Category: Unusual Baby Names
Let’s look at the comebacks in the US charts this year. These aren’t names that have returned to the Top 100, or even the Top 1000. I’m talking about names that disappeared completely from the official name data – because they were used for less than 5 boys or girls each year – and reappeared in 2017.
Some of them have been away for a long time. Esper, which was given to 6 girls in 2017, was last recorded for girls in 1912 and for boys in 1926. Addiemae (or Addie–Mae – the data doesn’t record punctuation) hasn’t been seen since 1915, while Rayo and Union last appeared in 1923.
Many of the returners are variant spellings of popular names. They’re not common enough to make it into the charts every year, but odds are that occasionally enough parents will name their kid Ferne, Izabele or Keagyn to put it in the rankings.
By Linda Rosenkrantz
With Arbor Day arriving this week, our thoughts naturally turn to trees and their names. I was quite surprised to find that this holiday has very deep international roots: the first recorded celebratory plantation dates back to 1594, in the Spanish village of Mondoñedo, where lime and horse-chestnut trees are still planted annually. Modern Arbor Day was launched in another Spanish village in 1805, celebrated with festivals and feasts. The initial American commemoration took place in Nebraska in 1872, when an estimated one million trees were planted.
But I digress.
Looking at tree names and seeing the usual suspects that have started to be transplanted onto baby birth certificates—Maple, Ash, Aspen, Cedar, Magnolia, Juniper, Willow, Olive, etc., I got intrigued by some of their scientific names, and found, yes, a forest of lovely, undiscovered new possibilities. Here are some of the most usable—forming yet another category of secret nature names.
Now there are even more names on Nameberry! Last month, we added over 100 wild and wonderful new names to our database, all suggested by our knowledgeable members in this thread over on the Nameberry forums.
Today, we bring you Part Two, focusing on the second half of the alphabet: from Naoise and Nefertari to Zazie and Zindelo. We’ve had great fun researching all of these, and we’ve learned a thing or two, as well. In fact, many of these rare and remarkable names were totally new to us — so bravo, Berries!
Here are some of the most intriguing new additions this time around:
Our hottest baby names are those we see attracting an outsized share of attention from expectant parents, based on number of views of our name pages for the first quarter of 2018 compared with the same period last year.
These hot names may not show up on the popularity lists….yet. Most are unusual, even unique, but hit the right style tone for today.
If you’re looking for a rare, cool name for your baby and want to be ahead of the fashion curve, we recommend these 30 hot choices.
But not every vintage name deserves to be revived. We don’t predict the return of Hyman, for instance. Or Normal. Or Butler. Or Rube. Or Walburga. All these names were in use in 1918, given to at least five babies born that year, but are not used at all today.
They’re not alone. Nameberry analyzed Social Security data to discover over 5000 names that were given to babies a century ago but have now gone extinct.
Some of these names were obscure ethnic names, like Tsuyako and Mieczyslaw, that have faded from view as immigration patterns have shifted. Others are unusual variant spellings of names that have declined in popularity, like Ulysees and Lauraine. A few are usable, or even elegant.
But a lot of them are just plain funny to us now. We combed through the list to find the most hilarious of these extinct names from 1918 — and couldn’t whittle it down to fewer than 200. Here they are, in all their LOL-worthy glory, along with the number of sad children given each name in 1918: