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Grace

Grace (f) Gaelic Giorsal. A decidedly Scottish name in
terms of modern usage. In the 1950’s, for example, the
name was bestowed far more often in Scotland than in any other English-speaking country. It had been popular in England and America in the nineteenth century, though
it was never quite popular enough to become one of the top twenty girls’ names. In Scotland, by contrast, Grace
was in 17th position in 1858, and still in 22nd position in
1935. Only then did it begin to fade, dropping to 70th
place by 1958. A 1975 count shows no trace of the name. Grace was introduced by the Puritans in the seventeenth century, along with other abstract virtue names such as Faith, Hope, Charity, Patience, all of which are now little used. Helena Swan (Girls’ Christian Names) quotes Charles Lamb on the subject of ‘saying grace,’ and comments that ‘the Puritan Fathers thought that there were other things to be grateful for besides food, and tried to show it in their daughters’ names.’
Grace Darling’s famous rescue of the Forfarshire sur-
vivors helped make the name popular in all parts of Britain
in the nineteenth century.

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