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Great A Baby Names for Girls

posted by: Abby View all posts by this author
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By Abby Sandel of Appellation Mountain

Heartbroken that Addison and Amelia are so popular?  Did your best friend just name her daughter Aria Alexandra, stealing two of your long-time favorites?  Never fear!  Here are some of my favorite A names for girls – and none of them currently rank in the US Top 1000.

Ariadne – In Greek myth, she helped Theseus defeat the Minotaur.  Top 100 choices Arianna and Ariana are derived from the same roots, but Ariadne is seldom heard in the English-speaking world.  But why not?  If Penelope can catch on, why not this clever heroine?

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New! First-Ever Berry Question of the Week

diamondsisters

We’re turning around the Question of the Week format, so that you ask the questions of us and of the general Berry population.

Looking for advice on naming your baby?  Negotiating a name problem with your partner or mother-in-law? Or simply have a larger name question you’d like to ask the crowd?  Send your question to pam@nameberry.com and maybe we’ll choose it for this column.

Our first-ever Berry Question of the Week comes from Lindy Diamond, a South African mother of two adorable little girls (that’s them in the photo) who’s expecting her third daughter and needs help in finding a name that fits her tight parameters.  Lindy writes:

“I have two daughters, with another one on the way in two months time – making me one week overdue for a three under three award! My first daughter is Ariella Jaime Diamond – we call her Ari for short. The second is Aerin Michaela Diamond, just Aerin at the moment.

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African American baby playing with the letter A

A names – those that start with the letter A – have become the most widely used in the U.S., given to over 10 percent of all babies, more than double the proportion of children who were given A names in the 1950s.

You can peg the popularity of A names to pure fashion, and definitely, A names ranging from the classic Abigail and Alexander to the trendy Addison and Aiden have been on the rise for a couple of decades now.  While this may be part of an overall trend toward vowel names, which are up across the board while most consonant-starting names are trending down, A is up the highest.

But there’s evidence that A names may be beneficial for your child in more substantial ways.  A study by researchers at Yale and the University of California-San Diego found that students whose names begin with the letters A and B earn better grade point averages than those whose names start with C or D.  And more law school students named Anna and Andrew tend to go to top-ranked universities like Stanford than those called Chris and Drew.

Even more significant, another study suggests that people with A names live longer – in some cases, as much as a decade longer – than those whose names start with the letter D.   Scary, but compelling if you want to give your child every advantage in life.

A names account for  20 entries on the girls’ Top 100, up from only five (Ann, Anne, Anna, Anita, and Alice) in 1950.  They are, in order of rank with their standing in parentheses, for girls:

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