Baby Naming Issue: Are Sophie and Josie Too Close? How About Sophie and Zoey? - Mood Baby


Baby Naming Issue: Are Sophie and Josie Too Close? How About Sophie and Zoey?

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Posted on: January 29, 2020

Dear Swistle, Is Josie too close of a sibling name for Sophie? What about Zoey with Sophie? Too similar? I like names that end in the long-e sound (ie, y) but don’t want to end up with names that sound too similar.


They’re too close for my own personal taste—but it’s easy to think of tons of families I know who have used two names that are closer than I’d like, and it isn’t the sort of thing that is causing shock-waves throughout our community.

It’s not just matching endings but also a matching dominant vowel sound: both pairings of names include a matching OH-EE. Calling one of those names from a distance, I think you’re going to get both kids answering.

Sophie and Zoey are even closer than Sophie and Josie, because S and Z are very similar: S is the unvoiced version of the sound, and Z is the voiced one. So then it’s more like two and a half points of overlap: half a point for the first sound, then the OH, and then the EE—and with the same number of syllables in the same order. Well, and if you’re saying Josie JO-see instead of JO-zee, then that matches an S sound with Sophie, though in a different part of the name.

But lots of people LOVE similar sibling names and do it on purpose! There are people who have an Ella and an Emma! A Noah and an Owen! A James and a Jane! An Emily and an Amelia! So if you love the names, and you love them together, and you won’t be bothered by other people’s occasional confusion, then I don’t think there’s anything wrong with going ahead with it. They ARE different names, they just SOUND similar.

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