Octavia is expecting her second daughter soon.
Octavia writes: "Our first daughter is called Azalea Blaise. As I have an unusual name I am keen for something no one else will have. My husband is half French (hence Blaise) and I am half Italian.
Names we have been considering are:
Anoushka - just like the name
Aurora - too many Rrr’s
Anaïs - quite like this at the mo
Margaux - was a front runner
The last two were actually names of my mothers best friends who were great influences in my life but also happen to be very unusual.
Middle name: Bijou. Pretty set on that as first scan showed the diamond ring effect and also French and cute.
I am keen for something pretty, strong and ultimately that no one will have. Don’t mind origin. I feel Azalea Blaise is a tough one to follow."
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Wow! I love your list. I got a degree in Ancient History so to see so many underused ancient names gives me a thrill.
I agree that Azalea Blaise is a tough one to follow, but you've got a great -- and meaningful -- middle name already lined up with Bijou, and there are plenty of bold but perfectly usable name that will compliment Azalea on equal terms.
In alphabetical order:
Celandine – With a sweet French style, Celandine has a floral heritage to match Azalea. The name Celandine derives from the Ancient Greek chelidon "swallow (bird)" as the ancients though that the plant flowered when the swallows arrived.
Clemency – A virtue name meaning "mercy" and "gentleness" which was used by the Puritans but now has a sweet underused vintage style alongside sisters Amity, Virtue, Temperance and Verily. The French Clementine also derives from this same source.
Corisande – A medieval French name of chivalric romance and 19th century literature. Renowned for her beauty and culture, "La Belle Corisande" was the nickname of Diana de Gramont, Countess of Guiche (1554-1621). A similar sounding medieval gem, borne by queens, is Melisande, a sister to Millicent.
Cressida – A Shakespearean name which derives ultimately from an Ancient Greek name meaning "golden."
Dulcibel(la) – A medieval name composed of dulcis "sweet" and bella "beautiful." By the 16th century it was used as a poetic term meaning "sweetheart" and its use as a name continued into the 20th century.
Elara – A melodic name which derives from a princess in Greek mythology. One of the moons of Jupiter is named after her.
Eriska – Like Skye and Iona, Eriska is a pretty Scottish island which is known as the "water nymph island."
Eulalie – The sweet French form of Eulalia -- an Ancient Greek name meaning "sweetly-speaking" (Eulalia itself is great, but a bit too close in sound when it rhymes with Azalea). Other great Greek Eu- names include Eumelia "melody" , Euthalia "flowering, blossoming" (also the name of a butterfly) and Euphrasia/Euphrasie "good cheer."
Evadne – A lyrical Ancient Greek name, borne by a mythological water nymph, which means "very pure, very holy."
Idony – Back in the 14th century, Idony was a pretty common name in Britain. It was just as common as Anne, and more popular than Mary! The name is the anglicised form of Iðunn, the Viking goddess of the Spring.
Ismeria – An elegant medieval relic which was the name of a legendary saint.The French form, Ismérie, is a little more common in France than Ismeria is in Britain, but both are evocatively lovely.
Jessamine / Jessamy – Both Jessamine and Jessamy are poetic forms of Jasmine which have a sweet Victorian darling feel.
Juno – As Hera is on your list, perhaps you would consider her Roman counterpart, Juno. It has a sleek and modern sound, even though her roots are bold and ancient. Juno is also the name of a butterfly.
Lelia – An Italian name descended from the Roman family name Laelia. Laelia is also the name of an orchid found in Central America which gives a subtle link with Azalea.
Liliosa – Another name with a subtle floral link is this Late Latin name which derives from the Latin lilium "lily." Saint Liliosa was an Iberian Christian woman martyred in Córdoba in the 9th century. The name has been used in Spain since, but also has a great pan-European flair.
Mariska – A sleek Dutch and Hungarian form of Maria which shares a similar sound and drama of Anoushka, but without repeating the "A" initial.
Mireya – Not uncommon in Spain, Mireya (spelled Mireia in Catalan) is a sleek and usable gem. Like the French Mireille, all three forms come from the Provençal name Mirèio, most likely derived from the Latin mirar "to see, to admire,"
Meliora – Derived from the Latin word melior "better," Meliora was used in Britain and the Continent in the Middle Ages and survived in the South West of England into the 18th century.
Parisa – A sweet Persian name which means "fairy-like."
Sunniva – Once the Anglo-Saxon name Sunngifu "sun gift," Sunniva was adopted by the Vikings and is now a cool Scandinavian staple.
Thessaly – Like Venetia, Lydia, Petra, Sabina, Olympia and Alexandria, Thessaly is a name taken from ancient topography. Thessaly was a major region in ancient Greece, homeland of the mythological heroes Achilles and Jason. Other ancient placenames-turned-first names worth considering include Larissa, Megara, Illyria, Edessa, Messina and Salona.
Viveca – Also spelled Viveka, Viveca is a Scandinavian name derived from the German Wibke which was a short form of names starting with Wig- "war." It is reminiscent of the Latin viva "alive."
Zenaida – Zena is a name of a beloved woman in your life, so perhaps Zenaida would be a great way to incorporate her name. Zenaida was a (ahead of her time) doctor in the 1st century, turned saint. The name was Greek in origin ultimately deriving from the great god Zeus.
I hope this has been of use. Good luck with settling on the perfect name!