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Need a good strong female mythic name!
April 20, 2012 9:10 AM   Subscribe

Everyone loves to do it: help me name my new kitty!

I have one cat, Samhain, who was a wild, abandoned stray that found me on Halloween a couple years ago and came to stay on as family (short-term named for the holiday and it stuck...full name is actually Sir Samhain Dastardly-Bastard, bringer of doom).

We are finally getting him a sibling: shelter kitty currently named Brunswick. She's the perfect sibling! They look to be the same long-haired breed, except where Samhain is a pure black male, [new kitty] is a pure white female.

But while Brunswick is kind of a cool name, it doesn't seem to suit her kittenish, high-energy playfulness. I would like to stick with a theme of either a celtic name, a goddess name...something kind of mystical.

Names we've thrown out so far include top-runners, Freya (which I sort of like because of the necklace story—could get a neat collar to fit that) and Azura (a goddess in Skyrim). But you guys are great at cat name suggestions, so I would love to get some more ideas to see what fits her best! We get to bring her home early next week. :)
posted by Eicats to Pets & Animals (44 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
 
The obvious thing that comes to mind is Boudica.
posted by Tomorrowful at 9:14 AM on April 20, 2012 [1 favorite]


She looks like a Boudica to me.
posted by Faint of Butt at 9:14 AM on April 20, 2012 [1 favorite]


Ha!
posted by Faint of Butt at 9:15 AM on April 20, 2012 [1 favorite]


Siobhan?
posted by Night_owl at 9:16 AM on April 20, 2012


Morgan (after Morgan le Fay - witchy, mystical and up to no good!)
posted by bunderful at 9:16 AM on April 20, 2012


kittenish, high-energy playfulness

Devil's Dandruff?

White Lady?

Cocaine?
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 9:18 AM on April 20, 2012


Samadhi
posted by katypickle at 9:22 AM on April 20, 2012


If you want to do opposites, Imbolc or Brigid?
posted by jeather at 9:23 AM on April 20, 2012 [2 favorites]


If one is Samhain, the feast of the winter solstice, then the other should be Lunasa, the feast of the summer solstice. Their colouring even matches the theme!
posted by LN at 9:23 AM on April 20, 2012 [14 favorites]


Pangur Ban after this charming Irish poem:

I and Pangur Ban, my cat,
'Tis a like task we are at;
Hunting mice is his delight,
Hunting words I sit all night.

Better far than praise of men
'Tis to sit with book and pen;
Pangur bears me no ill will;
He, too, plies his simple skill.

'Tis a merry thing to see
At our task how glad are we,
When at home we sit and find
Entertainment to our mind.

Oftentimes a mouse will stray
Into the hero Pangur's way;
Oftentimes my keen thought set
Takes a meaning in its net.

'Gainst the wall he sets his eye
Full and fierce and sharp and sly;
'Gainst the wall of knowledge I
All my little wisdom try.

When a mouse darts from its den.
O how glad is Pangur then!
O what gladness do I prove
When I solve the doubts I love!

So in peace our tasks we ply,
Pangur Ban, my cat and I;
In our arts we find our bliss,
I have mine, and he has his.

Practice every day has made
Pangur perfect in his trade ;
I get wisdom day and night,
Turning Darkness into light.'
posted by mermayd at 9:24 AM on April 20, 2012 [5 favorites]


And you could call her Luna for short!
posted by LN at 9:24 AM on April 20, 2012 [5 favorites]


I looked up the trickster goddesses category on Wikipedia. Mohini might work. Furrina is perhaps a little too apt.
posted by Johnny Assay at 9:24 AM on April 20, 2012


What a beauty!

I like Lalita, "She Who Plays". Incarnate of the goddess Parvati.
posted by Specklet at 9:25 AM on April 20, 2012 [1 favorite]


P.S. the poem Pangur Ban was translated from the original Irish Gaelic. "Ban" means white, so it is a good name for a white cat.
posted by mermayd at 9:26 AM on April 20, 2012


Taking bunderful one step further, Morgan le Fur?
posted by It's Never Lurgi at 9:28 AM on April 20, 2012 [3 favorites]


I was just coming in here to suggest Panguar Ban (Pan for short). Particularly apt if you've seen this movie.
posted by WidgetAlley at 9:28 AM on April 20, 2012


Serafina, after Serafina Pekkala the witch queen in Phillip Pullman's His Dark Materials triology, and after the late beloved cat of a friend of mine.
posted by sianifach at 9:28 AM on April 20, 2012


Iris.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 9:30 AM on April 20, 2012


Morgan le Fur is awesome :) But I'm not sure if that will work due to a family friend with that name (not le Fur, obviously). Otherwise, Lunasa is very intriguing...I love the yin/yang effect of the names. But keep the suggestions coming! It will have to win majority of the family.

Oh, and before anyone suggests it, I think Banshee is out (unless we find she has a meow that truly warrents the name).
posted by Eicats at 9:42 AM on April 20, 2012


Athena, virgin goddess of craftiness, war, etc? Seems appropriate for a playful white kitty :)
posted by krakenattack at 9:44 AM on April 20, 2012


If one is Samhain, the feast of the winter solstice, then the other should be Lunasa, the feast of the summer solstice. Their colouring even matches the theme!

If you want to do opposites, Imbolc or Brigid?

Samhain is the cross-quarter day between Lunasa and Yule, aka Halloween. So the opposite on the Celtic wheel of the year is Beltane. Timely and appropriate, as Beltane is just around the corner.

That said, I do like Pangur Ban (white I recall means "white clay") as a name for a white cat.
posted by ottereroticist at 9:46 AM on April 20, 2012 [3 favorites]


Ghost!
posted by ThaBombShelterSmith at 9:53 AM on April 20, 2012


Guinivere means "white ghost." So do lots of variations on the name, from Jennifer (modern English) to Fionnabhair (Irish Gaelic).
posted by infinitywaltz at 10:03 AM on April 20, 2012 [1 favorite]


I don't think it's as good as some of the suggestions you've already gotten, but "Levana" is Hebrew for both "white" and "moon" and it's kind of a pretty name.
posted by fingersandtoes at 10:07 AM on April 20, 2012


Ooh I like Beltane, Bel for short.

Or you could call her The Morrigan. No, not Morrigan. THE Morrigan!

And there's also Lilith.
posted by stompadour at 10:07 AM on April 20, 2012 [1 favorite]


Oona! Queen of the fairies, er, fluffies.
posted by Katine at 10:13 AM on April 20, 2012 [1 favorite]


Has to be Nemain, the Irish Spirit of the 'Frenzied Havoc of War'.
posted by WinnipegDragon at 10:21 AM on April 20, 2012


Asmira, Holy Avenger? (actually that whole wikipedia of Magic the Gathering names is chockfull of awesome mystical names)
posted by Katine at 10:40 AM on April 20, 2012



If one is Samhain, the feast of the winter solstice, then the other should be Lunasa, the feast of the summer solstice. Their colouring even matches the theme!


Unfortunately, Samhain isn't the feast of the winter solstice. It's an autumn festival, signalling the end of the harvest season and the beginning of the "dark half" of the year. Beltane is the feast that signals the beginning of the "light half" of the year. Thus it, and not Lunasa/Lughnasadh, would be the "opposite" of Samhain in that sense.

I think Beltane (also spelled Beltaine) would be a lovely name. And Lugh is a male's name, anyways!

Morrígan is another possibility. She's a figure from Irish mythology, often referred to as the "phantom queen." The Morrigan was the goddess of battle; she would often appear in the form of a black crow flying above the battleground.
posted by pecanpies at 10:41 AM on April 20, 2012


Dang, I really need to preview. Saw the comments about Samhain, but totally missed that somebody had already suggested Morrigan.
posted by pecanpies at 10:41 AM on April 20, 2012


It's not celtic necessarily, but when I think of Halloween and witchery and kitty-cats, I can't help but think of Agnes Bowker, which really isn't a bad name for a cat.

But Azura is brilliant, too.
posted by mibo at 10:45 AM on April 20, 2012


How about Ino, the queen of Thebes who would become "the white goddess" in Greek mythology? (cuter and easier to pronounce than Leucothea)
posted by argonauta at 10:54 AM on April 20, 2012 [1 favorite]


Morrigan Furchild.
posted by timsteil at 11:20 AM on April 20, 2012 [3 favorites]


Honestly, I think that if your cat already has a name, you have to respect that. She may already know her name, so if you do, you should call her by it.

A cat moved in, turned out that she had been living with a family down the road (who had two small boys - she was very timid) and you know what they'd named her? Fluff. That's right, Fluff. We had to call one of our cats Fluff. But it was her name.

Another cat moved in (this one was looking for more of an intellectual connection) and her name, as it turned out, was Flash. I used to tease her by calling her Flush, instead. She always pinned her ears back and said it wasn't funny. That's what cats think of you if you know their name but won't use it.
posted by tel3path at 11:22 AM on April 20, 2012


tel3path: her current name isn't really a known name to her. When the shelter takes in strays they always assign them a name (guessing it helps them instead of referring to "white cat #2" or something like that, and also gives a little personal touch when they advertise the available animals for adoption). But this kitty has only been in the shelter a couple of weeks, was previously a stray, and I with the high load of animals cared for by the staff, I don't think name recognition is an issue yet.
posted by Eicats at 11:34 AM on April 20, 2012


If you do call her Freya, her nickname can be Fray. A kickass strong female from the Whedonverse, future-dystopian edition. Brunswick even has her eyes.
posted by feral_goldfish at 12:07 PM on April 20, 2012 [1 favorite]


But I reckon she looks a bit more like a Beltane. In which case Little Miss White-on-White's nickname could be Bela.
posted by feral_goldfish at 12:21 PM on April 20, 2012


I am responsible for helping my friend place 9 kittens in forever homes. Amazingly enough, my kitties brother's name is Frey! He's an all black kitty, like his brother Malcolm. Eartha is a Snowshoe (tuxedo mommy, Siamese daddy.)

I like Luna as well, since the moon is white, etc.

Either way, your new kitty is beautiful, may you have lots and lots of yummy fur smelling sessions, cuddles and nose kisses.
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 1:01 PM on April 20, 2012


I love Freya. I think you should stick with it.
posted by pineappleheart at 1:17 PM on April 20, 2012


Widdershins.
posted by sciencegeek at 1:50 PM on April 20, 2012 [1 favorite]


This is such a stereotypically beautiful cat, so white with long hair, that I think she is a Russian beauty.

A Russian beauty is blonde, with skin so fair that you can see the marrow in her bones. In a culture which has and had a lot of superstitions around hair - it goes without saying that she has long hair.

I believe your cat is an incarnation of Vasilisa the Beautiful. Vasilisa is also a survivor who comes to good in the end, because of both beauty and skill.
posted by tel3path at 2:05 PM on April 20, 2012


I also came in to suggest Beltane! Ostara (Spring Equinox) is another good option.
posted by deborah at 8:06 PM on April 20, 2012


She's gorgeous. I second Brigid.
posted by corvine at 5:29 AM on April 21, 2012


Thanks, everyone! New kitty came home yesterday and is a happy, playful little purbox and seems to be loving it. The current cat is even adjusting better than I expected. The humane society confirmed that the name Brunswick was from the bowling ball because she was found stray at the local bowling alley. While a cute idea and good connection, I really appreciate all of the suggestions for something better than being named for a bowling ball! I especially loved Morgan le Fur—but unfortunately, a we have a member of the family with that first name, so it would be kind of weird. I also really loved the idea of Beltane, with the opposing holidays and all (small worry she would be shortened to Bella and then people would think it was from Twilight: le horror!)

After my son's complaining "why can't she have a normal name, like Sam or Lucy?", I thought, sure: Lucy Fur! ha! It has the dark connotations as Samhain sometimes does, but also actually means of the morning star.

But alas, after all the good suggestions and considerations, majority rule went with his initial suggestion of Azura. :) Ah well, tis a good name and the moniker of ruler of dawn and dusk fits her beauty!
posted by Eicats at 7:26 AM on April 25, 2012


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