juniors

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We're Halfway to the Perfect Namesake Name!

If the father's name is Steve and the baby's is Steven, will the suffix Jr. or II apply? I've been told that the suffix ISS, which means 1½ in Roman numerals, can be used to help distinguish between the two of them. I worry that that would happen often.

–Halfway There

Junior and a Half? That’s a new one for this Name Lady. There's really no such thing as a half-junior. It's like a half-rhyme, or being a little pregnant. Either you are, or you aren't. And while it sounds like a clever option, ISS is just not a thing. It’s true that "SS" can be used to stand for ½ in Roman numerals; pharmacists do it. But no one else does.

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Should My 3-Year-Old Become a Fourth?

I have a 3-year-old son and have been having name regret for the past year. My husband is John Christopher [surname] III and really wanted our son to be John Christopher IV. At the time, I was against it because it seemed like a lot of name for a kid. Instead, we called our son Michael John. Now I feel bad about that decision, especially since my son reminds me so much of my husband.

Would it be completely ridiculous to legally change our son's name now--but still call him Michael, since he's already used to it? Or could we add Christopher, so he becomes Michael John Christopher [surname] IV?

--Michael's Mom

Namer's remorse is a common problem, as the Name Lady's archives will attest. But there's no common solution, one that works best in every situation. In your case, your feelings have persisted for a year, your husband is on record as preferring a different name, and you would be changing your son's name to one that’s been in his family for several generations. All these support a decision to make a change.

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March Madness: Vermont's McGlynn Is Not Just Another Number On The Court

A few months ago we wrote about Saint John's basketball player God's Gift Achiuwa and his unusual name. Now, with the NCAA tournament upon us, we've come to learn of a few more interesting names in this year's roster of players. Among them is Vermont guard Four McGlynn. 

After the name Seven made a splash last year with the birth of Harper Seven Beckham, andCortney and Robert Novogratz, the stars of Bravo's 9 by Design, named their fifth child Five, Four doesn't seem too unusual. In fact, number names are gaining traction in more ways than one. Perhaps one of the most speculated baby names ever, Blue Ivy, reportedly got her middle name because of her mother's fondness for the number four (IV). 

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When Is a Junior Not a Junior?

My husband has his heart set on having a Jr. He believes it's a lost tradition. I don't LOVE his name, but I like it enough to pass on. But here's my dilemma: I don't want to have two Ryans in the house, nor do I want to call him "James" which would be his middle name. My husband's family calls him "Jamie," so that's out as well. I also have trouble with the fact that we'd like to give our children two middle names, yet a Junior would only have one. Could a child still be a Jr. if we kept his father's first and middle names, and gave him a unique second middle?
- Looking for a Compromise

For the middle names question, allow me to refer you to the 41st and 43rd presidents of the United States. That would be George Herbert Walker Bush and his son George Walker Bush -- not George Bush Jr.

Traditional namesake rules say that a Junior is an exact namesake, no adding and subtracting parts. That makes sense if you think of the purpose of the Jr. suffix as distinguishing between identically named family members.

This rule is simply a matter of custom, not law. 

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New Baby Alert: Keyshia Cole welcomes Daniel Hiram Gibson Jr.

New Baby Alert: Keyshia Cole welcomes Daniel Hiram Gibson Jr.

Speaking of juniors, R&B singer Keyshia Cole and her fiance, Cleveland Cavlier Daniel Gibson, welcomed Daniel Hiram Gibson Jr. this week.

As we wrote yesterday in our post on Dale Earnhardt Jr., being named for a famous dad has both privileges and pitfalls. Here's what we didn't say: professional athletes may be more likely to bestow juniors than other fields.

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