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Name of the Day: Seraphina

July 24, 2009

seraphinaHope you’re in the mood for a really girly name today!

Seraphina/Serafina is one of those ultra ultra feminine girl names.  It’s extremely hard to picture this name on a tomboy.  I’ve never actually been a tomboy myself, per se, but I’m usually not into really girly things.  I’ve only gotten a manicure twice in my life (both times were right before weddings), I despise most shades of pink, and I hate doilies.  Side note:  my mother has 67 doilies in her house.  She claims that the affinity for doilies “skips a generation.”  Like diabetes, I guess. We’ll have to watch our kids for both of those tendencies — maybe if we can catch it early…

And yet, in spite of the frills and lace, I can’t help but like Seraphina.  When I try to picture a Seraphina in my mind, I picture either a dark-haired, exotic beauty, or else a very pale blond ethereal type.  Maybe that’s just the cultural “angelic” stereotype kicking in.

There have been a couple of threads over at BNaBBT about this name, and here are some of the descriptors that people gave for Seraphina/Serefina:  soft, delicate, fairy-like, whimsical, frilly, fantastical, lovely, overly frilly, and crazy girly.

So, as you can see, there were a few non-believers.  ;)  Most names are like that, I suppose; you can’t please everyone all of the time (yes, I am talking to myself, here).

I think the thing that wins me over about Seraphina is the meaning.  “Fiery ones.”  I picture a throng of angels with six fiery wings and blazing swords, guarding a crystal throne.  I’m sure this  mental picture is not theologically correct, but I still like it.

Possible Nicknames
Sera
Seren
Fina
Fifi

from AskOxford
Latinate derivative of Hebrew seraphim ‘burning ones’, the name of an order of angels (Isaiah 6:2). It was borne by a rather shadowy saint who was martyred at the beginning of the 5th century in Italy, Spain, or Armenia.

from Behind the Name
Feminine form of the Late Latin name Seraphinus, derived from the biblical word seraphim which was Hebrew in origin and meant “fiery ones”. The seraphim were an order of angels, described by Isaiah in the Bible as having six wings each. This was the name of a 13th-century Italian saint who made clothes for the poor. As an English name, it has never been common.

from NameBerry
Serafina:  A name so lovely it’s worthy of an angel.
Seraphina:  The highest-ranking angels, the six-winged seraphim, inspired this lovely name. It was brought into the spotlight when chosen by high-profile parents Jennifer Garner and Ben Affleck.

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7 comments

  1. Love love love the name. Love it. Legit, one of my top top favorites. And I think that if the nickname was “Finny” it could most certainly work on a tomboy (unless maybe it’s too much of a boy’s nn?)….
    But I also for some reason really like “Sera” spelled that way, even though I know the “real” spelling is Sarah/Sara. It just feels different in a good way. Sara/Sarah/Sera is too common anyway (and I’m not a “spell it differently to be unique” person) so I like Seren or Finny.
    Anyway, my only problem is that it’s too close to Sapphira, which is another one of my top favs, so I could never use both. Bummer.


  2. I love Seraphina. (Though I prefer Serafina.) Serafina makes me think of an Italian toddler — Dark, curly hair, dark eyes, long eyelashes, chipmunk cheeks, the widest smile in the world, a little chubby, short, but the most adorable thing in the world. Yet, it’s still a bit too cutesy for me to add it to my list.


  3. I love Seraphine. I don’t like Seraphina as much, but its still a nice name either way. Love the picture you posted.


  4. I prefer Seraphine, like Sebastiane… Seraphina sounds slightly clunky to me… I also love the meaning of “Fiery ones”. I always look out for names with meanings related to fire, and Seraphine is one of the best of them ^^


    • Also, I forgot, but I always thought a fun nickname would be Rafi ^^ Especially if you want a not-so-girly alternative…


  5. Hello,
    I just had a baby named Seraphina a few weeks ago, and came across this site as I was looking for images of Saint Seraphina. I adore this image you have used, is it part of a bigger picture? Do you happen to know the artist so I can look it up. Many thanks


  6. Just want to say our daughter Seraphina is now 3 and completely lives up to her name. Fiery, indeed! And has long dark straight hair as you imagined, with a determination and fire that would terrify any adult! I think your description is actually quite acurate, theologically. The Seraphim are 6 winged angels always depicted in red (as oppossed to the Cherubim depicted in blue) and in the Bible, carried God in the heavens, shielding his face and feet. Beautiful! Just like our fiery little angel! Tomorrow is also her feast day in the Catholic church, although St. Seraphina has a terrible and tragic story!



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