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My first grandchild

Can probably get this to books!  My son and his wife had their first child on 24th October, a boy weighing 8lb 8oz.  They have called him Toby Finn.  (In case you think Finn is Irish my son describes this as 'a name with New Zealand connotations' - Tim and Neil Finn are from Crowded House and Split Enz and very strongly identified with the NZ music scene.)

So books with Tobys and Finns in please.  Shakespeare's Twelfth Night for Toby.  Not the most endearing of characters there.  There must be better ones.  

Cheers, Caro.

Congratulations, Caro.

As to Finn, I can only think of Trollope's "Phineas Finn". †I've always thought of Finn as an Irish name but a journalist I used to work with married a Kiwi and moved to NZ a few years back and has called her son Finn, so I'm interested to learn of the NZ connection for that name.

PS. †There's Uncle Toby in "Tristram Shandy".

Hearty congratulations! You must be absolutely delighted!

I see Sandra got in before me by nominating Uncle Toby from Tristram Shandy - a gentler character never existed inside or outside fiction. And as for Finn - I'll get in before everyone else and suggest Huckleberry.

And - w writer rather than a fictional character - Smollett's first name was Tobias, the shortened form of which is, of course, Toby.
Jen M

Congratulations, Caro - lovely news!

I can't think of any literary Tobys or Finns other than those already listed.  Toby is a popular name for pets here, although I am acquainted with a couple of teenage Tobys.  And I have a distant cousin called Finn - I've no idea why his parents chose the name.

There is the writer Gervase Phinn, who writes light-hearted autobiographical accounts of his time as a school inspector in the Yorkshire countryside.  I have never read any of these, although I do have one in my drawer at work, so may get around to it one day.

Thank you all.

Toby is a popular name for pets here,
 That is quite funny, Jen.  I was guessing the name this morning and was told it was a shorter version of a longer name, so I suggested Max, and my son said that was a dog's name.  Have to say I did think Toby was quite good as a dog's name, but I didn't mention that to my son.

I have been reading a book, memoir/biography, with a black American working down the Mississippi and thought that Huckleberry Finn might be a good complementary read and I just bought it the other day.  They seem to have a lot of classic fiction on sale very cheaply.  Had forgotten it had Finn in its name though.  Well, not exactly forgotten, just not connected the two.  

Cheers, Caro.

Caro, many congratulations from me too.
I can't yet recall any other Toby or Finn references but these days names frequently escape me.

Congratulations, Caro.

Didnít think I could help you with any titles till I remembered ĎFinn and Hengestí by JRR Tolkien. Not a novel but the notes of a lecture Tolkien gave on the story of Finn and Hengest told in Beowulf and in an Anglo-Saxon poem


And of course, there's Finn E. Gann's Wake by James Joyce.

Congratulations from me! Toby is the Punch and Judy dog, of course, not that it's not a good boy's name. I knew a boy called Toby at school who used to play with his various My Little Ponies at playtime. He turned out normal, thank goodness. Quite my favourite Toby is Sterne's Uncle Toby, mentioned above.

Wonderful news, Caro. I could only come up with a Toby in Miss Garnett's Angel by Salley Vickers. It is a lovely book and retells the story of a biblical Tobias too (which also includes a dog). I am going to go through my Georgette Heyers soon, quickly, because I have a feeling there is a Toby in one of them and that would resonate with you.

Well done to your son and daughter-in-law Caro. We found the excitement over the birth of our first grandchild just about reached the excitement over our first child!

As there is going to be a whale of a time over the new arrival how about Toby Dick Laughing

I think we need to find a Toby in Tolkein's writing.  My son has sent photos on a blog and I'm sorry to say they just made me laugh.  He looks like a little gnome or pixie or hobbit or similar!  (Fortunately my son was off the phone before I checked the photos or he might have been offended by my reaction.)

Cheers, and thanks everyone,


Congratulations Caro!

The literary Finn that springs to mind for me is indeed the Irish one - Finn McCool (Fionn mac Cumhaill), the great hero of Irish myth. I'm mostly familiar with him through the parodies in Flann O'Brien's At Swim-Two-Birds.

Toby is more difficult, though I think it's a name Hamlet was considering ("Toby, or not Toby? That is the question."). Coat got.

"Have to say I did think Toby was quite good as a dog's name, but I didn't mention that to my son."

It'd be a shame if your son was searching Google for Toby Finns and could only find your message on here though, eh!  So long as it works for our little boy too, then it's fine by me.  And he is starting to get a little round Toby-face, so I think his name will work out fine.

Btw (Do we use such acronyms here or are they a bit anti-literary?) one of the actors in the new Deathly Hallows film (adaptation of a book - still worthy of a readers thread?) is Toby Finn Regbo.

Scary how much my rambling post reminds me of my mother and you guys have already to deal with her so I'll leave you to it.


You mean you are just coming here to make one post and then disappear! †Like a troll! Huh. †I do not ramble: I am succinct and to the point.

Mr Regbo is a very pretty boy. †I'm sure your lovely little boy will †be too.

Love, Rod's Mother.

Caro wrote:
You mean you are just coming here to make one post and then disappear! †Like a troll! Huh. †I do not ramble: I am succinct and to the point.

Mr Regbo is a very pretty boy. †I'm sure your lovely little boy will †be too.

Love, Rod's Mother.

Caro, How wonderful to find your son's sense of fun matches your own. You are well blessed with three sons plus new grandson Toby.

Congratulations! I'm afraid I can't add anything useful, but hehe, the above posts have made me smile. Especially that you were caught Caro!

Slightly belated but Congratulations to you and your family from me too!!
Joe Mac

Congratulations, Caro. How nice for you!

I can recommend Patrick O'Brian's The Golden Ocean (or is it The Unknown Shore? Oh dear.) for a book with a delightful character named Toby, or perhaps Tobey.
I have a nephew by that name as well.

Caro, congratulations!  How exciting.  And to Rod too - thanks for joining us, please come back!

I think Toby is a great name.  It makes me think of the lovely actor Toby Stephens, son of Robert Stephens and Maggie Smith.  And looking back to an earlier post - there is indeed a hobbit in Lord of the Rings called Toby!  It's short for a longer name.  Tobias is a good biblical name (well, Apocryphal, but that counts, and as an art historian, I can think of several very lovely works of art depicting the story of Tobias and the Angel!).

Thank you.  (I was about to add names and then realised I would be bound to leave someone out, so it is a generic thank you.)

Joe, I read The Golden Ocean not too long ago and enjoyed it, but I can't remember the names of the characters at all.  Evie, I knew we hadn't learnt about Tobias when I went to church and Sunday School and your comment about the Apocryphal explains that.  They didn't want Tobias, perhaps too much Christian connotations for a non-religious family.  

What I must do is read Tristram Shandy; I have just been reading that Sterne wrote it after the death of his mother and while both he and his wife were quite ill.  I am not sure how you can write comedy in those circumstances.  

Cheers, Caro.

Hello Caro,
† † †I'm anusa, (the new girl). I just wanted to introduce myself and say, i hope you find the being a grandmother is wonderful becuase my mother does. She only loves her granchildern because she doesnt baby sit them she sees them in the morning and at dinner only. I'm their aunt, therefore, i am the one who is stuck with them, i do love them its not the i dont its just i cant stand them anymore. I need to concentrate on my IG's and its really hard. They have really young mothers (from 21- 26 years old), who still want to enjoy their lives, its not that i dont want them to its just that i wish they remember that they have children to take care of.

with all my love, Anusa

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