Posts Tagged ‘
baby names ’
Friday, January 31st, 2014
James Van Der Beek and his wife Kimberly welcomed their third child—a daughter—earlier this week. Joining big sister Olivia and big brother Joshua is brand new baby Annabel.
Annabel is a bit more offbeat than her siblings’ top ten baby names—her name is falling just below the top 500. The name means loving, and its big claim to fame is Edgar Allan Poe’s classic poem, Annabel Lee. The name was at its most popular back in the 1880s, when it neared the top 400, but it’s currently on a major upswing. And since it’s in stile close to top names like Isabella and Adeline, it may reach its pinnacle of popularity in the next few years.
No word from the Van Der Beeks about which middle name they chose. My picks would be Lee (I’m a big Poe fan at heart), plus names like Rose, Maeve, Margaret or James (that’s the new hot middle name for girls!).
What do you think of the name Annabel? And what middle name would you pick with it? Get help finding the perfect name for your baby with our Baby Name Finder, or like In Name Only to keep up with the latest in baby names.
Image: Kim and James Van Der Beek by Helga Esteb / Shutterstock.com
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Celebrity Baby Names, Must Read
Thursday, January 30th, 2014
The 1940s saw us enter—and win—a world war, then soldiers came home to start the biggest baby boom in U.S. history. The top names of the era are likely the names of your parents or your grandparents. Odds are you have a James (or a Jimmy or Jim) and a Mary in your past.
But while James and Mary still do relatively well, you’ll find other chart toppers that have fallen by the wayside—and may be ready for a comeback. Here are the top 1940s names you might want to consider for your kiddos.
Many of the top 100 baby names in the 1940s don’t feel fresh enough yet for their comeback—perhaps our sons and daughters will help bring stalwarts like Linda and Barbara back into vogue. But there are a few names that may be ready for a second shot at the top spot.
Rosemary was one of the classic nature names, for the herb that symbolizes faithfulness. It hit its peak in the #91 spot back in the 1940s—but after decades of decline, is finally starting to stage a comeback. (Probably because it makes a lovely and less-expected way to get to “Rose.”)
Carol (with or without an “e”) has a special place in my heart—it’s the name of my mother. And given that Carol was the 5th most popular name and Carole the 57th back in the 1940s, odds are you have a relative with the name, too. Both versions have fallen out of the top 1000, but perhaps a little of the popularity of the more traditional Caroline (currently #80 in the U.S.) may rub off on these shorter forms?
Judith has been on a downward spiral since it hit the top 10 in the 1940s—and it’s barely in the top 1000 right now. But the name has an interesting meaning—praised—and a cool new pop-culture association, in the doomed daughter of Walking Dead‘s Rick and Lori. Jude makes a cooler short form than the old-school Judy.
Elaine, a form of Helen, was a top 50 name back in the 1940s—it means “shining one.” One would have thought that Seinfeld’s Elaine could have brought it back into vogue, but it’s still on the decline. (P.S. It’s a cool way to get to the uberpopular nickname Ellie.)
Boys names don’t have the turnover you see in the girls’ side—many of today’s top names, like William, Charles and the like, were top 100 back then, too. But here are a few gems that haven’t been as popular of late.
Keith was just entering its heyday back in the 1940s, when it charted as the 100th most popular name. It’s a Scottish name that means “woods,” and is currently residing at the edge of the top 400.
Lee has become a popular middle name for girls, but I think its meaning, “meadow,” and its simplicity make it a nice contender for today’s boys—either front and center or in the middle spot.
Dennis, a top 20 name back in the 1940s, lost its mojo the second the rough-and-tumble comic book character Dennis the Menace made its debut. But the name, a French take on Dionysus, deserves another look.
Timothy hit its peak not long after ranking as the 63rd most popular name back in the 1940s. It fell out of the top 100 five years ago—but given its Biblical pedigree and its classic-but-not-overused status, it’s worthy of another look.
We’re almost done with our Throwback Thursday series! Check out the previous posts and let me know what your favorite decade was.
And if you’re still on the baby name hunt, check out the Baby Name Finder for some guidance—or send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. And don’t forget to like In Name Only on Facebook to keep up with the latest in baby names.
Image: 1940s woman by Everett Collection/Shutterstock.com
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Baby Name Stories, In Name Only, Must Read
Thursday, January 23rd, 2014
On paper, Downton Abbey should be a must watch for me—so I don’t know why I’m coming so late to the game. British + Maggie Smith + drama + history = perfect show in my book. Plus, as a name nerd, there’s lots of names to love on the female side of the cast. (Alas, they stuck with some pretty standard and popular fare for the boys, like Thomas and Robert.)
Granted some names, like Violet and Rose, started on the road to popularity before the show aired. But there are still some names that are under the radar—and they’re names that could fit into the current passion for old-fashioned names. Try these on for size:
Cora is the mother of the three Crawley daughters, an American woman who married into British nobility. Her name means “maiden,” and was already launching a comeback before the show aired—it’s currently the 155th most popular baby name for girls.
Mary was the most popular name for girls for centuries, but in recent decades it’s been on the decline. Maybe Lady Mary Crawley, the eldest daughter in the wealthy family who lords over Downton Abbey, can help restore its luster.
Edith is probably my favorite of the sisters’ names—it means prosperous, and after a sharp decline over the past 50 years, it started climbing back up the charts as soon as the show started airing.
Sybil is the youngest and most modern Crawley daughter, who ends up marrying one of her family’s staff members. Her name means prophetess, and hasn’t been in the top 1000 in decades. Perhaps it’s ready for a comeback now?
Daisy and Ivy are a pair of servants, each with a lovely botanical name. They’re both currently top 200 names in the U.S., and top 100 in England.
Isobel is the Scottish variant spelling of the ever popular Isabella, which means pledged to God. And unlike the #3 name Isabella, Isobel hasn’t been in the top 1000 in nearly a century.
Anna has been a top 100 baby name for over a century—and it’s the name for one of the stalwarts of the Downton Abbey staff. It means grace—and is a perfect choice for the kind and honorable lady’s maid Anna.
What’s your favorite Downton Abbey name? Share it in the comments.
If you’re still looking for baby names, try our Baby Name Finder!
Image: Downton Abbey by Dutourdumonde Photography/Shutterstock.com
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Baby Name News, In Name Only, Must Read, Top Baby Names
Monday, January 20th, 2014
Actress Laura Linney and husband Marc Schauer welcomed their first son earlier this week, and they chose a pretty cool moniker for their boy: Bennett Armistead.
Bennett is a variation on Benedict, and means blessed. It’s been on a slow and steady rise from its low point in 1975 (when it was the 943rd most popular baby name)—it’s currently about to break the top 200 names in the country.
Armistead is an intriguing choice. It’s a surname name that means “hermit’s place,” and hasn’t ever been in the top 1000 in the U.S. Early in her career, Laura Linney starred in a mini-series based on author Armistead Maupin’s Tales of the City—which may have been the inspiration behind her name choice.
Overall, it’s a really classic, weighty name—it feels like the name of a classic author or playwright.
What do you think of the name Bennett Armistead? Cool—or a little too stuffy? If you still need baby name inspiration, check out the Baby Name Finder, or like In Name Only on Facebook to keep up with the latest in baby names.
Image: Laura Linney by Jaguar PS/Shutterstock.com
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Baby Name Stories, Celebrity Baby Names, In Name Only, Must Read
Friday, January 17th, 2014
Reader Tiffany already has a perfect girls’ name all lined up—except for the middle name.
We were all settled on Lily Patricia, after my husband’s grandmother. But we found out over the holidays that Patsy wasn’t the nickname we assumed it was but her actual given name and she hated the name Patricia! Her name was Patsy Lou but I’m not wild about Lily Lou either. Our last name starts with a G, so we have a hard time with middle names that start with vowels as it occasionally creates awkward initials. We like old-ish sounding names (are toying with Frederick and Theodore on the boy’s side). We’re not finding out the baby’s sex until it is born (due in May)!
Oooh, I love Lily Patricia—it’s too bad that your husband’s grandmother doesn’t! Patsy and Lou don’t strike quite the right chord with Lily, so we definitely do need to move in another direction. What about another name that gives you that “Pat” start in homage to his grandmother? I really love the idea of a Lily Patience or Lily Patia.
You could also choose a name that has the same meaning as Patricia, which means “noble.” There’s Freya, the name of an ancient Scandinavian goddess, or Adeline or Alice. (I know you were concerned about the vowel in the middle, but I don’t think LAG is as bad as LUG or LOG.)
Or you could just go with an old-fashioned name that suits your style. I like Lily paired with Rose or Azalea for a super floral, feminine and old-fashioned name. Or try Delphine, Theodora, Beatrice—all up-and-coming vintage names that flow beautifully with Lily.
What other names do you guys think would suit Lily? Share them in the comments! And don’t forget to get a little help with your own name hunt by checking out our Baby Name Finder, and liking In Name Only on Facebook.
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baby name, baby name advice, baby name dilemma, baby name help, baby name ideas, baby name meaning, baby names, girl baby names, girls' names, middle names, old-fashioned names | Categories:
In Name Only, Must Read