English Diminutives for First Names

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English Diminutives for First Names

Message  gerardM le Mar 5 Nov - 22:57

Hi everyone,

As you surely noticed, English speaking people rarely use the true 1st name of people but a diminutive: Peg, Dick Wink, Bob, etc.

In addition, there're several diminutives for a name.
In addition, many diminutives are rather far from the name.

This is weird, isn't it?

For example:
- Margaret - Meg, Meggie, Maggie, Peggy, Peg
- Elizabeth - Lisa, Liz, Lily, Libby, Betsey
- Ann - Nancy
- Mary - Polly, Molly
- Robert - Bob
- William - Bill
- John - Jack

Do you know why? Why they use diminutives? Why diminutives are far from names?

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PS: Pls note that I chose American English for my vocabulary, grammar, spelling, culture, etc.  :-)
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gerardM

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Re: English Diminutives for First Names

Message  gerardM le Mar 5 Nov - 23:07

Hi,

Clues are provided on the Internet -of course Wink -, on Yahoo! Answers.

( http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20090610074258AA5nFd7 )
tangerine asked 4 years ago

I can understand "Meg", "Meggie", and "Maggie" being diminutives for "Margaret", but I don't see how "Peggy" could be a diminutive of it. Does anyone know?
Best answer:
Nicole answered 4 years ago


"When the Normans invaded England in 1066 they transformed
not only politics, religion, society and language, but names
as well. They brought their large stock of Germanic names,
only Frenchified, reflecting their language.

The native Anglo-Saxons (now the lower classes)
faced with an unfamiliar language and strange pronucnations.
Often, they were uncomfortable with the Norman “R” found
in names like Richard, Roger, and Robert, and Henry/Harry."

The Scots changed many names Smile

"Every now and then, other letters were switched out.
In some cases, a “p” would be swapped for an “m,”
as in the names:

Polly - from Molly, from Mary
-or-
Peg - from Meg, from Margaret

And in the 19th century Bill was coined from Will, and Bob from Rob"

The name from which the most nicknames come from is Elizabeth!
I let you read other answers on site.

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PS: Pls note that I chose American English for my vocabulary, grammar, spelling, culture, etc.  :-)
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gerardM

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