(m) Hebrew, ‘God is gracious.’ It has been said,
in partial explanation of this name’s great popularity,
the name of John the Baptist was considered particularly
suitable for the baptismal ceremony. John was Scotland’s
most frequently given name for centuries, but it has lost ground.
There has been a certain amount of reaction against it since 1960
in all English-speaking countries, though perhaps it is the habit
of naming sons after male relations that is changing. As the use
of John diminishes, its other forms, such as Ian, Sean, etc.,
become more popular. Jonathan is looked upon by many parents as
a more fanciful form of John, although it is in fact a separate
name. Johns are still called Jack or Jock in Glasgow and elsewhere.
Jack is also often given as an independent name. Many bearers
of the name John have preferred to spell it Jon.
(m) Hebrew, ‘Jehovah has given.’ This has been
used in recent years as if it were a fanciful variation of
John. It was previously little used in Scotland. In the
Highlands it is used as the equivalent of Eoin, John
being used for lain.
To Scottish Christian Names