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Upper class / Lower class names

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#1 Jen


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Posted 16 May 2008 - 09:54 AM

I was reading in a book about certain names that are viewed as more upper class names and names that are viewed as lower class names. I find it a little fascinating. So my question to everyone is... are there any names that just seem upper or lower class to you? :)

#2 Jennifer


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Posted 16 May 2008 - 11:24 AM

I hate being stereotypical about anything or anyone.. but yes, I do hear
certain names that make me think not usually lower class but definately
upper class. Like Remington, Winston, Randolph, Francesca, Gwendolyn,
Sloane, Blaire (probably because of the old Facts of Life Show),and a few

#3 scarlet520


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Posted 16 May 2008 - 11:37 AM

It's an interesting subject that can lead into a rather heated debate because it's terribly subjective. But I have to admit that there certainly are names I think of as lower class or "hickish"; I suppose it's a regional thing. And by no means do I mean to offend anyone with mentioning these names, but to me any name (boy or girl) that has Jo or Jean as a second part to the name seems a bit off. Like Billy Jo/Jean, Bobby Jo/Jean as the official first names strike me as the type to fit into this category. At the opposite end of the spectrum, there certainly are names which can be deemed upper class or snobbish to me, such as Worthington, Remington, or even Hugh (I can only think of boy names at the moment). Some people might think the Aidan, Brayden, Jayden, Hayden craze is the result of rich/well-to-do people naming their children these names and it has trickled down to the rest of the populous - thus creating the wonderful trends with now live with. But, as I said, this is VERY subjective so there will be several different points of view. (I truly hope no one was offended by my comments and if they were, I'm truly sorry. It was not my intent.)

#4 Jen


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Posted 16 May 2008 - 11:50 AM

Montgomery seems really upper class to me.. I think it's because of the nickname Monte.

#5 Smile


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Posted 17 May 2008 - 04:18 PM

hm, i'm not really sure. i guess since i've never met a preston, it hink its a handsome name but could give off a more 'upper class' expression. as far as lower class names, it only strikes me as lower class if the names are spelled very fanncie or look like they have been sounded out. i once saw a girl named feebee. that didn't make the best impression on me. i hate to say it, but certain names and their spellings make a difference on me, i hate that about myself i guess.

#6 Kate


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Posted 18 May 2008 - 11:24 AM

Creatively spelled names and cutesy nicknames as first names (even though I'm the bearer of one) give me a more lower class feel, whereas some old-fashioned names strike me as upper class. Examples (and apologies if anyone is offended, it wasn't my intention):

Lower class:

Upper class:

#7 ~Liz~


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Posted 12 August 2008 - 09:51 PM

There are definitely upper class/lower class names. The thread "Freakonomics" that I made discusses the ecomomics of baby naming just like this. The book studies what upper class people name their children, what middle class name their children, what lower class name their children.

One interesting pattern is that when a name starts becoming popular in the upper class, it slowly trickles down the socioeconomic latter until it hits the bottom. Names like Ashley and Courtney were originally the upper class *boys* names Ashley and Courtenay, but have trickled down into the lower class to become girls names.

So unisex, or naming girls boy's names, is a pattern commonly found in the lower class, and never found in the upper class.

Another trend is that the upper class names their children surnames, such as Chamberlain, Amherst, and Vanderbilt.

The upper middle class, uses professional names, such as Tanner, Sawyer, Miller, etc.

The lower class, uses "aden" names, like Aiden, Jayden, Hayden, etc.

Top 5 most popular girls names found among white, lower class Americans: Kayla, Heather, Alyssa, Britney, Amber.

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