Why does Henry consistently rank as one of the top two Nameberry favorite boysâ names? (Finn is the other one.)
Henry has a lot going for it.Â Let us count the ways:
HENRY IS POPULAR, WELL-LIKED, BUT NOT EPIDEMICALLY TRENDY.
At #67 on the Social Security list last year,Â Henry was given to a little over 6,000 boys across the countryâas compared to almost 22,000 Jacobs.Â Â Henry was much more commonly heard in the past,Â having beenÂ #10 in 1900, 12 in the 1910s, 18 in the twenties, 25 in the thirties, then dipping to a low of 146 in 1994, after which it started itsÂ edge back up.
To pick out just a few amongÂ the many distinguished Henrys, there was explorer Henry Hudson, industrialistÂ Henry Ford; in political history there have been Henrys Clay and Kissinger, in literatureÂ Henry Fielding,Â Adams,Â James,Â Longfellow,Â Thoreau andÂ Miller, and other notables in the arts includingÂ Purcell,Â Moore,Â Fonda, Mancini, Winkler andÂ Rollinsânot to mention thatÂ historic string of English sovereigns, as well as pop culture icons from theÂ Henry comic strip to the OhÂ Henry! candy bar.
HENRY HAS CELEB CRED
Henry has been a Hollywood hit since atÂ least the early 1990s, when it was used by Meryl Streep, Martin Short, Â Dennis Hopper,Â Julia Louis-Dreyfus and others.Â More recently itâs been the choice ofÂ Heidi Klum andÂ Seal,Â Julia Roberts,Â Steve Zahn, Minnie Driver,Â Jack White andÂ Karen Elson,Â Norah OâDonnell,Â Rachel Weisz and, just a couple of weeks ago,Â Emily Deschanel.
HENRY HAS GREAT NICKNAMES
HARRY is currently huge in the UK, thanks to the combined power of the younger royal princeÂ (christenedÂ Henry) andÂ Harry Potter, while mysteriously remaining at a low point of #658 in the US.Â A nickname forÂ Henry since the Middle AgesâShakespeare used it as the familiar name of the matureÂ King Henry Vâ it has also long been used on its own, with the distinction of claiming one American presidentâTrumanâwhich Henry cannot.Â Other famousÂ Harrys include Houdini (bornÂ Erich),Â Bing Crosby (bornÂ Harry), Belafonte, Connick and Reasoner.Â In addition to theÂ Harry Potter franchise, itâs familiar through such titles asÂ WhenÂ Harry MetÂ Sally, DirtyÂ Harry, and Harry & the Hendersons, and as characters inÂ John Updikeâs âRabbitâ books (Rabbitâs given name),Â The ThirdÂ Man, To Have and Have Not andÂ Twilight. David Letterman, Richard Dreyfuss, Simon Baker and Billy Bob Thornton all have sons named Harry.
HANK is the all-American athlete ofÂ Henry nicknames, with a catchy, good-guy, vintage feel.Â Distinguished bearers include baseball greatsÂ Hank Aaron andÂ Hank Greenberg and country music legendsÂ Hank Snow (bornÂ Clarence) andÂ Hank Williams Sr (bornÂ Hiram) andÂ Jr., and the aforementiond H.Â Azaria. Kendra Wilkinson named her son Hank IV.