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Category: baby name Beatrix

One Hit Wonders: Beatrix, Baker & Boone

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By Linda Rosenkrantz

Over the years, there have been hundreds of names that have rocketed onto the Top 1000 for one year, then just as suddenly disappeared, fading like shooting stars.  We’ve made a thorough search through these names, seeing what gems  we might find hidden among the oddball Metros, Councils and Dolls, the Jeps and Bunks and Schleys, which might merit a second appearance.

Two things to bear in mind: a lot of these names made their solo appearances soon after the Social Security list was launched, and so it’s possible that they might have enjoyed some previous popularity and were trending downward at that point.  And also, many of them ranked in the eight and nine hundreds, and so probably accounted for just ten or less newborns with those names.

It’s also interesting to scope out if there’s some historical reason for these singular appearances.  Wendell Wilkie, for example, was the 1940 Republican presidential nominee against FDR, accounting for the appearance of Wilkie that year, Tai Babilonia was the world figure skating champion when her name popped up in 1980, and Sable was the name of a character on the high-rated TV soap, The Colby‘s in 1986, when she was a one hit wonder.

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By Linda Rosenkrantz

We haven’t quite kissed 2013 goodbye yet, but we’re close enough to have gotten a pretty good picture of the year’s celebrity baby naming landscape, enough to pick out our personal faves—and to give you the reasons why.  Here are our Top 12 choices—some from A-list celebs, others who are not so well known—from the worlds of film, TV and sports.

Winnie RoseJimmy and Nancy Fallon went up to the attic to pick this vintage treasure. Turns out the name was chosen by the couple in honor of the lake where they frequently vacationed and even got engaged at: New Hampshire’s Lake Winnipesaukee, but, said Fallon, ‘Winnipesaukee’s a little long, Also, she’s a ‘win’ for us. He added that the Wonder Years connotation makes the name even better –“Winnie is the coolest girl on TV ever.”

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Nameberry 9 by Abby Sandel of Appellation Mountain

Neil Gaiman recently lectured on the future of reading and libraries and all manner of literary and imaginative things.

He didn’t utter a word specifically about names, but he’s bestowed many a memorable choice on his characters, from Coraline to Thessaly to Yvaine, Silas to Vandemar.

Gaiman did say this: “We must not attempt to freeze language, or to pretend it is a dead thing that must be revered, but we should use it as a living thing, that flows, that borrows words, that allows meaning and pronunciations to change with time.”

If language is a living thing, doesn’t the same hold true for names?

Some words endure with minimal alteration, and some names do, too.  But for every Elizabeth, there’s a Samantha – a name that feels rich with history, but is actually almost unknown until the nineteenth century.  Or Brooke, a name that feels established and sophisticated, but would have been out of place a hundred years ago.

Names should evolve, and they quietly do when we’re not noticing.  Take Beatrix.  Once a rare spelling variant, she’s now at her most popular ever – and gaining on Beatrice.

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For many name lovers, that passion was sparked by a name that jumped out from the pages of an early-encountered children’s storybook. It might have been as simple as Alice or Anne, Jo, Beth, Amy or Meg, as fanciful as Pollyanna or Amelia Bedelia, as memorable as Eloise or Fern, Madeline or Matilda– or even have been an attractive animal’s name like Celeste the elephant or rabbits Cecily or Jemima. It’s hard to pick a dozen best from all the possible choices, but here are our top 12 most adventurous:

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In this week’s Nameberry 9, Abby Sandel of Appellation Mountain demonstrates the endless ingenuity there is out there in coming up with creative baby names.

This week’s baby name news was dominated by tales of a mom who has agreed to let the general public name her baby in exchange for $5,000.  It turned out to be a hoax, but it raises the question:  Would you ever let another person name your child?

It’s an unthinkable transaction for most of us.  We have extensive lists of baby names carefully assembled and edited over the years.  I like to think that I could blissfully name eight more children, each with two middles.

Or could I?

Creative freedom in baby naming is here to stay.  Even parents who say they prefer the mainstream often choose names like Chloe and Noah, Avery and Jayden, possibilities that would have been quite surprising a few decades back.

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