Bosnian female Names – The Trends

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Sara from the popular movie Esma´s secret

Today more about female Bosnian names in Austria. I´ve used the same categories as in the boy´s post.

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Names that appear in Austrian, but are not usual in Bosnia:

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  • In the girl´s section you can find a bunch of names, which only appear in Austria. Among these names are Ella, Emma, Elina, Lara, Jessica and Sabrina. None of these names have a Hebrew or religion connection, which was the case on the equal male category. This shows us that parents of girls are more willing to choose a name that has no relation to their country of origin or their religion.

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Names which are common in Austria and also in Bosnia:

This is the most popular category on the girl´s side. Particularly the name Sara stands out.

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  • Sara is the clear winner of my analysis. More than 15 % of all girls received this name. There are many reasons for this huge popularity. The name ranks on the highest places in the Top 10 of Austria (mostly in the spelling Sarah) and Bosnia-Hercegovina. Sara is also very international; she could come from almost every part of the world. Also it has the same pronunciation in both countries and it´s easy to spell. I would recommend Sara for all parents who don’t want to stand out and who are familiar in both cultures. But they have to keep in mind that their little Sara will likely have to share her name with many other girls.
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  • On the second place is Hana. The popularity of Hana has the same reasons. But unlike Sara, Hana had the state as a granny-name in the past. This state is changing. Due to her internationality and simple pronunciation Hana is very likely to be even more popular.
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  • Other names in that category are: Ena, Melisa, Lina, Soraya and Selina.

 

Names that are only common in Bosnia, but you can easily spell and pronounce them in Austria. They don’t appear too foreign.

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  • With the letter A: Names that start and end with an “A” always have enjoyed an immense popularity among the Bosnian population. A classic and a name, which is never out of date is Amina. The name is currently the most popular female name in Bosnia-Hercegovina. You can compare Amina with English classics like Mary and Elizabeth. They are always very fashionable. Besides Amina, there are also Ajla, Adna, Aida, Anisa, Azra and many more.
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  • With the letter E and I: Many of these names have a Muslim background. You can find Elma, Emina, Esma, Ilda, and Ilma in this category.
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  • Also represented are names with a consonant in the beginning.
    • Jasmina
    • Lamija, Latifa, Lejla
    • Medina, Merjem, Mirela
    • Nadja, Nejla
    • Samira, Sejla, Selma

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Names, which sound rather foreign in Austria or are hard to pronounce:

  • There are only few parents, who go with a traditional name for girls. They fear that their child will never be fully accepted and so they often choose the easier way and simply give an adapted name. This is very sad, because many names, which were common for centuries in Bosnian families, are slowly dying out. But still there are some brave people, whose children received names like Dafina, Hasra, Nadza, Sevzada and Zemka.
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Photo: http://pagophila.wordpress.com/category/filme/bosnien-h
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Bosnian male names in Austria – The Trends

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Today I would like to write more about the boy names in detail. I have tried to classify them in different categories.

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Names that appear in Austrian, but are not usual in Bosnia:

  •  There are only a few boy names that fit in this category. The only names, I have found in my list were Elias and Samuel. But both have Hebrew roots and they also exist in Muslim countries, only in a modified form.

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Names that are common in Austria and also in Bosnia:

  • Those are very popular. You can find names like Adem, Benjamin, David, Den(n)is, Emil, Ervin and Jakob in this group. I expect an increase of baby boys with these names. Particularly younger parents will embrace them, because they are the perfect combination of two different cultural backgrounds.
  • Ervin or Erwin, which is a very popular name among older men in Austria, is rarely used on babies by Austrians nowadays. But Bosnian parents are not discouraged to use it. So you don’t have to be surprised to find an 8 year old Ervin in elementary school and a 70 year old Erwin in a retirement home.

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Names that are only common in Bosnia, but you can easily spell and pronounce them in Austria. They don’t appear too foreign.

  • This is the biggest group. I have divided them in sub-categories.´
    • The”trendy” A-Names: Almost every tenth boy got such name. A majority of them has no or only a minor connection with real Muslim Names. There you can find names like Adin, Ajdin, Adnan, Alen, Aldin, Almin, Alvin, Anes, Amar, Elmedin, Elmir, Elvin, Eman, Emin, Eniz, Ermin and much more. They sound very similar and only few letters distinguish them. Many of them only base on Muslim names, for example based on Edin (Faith), people create “new” names like Eldin, Elmin, Elvin and so on. Most parents only care for a melodious name with an easy spelling and they don’t bother them too much with meaning and tradition.

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    • The “soft” boy names: Those are names, which sound very soft and feminine for foreigners, but which are popular and accepted in the Bosnian culture. In this category are names like Anel, Amel, Anes, Melis, Meris, Sanel, Semin and the probably the best know example Jasmin.

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    • The peculiar ones: I classify names in this category, if they are easily pronounceable, but sound somehow strange in German speaking countries. In this category are Din, Alladin and Elvis. Elvis was very popular, but I hardly believe that all Bosnian parents, who chose the name, were big Elvis-Fans. The connection with the singer was often rather accidental. Elvis fits in with all those names with the initial letters EL like Eldin, Elvin and Elvir.

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Names, which sound foreign in Austria or are hard to pronounce:

  • All names with the initial letters DZ like Dzelaludin and also traditional names like Ahmed, Hamza, Hilal, Ibrahim, Ilhan, Mahir, Mehmed, Muhamed, Ramadan, Nuradin, Mirza, Muris. This is a very small group, because most parents don’t want their kids to have names that sound too foreign. They also don’t want them to have problems with the spelling and pronunciation.