Roald Dahl wrote some of the most magical stories. One of his most famous books is Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. The vibrant characters in this tale come with names perfectly suited to them.
Wonka is a fun eccentric character that Dahl described as having movements “like a squirrel”. Willy is a nickname for William, meaning “resolute protection”. Willy isn’t such an odd or whimsical name until you pair it with the alliterative and quirky Wonka. It’s such an iconic surname that I can’t imagine Wonka by another name.
A greedy little glutton, Augustus like most of the children in this story, is not too likable. Augustus is a Latin name, meaning “magnificent and great”, quite the opposite of this character. Augustus used to be looked at as a dusty, heavy name, but it’s now coming into fashion. I suspect the character of Augustus Waters, from The fault in Our Stars, will give this name a boost.
“Violet, you’re turning violet!” Violet is the obnoxious, gum chewing girl, that turns into a blueberry. Her name is so perfectly suited given her fate in the story. Violet is a lovely Victorian color and flower name that has been rising in popularity. Beauregard is one of my favorite guilty pleasure names.
Veruca still kind of scares me. If little girls are supposed to be sugary and sweet, it’s quite fitting that her last name is Salt. The epitome of a brat, her name in pop culture is now synonymous with a spoiled child. Veruca is a Latin name, with the unfortunate meaning, “wart”. There is a rock band called Veruca, which is the best use of this name that I can recommend.
Mike is a child obsessed with television, hence his surname which fittingly sounds like T.V. His character is really a social commentary on an average but bright child who’s potential is wasted away on clocking hours of television. I imagine that this is why Dahl gave him the familiar name, Mike. Mike is a diminutive of Michael, meaning “who is like God”.
Finally, we have our protagonist, Charlie. A kind boy in this sea of nasty children. Charlie is poor and ordinary prior to entering the Chocolate Factory. His name is familiar, inviting, and friendly. Charlie is a diminutive of Charles, meaning “free man”. Interestingly, Charlie as a given name is almost as popular with girls now as it is boys in the U.S.
I’m craving a chocolate bar now..