Category: baby name Jack


By Linda Rosenkrantz

Though we here in the U.S. have to wait until May for our official 2013 popularity lists to be revealed, some other countries manage to get their reports ready even before the year ends.  As these listings start to trickle in, I thought I’d fill you in on what we’ve received so far.


The most complete story to have come in is from Scotland, where the top names are Jack—for the sixth consecutive year–and Sophie, for the ninth. And if you think that Yanks are the only parents into unusual names, Scottish mums and dads chose about 7,400 different first names for their babies, with nearly 4,800 of them unique.

Some of the standouts among girls on the rise: Millie, Poppy, Georgia, Alice, Esme, Mila and Phoebe.  In the blue column, those climbing up include Logan, Lucas, Leo, Kai, Oscar, Brodie, Harrison, Murray, Callan, Hamish, Harvey and Struan.

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Nickname Names for Boys


by Pamela Redmond Satran

A friend of ours recently named his baby Jake.  Not Jacob, just Jake.

Why name the kid Jacob, he and his wife reasoned, when they weren’t really crazy about it and intended to call the little boy Jake all the time anyway?

Nickname names have become increasingly popular and fashionable for children of both sexes over the past handful of years, in both the U.S. and the U.K.  They’re evidence of a new informality along with a rebellion against putting a formal name on the birth certificate just because you’re supposed to.

Popular nicknames names for boys in the U.S. include the following, all in the Top 350:

Liam (6 — originated as a short form of William)

Jack (46)

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Nickname Names: How did Henry get to Hank?


by Linda Rosenkrantz

A Berry recently posted a request for a blog explaining the origins of some of the common nicknames—more properly diminutives or pet forms– for classic names that seem to be miles apart.  And of course we aim to please, so…..

There is a certain logic to it all, as well as some whimsy. The simplest road to a pet form is, obviously, by shortening it to its first one or two syllables, as in Di for Diana, Ben for Benjamin, Archie for Archibald and Eliza for Elizabeth.  Occasionally, a middle syllable will do the job, leading to Liz for Elizabeth and Xan for Alexander.  (Where this gets a little tricky is when the pronunciation of the base name has changed over the years—Richard seems to have been often pronounced Rickard at one time, resulting in the nickname Rick and his rhyming cousin Dick, with Dick then becoming so popular that the phrase “every Tom, Dick and Harry” became a euphemism for Everyman. Or a sprinkling of the letters in the name could lead, say, from Dorothy to Dot

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The Nameberry 9 by Abby Sandel of Appellation Mountain

I’ve often said that if our second child were a boy, he would have gone nameless.

Blame it on our preferences.  My husband and I planned to source family names for our children, without thinking about the imbalance.  We have tons of women in our family, with a rich list of interesting names.  The pool of masculine names is much smaller, and repeats, again and again, over the generations.  Naming a second – or third or fourth – son would have required a willingness to reinvent some antiques and reconsider a few imports.

Is Zbigniew wearable in the US?

But let’s say that we were open to finding a great name, not one with family ties necessarily.  Just a name that would serve our child well from infancy into adulthood.

Happily, there’s no shortage of those.

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By Abby Sandel of Appellation Mountain

It’s been a great week for welcoming boys!

Eric Christian Olsen, Kate Levering, Fergie and Josh Duhamel have all brought home new sons.  The parents have something in common besides making headlines.  Their naming style might be called modern classic.

On Friday, Angela wrote about some appealing and underused choices, like Patrick, Lawrence, and Lewis.

This category is different.  These are names that would have been considered unusual – maybe even strange – just a few decades back.  But today, they’re mainstream, go-to appellations.

Call them Goldilocks names.  There are buttoned-down classics like James and George, and daring never-heard-before ones like Pilot and Zuma.  Goldilocks choices are at neither extreme.  They’re just right, falling into the wide middle: very wearable, but probably not your grandpa’s name.  Sure, they might be this generation’s Larry and Jerry, Ronald and Keith.  But they make for great choices in 2013.

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