"Tristan" now feminine given name

Beverly Flanigan flanigan at OHIO.EDU
Fri Feb 24 20:27:57 UTC 2006

My brother John was called variously "Johnny" or "Jack" by our father but
never by anyone else in the family (in the 40s and 50s).  Predictably, he
became exclusively John.  But I had a classmate John who was always called
Jack or Jackie.  I suspect, with Arnold, that once Jackie became a girl's
name (esp. after Jackie Kennedy), it was frozen as feminine.

At 02:55 PM 2/24/2006, you wrote:
>Except for JFK, I've never known a "John" who was called "Jack."  In the
>first class I ever taught I had a "Jack," but that was actually his given
>name.  So far as I can recall, I've known only one other "Jack" (also his
>given name), and that was in the '50s.
>   JL
>sagehen <sagehen at WESTELCOM.COM> wrote:
>   ---------------------- Information from the mail header
> -----------------------
>Sender: American Dialect Society
>Poster: sagehen
>Subject: Re: "Tristan" now feminine given name
>John was certainly, mid-century, the most common boy's given name, it was
>nearly always nicknamed "Jack." I can't remember ever knowing a John who
>wasn't Jack from the '30s to the '70s. This might have been at least
>partly because "john" was also the most common designation for the toilet.
>Shortening and nicknaming seems to be less common now than fifty years ago.
>Perhaps due to more parental management of kids' lives.
>A. Murie
>The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org
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