Giving a name that's not a name
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- This topic has 18 replies, 12 voices, and was last updated 7 years, 7 months ago by haifagirl.
July 31, 2015 5:04 pm at 5:04 pm #616142
If someone gives a child a name that is not a name, e.g., Purple, is that not their name? Does it have to be changed?July 31, 2015 6:31 pm at 6:31 pm #1094830akupermaParticipant
Under halacha and American law, no. Any name is kosher. If a Jewish child with a silly name wants to change it, they’ll still need the original name on the “get” if one should be required.
In many countries with legal systems based on Roman law, there are official lists of acceptable names to choose from (e.g. Yaakov is out, but the local equivalent such as James or Jacob, are allowed).July 31, 2015 8:15 pm at 8:15 pm #1094831Sam2Participant
akuperma: That’s not quite true. If literally no one uses the original name, many Poskim hold that it’s not necessary on a Get.July 31, 2015 8:51 pm at 8:51 pm #1094832akupermaParticipant
If the parent gives a kid a horrible name (the boy named “Sue” comes to mind), and he changes the name when he is older, he’ll need both names on the “get”. The parents presumably used the name until the kid was old enough to object, and that’s probably a good many years.July 31, 2015 8:53 pm at 8:53 pm #1094833JosephParticipant
When it comes to a Get, you don’t want to write a Get that only some poskim hold is kosher. Because if such a Get is utilized while other poskim hold it isn’t a kosher Get, then she potentially remains an eishes ish and future children with a future husband will be mamzeirim according to the poskim who held the Get wasn’t kosher.
Of course in the Gemora when there was a machlokes where Beis Shammai held a person was a mamzer but Beis Hillel held the person wasn’t a mamzer, Beis Hillel would identify those people to Beis Shammai so that they shouldn’t marry someone they held was a mamzer, even though Beis Hillel didn’t hold so.July 31, 2015 9:17 pm at 9:17 pm #1094834Happy Go Lucky!!Participant
Hopefully, no one should need a get!!
Comes to mind a cute story, where a couple went to a Rov (a most competent one!!) and asked for divorce. The woman in question had a sha’alah about her name, so the Rav advised them to change it (maybe I’m getting wrong on the details), and he should only use her new first name for thirty days. Like ‘Good morning, Rachel’, ‘Good night, Rachel’, ‘I’m going out, Rachel’. After thirty days they (naturally) did NOT show up again to proceed further with their divorce.
So it’s an excellent thing to have a sha’alah aboout one’s name!!July 31, 2015 9:29 pm at 9:29 pm #1094835
What if it’s not silly and they are called that? Or it is silly but they are called that anyway?July 31, 2015 10:10 pm at 10:10 pm #1094836Sam2Participant
Joseph: Not quite. We’re not the Machmir in Gittin. Almost all Poskim hold that a Get that is Kasher according to some is Kasher B’dieved, especially if she already got remarried.July 31, 2015 10:38 pm at 10:38 pm #1094837🍫Syag LchochmaParticipant
I know someone from a frum home named purple. i think her parents thought it was funny since she would never really use her legal name. im not sure i agree on either point, that its funny or that she wont need to use her legal name at some point.July 31, 2015 10:54 pm at 10:54 pm #1094838JosephParticipant
When it comes to gittin we don’t go with b’dieveds. And almost all means some hold its not kosher.August 2, 2015 2:05 am at 2:05 am #1094839☕ DaasYochid ☕Participant
I knew a boy named Sue. Sure, he was picked on as a child, but he used it to his advantage when he became a personal injury attorney.August 2, 2015 3:58 pm at 3:58 pm #1094840oomisParticipant
I actually never knew my real name until I got married. My entire life I thought my name was one thing (first and middle name), then found out when my kesuvah was written, that my true middle name was actually the Yiddish form of what I always thought was my middle name. For example, let’s say I thought my name was Shoshana, then saw on the kesuvah that it was really Raizel. I was very disconcerted by this, but the Jewish name was the one the Rov held to be the correct middle name for that purpose. I had never
noticed as a child or young woman, that when my dad O”H got an aliyah, he used my proper Yiddish name for a misheberach. Had I only been referred to by the Hebrew form, there could have been a shailah about what to put on the kesuvah.
Object lesson – parents, be very careful and put much thought into how and what you name your children. Don’t call them ridiculous names like Purple, or Apple. They will never thank you for it.August 4, 2015 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm #1094841
Purple is ridiculous, but Violet and Apple are actual names.August 4, 2015 2:05 pm at 2:05 pm #1094842cozimjewishMember
Good point! why is it that violet is a name but purple is “ridiculous” ?August 4, 2015 4:30 pm at 4:30 pm #1094843bp27Participant
There is the famous story of the person who told Rav Chaim Kanievsky that his daughter’s name was “Shira”. Rav Chaim said that is not a name, and he must change it!
When asked where he got the name from, the father answered that she was born the week of Shabbos Shira, to which Rav Chaim answered “If she was born the week of Parshas Parah, would you call her Parah?”August 4, 2015 5:02 pm at 5:02 pm #1094844🍫Syag LchochmaParticipant
When the Steipler was not yet world renown he was collecting to have a sefer published. Two of the people who sponsored a sefer printing were childless. Shortly after donating this money, they had children. One of them named his first born daughter shira.
(not really significant but it sounded interesting.)August 5, 2015 12:25 am at 12:25 am #1094845
People are named Menachem because of the Shabbos that they are born, but I haven’t ever met anyone named Shekalim or Zachor. (I am not sure they don’t exist, I’ve just never met them.)August 5, 2015 4:49 am at 4:49 am #1094846Avi KParticipant
The comedienne Portland Hoffa’s parents were their first three children after the cities in which they were born. Some Israelis name their children after when they were born )Stav, Sivan, etc.). In Tanachic times parents gave their meaningful names. Perhaps “pyrple” is because they consider their child to be royalty.August 6, 2015 3:03 pm at 3:03 pm #1094847haifagirlParticipant
Good point! why is it that violet is a name but purple is “ridiculous” ?
Purple is just a color, but violet is also a flower. Flower names are common: Rose, Daisy, Hyacinth, Lily, etc.
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