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Subject: Re: Beatrix/Viatrix
Author: Anneza   (guest)
Date: May 17, 2004 at 12:53:12 AM
Reply to: Beatrix/Viatrix by beator
Meanings are difficult, aren't they? Look at Dante - there we have good old Beatrice guiding him through the various levels of Paradise, so she's acting as a viatrix; but she can only do that because she's already beatrix herself!

And, in spite of the popularity of Travis at present, my guess is that the overwhelming majority of parents down the centuries have had the idea of happy blessings in mind when naming their daughters Beatrice, not the idea of Life's Journey. So, what can we say about the meaning? What is the meaning of "nice"? We all know, until we consult a good etymological dictionary! Same with "silly". And nobody would claim that a silly idea is a divinely-inspired one on the basis of the word's history.

I'm the mother and the daughter of a Beatrice - my mother got it from her 19th-century relatives, who had copied Queen Victoria - who used it for her youngest daughter, I think. One of her large family, anyway! And I'd be amazed if the idea of travel ever crossed the royal mind, any more than the idea of blessings crossed mine! The meaning it has for me is: my mother, my daughter. Having said that, they are both wonderful people who love travelling ...

To take it a step further - what does Marilyn mean today? Plump, plain elderly ladies? Miss Monroe? Mary + Lyn? All three ... ? Not to mention Elvis and Errol. There's much more to meaning than etymology!

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