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Pocahontas McGinty? No, she Disney exist

IT IS seen as the ultimate example of the trend for parents to name their children after the latest movie character or celebrity.

But while we have had Kylies, Britneys and Chardonnays, it seems that the Scottish baby named Pocahontas is no more than a myth.

After a quest that has lasted several months, a society dedicated to debunking urban myths has revealed that there are no children in the country who have been given that name.

The case of the girl - supposedly born in the aftermath of 1995 Disney smash-hit film Pocahontas - is regularly cited as a prime example of what not to name your child.

Joel Conn, of the International Society for Contemporary Legend Research, was determined to get to the bottom of the tale after hearing a half-dozen versions from different people.

Using the Freedom of Information Act, he confirmed that no-one named Pocahontas has been recorded by the General Register Office for Scotland since at least 1974. The Office for National Statistics also revealed no record of anyone with the Native American name in England or Wales since at least 1944.

Mr Conn, a 31-year-old Glasgow-based solicitor, said: "I am not ashamed to say that I believed it was possible at first.

"Everyone had heard of kids called Kylie and Jason after Neighbours, but Pocahontas seemed too good to be true.

"Always someone who works as a nurse, primary school teacher or community worker is given as the source to give it some sort of credence. But the more I heard it, the more the surname and place varied and I realised it must be an urban legend."

Despite no evidence of her existence, Pocahontas McGinty has also earned mentions in at least two national newspapers in articles discussing unusual names.

Dr Mikel Koven, a lecturer at the University of Wales at Aberystwyth who is also editor of the journal Contemporary Legend, said: "This may have started out as a joke at the Edinburgh Festival that gets carried on.

"These things spread very quickly. But the fact a lot of people claim to know Pocahontas McGinty means it's not that far-fetched."

 
 
 

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