Update on Chinese name for Emmaline
So... we've been wrestling over and rejecting several dozen possible Chinese words for a given name for Emmaline. According to Ding family custom, our two boys thus far are named 明哲 (míng zhé) and 明隽 (míng jùn). The character 明 (míng) is particular to this generation of Dings, inasmuch as my brother and I share a common middle character in our Chinese names (兆/zhào). So for Emmaline we simply had to choose a third character to append to 丁明 (dīngmíng).
For Emmaline, we've finally agreed on 雯 (wén). And for those of you without Chinese character support in your web browsers, here's her full name in gif format:
You can click on each character to see a dictionary entry for it.
The character “雯” (wén) literally simply refers to “cloud patterns, coloring of cloud.” It is composed of the character for rain (雨) on top of the character for culture (文). It's also a homonym for the word which means culture, 文. As such, the given name implies elegance and a sense of culture.
At least, that's what I'm told. I'm just a simple ABC: American-Born Chinese. For all I know, it's all just sweet words to a dull ear. But I like how it sounds, nevertheless, even if she'll primarily be known (for the time being) as 妹妹 ("meimei", Chinese for little sister). She'll also be "小雯" ("xiao wen" = little wen, a nickname) or "雯雯" (wen wen).
Trivia: these links, respectively, are the number of results that google reports for each of our kid's Chinese names: Matthew (415), Andrew (55), and Emmaline (8).