• Grace A. Johnson

Name of the Week: Margaret


Well, I've hem-hawed all last week about December's first Name of the Week, and of course I've been hem-hawing about whether or not I should do this particular character's name now or closer to Bound and Determined's 2021 release.

As you can probably tell, I've decided to share with y'all the story behind the name Margaret--one of the key characters in Bound and Determined!

I'll to keep this short and the spoilers down to maybe one or two. 😉

Margaret is a very interesting name, believe it or not. Especially in the way I'm using it for Bound and Determined. It has many variants, many nicknames (some of which are kind of strange), and two separate meanings in the same name.

Margaret all started out in Latin--which, per the word margarita--is more than a little obvious. The Latin name, Margarita (you so saw that coming, didn't you?), actually comes from the Greek μαργαρίτης (margarites). The word means "pearl," and it goes even farther back into an Indo-Iranian language. The name was popularized by Saint Margaret, who was martyred in the 4th century in Antioch.

Even today the name is popular, thanks to people like Margaret Mitchell, Margaret Thatcher, and several queens in Europe throughout the last several centuries. We all likely have at least one Margaret in the family tree.

I don't have any Margarets that I know of, though.

But wait. Didn't I just say that it's a family name?

Well, it is. A variant of it, anyway.

My great-grandmother's name was Margarite, which is more closely related to the Northern European Maragreta and Margreet, the Latin Roman and Greek Margarita, and the Danish and Dutch diminutive Grete/Greet. My granny went by Grete for most of her life, I believe, which is a popular nickname in Europe, whereas we in America/England have Meggy, Peggy, Maggie, Midge, and others as nicknames.

And that's just a few of the many, many, many variations and diminutives of Margaret there are.

I said something about separate meanings, didn't I?

I did. And I was talking about the French form Marguerite--pronounced like Margareet or Margarite. I use Marguerite as the basis for my character's name, as she is French and Anglo-Norman in origin. Therefore, my Margaret doesn't go by Maggie or Mae.

She's Daisy.

Marguerite is in fact the French word for "daisy." The French word is of no relation to the Greek word, but the names themselves correspond. Funny how that is, huh?

When I first created Margaret Sharow, she was just Daisy. I had a face and a personality just begging for that name, and from there I chose Margaret as her given name. Believe it or not, Daisy isn't the only character who is a "Margaret." My minor character Marjorie from Held Captive would find that her name is another variant of Margaret.

Intriguing, eh?

Well, I hope y'all enjoyed this little glimpse into the origins and meanings of Margaret. Lord knows that I wanted to share some excerpts and spoilers...but we'll save that for another day, aye? You can always find some sneak peeks in my earlier blog posts, take a look at the inspiration behind BAD (along with some of my other stories) on Pinterest, and stay up-to-date on my writing progress by signing up for my newsletter! Just enter your email at the bottom of the page, and you'll receive my monthly newsletter and get notified every time I post here on my blog!

Merry Christmas!



(Update: Yeah...some idiot thought that today, Tuesday, December 1st, was Monday. I'm not pointing any fingers, but we've all been thinking it...)

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