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A study of the naming patterns used for 648 children in 322 American families provided mixed support for a number of hypotheses that are derived from the propositions that namesaking (the naming of a child after another person) functions as advertisement of genetic kinship when it may be in doubt and as a strategy to procure future investment of resources from the father and other relatives. Males and second-born children with older sisters were more likely to be namesaked, and birth order was a significant predictor of the probability of being namesaked for males. First-borns were more likely to be named after a patrilineal relative, but there was no tendency for children born early in a marriage to be namesaked more frequently than children born after many years of marriage. Parents who themselves were namesaked were more likely to namesake their own children.