Cool Name of the Week: Luke

A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away—there lived a brash young man with dreams of becoming a star pilot. My husband was hooked from the age of 6 on the tales of Luke Skywalker and Han Solo. So much so that we own the six Star Wars movies in every available movie format, along with a cavalcade of Star Wars figures new and old for him and my oldest daughter, who is equally intense in her love of George Lucas’ opus.

So when we talked about names for a potential future son, Luke was on my short list. I liked how the short name and the hard “K” sound at the end played nicely with my husband’s long, vowel-filled last name. And I loved that it was a character we both loved (I’m not quite as passionate, but I know my R2D2s from my R5D4s), that was such a strong, good person—much like my husband.

But he wasn’t having it. He felt that naming his son Luke would put him in the “supernerd” league, and make our name choice the brunt of too many jokes amongst our family and friends. And so, Luke got crossed off of our list.

It’s clear that not every Star Wars fan has those same concerns…Luke started a strong rise in popularity soon after the Star Wars movies started rolling out, and in the past decade or so (when the kids who grew up with Star Wars became parents themselves), it’s been consistently in the top 100 names—and is currently number 41.

Luke began as a Greek place name, meaning someone from Lucania. It was the name of one of the four New Testament authors, and also a few wild and woolly characters, including Luke Duke of Dukes of Hazzard and Cool Hand Luke from the classic Western.

But my guess is that most of the young boys named Luke have dads with light sabers in their closets. Would you name your child after a beloved movie or book character?

Photo: Pregnant woman via Ronald Summers/Shutterstock.com

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  1. by Heather Comer

    On July 9, 2012 at 7:57 pm

    Love the name! But there are more than 4 New Testament authors… There are 4 gospel writers, and Luke is one of those. ;)