Category: baby boy names
by Abby Sandel
Congratulations to Storybook’s most famous couple on the arrival of their second son. Ginnifer Goodwin and Josh Dallas welcomed Hugo Wilson last week. The Once Upon a Time stars are also parents to son Oliver Finlay, and with the arrival of Hugo, might be among the best boy namers in Hollywood.
Hugo is a name with history galore, and literary ties, too. It’s the Number One name in Spain, and it’s big in Scandinavia, Australia, and the UK. The new Goodwin-Dallas baby is in good company, all over the world.
But Hugo is also at the forefront of an important trend. O ending names for boys are fast becoming go-to choices for parents after something just a little different. The sound is stylish and unexpected, but many of the names feel vintage, even traditional. They also work beautifully to honor Spanish or Italian roots.
Vintage baby names have been so widely used for so long that the parent in search of a boys’ name that’s both old-fashioned and fresh-feeling may have to search long and hard.
Given all this popularity, if you’ve been looking for a vintage boys’ name that feels fresh and new, you may feel frustrated. So we’ve done the searching for you. These 15 boys’ names are all well below the Top 1000 yet can work in the modern world. They’re distinctly vintage — some Biblical, some from ancient cultures, some international — yet feel surprising cool.
Our picks for old-school boys’ names that feel new again are:
If you look below the Top 1000 baby names on the US popularity list, you’ll find an awful lot of word names for boys inching up toward visibility. These are mostly names that didn’t exist a decade ago, but now the fashion for word names — nature names and inspirational names and tough-guy names and just regular word names — is inspiring parents to consider them more seriously.
You may be interested in finding a new and unique name for your son that is also easy to understand, pronounce, and spell. Or perhaps one of these word names has a special meaning for you — Arrow if you’re an archer, say, or Pike for a fishing enthusiast.
Or maybe you’re just curious about the really unusual names some parents are choosing these days. The hot new word names for boys include:
In this global culture, many of the same boys’ names are popular in both Europe and the US: Noah, Jacob, and William, for instance. But there are other names that seem to flourish there while going largely ignored here. Not every European name can make it in America, but here are ten we consider ripe for appropriation:
Some parents want their babies to be beautiful, some put an upbeat disposition first, while others wish most for an intelligent child.
If you’re interested in a name that means or conveys intelligence and wisdom, here are a range of choices for boys. (Of course there are wonderful choices in this vein for girls too, including the popular Sophia, name of the goddess of wisdom. But today is the boys’ turn.)
Aakil — This Hindi name means intelligent or smart.
Alden – This English surname, quietly but historically used as a first, means “old wise friend”.
Alfred – After nearly touching the bottom in 2013, Alfred — which means “wise counselor” — has regained nearly 200 places on the US popularity list. The name is Number 19 in Sweden and was discussed as an option for one of Britain‘s royal babies, so its profile is rising. Alfred was a Top 50 names until the early 1930s.
Boman – This unusual-but-accessible Persian name has a stylish sound and means “great mind”.