Meaning/History
Usage
Pronunciation
Famous Bearer
Personal Impression
Other
1
The Flemish reality show mentioned in the description revolves around the retired Flemish soccer player Jean-Marie Pfaff (b. 1953) and his immediate family, the most notable of which are his wife Carmen (b. 1956) and their three daughters Debby (b. 1975), Kelly (b. 1977) and Lyndsey (b. 1978). The child named Keano that was featured on the show, is the eldest son of Debby and her husband Nicolas Liébart (b. 1980; his surname is sometimes erroneously spelled as Liébaert).

Also, while Keano contributed to the popularity of this name, he is not the first bearer of the name in the Dutch-speaking world. In the Netherlands, the earliest known bearers of the name were born in 1994, which is a decade before the birth of Jean-Marie Pfaff's grandson. 1994 also happens to be the year in which the hugely popular American film "Speed" was released, which was directed by the Dutch director Jan de Bont and starred Keanu Reeves and Sandra Bullock in the lead roles. As such, it is quite likely that Keanu Reeves is ultimately the inspiration behind the name.

Dutch parents may possibly have changed the -nu in Keanu to -no because -nu and its pronunciation is too reminiscent of the Dutch word 'nu' meaning "now". Keanu might visually also have been too similar to Kenau, which is a rare Frisian feminine name that has also become a Dutch term for a courageous woman, due its (in)famous bearer Kenau Simonsdochter Hasselaer (1526-1588). Finally, the fact that names ending in -u (when the preceding letter is a consonant) are foreign to Dutch culture probably played a role as well: prospective parents might have thought that having the name end in -o would work better, because such names are well-known and commonly used in the Netherlands (mostly inspired by Frisian, Italian and Spanish names, which tend to end in -o).

Sources used:
- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/De_Pfaffs (in English)
- https://nl.wikipedia.org/wiki/De_Pfaffs (in Dutch)
- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jean-Marie_Pfaff#Personal_life (in English)
- https://nl.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jean-Marie_Pfaff#De_Pfaffs (in Dutch)
- http://www.meertens.knaw.nl/nvb/naam/is/Keano (in Dutch)
- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Speed_(1994_film) (in English)
- http://www.meertens.knaw.nl/nvb/verklaring/naam/Kenau (in Dutch)
- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kenau_Simonsdochter_Hasselaer (in English; be sure to read the "Legacy" section)
- https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/kenau#Dutch (in English)
- https://www.vandale.nl/gratis-woordenboek/nederlands/betekenis/kenau (in Dutch)
Lucille  6/14/2019

Comments are left by users of this website. They are not checked for accuracy.

Add a Comment