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Subject: naming our son: Samuel or Samwise? rss

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aaron belmer
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Ok so serious question:

My wife is pregnant with our second baby (yay). Our daughter is currently 3 and looking forward to being a big sis.

We don't know what the sex is yet, find out in a few weeks. If its a boy however, his name will be Sam. We're just not yet sure if it should be Samuel or Samwise.

I think it goes without saying that we're both huge LOTR fans. We love Samwise, and thnk hes a cool character and all around great name.

But also we're christians, and i just know how conversations are going to go at church:

"Ah, sam. Fine christian name. Samuel the prophet, eh?"

"Er, actually Samewise the haffling."

We're both fine/comfortable with it, and for sure he'd be known as Sam his entire life. I just want to make sure there's not some long term repercussions that will come back to make his life miserable that im not thinking of.



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Andy Andersen
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Break the tie.

Andy is an excellent choice.
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Save the kid the hassle. Samuel.
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M Campbell
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I could see him being made fun of with a name like Bilbo, but Samwise seems fine to me.
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Professor of Pain
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Samwise. Definitely
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Best of both worlds, or wrong in both ways, depending on how you look at it: Samuel Gamgee Belmer.

But honestly, I do think Samuel would be easier for the child. You could also go with just "Sam"; we named our daughters "Ella" and "Lucy," not Elinore or Lucille. Figured, why not name them what people will actually call them? Being stuck between William and Bill all my life probably had some influence on that decision.
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Eric "Shippy McShipperson" Mowrer
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As someone who named his son Beren, I'm going to hypocritically go with Samuel, or just Sam.

Also, if you go with Samwise, I recommend giving him a perfectly normal middle name, so he has a fallback plan.

Edit: For a girl, we were briefly considering Luthien, but then we decided we didn't want any chance of people shortening it to Luthy for obvious reasons.
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Don't burden the kid with an odd name. Don't name your kids based on what you like, but on what would be a good, solid name for the kid.

You won't have to live with it, but he will.
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Nate Mohling
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zenmazster wrote:
But also we're christians, and i just know how conversations are going to go at church:

"Ah, sam. Fine christian name. Samuel the prophet, eh?"

"Er, actually Samewise the haffling."


Would people actually aks this? When I was growing up, no one at church ever said, "Ah Nate. Fine Christian name. Nathaniel the prophet, eh?"

People have called me Nathaniel before, even though my given name is just Nathan. Doesn't bother me one bit.
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JessA
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Why not name him Samuel and call him Samwise? I think Samwise is an adorable nickname. I also think kids like having a name that is special and used by family only if my youngest is any indication.

I would just caution you: We had a kid at our school named Calrissian, his dad was a huge Star Wars fanatic. This love did not get passed on to the son. He always called himself Cal and he hated Star Wars. I believe he had his name changed when he became an adult.
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samwise is just fine, it isnt odd enough or poorly spelled enough to hinder them in any way


named my first child from bram stokers dracula...mina and prue from edward goreys gashlycrumb tinies. my mother went around proclaiming that my child was named after phantom of the opera...cry

shes 11 and no one even bats an eye....probably because they all think her name is nina....which would be fine if i was russian and named her after a lunatic russian psychic


i left my parents in suspense for a week when we said we decided to name the second baby gandalf spider-man.


since i own a comic shop it was just likely enough to be true that it caused panic. they were pleased that we didnt go with our 2nd option name which was from an unsolved hollywood murder
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Richard Dowdy
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The more important consideration is not whether Samuel would build up more Biblical name cred with the church friends, but whether the uniqueness of Samwise is worth the extra hassle. Weird names cause problems. I'm called by my middle name, so always have to figure out which name which people or organizations know me as. My father has a name obscure enough not to show up in those "100000 names" books, and always has to spell it out for people. An unusual name can be quirky and interesting but think over what problems it will lead to and whether Samwise as a nickname would suffice.
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Isaac Citrom
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The reasons not to name the child Samwise are identical to the ones not to name him Frodo. If you suspect that Samwise will cause him trouble in life, then it behooves you not to name him that way.

This is a person, not a really high quality figurine picked up at a convention.

His full name will certainly be announced from time to time, for example on the first day of class, in front of his classmates, from the official registration; not to mention how he will cast first impressions at job interviews or other important functions.

I adore unusual names. My eldest is named Laszlo. I'm not sure naming a child after a fantasy novel character is wise, and LotR is my one truly all time favourite book. I'm a fan to the core.

I think Laszlo is sexy. I think Samuel--not Sam--is most distinguished. I think Samwise smacks of novelty.
.
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Blorb Plorbst
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You should listen to Sam's Gaffer:

"Make it short, then you won't have to cut it short."

Sam would be fine.
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(From ‘Appendix F’ in the LotR:RotK, p. 517 in the paperback, under the heading ‘On Translation’)

“I have not used names of Hebraic or similar origin in my transpositions. Nothing in Hobbit-names corresponds to this element in our names. Short names such as Sam, Tom, Tim, Mat were common as abbreviations of actual Hobbit-names, such as Tomba, Tolma, Matta, and the like. But Sam and his father Ham were really called Ban and Ran. These were shortenings of Banazîr and Ranugad, originally nicknames, meaning ‘half-wise, simple’ and ‘stay-at-home’; but being words that had fallen out of colloquial use they remained as traditional names in certain families. I have therefore tried to preserve these features by using Samwise and Hamfast, modernizatons of ancient English samwís and hámfœst which correspond closely in meaning.”

So, if you use “Samwise”, you would be giving your (potential) son a name which the creator intended to mean “naive, lacking in depth, having an intellectual capacity that does not permit higher-level cognitive processes”. Not an easy burden to carry through life, and possibly a self-fulfilling prophecy.
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claymore_57 wrote:
(From ‘Appendix F’ in the LotR:RotK, p. 517 in the paperback, under the heading ‘On Translation’)

“I have not used names of Hebraic or similar origin in my transpositions. Nothing in Hobbit-names corresponds to this element in our names. Short names such as Sam, Tom, Tim, Mat were common as abbreviations of actual Hobbit-names, such as Tomba, Tolma, Matta, and the like. But Sam and his father Ham were really called Ban and Ran. These were shortenings of Banazîr and Ranugad, originally nicknames, meaning ‘half-wise, simple’ and ‘stay-at-home’; but being words that had fallen out of colloquial use they remained as traditional names in certain families. I have therefore tried to preserve these features by using Samwise and Hamfast, modernizatons of ancient English samwís and hámfœst which correspond closely in meaning.”

So, if you use “Samwise”, you would be giving your (potential) son a name which the creator intended to mean “naive, lacking in depth, having an intellectual capacity that does not permit higher-level cognitive processes”. Not an easy burden to carry through life, and possibly a self-fulfilling prophecy.



yes but is that how you would describe sam at the end of ROTK?
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Jimmy Smith
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I can hear the snickers from the school kids already:

"Samwise? More like SamDUMB! LOLOLOLOL!!!!!"

Don't do that to him.
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aaron belmer
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Wow, great great comments all around, sincere thanks for all the thoughts.

So at this point, we're definitly having second thoughts about Samwise, and strongly now leaning towards Samuel or, yeah, maybe just Sam.

You know when you propose 'Samwise' to a bunch of fellow geeks and it gets shot down that you probably shouldn't do it.

This helped a lot guys, thanks.

You know what's funny about the internets is that someday, I'm sure he'll be reading this forum thinking 'my dad is such a dork'.

Hi Sam!

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And if you have a daughter you could name her Samus.

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zenmazster wrote:
Wow, great great comments all around, sincere thanks for all the thoughts.

So at this point, we're definitly having second thoughts about Samwise, and strongly now leaning towards Samuel or, yeah, maybe just Sam.

You know when you propose 'Samwise' to a bunch of fellow geeks and it gets shot down that you probably shouldn't do it.

This helped a lot guys, thanks.



When you crowd source anything irregular will be ruled out.
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Jeff
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jmsmith2434 wrote:
I can hear the snickers from the school kids already:

"Samwise? More like SamDUMB! LOLOLOLOL!!!!!"

Don't do that to him.


Well, truthfully, kids will tease for any reason. I don't know that there are too many names out there that would make a kid immune, and Sam seems like it wouldn't attract as much attention as some other ones out there...

edit: for the record, I'd say go ahead and go with a longer name - either Samuel or Samwise, whatever you decide on, but don't go just Sam. this way, the lad at least has a choice - he can choose to use Sam, or not, or switch.

For myself, I'm Jeff to most people, but there are times I do like Jeffrey.
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zenmazster wrote:
Wow, great great comments all around, sincere thanks for all the thoughts.

So at this point, we're definitly having second thoughts about Samwise, and strongly now leaning towards Samuel or, yeah, maybe just Sam.

You know when you propose 'Samwise' to a bunch of fellow geeks and it gets shot down that you probably shouldn't do it.

This helped a lot guys, thanks.

You know what's funny about the internets is that someday, I'm sure he'll be reading this forum thinking 'my dad is such a dork'.

Hi Sam!




best of both worlds is use samwise as a middle name
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This reminds me of how close I was to naming my kid Gandalf...

Good luck, Starfighter!
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There's a kid in my church named Drizzt.

Don't do it.
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