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1980s baby names

By Abby Sandel

What defines the 1980s?

There’s breakdancing and the Rubik’s Cube, legwarmers and Pac-Man, Prince William instead of Prince George. But how about the names?

Thirty years ago, the most popular baby names for boys included Jason and Joshua, Michael and Christopher, Andrew and Ryan – the dad names of 2015.

But rewind that VCR in your head to the names of movie characters, popular singers and actors, and more. A surprising number of those names have become among the most stylish choices for boys born today.

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New biblical boys

Yes, Noah is Number 1 in popularity and Jacob and Benjamin and Samuel are right up there too, but there’s a whole generation of new biblical boys—all as old as Methuselah—who are in line to challenge them. Some of them, like Amos and Abel, are usably familiar, while others—Hezekiah, anyone?—were considered too clunky in the recent past. Here are 12 Old Testament boy names that are moving up the popularity ladder.

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Arthurian Names Beyond Morgan and Merlin

arthurian baby names

By Bree Ogle, The Beauty of Names

My love for Arthurian myth is a strong one. I love the knights, the quests, the magic, and of course, the names. Arthurian myth features some of the most unusual names out there, from the knight Sagramore to Guinevere‘s half-sister Guinevak (originally the complicated Gwenhwyvach), but we never really hear much beyond Arthur and Merlin. Well today I will be shedding some light on the more unusual characters – and names – of the myths.

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Notable Namesakes for August

August namesakes

By Meagan, A Tulip by Any Name

August is here and that means warmer temperatures and soaking in the last sweet days of summer before school starts. Here are some inspiring names of writers, actors, and pioneers that all share August birthdays.

Tennyson – One of the most influential Victorian poets, Alfred, Lord Tennyson, was born August 6, 1809. Tennyson was appointed as Poet Laureate by Queen Victoria and served for 42 years. Tennyson is an English surname meaning son of Dennis. Actor Russell Crowe used this poetic name for his son, Tennyson Spencer in 2006.

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Nerdy Namesakes: Brilliant Biologists

posted by: Callmecalliope View all posts by this author
biology baby names

By Jackie at Namesplash 

As a recent biology grad, I have many an idol in the field. Would I deliberately name my child after one of them? Doubtful, but there is certainly a wide variety of wonderful names to choose from!

Charles Darwin- (Shown in illustration) English naturalist most notable for his contribution to evolution theory. Charles is a classic on the upswing, and Darwin is quirky yet dapper.

James Watson- One of the first, along with Crick, Franklin, and Maurice Wilkins, to recognize the double helical structure of DNA. I can’t see sweet and sophisticated James ever going out of style.Watson would make an interesting choice for the daring namer, and would fit in with popular surname names.

Francis Crick- Collaborated with Watson in the discovery of the double helical structure of DNA.Francis is dated, but could be usable, considering the vintage trend. I cannot bring myself to advocate for naming a child Crick!

Rosalind Franklin- An X-ray crystallographer whose X-ray diffraction images led Watson and Crick to their realization of the structure of DNA. Franklin died at the age of 37, and therefore did not share in the Nobel Prize awarded for the work. Her contribution to the discovery and status as a pioneering figure for young women in science continue to be recognized nonetheless. Rosalind would be a beautiful, sophisticated vintage choice. Franklin may be so old it’s new again.

Carl Linnaeus- (Also Carolus Linnaeus and Carl Von Linne) Known as the father of modern taxonomy. Carl is clean and simple; Linnaeus might be a bit out there. The female name Linnea, however, comes from the genus name for the twinflower, which is named for Linnaeus himself.Linnaea would be a usable alternate spelling.

Thomas Huxley- An English biologist nicknamed “Darwin’s Bulldog” for his public support of Darwin’s ideas. Thomas is a great classic, and Huxley would make a unique, modern choice, with Huck as a potential nickname.

Gregor Mendel- The “father of modern genetics,” Mendel is best known for discovering the laws of inheritance by studying pea plants. I find Gregor to be a darling international option. Mendel would be an unusual and very obvious reference.

Elizabeth Blackburn- A molecular biologist who has made important contributions to the study of telomeres and the telomerase enzyme. You can never go wrong with a sophisticated classic likeElizabeth, and it has such a great variety of nicknames!

Frederick Sanger– The winner of two Nobel Prizes, Sanger made important strides in the areas of protein structure and DNA sequencing. While Frederick is a handsome choice, Sanger is a bit much for me. But hey, there were 7 Sadler’s, 8 Satchel’s, and 7 Sender’s born last year, so maybe Sanger will appeal to someone.

Kary Mullis A major contributor to the improvement of the polymerase chain reaction, an important method for amplifying DNA sequences. Both Kary and Mullis would make unique, potentially unisex choices.

Matthias Schleiden A German botanist best known for his contribution to cell theory, along with Theodor Schwann and Rudolph Virchow. I think Matthias is a very accessible international option. It’s off the grid and fairly rare in the USA, yet it’s stylish and on-trend. With its connection to Matthew, Matthias suits the ‘different, not weird’ criteria perfectly!

I do regret the lack of females on this list. Of course, the list is not comprehensive, and I hope that with these ladies paving the way, there will be even more wonderfully-named women to add in the years to come!

Feel free to add your own favorite biologist’s name to the list!

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