Names Blog

Articles about names and naming.

Play it again…

Hello Jennifer,
I was researching my family tree, and I discovered my mother has a cousin named Adagio (we call him Donny or Dom, so I always thought his name was Dominic). It was his father’s name and his father’s father’s name. I know adagio is a music term for playing slowly, but I wondered if there was any meaning beyond that. 
Hi Stephanie,
Adagio is indeed a direction for playing music at a slow or slower tempo. Literally, in Italian, it means “To lay carefully, lay down, subside.”
I, personally, have never heard it as a given name! There are records of it being an Italian surname, which may have been occupational (bricklayer or something?) or possibly just “that slow guy.”
Hope that helps!  We’ll add it to our database.