been there, and I do think it isn’t automatically associated with the city unless you’re in Australia, or NZ, or living somewhere where there are a lot of ex-pats or Aus/NZ history.
[name_f]Vienna[/name_f] is tougher… my grandmother is Austrian, so I have thought about [name_f]Vienna[/name_f] myself before, but I’ve never been and personally don’t feel any connection.

I do like that I lived in Donostia- San Sebastián, and my SO agreed to [name_m]Bastian[/name_m]. We actually picked [name_m]Bastian[/name_m] because we love [name_m]Baz[/name_m] as a nickname and [name_m]Balthazar[/name_m] is a little bit much, but it works out for me to have the place connection.
On the other hand, I personally prefer names associated with places, rather than the place name itself. I used to live in Alicante, and the Patron [name_m]Saint[/name_m] of the Valencian Community is the Virgen de los Desamparados, so [name_f]Amparo[/name_f] is used more densely there, and I would love to use [name_f]Amparo[/name_f] as tribute to the Valencian Community. Would I use [name_f]Valencia[/name_f]? No.

I have to say, I know someone whose middle name was after his place of conception and it MORTIFIED him… and for good reason because it was a very specific place name, so everyone knew.

Thank you for your input! I wouldn’t directly name the child after the place, it’s more of a coincidence that I like those names and they happen to be cities as well :slight_smile: I don’t even live anywhere near [name_f]Adelaide[/name_f] (I’m from Europe), but since I’ve never met anyone with that name I just automatically associate it with the city. :slight_smile:

(Also the conception thing?? HORRIBLE idea lol. I’ve heard that is also the case for [name_u]Brooklyn[/name_u] [name_m]Beckham[/name_m]… I hope it’s just a rumour for the poor boy’s sake!)

I wouldn’t let it stop me.

I think I’d still use it even if I hadn’t visited the place. I actually love [name_f]Vienna[/name_f], and am warming to [name_f]Adelaide[/name_f], and I consider them usable (for me), even though it’s not a guarantee I’ll go there someday. As long as you have a little bit of background knowledge (or can at least point it out on a map), and know the connections that could be tied with the country, I think it’s okay.

A lot of place names were people names originally, so sure.

I wouldn’t personally care :slight_smile:

[name_f]Adelaide[/name_f] is on the same level as [name_f]Charlotte[/name_f], [name_f]Caroline[/name_f] etc. I’ve never been to [name_f]Adelaide[/name_f] and I live in Australia, but it’s one of my favourite names.
However, I have [name_f]Florence[/name_f] as a top name and I associate it with both a name and the place, and I love it for both reasons. I’ve never been to [name_f]Florence[/name_f] but as an art history buff, I adore the city without ever visiting it. I find no issue with naming a child after a city if you’ve never been, as long as there’s something that makes it special to you anyway.

It really depends. [name_f]Vienna[/name_f] & [name_f]Adelaide[/name_f] feel like names to me. [name_m]Even[/name_m] [name_f]Geneva[/name_f] is one that I wouldn’t expect the parents to have been there just because they named their daughter this (it always surprises me how usable English place names are, try Wien or Genf. Yeah, no!).
However if you named your kid [name_m]Oslo[/name_m], Prague, [name_f]Barcelona[/name_f], Lisbon or [name_m]Berlin[/name_m], I would ask if or rather what connection they have to the place (not in a rude manner but out of genuine interest.)

I think there are names that are also the names of cities and then there are names of cities that have also been given to some people. [name_f]Adelaide[/name_f], [name_f]Carolina[/name_f], [name_f]Georgia[/name_f], etc., fall into the first category, [name_f]Vienna[/name_f], [name_u]Paris[/name_u], Montreal, [name_u]Indiana[/name_u], fall into the second category.

Now yes many places that are “place names” were originally named after a person, however they’ve become defined by that place while not being established as a name and so lose their baby name quality [name_f]IMO[/name_f]. People name their baby places all the time. [name_u]Brooklyn[/name_u] definitely saw a surge in popularity! The “lyn” ending probably helped there. [name_u]Paris[/name_u] is also in Greek mythology but people are inevitably going to reference the city in [name_f]France[/name_f].

I wouldn’t give my child a name that is very tied to a place unless it had significance to me / us personally. That does not mean visiting necessarily, as I don’t think that makes a very good argument unless you fell in love with the place or it acquired special meaning. Then I think it can be great! My daughter’s middle name is a place name that is actually from an old family name that has been passed on in my SO’s family! I do get asked about it and can’t imagine what it’d be like if I didn’t have a good reason for it.

My name is [name_u]Chelsea[/name_u] and while I think my parents just liked the name, I have the added connection that my maternal grandparents used to have a flat in [name_u]Chelsea[/name_u], [name_f]England[/name_f]. I don’t think it is essential, but I just find it kind of cool.

My son’s middle name is Cahuilla, which is a Native American tribe in [name_u]California[/name_u]. I have been to [name_u]California[/name_u], but at the time I didn’t even know the tribe existed. My son’s father has never been to the USA at all, but his maternal grandfather (who he never met - he has a step-grandfather) was a member of the tribe - that was important to him and he wanted our son to have a connection to his heritage.

I like the name [name_u]Holland[/name_u], I have never been there and I have no great connection with the Country, so I wouldn’t use it. There aren’t any [name_m]New[/name_m] Zealand place names I really like, and my partner is Irish, so that rules out using any British place names, where most of my Heritage comes from - also rules out Irish and [name_f]Ireland[/name_f], which I actually quite like.

So, to summarize (sorry!) I think I would need some kind of connection to the place rather than just visiting it.

There is a place name I misheard and thought “that would be a pretty name” only to find out it wasn’t what I thought. So I googled what I thought I had heard (to make sure it wasn’t something I wouldn’t want to use for a name) and it turned out to still be an actual place! A small place in [name_f]France[/name_f], actually. Which is fine by me, despite that I’ll probably never visit there it’s still in my short list to use. My fiance’s family heritage is mostly french and his last name is french, so it’d be a cute honor to his family roots. Also it’s uncommon enough that most won’t have heard of it, yet it’s easy enough to pronounce correctly.

I love the name [name_f]Adelaide[/name_f], but I consider it as much as a name than it is a place. The place doesn’t really cross my mind much when I think about the name.

I would never, ever name a kid [name_u]London[/name_u] or [name_u]Paris[/name_u], so I can’t answer accurately with that one. I am a sucker for [name_u]Brooklyn[/name_u] on a girl though, and if I was actually going to use it (I’m not going to, ever), I wouldn’t let the fact I’ve never been to [name_u]Brooklyn[/name_u], NY, stop me.

I feel like a majority of place names are well-integrated enough as just ‘names’ to be used without any connection.

There are certain names that I associate with places that a majority of people would never recognize. [name_m]Augustine[/name_m]/[name_m]Augustin[/name_m], & the names [name_u]Grove[/name_u] & [name_f]Valencia[/name_f] all remind me of where I grew up, St. [name_m]Augustine[/name_m], [name_f]Florida[/name_f]. Also, the name [name_m]Gable[/name_m] reminds me of when I lived in [name_f]Coral[/name_f] Gables, [name_f]Florida[/name_f]. They are both places that I adore & would love to use as namesakes.

I would look at it like this… would it make you angry or annoyed if people constantly asked you “oh, like the country/city?” or said “have you been there / are you from there?”. If you would feel comfortable saying no and not feel like you had to justify yourself then I say go for it. :slight_smile:

I would do it if any close family members had ties to it, because I think it’s a sweet way of honouring loved ones without using their actual names. I really like the name [name_u]Cairo[/name_u] for a boy, but I have never been there nor do I have any relatives that have. Therefore it’s off the table – I really believe that names associated to specific places should have some personal history/meaning for me to use it (only for me though, I don’t judge other people who use place names just because they like the sound of it).

Anyways, it’s not something I ever have to consider. There are pretty strict naming laws where I live and I’m fairly certain that most place names would be rejected by the state.

I would if A) I liked the name and B) The place didn’t have any major negative things going on [so I wouldn’t use the name of a war-torn place]

Ii see [name_f]Adelaide[/name_f] as a girls names separate from a city name much like [name_f]Florence[/name_f], [name_f]Charlotte[/name_f], [name_f]Georgia[/name_f], [name_m]Reno[/name_m], [name_u]Sydney[/name_u], and [name_f]Savannah[/name_f]. I wouldn’t hesitate to select those as names if I loved them.

[name_u]London[/name_u], [name_u]Paris[/name_u], [name_u]Denver[/name_u], [name_f]Vienna[/name_f], [name_f]India[/name_f] all seem primarily like places names and I think you would constantly be asked about your connection to that place when you introduce your child.

I would totally use a place name for no reason other than that it sounds nice. I think it’s kind of weird to assume there even is a connection to a place, just because it’s somebody’s name. [name_m]Even[/name_m] if I met a kid named Mississippi, I wouldn’t assume it had any meaning other than that the parents liked it.