Referendum Fervour Saw Scottish Babies Given Independence-themed Names

March 12, 2015

Last year’s referendum to decide whether Scotland should become an independent nation or stay as part of the UK prompted a spike in babies being given curiously patriotic names, it has emerged.

According to official records released by the Scottish government this week, there were more than 20 children named either ‘Indy’ or ‘Indie’ in different parts of Scotland over the course of 2014.

The unusual names are being taken as attempts by families around the country to capture the spirit of the moment as Scotland considered the prospect of becoming an independent country. However, the naming by optimistic ‘Yes’-voting parents soon backfired with a majority of Scottish residents voting to remain part of the UK and against independence.

As well as the 20 or so very clearly independence-themed names, there was also one boy and one girl named ‘Freedom’ last year, which are similarly being interpreted as parental references to what might have been a national breakaway for Scotland.

Other names rather more tenuously being linked with themes relating to the prospect of Scottish independence include Scott, of which there were 83 added to the official records in 2014. Plus, there were two new Scottish citizens named Scot and Scotty respectively last year.

Meanwhile, the classic Scottish names William, Robert and Andrew all made a strong showing in 2014, with almost 500 new born children given one or other of those three names over the course of the year.

Interestingly, it appears that the Scottish referendum was not the only factor influencing children’s names across Scotland in recent months, with the names of characters from the Disney movie Frozen appearing high on the list of the country’s favourite names for new born girls.

Scotland’s referendum to decide its future was one of the biggest political stories of the year in 2014, with a remarkably large proportion of people eligible to vote turning out to do so. In the event, more than 2 million Scottish people aged over 16 voted against independence and defeated the pro-independence campaign with a 55.3 per cent to 44.7 per cent majority.

John Baird

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