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Name Your Baby Using Syllables

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Have you considered the importance of syllables when searching for a baby name? While you may not have been that interested in the art of syllabics when you studied poetry in high school, syllables, believe it or not, make your everyday life sound extraordinary. This language technique is something every parent-to-be should take a few moments to consider before selecting a baby name. How you choose to interact with or ignore syllabics can give your child a melodic name or just a jumble of cumbersome proper nouns.

How can you use syllables to find the best name for your baby?

Look At Your Last Name

To make syllabics work for the naming of your child, consider your last name first. If it is one syllable (like Jones, Smith, Lee), you can get away with a multi-syllable first name for your child or a one-syllable name. A simple last name is the best surname to have – the entire dictionary of names is available to you. If your last name is multi-syllabic (like Johnson, St. John, Johansson) and just plain complicated, a one-syllable first name would be the wisest choice -- two syllables at the most. 

Now, just because you might go with a one-syllable first name doesn’t mean that it has to be boring. You can be as creative as you like. Likewise, if you have a simple last name, you can still choose a very solid first name for your child – being “allowed” to go multi-syllabic doesn’t mean you have to go crazy on the name.

No matter your choice, the idea is to find a name that sounds good, that makes you happy, and, most of all, will suit your child from infancy to childhood to adolescence to adulthood.

One & Two Syllable Baby Names

For those that have a longer or more complicated last name, here are some one- and two-syllable name suggestions for your little one:

Girl Baby Names
One-syllable: Ade, Bess, Cait, Drew, Eve, Finn, Grace, Hope, Jayne, Kat, Love, Mae, North, Oak, Paige, Quinn, Rue, Sage, Tess, Vor, Wynne, Xan, Yale, Zahn.

Two-syllable: Adette, Bailey, Celine, Daphne, Eden, Frances, Georgia, Hayden, Iris, Joelle, Kaia, Lena, Merna, Nixie, Oola, Prudence, Quinta, Riley, Siobhan (Shi-VAUN), Trista, Una, Vera, Willow, Xanthe, Yasmin, Zoe.

Boy Baby Names
One-syllable: Abe, Brock, Cole, Duff, Earl, Flynn, Gage, Heath, Ike, Jeb, Kane, Leif, Mac, Nash, Oz, Pierce, Quinn, Rex, Scott, Tate, Ulf, Vail, Wayne, Xan, Yul, Zane.

Two-syllable: August, Bradley, Carter, Dawson, Emmett, Frisco, Gavin, Holden, Ianniq (YAWN-ick), Jonah, Keegan, Leo, Mason, Nolan, Owen, Preston, Quentin, Robert, Stanford, Trevor, Urban, Victor, Walker, Xander, Yanni, Zared.

Three & Four Syllable Baby Names

If you’re lucky enough to carry a surname like Smith, Jones or the like, consider these adventurous three- or four-syllable first names.

Girl Baby Names: Adelaide, Bernadette, Calliope, Dakota, Emmaline, Francesca, Genevieve, Hermione, Ileana, Josephine, Katarina, Lorelai, Millicent, Natasha, Ophelia, Pollyanna, Quintana, Rhiannon, Sigourney, Thomasina, Ursula, Venetia, Wednesday, Xiomara, Yolanda, Zinnia.

Boy Baby Names:  Atherton, Beauregard, Cornelius, Domenico, Emmanuel, Fitzwilliam, Gulliver, Harrison, Iago, Jedediah, Kristoffer, Lysander, Maximillian, Nehemiah, Orpheus, Phineas, Quintero, Reginald, Sebastian, Theodore, Umberto, Valentine, Willoughby, Xuqio, Zachary.

A few more words about poetics: Rhyming may seem like a cute choice for an infant, but try not to saddle your child with a name like Max Baxter or Rhonda Johnson. Such unfortunate rhyming can also lead to not-so-welcome nicknames during your child’s school years as well.

Try to keep in mind that middle names play a part in your child’s identity. Balance the syllables and aim for pleasing, rhythmic (different than rhyming!) sounds. Piper Samantha Green is a bit of a mouthful, whereas Piper Lauren Green is more soothing.

However you choose to name your child, say the words aloud to see if you like the feel of the name, and if it’s something your son or daughter can be proud to carry.

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