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  • Name advice from Jennifer Moss,
    founder of BabyNames.com

Somer v. Summer
Hi Jennifer,

I’m a big fan of your site! I always check it for celebrity baby gossip and to make a list of my own future baby names. My husband and I just found out that we’re expecting and are overjoyed! We have already picked out a boy name, but we’re struggling with a girl name.

We are very much into names with meaning and wanted something that represented when/where we fell in love (which was in England). We were in Bath, Somerset during this time and we really like the name Somer for a girl. My husband wants to spell it like the season, Summer. I am torn because I always remember you saying stick to “normal” spellings; however, spelling her name Summer, not Somer would completely change the origin of her namesake. What do you think? Is it okay to do a unique spelling in this case or should I concede?

Thanks for your help!

~Shea

Dear Shea,

I would use the full name Somerset and call her Somer for short.  Most people know that Somerset is pronounced like “Summer Set.”  Hope this helps and congratulations!

Sincerely,

Jennifer

Crossed Swords

Dear Jennifer,

We are expecting our third child next month. We have two boys, Paxton and Zephan. We love unique names and it’s important that they end in “n.” For a boy we love Quillan, which means cub. But the spelling Quillon (not listed on your site) can mean crossing swords or strong. I prefer the latter definition but am unsure of which spelling would be the more common for our newest addition when he gets older.

I’ve also read that the name was originally pronounced “kill-on” but we want it to be “quill-an” – not sure if the spelling would affect the pronunciation upon seeing the name.

Thank you so much for any direction!

Sincerely,

Randi

 

Dear Randi,

As for your first question, the name is so unique, I don’t believe either spelling will be common by any means! 

A “quillon” is originally a French word meaning one of two crossed swords. It is a derivative of the word “quille” which means club or pin. In French, the word is pronounced “kee-yawn.”  I’ve never heard of the “kill-on” pronunciation and don’t think you have to worry much about it.  Most Americans will say “KWIL-on.”

Hope that helps!

Sincerely,

Jennifer

 

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