Guest Author - Nancy Man
One of the most-maligned celebrity baby names I can think of is a fruit name -- Apple. It belongs to the daughter of actress Gwyneth Paltrow.
Love it or hate it, the name Apple does make people wonder: Do other parents ever name their kids after fruit?
It's a tricky question. Many of the "fruit names" used for babies also happen to be either legitimate personal names and/or surnames, so, even though they can refer to fruit, they usually aren't bestowed with fruit in mind.
Here are some of the names I'm talking about:
943 baby boys and 609 baby girls were named Rowan in 2009. Rowan is an Irish surname based in part on the Gaelic word for "red," ruadh. It also refers to a type of tree, and to the berry produced by that tree.
508 baby girls were named Olive in 2009. Like Rowan, Olive refers to both a type of tree and to the fruit produced by that tree.
141 baby girls were named Clementine in 2009. Clementine is a French feminine form of Clement, based on a Latin word meaning "merciful" or "gentle." It's also an orange-like citrus fruit.
33 baby girls were named Apple in 2009. Apple is a type of fruit (and also the type of tree that produces this fruit). Most of the babies getting this name nowadays were influenced by Gwyneth Paltrow's choice of Apple in mid-2004.
24 baby girls were named Cherry in 2009. A cherry is a type of fruit. The name Cherry is also sometimes used in place of the modern name Cherie, which is based on the French word cherie, "darling," and as a pet form of the virtue name Charity.
15 baby boys were named Huckleberry in 2009. A huckleberry is a type of berry, though most of the boys who get this name are being named in reference to the fictional Mark Twain character Huckleberry "Huck" Finn.
11 baby boys were named Berry in 2009. Berry is a surname that can be traced back to at least six different sources. The English surname Berry, for instance, means "fortified manor house," The French Berry refers to a family that originated in the region of Berry in central France. Of course, the word berry also refers to a type of fruit.
8 baby boys were named Quince in 2009. Quince is a short form of the surname Quincy, which can be traced back to the Latin word for "fifth." It also refers to a type of tree, and to the fruit produced by that tree.
Fewer than 5 baby boys were named Lemon in 2009, but it was used more often as a name in the past. Lemon is a surname that means either "beloved man" or "law man," depending on the origin. It's also a type of tree, and the citrus fruit produced by that tree.
Fewer than 5 baby boys were named Orange in 2009, but it was used more often as a name in the past. Orange is a surname of unknown origin (it might refer to a location in France). It's also a type of tree, and the citrus fruit produced by that tree.