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Category: Australian baby names

boy-globe

We’ve still got five months to wait before we get the official word on what the top names across America were in 2009, but in the meantime we can console ourselves with the lists that have started to come in of the most popular names in various US cities, states and even individual hospitals, and in in other cities and countries around the world.

One thing seems clear: the romantic trio of Isabella, Sophia and Olivia is running a three-way race for first place in many areas of  the world, while Jack continues his reign in a number of English-speaking countries.

We’ve been looking  at the lists that have been released so far and have put together a selection (or hodgepodge) of some of the more interesting choices: top-ranked international names that are barely known to us, surprising choices that have popped up in unexpected places, and just plain noteworthy names–and we’ll be updating it as more results come in.

GIRLS

ANDELA  –  #2 in Serbia

AOIFE  –  # 4 in Derry, Northern Ireland

AURORA  –  #8 in Finland

CHARLOTTE –  #2 in Canberra, Australia

CHLOE  –  #1 in Sheffield, England and Queensland, Australia

DARYNA  –  #5 in Ukraine

ELLIE –  #1 in Derry, Northern Ireland

EMILIA  –  #2 in Finland

EVA–  #8 in Northern Ireland

EVIE–  #4 in Sheffield, England

ISLA — #2 In Aberdeenshire, Scotland

JOVANA  –  #4 in Serbia

KATIE –#1 in Northern Ireland

KAYLEE — #5 in Flagstaff, Arizona

LÉA  –  #2 in France

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australia

Even though Australian baby names are a lot like British names, they do also have their own distinctive flavor.  The blend of cultures Down Under and the strong presence of several enduring indigenous languages and groups have a powerful influence on Australian baby names (the complex Aboriginal naming traditions definitely deserve a future blog of their own).  Last year, for example, though Australia’s most popular list included Jack and Ella, Joshua, Ethan, Emily, Chloe and Mia, also high up on their list were Matilda, Isla, Lachlan (the name of Oz newspaper mogol Rupert Murdoch’s high-profile son), the Scottish-influenced Angus, and the nickname-name Archie.

Aussie heroes–from outlaws like Ned Kelly to poets like Banjo Paterson to politicians such as Prime Minister Geogh Whitlam–provide some interesting and adoptable namesakes.

Here are some from the world of sports:

EVONNE Goolagong
KARRIE Webb
KEL Nagle
KIEREN Perkins
LIESEL Jones
LIONEL Rose
LLEYTON Hewitt
LUC Longley

And nameworthy names from the show biz arena:

ANGUS Young
BON Scott
BAZ Luhrmann
CATE Blanchett
ELLE Macpherson
GUY Pearce
HEATH Ledger
HUGH Jackman
ISLA Fisher
JACINDA Barrett
KAHAHL
KYLIE Minogue
LOUISA Brammall
NAOMI Watts
NATALIE Imbroglia
NELLIE Melba
NICOLE Kidman
OLIVIA Newton-John
PORTIA De Rossi
ROLF Harris
RUSSELL Crowe
TONI Collette

And what names do these Aussie celebs choose for their own their kids? Austarbabies include:

ADELAIDERachel Griffiths
ALEXANDERNaomi Watts
ANGELICAGeoffrey Rush
AVAHugh Jackman
BANJORachel Griffiths
BINDI — Steve Irwin
CHARLOTTEJudy Davis
CHLOEOlivia Newton-John
CHRISTIANMel Gibson
DASHIELLCate Blanchett
FLYNNElle Macpherson
IGNATIUSCate Blanchett
KLAUSEric Bana
LILLIANBaz Luhrmann
LOUISMel Gibson
MATILDABryan Brown, Heath Ledger
MILOMel Gibson
OLIVEIsla Fisher
OSCARHugh Jackman
ROMANCate Blanchett
ROSIEBryan Brown
SAGEToni Collette
SAMUELNaomi Watts
SATINEJacinda Barrett
SOPHIAEric Bana
SUNDAYNicole Kidman
TENNYSONRussell Crowe

And there’s a whole lot more to Australian place names than South Australia capital city Adelaide. Here’s a selection:

ALBANY
ALLORA
ARARAT
AUGUSTA
BENALLA
BENDIGO
BOTANY
BURNIE
DARWIN
ELANORA
ESPERANCE
GALLAH
GRAFTON
GRIFFITH
HOBART
ISA
JANNALI
KALLI
KARRATHA
KILLARA
LINCOLN
LOGAN
MACKAY
MACQUARIE
MAITLAND
MILDURA
ORANGE
PERTH
RYDE
VICTORIA

We’d like to thank and acknowledge the imput of our Australian correspondent Alicia Polman, who alerted us to some interesting names and their backstories, and to the fact that “there’s more to Australian-esque baby names than Matilda and Jack.”

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