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    Name advice from our founder, Jennifer Moss.

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What do my surnames mean?


Robert Walpole

Robert Walpole

I have been trying to find out the meanings of both my maiden name and my married name. Neither one is common, and the only people I have met with either surname is a relative! I know both names are from England, but that is all I know. My maiden name is Walpole, and my married name is Blott.

Any help is greatly appreciated.
Have a great day!

Dear Nicki,

I use several sites for nickname meanings. It appears that both names, Walpole and Blott are regional, meaning they were used for families from a certain region or town.

I found background on the name Walpole on the Surname Database. The Walpole families came from either Walepola in Suffolk, England or Walepol in Norfolk. According to the site, Walpole means the “pool of the Britons.” There was a famous Robert Walpole who was considered the first Prime Minister of England (1721 – 1742). You should research your roots and see if you’re related!

As for Blott, I found some information on The surname Blott was used for families who came from the village of De Blot in the Auvergne region of France. In England it could be spelled Blot, Blott, Blotte and in France Bloteau, Bluteau and De Blot. In America, there was an early settler in Charlestown, Massachusetts named Robert Blott in 1635.

Hope that helps!

Will the name Gage Age?

Dear Jennifer,

My husband and I are considering the name Gage for our son. I like that it is unique but not weird. I also like that it’s short (we have a long last name), easy to spell and pronounce. My only concern is whether or not the name Gage will “age well.” Meaning, how will my son as an adult be perceived in the business world? Do you think it’s a name can go beyond childhood?

Thanks for your advice!

Dear Ali,

Those are all great questions. I think the name Gage is strong and simple and therefore lends itself to have longevity. It is not one of the top 100 names, currently, and therefore will not eventually be considered “dated.”gage

It’s also not a diminutive name–names that end in “i” or “y,” nor is it a nickname. So I believe the answer is YES! Gage will age well.

The only connotations I can think of for the name is 1.) The homophonous word gauge, which is the big hole in an earlobe and 2.) the child character from the Stephen King book/movie Pet Sematary. Neither of which should deter you from using it, though.

Thanks for checking!

The Honest Company The Honest Company
Origin of the name Elyes

Elyes GabelHi Jennifer,

I recently heard a name I absolutely LOVE and cannot stop thinking about – Elyes. It is the name of the actor who plays the main character on the new CBS show, Scorpion. I had never heard of it before I discovered that show. According to the actor/interviews I have seen with him, it is pronounced like “Elliot” with an s… “ELL-ee-iss” and I absolutely adore it. It’s the perfect combination of cute and masculine.

However, when I tried to look it up on your website I did not find it, and there was not much info on other websites as well. Perhaps it is a non-traditional spelling of another name? The only one I could think of was Elias, and apparently that is pronounced ee-LIE-us. Any info would be GREATLY appreciated!

Thank you!!

Dear Mikeyla,

You are right in that Elyes is an Arabic form of the name Elias, which comes from the Biblical name Elijah. The literal translation of the name would be “My God is Yahweh,” but we have it as “The Lord is My God.”

Hope that helps! I have added the name Elyes to our database.



Hi, there –

Big fan of the site! I’m wondering if you have any information on the name “Moonyeen?” It was my grandmother’s middle name but I have no idea where it comes from or what it means.

Thank you,
Karen Siddiqi

Screen Shot 2014-11-23 at 1.53.54 PMHi Karen,

Moonyeen was an unusual name that turned up briefly in the U.S. from 1922-1936. Most likely because of a Broadway play called “Smilin’ Through,” first produced in 1919, which had a character named Moonyeen Clare. The play was made into three movies: one in 1922 which starred Norma Talmadge, one ten years later featuring Norma Shearer, and a musical in 1941 with Jeannette McDonald in the role.

Nancy over at Nancy’s Baby Names speculates that the playwright Jane Cowl based the name on the Irish word muirnín, which means “darling” or “sweetheart.” That certainly is a possibility. That, or she just made it up, which many writers do!

Hope that helps,

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