What is in a name?

The other day I was reading The Importance of Being Earnest. In the play, Lady Gwendolen falls in love with Jack solely because of his fake name (the titular “Earnest”). Can one’s name actually be a factor of romantic attraction?

While a name doesn’t necessarily make the person attractive, I realize there are several names which I find especially appealing. I assume I’m not the only one who fancies particular names, but I want to know why I do.

I went through my list of names and discovered they have one thing in common – the last syllable is composed of a schwa and an “n” consonant.  Yes, that’s very close to the second syllable in “Kevin”. Maybe subconsciously I want to be with someone whose name rhymes with mine.

Surprisingly (or perhaps not so), another recurring feature on the list is alliteration – a starting consonant of “k”. That includes names that start with the letter “C” or “K”. So, does that mean I actually like people whose name sounds like mine? Let’s face it, Kevin, maybe you’re just narcissistic.

The only name on my list that carries both the alliteration and rhyme is “Karen”. But it’s not the name I like most, which is “Ellen”.

Before you ask, let me state that I’ve never met anyone with these names. So that rules out influence from real life people.

Perhaps it’s much easier to explain why certain names are repelling instead. We have plenty of them in Hong Kong – Apple, Strawberry, and the classic Highway. They are a major turnoff and anyone with the audacity to use them attracts nothing but sneer from me.


5 thoughts on “What is in a name?

  1. It’s snowing! 🙂

    I had fun reading this post. I, too, find certain names inexplicably appealing. In fact, I like names that end with an ‘n’ sound a lot. (Note ‘Ming’ has the ‘n’ sound’ too.) This line — “I want to be with someone whose name rhymes with mine.” — could be put in a poem.

    And let’s face it, are we not all somewhat narcissistic?

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