I’ve always had friends and associations with the name Elizabeth; there was Elizabeth Smith who I was at infants school with, but I think she must have moved before I went into juniors because I don’t remember her further up the school. When I moved to secondary school there were Elizabeths in my class, Fuller, Gilbert, Halls, and others in my year, and a whole sprinkling of Elizabeths older and younger than me. Elizabeth Short was a good friend in my swimming club – she was quite tall so she would introduce herself as ‘Short by name but not by nature‘. Two of my cousins married Elizabeths. Some Elizabeths I knew became Liz, or Lizzie/Lizzy, and of those, some liked the diminutive and some really didn’t. My Mum had contemporaries who were Elizabeth and they became Betty, but it wasn’t a nickname with any Elizabeth I knew – and Bessie was a name from my grandma’s era.
Elizabeth is a Biblical name, I obviously knew of John the Baptist’s mother who was Elizabeth, but apparently Aaron’s wife was also Elizabeth. Elizabeth I may have been one of our most famous queens, but maybe she has been eclipsed by our present monarch. The name means ‘my God is an oath’ or ‘my God is abundance‘, although how you might interpret the former is a bit puzzling. There are plenty of famous Elizabeths in every field of achievement, writing, sport, music, acting, science, education, and of course there have been famous ships with the name. And now, one of my dearest friends is named Elizabeth!
I suppose I have a connection too, a close connection, because my middle name is Elizabeth, but whether I was named for or after someone, or whether my parents thought it balanced my first and last name, I don’t know. Even though I have a connection, it doesn’t seem close – if I hear the name, my ears don’t prick up as when I hear ‘Lois’. In a way it has no meaning or significance for me. My husband’s middle name is William, and he comes from a line of forefathers with it as a first or middle name, and sticking with tradition, one of my son’s middle names is William. Coincidentally, my maternal grandfather was also a William, and there are a whole line of them stretching back to the beginning of the nineteenth century.
So, Elizabeth, such a pretty name, and in many lovely ways significant to me!
There is a rose named Elizabeth, but I don’t think my featured image is it!