Archiver > BRISTOL_AND_DISTRICT > 2009-01 > 1231762871

From: "Patrick Williams" <>
Subject: Re: [B&D] Betty and Betsy and other derivatives
Date: Mon, 12 Jan 2009 12:21:11 -0000
References: <9F252DE9D107492EBEA6569B780771F3@LLLLawrence> <><004a01c97380$ddffb260$cdf84b4f@computer> <><8E3EB8C18D374D72B0F05A472452C138@acer2b73192757> <> <005001c974a6$25e493e0$4384434f@computer><>
In-Reply-To: <>

There are often obscure reasons for a PET name, in my case a uncle was
always referred to as Uncle Son or Sonner, it was not until after his death
that I found out he had been christened Henry, the Name Son was derived from
Grandfathers habit of coming in from work and greeting him " hello my
Sonner" or words to that effect! And that name for him stuck. On one
occasion I was talking to about him to someone he worked with and they did
not realise who I was talking about, at work he was known as Henry. In
another case on my wife's side she had an Aunty Dot and until recently we
were unable to find out anything of her birth or marriage until we met with
her Daughter and found out Dot's name was Christiana but someone had said
when she was born that she looked like a "little dot" and that name stuck.

There are of course many derivatives of names used and many are well
documented such as the Betty = Elizabeth, Peggy = Margaret, Harry = Henry
variety but many are names in their own right, My wife's Father was
Christened Fred and her Uncle was Harry, both recorded as such on their
birth certificates, my own Father was Henry but always known as Harry.

This reminds me of another story quoted on one of the Dorset lists some
years ago as follows:-


The story of Wapsy doubtless first gained publicity through Fido Lunettes,
for we read

" A gentleman had made repeated enquiries after one James Miller ; but as he
was not possessed of the secrecy of his cognomen his enquiries were
necessarily fruitless and unavailing. By chance, at last, he discovered that
Miller was alias Wapsy and accidentally meeting with this man's son in the
Island he asked him where this person lived, signifying him by the former
name. " I don't know" was the immediate reply, " there's no such a man as he
here ; he does not live in Portland, Sir.'' - " He is commonly called Wapsy
added the gentleman---
" Wapsy, Wapsy, Sir" repeated the astonished Portlander, "why, Sir, Wapsy's
my feyther - Wapsy's my feyther, Sir".


Patrick Williams

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