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Unusual first name: Belena

Unusual first name: Belena

Posted: 16 Apr 2013 1:57AM GMT
Classification: Query
I have a mystery relative that shows up on censuses, in directories, death record with a first name of "Belena". This was also the name my father remembered her being called. I thought it might be an erroneous version of Belinda but find it odd that it would have perpetuated incorrectly so many times, with plenty of opportunities to correct the mistake. I didn't seem to find many Belindas in my search either. Does anyone know if this is a nickname? Anyone heard of this name?

Re: Unusual first name: Belena

Posted: 16 Apr 2013 8:28AM GMT
Classification: Query
If you would say where (and when) exactly in Ireland your Belena occurred, you might have a better chance of getting your question answered. My educated guess would be that the reasonably frequent Christian name Belinda is meant, if you are talking about Co. Cork. It was used both by Catholics and Protestants in Co. Cork.

Re: Unusual first name: Belena

Posted: 16 Apr 2013 2:28PM GMT
Classification: Query
Thank you for the response. I believe she was from Galway County but that is an assumption based on the rest of the family. She was born sometime between 1835-1845. I wanted to make sure this wasn't some nickname. For instance, I didn't know for a long time that Delia was a common nickname for Bridget and thought this could be something similar. I also wish I knew why she went through life being called "Belena". I think that it is on her tombstone as well!

Re: Unusual first name: Belena

Posted: 28 Apr 2013 9:56PM GMT
Classification: Query
Feel I must add a personal comment! Having suffered from having been saddled with the name Belinda I can assure you it is not reasonably frequent. In a long life I have met exactly two other Belindas - and I have been called a lot of things, many of them far from flattering and have never heard a whisper of Belena being a variation of the name. Not saying it wasn't in this case but it would have been very, very unusual.

Re: Unusual first name: Belena

Posted: 1 May 2013 11:54PM GMT
Classification: Query
Thanks for the comment, and it is helpful coming from a "real" Belinda! It seemed to make sense that Belinda was the closest thing to Belena and I've even tried saying it with some kind of accent to see if I could even make Belena SOUND like Belinda. I was hoping to find her birth record in some film that I recently viewed but didn't find anything. I think this may be a mystery I'll never solve.

Re: Unusual first name: Belena

Posted: 2 May 2013 7:25AM GMT
Classification: Query
As you say people remember clearly hearing the "B" this suggestion is unlikely to be of use, but if it were just written could someone have transcribed an "S" as being "B" - i.e.Selena? Another idea - I once met someone called Serica - the name of the ship her father was sailing on when she was born! People do do funny things with names - but proof is different from fantasy! Good luck anyway, perhaps you will find it somewhere.

Re: Unusual first name: Belena

Posted: 2 May 2013 11:13AM GMT
Classification: Query
Another stray thought! You say you think she was born in Galway and a date, but no full name. Perhaps it would be worthwhile putting her full name so if anyone ever came across anything that seemed to relate to that, they could tell you?
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