Are you trying to find the perfect name for your impending little family member but keep coming across the same “trendy” lists? Do you find yourself awash in suggests that don’t exactly “roll off the tongue” or add 3
I know what you’re thinking and but no, Adam is not on the list.
Instead, these names come from real life scientists. Okay,
some most of them are dead now, but their names are both solid choices (IMHO) and have come from some of the greatest minds that, hear me out, have really helped people like you and me.
Also, I may have used a few of these with my own children. Did I think it would make them smarter? I mean,
maybe of course not.
5 Scientist Inspired Baby Names
Have you heard of a little thing called DNA? More specifically, its structure that forms a double helix? You probably learned all about Watson and Crick’s Nobel prize from your high school biology class. What they usually leave out is the incredible contributions of Dr. Rosalind Franklin’s work on X-ray crystallography.
As in, it probably wouldn’t have happened (figuring out the structure of DNA) without it.
This woman was underappreciated by her male colleagues and was still performing some of the most essential work necessary
It will come as no surprise that Rosalind was on the top of my list for my own daughter. The name is elegant and uncommon with an incredible history (from a scientific perspective). While we didn’t end up going with this particular spelling (blame my husband), the sentiment remains.
For the record, if Rosalind and it’s alternative spellings (Rosalyn, Rosslyn, Roslin, etc.) happen to blow up in the near future, I’m taking credit NOW. It was all me and you’re welcome. This, coming from one of the millions of Katies from the late 80s/early 90s.
If physics is more your things, why not consider the name Erwin (as in the famed Erwin Schrodinger?)
Schrodinger won a Nobel Prize for his work in quantum theory. In addition, Schrodinger’s equation allows us to calculate wave function of a quantum-mechanical system and how that changes over time. (I don’t really understand that either, but it sounds pretty important.)
This dude was busy developing theories for physics as it relates to all sorts of fields: genetics, statistics, ethics, other physics stuff (you know they have so many different sub-specialties).
However, the public at large most likely recognizes this scientist from the famed Schrodinger’s Cat thought experiment. Personally, I used to this was a psychological demonstration, but NO! It’s about quantum superposition. Due to a particular set of conditions having to do with radioactivity and poison, the cat within the box can be both alive and dead. While outside of the box (since we don’t know at any precise moment) the cat is neither alive or dead. Or something like that.
I think Erwin is a great name. It’s not too common and not too weird. I say go for it. Dead..or not dead cat and all.
Dr. Mae C. Jemison is next-level inspirational. She’s a doctor, an astronaut, a public speaker, an entrepreneur, a science education advocate, an engineer, and all around BOSS.
Dr. Jemison holds many prestigious accomplishments, the most well known as being the first African American woman to go to space.
While it may not be as “scientific” but still INCREDIBLY COOL, she was also on Star Trek! Did you know she holds nine, yes 9, honorary doctorate degrees (this in addition to her degrees in Chemical Engineering and, you know, being a Medical Doctor)?
If you want to like one of the cool kids, you can follow Dr. Jemison on Twitter.
Perhaps one of the greatest contributions to human health in the last century, Jonas Salk was the physician and virologist that developed that first polio vaccine. In addition to helping prevent thousands (and later millions) of polio cases, Dr. Salk never patented the vaccine, allowing it to be distributed as widely as possible.
Polio, which was a terrifyingly common less than a century ago, was an urgent public health crisis less than 80 years ago. It was deadly, killing thousands of people a year. Many more were left paralyzed. With the introduction of the vaccine, Polio was eradicated from the United States and later, most of the world.
Dr. Salk continued his scientific career, working on both influenza and AIDS research.
Eleanor “Barbara” McClintock makes the list because I can’t get enough geneticists in my life (particularly females!) She’s also a Nobel Prize winner and all-around awesome and inspirational human being.
Why was her work so exciting you might ask. And I would giddily answer: corn.
You would then likely be very confused, but “ear” me out (that was a corny pun, oh my god please stop me now, I just cannot help myself.)
Let’s get to the science. Dr. McClintock was researching chromosomes. Those supercoiled, tiny, sausage-looking collections of DNA that we can visualize under the microscope if we treat our samples just right. She studied the reproduction of maize (i.e. corn) to understand more about how that genetic reproduction works. She helped develop concepts that are integral to our understanding of genetics today including genetic recombination, the roles of both telomeres and centromeres, and the discovery of transposable elements.
Not Babs at all.
Terrible puns aside, it’s nice to find a name for your baby with more meaning than just the way it sounds. Do you have any science-inspired baby names that you like? Add a comment below.