Odd Names

I Stumbled Upon this page and it got me thinking about the weird names of my friends and me.  I won’t use last names unless the other people say that it’s okay.  Except for Bjorn since his is quite interesting.


Joshua Michael Armstrong – my dad, Michael Lee Armstrong, named his sons after old testament prophets:  Elijah and Joshua.  To my knowledge we both have the middle name of Michael since that was his name and his family tradition dictates that sons be given middle names the same as their father’s first.  Then again, his family tradition was being given the last name of his mother so as not to taint the family name of his famous folk singer father.  Incidentally, my dad was also a folk singer and was neither rich nor famous even though he had immense talent and could have easily made a living off of his songwriting.  Instead others made millions off of his talent.  It never bothered him, or so says my mom.


Wick was Old English for “dairy farm.”  Chad comes from the Welsh word meaning “battle.”  In its most modern incarnation, Chadwick means “Chad’s Dairy Farm.”  I’d like to mention that Chad’s last name is the Anglicized form of the German word for “miller.”


Anglicized form of Krista, German familiar form of Kristina, meaning “Christian.”


Bjorn’s original spelling is BJØRN, which is the Norwegian form of the Swedish noun, BJÖRN, meaning “bear.”  Bjorn’s middle name is Terren, which is the Norwegian tradition of naming the son after the father, in this case, Terrence.  Bjorn’s last name is an Anglicized and shortened form of the Polish Kasimirski, which means “son of Kasimir.”  Incidentally, Kasimir came from old Slavic and has two different origins, one meaning “great destroyer,” the other meaning “bringer of peace.”


JBradford Van are  his first and middle names.  You can ask him about that one.  Yes, that really is JBradford – that’s not a typo.  He really has two capital letters beginning his name.


Paul Gustav are his first and middle names.  He doesn’t like Paul so he takes his middle name.  Except it isn’t “goo-stoff” like everyone thinks.  It’s “gust-uf.”  He just prefers Gus.


Well, I’d suppose he’s named for the city in England.  You’d have to ask him.

Sean, Erin

Both fine Irish names.  Seán is just the Irish form of John.  Erin is the Anglicized form of Éireann, which is the genitive case form of the Irish name for Ireland.


Kurt is a German contraction of the name Conrad, which came from Old Germanic and means “brave counsel.”


And early Old-English (or possibly Scottish) UPDATE:  It’s confirmed as a Saxon transliteration of the Greek name Ανδρεας, which, as used in the New Testament for the apostle by that name, was either a nickname or an approximate meaning of his Hebrew name, the record of which having been lost to the ages.  In any case, the Greek Ανδρεας means “concerning a man.”


Jedidiah is a direct transliteration of the Hebrew name יְדִידְיָה, meaning “beloved of יהוה.” יהוה is the Hebrew name for God.  It is usually transliterated as either YHVH or YAHWEH.  Its meaning and origins are a source of fiendish debate among linguistic scholars.  So, in essence, Jedidiah means “beloved of God.”


Two different origins here.  One is Hebrew, meaning “bitter” and was one of Naomi’s adopted names in the Old Testament.  The other origin is Hungarian (written MÁRA) and is the transliteration of Mary.


Means “small” or “humble” in Latin (Paulus).  Was usually a family or surname.


From the Greek word “Φιλιππος,” meaning “friend of horses.”


From the Greek transliteration (Ματθαιος) of the Hebrew מַתִּתְיָהוּ, meaning “gift of YHVH,” which we already covered above as being able to be written “gift of God.”

Are there any others I’m missing?

  1. #1 by Chadwick on December 1, 2009 - 4:17 PM

    Well, I’ll have to take a second look to see if there’s any you’re missing, but for what it’s worth, I believe that Jed is not actually short for Jedidiah, so I don’t know what that would make him, and Bjorn’s last name is not actually an original. From what I recall, it was selected in the last generation or two.

    • #2 by Phillip on December 1, 2009 - 9:30 PM

      No, no. It really is short for Jedidiah. I remember for Caitlin’s 21st birthday, Jed was there and one of my friends. Jessica got everyone’s name and later on asked if Jed was short for Jedidiah. “Yeah, just don’t call him that.”

      I know my brother and I, our first and last names were selected primarily because they were in the bible. So, Phillip John, Alex James and Benjamin Jacob.

      I don’t like the whole “lover of horses” thing, but apparently through some roundabout magic, it works out to being nobility. Which is good enough for me!

      • #3 by Chadwick on December 2, 2009 - 5:08 AM

        When was the last time you saw peasants playing with horses?

        • #4 by Phillip on December 2, 2009 - 3:44 PM

          All the time!

      • #5 by Joshua on December 2, 2009 - 12:04 PM

        No, I’m pretty sure that after the sheep thing, this just seals the deal. 🙂 If I were mean, I could just translate it as “horsefucker.” 😛

        • #6 by Chadwick on December 2, 2009 - 12:18 PM

          Lol. That’s a change that should definitely be made.

          • #7 by Phillip on December 2, 2009 - 3:42 PM

            No, no..I’m sure I don’t want to be horsefucker.

  2. #8 by Andrew D. on December 7, 2009 - 11:42 PM

    From the Greek, my name means “strong and manly”. Pfft, we all saw how THAT wish turned out.

    • #9 by Chadwick on December 8, 2009 - 5:09 AM

      Well, Erin has, anyway.

      • #10 by Joshua on December 8, 2009 - 7:26 AM

        You stole my line – I was going to use that one here.

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