ONE of benefits of having children is boosting your own status with pretentious, aspirational middle names. Try cursing them with these before they’re old enough to get a deed poll.
If you’re not posh you won’t have any recorded medieval family names. But don’t let that stop you – just consult a historical film, such as Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves. Pete Locksley de Gisbourne-Scarlett is pretty impressive. Don’t get carried away, though. Ralph Fiennes is actually Ralph Nathaniel Twisleton-Wykeham Fiennes, which sounds as if he’s named after a Sunday Times article about scenic villages for weekend breaks. Maybe he is.
Outdated grandparents’ names
What youngster in a class full of Jacks, Jaydens and Sophies wouldn’t like the middle names Herbert, Walter or Agatha? The smug parent can thus immortalise ancestors who were farm labourers and scullery maids who they’d consider a bit common now. It doesn’t make a lot of sense, but nor do middle names in general. There’s probably some poor sod out there called Ian Lord Vader Blenkinsop.
To show off your Radio 4 intellect why not burden your offspring with middle-names of characters from Greek and Roman mythology? Little Jasper Apollo and Clementine Demeter will love being laughed at by kids with more contemporary ridiculous middle names. Or fail to understand what the names actually mean, so your daughter is Rose Alice Medusa Smith.
Middle-naming a child after national achievements is an act of supreme self-importance, or unhinged patriotism. Saddle your little one with part or all of: William Wallace, Archie Gemmill, the Battle of Trafalgar, the 2005 Ashes winning England cricket team. Try cramming a whole range of national achievements in there, eg. Jack Dunkirk Dyson Shakespeare Daley Thompson Thompson.
Your superior education
There’s nothing more self-centred than a middle name which is the elitist educational establishment you attended and continue to drone on about decades later. If you give all your children middle names like Magdalen or Corpus Christi then surely one of them will get in, right? Note: this strategy will not work with ‘Hogwarts’.
Just nauseating. Naming your children after the places where they were conceived is just a bit tasteless and show-offy if it’s Andalucia or Aruba, and downright cruel if it’s Montepulciano. Worse still, with no foreign travel during Covid, your kid may find themselves with the middle name Skegness, or simply where you live, eg. exotic Crewe.