At the beginning of the year, we like to flip back the calendar a hundred years to see what the baby name landscape looked like a century ago. 1914 was a year in which World War I was in full swing, the year that President Wilson officially established Mother’s Day, Charlie Chaplin and Babe Ruth made their debuts, and saw the births of Dylan Thomas, Jonas Salk and Joe DiMaggio.But the babyname universe was relatively calm, as we can see by looking at the stable top dozen girls’ names. Here, they are, in order of their 1914 popularity, and what their status is today:
Biblical names have always been popular for boys, and their influence has only risen in recent years. The dozen boys’ names here all stand below the Top 20. Eight derive from the Old Testament, three from the New, with one – Michael – figuring in both. A half century ago, there were fewer biblical names on the boys’ Top 20 and more of those were from the New Testament. What hasn’t changed is that all these names are well liked and have deep roots, and will serve any boy well. The most popular biblical names for boys today, and the figures behind them, are:
The names Mary and Elizabeth were once so ubiquitous (there sometimes would be two in one family) that it was inevitable that a ton of nicknames and variations would evolve, not to mention international versions. Running a close third to those ultimate girls’ classics is Margaret, which means ‘pearl’ and which in fact shares a number of Mary’s pet forms. Here are just a few of Margaret’s offspring, and their recent bearers.
New year, new names. Let’s usher in Baby Names 2014 with the 14 newest names on Nameberry, drawn from ancient places and fresh words-turned-names, new-fangled spellings and refashioned surnames.
In movies, actors know they’ve reached the top when they get their names above the title; for opera singers the most coveted roles are those whose names ARE the titles. Here are twelve such names that would be perfect for the daughter of an opera buff—or for any classical music-loving parents.