[APG Public List] abbreviation [Ida]

Meredith Hoffman / GenerationsWeb mhoffman at generationsweb.com
Wed Mar 9 12:07:02 MST 2011


I was going to respond to Terry's query with a much shorter version of what Ida's so comprehensively covered here -- and also ask him to specify probable/known ethnicity and place and time period -- , so instead I'll only add a footnote to her statement that "a number of Jewish women are named Ida."

In the period of the great Jewish emigrations from the Austro-Hungarian Empire and the Russian Empire, one often finds Ida as an americanized version of the fairly common Yiddish name Eidel (the first syllable pronounced as a long "a"; also transliterated as Aydel and Edel), meaning "delicate" -- with a host of variations in Yiddish, including Edle/Etle, Ettel, Ittel, Itla and often going through a transitional "westernization" as Ettie, Etta, Ittie before morphing into Ida (which, as Ida notes, was popular in the early decades of the 20th century) or Ethel.

--Meredith

On Mar 9, 2011, at 2:44 AM, Ida Skarson McCormick wrote:

> On 3/8/2011 9:05 AM, Terry Parcel wrote:
>> 
>> Anyone know if Ida is an abbreviation for a woman's first name.  Hitting a roadblock.  Thanks.
> -------------------------------------------------------------
> 
> Terry:
> 
> Ida is a name in its own right, not a nickname in the usual sense. A nickname for Ida is sometimes Idie. That's what my Missouri-born grandfather called me, in his _Mark Twain Tonight_ accent, when he wasn't calling me Li'l Sistuh.  
> 
> Mount Ida was 2 sacred mountains in Greek mythology (present-day Crete and Turkey). 
> 
> Gilbert  and Sullivan's comic opera, _Princess Ida or Castle Adamant_ , opened in 1884. It was based on the 1847 poem "The Princess: A Medley" by Alfred Lord Tennyson. 
> 
> The name's popularity in the US was extended most likely because Ida Saxton was President McKinley's wife. 
> 
> Ida was very popular around the turn of the 20th Century but waned thereafter. You don't know how many people have told me they had an aunt or a grandmother named Ida. 
> 
> Over the years Ida got paired with  and merged with other names (maybe 2 people to name the baby after), such as Ida + Lee -> Idalee, Ida + Mae -> Idamae, Ida + Elaine -> Idalaine. The Idalaine I knew in college was called Idie.
> 
> Ida was frequently used by immigrant women for themselves or their daughters as a substitute for an Old Country name. Some immigrants carried over Old Country naming patterns but substituted American names beginning with the same or similar sound(s). 
> 
> Among the Norwegian immigrants, for example, an American name beginning with any vowel could be substituted for a name beginning with a vowel in Norway. I was named after my mother's schoolmate whose parents came from my father's parish in Norway. 
> 
> A number of Jewish women are named Ida.
> 
> There was a 19th Century Black feminist leader named Ida B. Wells-Barnett, for whom some Black women are named.
> 
> My name is pronounced with a long "I," but I respond, also, to EE-da in a doctor's office, restaurant, etc. That pronunciation is used by some named Ida, primarily Spanish speaking, I believe.
> 
> If you give us more information about the Ida you are inquiring about, such as full name, dates, location, and ethnicity, perhaps we can provide more specific help. 
> 
> See Wikpedia.com for some information about Mount Ida, _Princess Ida_, Ida Saxton McKinley, and Ida B. Wells-Barnett.
> 
> --Ida Skarson McCormick, idamc at seanet.com, Seattle
> 
> 

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