Abigail, an Old Testament name -- she was the wife of David, renowned for her beauty, wisdom, and prophetic powers -- that became a term for a maid in the early nineteenth century, leading to a fall from favor. Now, Abigail's back in a big way--it was Number 7 on the 2011 list-- liked for its slightly proper vintage charm.
Abigail has been the name of two of our First Ladies -- three, if you count the character on West Wing -- and Abby has been the name of a host of television and movie characters--she has been seen on screen in everything from Mad Men to The Lovely Bones.
Abigail's biblical roots and her buttoned-up image combined with cute, accessible nickname Abby make her popularity understandable. But whatever style currency Abigail had over the past decade is beginning to flag. There may be a lot of reasons you still might want to choose Abigail for your baby girl, but fashion shouldn't be one of them.
If you like Abigail but want something fresher, you may consider such other Biblical choices as Lydia and Priscilla or names popular in Revolutionary Era America that have been neglected in recent years, such as Susannah and Eliza.