Names and Naming Patterns in England, 1538-1700

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Clarendon Press, 1997 - History - 223 pages
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This book contains the results of the first large-scale quantitative investigation of naming practices in early modern England. Scott Smith-Bannister traces the history of the fundamentally significant human act of naming one's children during a period of great economic, social, and religiousupheaval. Using in part the huge pool of names accumulated by the Cambridge Group for the History of Population and Social Structures, he sets out to show which names were most commonly used, how children came to be given these names, why they were named after godparents, parents, siblings, orsaints, and how social status affected naming patterns. The chief historical significance of this research lies in the discovery of a substantial shift in naming practices in this period: away from medieval patterns of naming a child after a godparent and towards naming them after a parent. In establishing the chronology of how parents came to exercisegreater choice in naming their children and over the nature of naming practices, it successfully supersedes previous scholarship on this subject. Resolutely statistical and rich in anecdote, Dr Smith-Bannister's exploration of this deeply revealing subject will have far-reaching implications for thehistory of the English family and culture.
 

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Contents

Names Naming Patterns and Godparents
25
3 Naming and the Family
55
A Comparative Study
81
Personal Names and the English Poor 15701700
98
Names Naming Patterns and the Peerage
119
Personal Names in England
135
The Sources of English Names
155
9 Some Conclusions
183
A A Test to Measure the Degree of Standardization in
189
The Standard Forms of Alternative Spellings of Names
201
Index
219
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The Grammar of Names
John M. Anderson
No preview available - 2007
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About the author (1997)

Scott Smith-Bannister is a Head of History Department at Papplewick School, Ascot.

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