The Washington PostThe Washington Post

Pop culture baby names will never die

By Sophia Solano

23 May 2023 · 5 min read

Editor's Note

Choosing a name for a baby can be a daunting task. The Washington Post explores how some parents choose to name their children after characters from books, movies and TV shows.

For Ian Donaghy, J.R.R. Tolkien's "Lord of the Rings" is more than a literary epic. It's the first book series his father read, helping him pass his high school English course with a D so he could graduate from high school, join the military, instill a fondness of literature in his children and send them to college. It's the series that Donaghy's ex read as a bedtime story with her family as a child. It's the series for which their daughter, Eowyn - Tolkien's noblewoman warrior of the fictional kingdom Rohan - is named.

"We both had the idea that we wanted to give her an inspirational name of some variety, something that could be not necessarily shoes to fill, but you know, an ideal target," Donaghy says. "We wanted it to be empowering."

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