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The birth of Lilibet Diana: “Maybe this girl will be proud of her name”

Der Spiegel: Ms. Rodriguez, Prince Harry and Meghan announced the name of their newborn daughter: Lily Bet Diana. What do you think when you hear this?

Gabriel Rodriguez: I think this choice is ideal for children. In the royal family, children are usually named after their ancestors, usually after their grandparents. Lilibet is a pet form of the name of the great grandmother Elisabeth, and Diana is the name of the grandmother. Although Harry and Meghan follow tradition, they managed to come up with a very modern name. This girl can be called “Lily” and is very popular now.

Der Spiegel: What does it mean to give a child such a meaningful name?

Rodriguez: Maybe this girl will even be proud of her name, proud of her two great ancestors. If parents choose Elizabeth as their name, it will look different. The name sounds more serious, and it’s heavier to mention grandmother directly. But then Lilibet would find out that it was her own name. I also have a personal connection with this name. My daughter is also called Diana. She was born in 1987, long before Mrs. Di became famous. So far, Diana is a widely used name all over the world. My bitch is Lily. So I can only approve of this choice.

Der Spiegel: You provide name suggestions at the University of Leipzig. So will Harry and Meghan receive your unreserved recommendation of Lilibet Diana?

Rodriguez: Absolutely. Today, short names are very popular. Boys use one or two syllables and girls use two syllables. “Lili” sounds feminine and cute because the name ends with -i. It has everything needed for a nice name. It is also a common trend today to rename children after their ancestors. The royal family is no longer an exception.

Der Spiegel: how come

Rodriguez: We have been observing this since the millennium. Since then, the old German name has been used again, which was the last trend 100 years ago. Oscar, Fritz and Karl, and girls Ada, Emma or Frida. I interpret it as the family as a reliable reference point for personal identity once again becoming more important. In the past few decades, people prefer to give children exotic names. There are French, Scandinavian, and British waves. Before the end of World War II, children were still commonly named after saints. After experiencing the terrible atrocities of the war, people no longer pay attention to this.

Der Spiegel: What are the concerns that people come to you?

Rodriguez: In most cases, the registry refuses to choose ideal names for newborns.Then, we prepare an expert opinion, and we check that opinion, for example, whether the name is already in Germany be awarded. Although this is not legally binding, the registry usually makes a decision based on our recommendations. For example, problem cases are foreign names and we can usually recommend them even if they have not yet appeared. I also have very crazy queries. Parents want to call their children “yogurt” or “Rumpelstiltskin”. We must advise against this. The name “Lucifer” has also haunted me for many years. There is an American TV show called this title. Nevertheless, I still advise parents not to do this. The relationship with the devil is still very strong. Lucifer actually has a beautiful meaning: “The Messenger of Light”.

Der Spiegel: What advice would you give to anyone who wants to name their child Corona?

Rodriguez: In fact, there is no problem at all, no registrar rejects the name. Last year and this year, some children were called “Corona”. The name was common long before the pandemic, and there is no reason to ban it suddenly. The name comes from Latin and means “crown”. This is pretty in itself, but of course you should consider what burden you will bring to your child.

Der Spiegel: What issues should parents pay attention to when naming their children?

Rodriguez: My main suggestion is to choose a timeless name. If it was popular 100 years ago and sounds good now, then you can’t go wrong. It’s also important to ask yourself: Will I be happy that I have this name all my life? Will it damage or even cause strange combinations when combined with last names? If you choose an exotic name, you should choose a widely used middle name so that your child can decide for himself in the future.

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