Mockingjay Character Names and their Meanings

Character Names and their Meanings – Supporting Female Characters

effieEffie Trinket:
Effie Stephanidis is a popular Australian comedy character that exploits Greek stereotypes. A trinket is any flimsy item that looks pretty, but has little value or substance to it. Effie Trinket is such a person, who is unintentionally annoying, superficial and lacking in substance. She is interested in her own career growth while being warped in a mentality of ‘better’ or ‘worse’ districts. She values superficial etiquette over real character. She dresses outlandishly, dying her hair pink, and has her pet expressions which she utters in a characteristic, affected accent.

The primrose, also known as the primula vulgaris, is a common wildflower that grows across Europe. It has mild colors and an understated beauty. Primroses are perennial plants, meaning that they endure all seasons, just as Prim endured the hardships of war and starvation. The primrose flower is the first wildflower to bloom, as spring approaches. Just as the primrose heralds spring as winter fades away, Primrose was an inspiration to Katniss during moments of hopelessness during the 74th Hunger Games, when it seemed to her that it was only a matter of time before she was killed. Katniss decided to fight and try to win for the sake of Prim – thus, Prim symbolizes the turning of the moods – the seasons within the mind of Katniss. The primrose flower also has healing properties, and is used for making healing teas. Primrose also has a talent for healing. She treats coal mining accidents in the Seam, rescues war victims during the rebellion, and dreams of becoming a doctor.

Rue is a girl from the farming districts, who reminds Katniss of Prim. Rue has the name of a medicinal plant, just as Prim does. Like Prim, she too is petite, young and with an excellent knowledge of healing plants. However, the herb rue also represents sadness and regret. The rue has symbolized regret and melancholy in everything from the Bible, to Shakespearean plays. Katniss has to live with this regret, as she fails to protect rue, and she is speared to death. In Mockingjay, she credits Rue with teaching her and for giving her a purpose in life.

Character Names and their Meanings – Katniss’ Prep Team

Cinna is the head stylist of Katniss’ prep team. He sympathizes with Katniss and wants her to win. He consistently tells her that he believes in her and that she will win. He designs a mockingjay costume for the 75th Hunger Games, which is a clear act of defiance, for which he is beaten and arrested by Peacekeepers, and then executed. In history, Lucius Cornelius Cinna was consul of Rome during the first century A.D. He conspired to overthrow the dictator Lucius Sulla. He did this to end authoritative rule and bring Julius Caesar to power. When Julius Caesar became absolute ruler, he did his best to oppose this authoritative rule as well.

In the Hunger Games, Octavia is part of Katniss’ prep team. In Mockingjay, after Cinna is arrested by Peacekeepers, Octavia, Flavius and Venia are taken hostage by District 13, and tortured. In Roman history, the title ‘Octavia’ refers to many famous women. Among them is Claudia Octavia, who was an aristocratic and noble wife to Emperor Nero. She was exceedingly popular among the masses, but Nero found her too boring, mistreated her, and then had her executed. Another Octavia, Octavia the Younger, was the fourth wife to Mark Antony, when he had an affair with Cleopatra. His third wife had been Fulvia. In The Hunger Games, Fulvia is the name of the secretary to President Snow.

In ancient Rome, the title ‘Flavius’ meant ‘blond’. Its female equivalent is Flavia. This has therefore been adopted by a number of historical figures. As with his historical namesakes, Flavius, part of Katniss Everdeen’s prep team, is in charge of her hair. He is not blonde, but has mostly orange curls, and wears a purple lipstick. When the prep team is tortured in Mockingjay, Flavius, the only male of the three, seems the most fearful, trembling constantly even after being rescued, medically treated, cared for.