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popular boys names ’
Thursday, November 7th, 2013
Were the 1970s long enough ago that the top names of the era deserve another look? Top girls’ names like Jennifer and Lisa may be a little too overdone to make a comeback now—and top boys’ names like Michael and Christopher never exactly go out of vogue. But the age of disco does have a few names in the top 100 that might be worth a second glance.
Kevin didn’t exactly drop too far from its pinnacle in the 1970s. It was #13 back then, but #67 now. The Irish name means handsome—and is a nice break from the Celtic Aidens and Dylans.
Jeremy, on the other hand, has fallen mightily from its peak in the 1970s—it was often a top 20 name, but now, this name that means “appointed by God,” is well below the top 100.
Gregory means vigilant—this #29 name in the 1970s has fallen to the top 300. I kind of like it in lieu of the equally classic Gabriel. Gregory’s a saint’s name and the name of legendary actor Gregory Peck.
Craig was the #56 baby name in the 1970s. But this name, which means “from the rocks,” has had a rocky time since then—it’s been on a precipitous fall from grace since the early 1990s. I like it in place of Caleb or Carter.
Shane is a real “cowboy” name, thanks to the film. It’s on a long, slow slide currently, after being the #60 name in the 1970s. Perhaps the fact that it’s been in a number of modern hits, including The Walking Dead, may give it a new lease on life.
Angela was red hot in the 1970s—a top 10 baby name all the way. I’m seeing it as an alternative to the uberpopular Amelia. What do you think?
I’m a little sad to see the name Tracy (the 1970s 24th most popular name) fall so far—my sister was given the variant spelling Tracey back in the 1970s. My mom seemed to know how to pick names at their pinnacle of popularity! Tracy’s now fallen completely out of the top 1000, though it could make a lovely name for a boy, too—think Tracy Morgan.
Dawn was the perfect popular name for the post-hippie 1970s—and it’s no wonder it was the 26th most popular name. It fell out of the top 1000 at the dawn of the century, but might make a sweet middle name, if nothing else.
Monica was the perfect name for the Friends character who seemed to run the whole group—it means advisor. It was in the top 45 back in the 1970s, but these days, it’s hanging around in the top 500.
Melanie means dark, and it’s held pretty steady in the bottom of the top 100 ever since it hit #56 in the 1970s. It’s most famous as the name of Scarlett O’Hara’s best friend/rival from the classic Gone With the Wind.
What do you think? Any of these 70 names worth a comeback? If you still haven’t found a baby name you love, email your question to me at email@example.com, or check out our Baby Name Finder for more help!
Image: Disco chick by Nemanya/Shutterstock.com
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In Name Only, Must Read, Top Baby Names
Monday, October 7th, 2013
Actress Jaime King gave her brand new son a name that’s pretty similar to her own. She and husband Kyle Newman welcomed a baby boy they named James Knight Newman.
James is one of the most enduringly popular baby names, having never left the top 20 baby names within the past 150 years. It means “supplanter,” and it’s connected to another uberpopular name, #1 Jacob. It’s so timeless, it’s been the name of two of Jesus’s apostles, of numerous royals, of American presidents, and countless bold-faced names. (It’s even become popular as a middle name for girls, at least within the A-list celebrity set!) James and Jaime are both variants of Jacob—Jaime is the Spanish version, while James is the English.
They went a little more offbeat in the middle with the name Knight. It’s a noble title for the armor-clad warriors of yore, like King Arthur’s Round Table companions. I think it lends the name a little chivalrous note, don’t you think?
What do you think of Jaime King’s choice? Would you pair a common name with a more offbeat middle, or should they have gone classic in the middle as well?
Image: Jaime King by s_bukley / Shutterstock.com
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Celebrity Baby Names, In Name Only, Must Read
Monday, July 8th, 2013
Nameberry has a list of July-themed baby names up on their site right now (definitely worth checking out if you’ve got a baby on the way over the next month). And it reminded me of one of my absolute favorite baby names, Julian.
The Latin name is a cooler take on Julius (aka Caesar!). It means youthful, and has been on a slow and steady upswing, ever since John Lennon chose it for his son nearly half a century ago—and it currently sits at number 53 on the U.S. chart. (It’s even more popular across the pond.) And thanks to that, it seems to have a very British vibe (just perfect for a baby born the same year as English royalty).
It’s been a celebrity baby name favorite, picked by people like Bob Marley, Robert De Niro, Jerry Seinfeld and Lisa Kudrow. Of course, it has its slightly more wicked side—it’s also the name of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, who is currently holed up in the Ecuadorian embassy in London, avoiding arrest for an alleged sexual assault in Sweden. (Not exactly the kind of guy you probably want to name your baby boy after, am I right?)
You can shorten Julian to Jules—or follow the lead of one mommy blogger and make it Juju. (I prefer Jules myself.)
Julian pairs nicely with a short and sweet middle name—I like it with names that continue the softer sounds of Julian, such as Snow, Leo, Henry or Louis.
What do you think of the name Julian? Is it one you’d consider for your son?
Don’t forget to like In Name Only on Facebook to keep up with the latest in baby names!
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Thursday, May 9th, 2013
The top baby names in the country were released today, and while there isn’t a whole lot of change in the top 10 baby names (still lots of A-names for ladies, and Irish root names for the boys), there are some names that are quickly rising to the top of the list. The biggest mover overall was Major, a Latin boys’ name meaning “great,” which moved up a mammoth 505 places to #483 this year. I loved it in Catch-22, though it was part of a farcical name (Major Major Major). For girls, the top mover-and-shaker was Arya, which jumped 298 places this year (on top of the 200 it jumped from 2010-2011), putting it at number 413 overall. The name is a Sanskrit word that means “noble,” and has an equally popular variant, Aria, which moved up more than 60 spots into the top 100.
Messiah is currently the #4 mover and shaker, having moved up nearly 250 spots in the past year alone. (And it wasn’t even in the top 1000 before 2005!) It’s an interesting choice, which seems to follow a mini trend of choosing “powerful” royal/leader names for boys—also on the rise are names like King, Prince, and Kingston.
Raelynn and the sister spelling Raelyn were both on a major uptick, thanks to Season 2 Voice contestant RaeLynn. It’s been new on the list since 2008.
Here are the top 5 names on the rise for boys and girls:
Keep watching for even more analysis of the top 1000 baby names in the country—and follow In Name Only to keep up with the latest in baby names! (P.S. If you need some baby name advice, feel free to drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org!) Check out our Name Game to tell us what other names you love—or love to hate!
Image: Baby names by Amir Ridhwan/Shutterstock.com
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Monday, January 21st, 2013
What other choice would there be for today? My girls have spent a lot of time over the last few days talking with me about why Martin Luther King is so important—a talk which brought us to all kinds of injustices that people have fought against and won, from the right to vote here to equality for everyone. We’ve even done some research to find out how they would have been treated back then, as people of Chinese descent, if they were in the South—and it turns out, in some places, they would have had to sit in the back of the bus and use “colored” water fountains and schools. I’m feeling very fortunate today for Martin Luther King’s influence.
Martin is a Latin name that means “warlike,” which makes sense considering how fiercely he battled for equal rights (of course, he didn’t actually use violence to make his points, so he was a more peaceful kind of warrior). Paired with his middle name, Luther, MLK’s name is a homage to the creator of Protestantism, one of the other most famous Martins. It’s a name that’s been used for past presidents (Martin Van Buren), actors (Martin Sheen, Martin Lawrence and Martin Short), and of course, a director (that’s Scorsese).
Martin hovered near the top spot for centuries, but recently started a minor decline this century (it’s number 262 in the U.S. right now). But in other countries—particularly in Europe—it’s still in the top slots.
As a shorter name, Martin can pair well with either short or long middle names, depending on the length of the surname. I like it with Theodore and Jackson, or with short names like Charles and Grant.
What do you think of Martin as a boy’s name? Would it be one you’d pick for your son? If you need help picking out a baby name for your son or daughter, don’t forget to e-mail me at email@example.com.
Photo: Pregnant woman via Ronald Summers/Shutterstock.com
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Baby Name Help, Baby Name News, Baby Name Stories, In Name Only, Must Read, Top Baby Names