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The Frightening New Wave of Baby Names

violent baby names

It’s a tough world out there, and the new cadre of aggressive, sometimes violent baby names paint a grim picture of parents’ outlook for the future. Baby names inspired by guns and other weapons, by violent behavior, and by historical and mythical warriors are all on the rise – for girls as well as boys. Here, a look at the new frightening names and the numbers that demonstrate their power.  — by Pamela Redmond Satran with research by Esmeralda Rocha

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abby--double

By Abby Sandel, Appellation Mountain

Good things came in twos this week, as the baby name news was dominated by interesting sets of twins, and two new ends-with-R names for boys.

Let’s start with the letter R.

This past spring, the mainstream media picked up on a phenomenon we name nerds have long recognized: two-syllable, ends-with-N names for boys are big.  Whether we’re talking chart toppers like Aiden and Mason, or new inventions like Zennon and Dreyson, N has been the go-to letter for ending boys’ names in recent years.

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Hyperlocal is a word you hear a lot today. There’s hyperlocal news and hyperlocal food, hyperlocal weather and hyperlocal — yeah, baby names.

What are the name trends where you live? Which popular names ring through every playground and crowd every class list? What kinds of names are considered cool, and what names do you NEVER hear?

In my diverse liberal suburb of New York City, for instance, names that are ethnically distinctive and unconventional when it comes to gender identity are definitely cool. Names you hear a lot include Henry (there are three on my short block), Zoe, Izzy, and my younger son’s name, Owen.

Please tell us where you live to help put your hyperlocal baby names report in context. If you’re not comfortable revealing your exact locale, you can say “a gentrifying neighborhood of London” or “a prosperous town in Silicon Valley.” But something vaguer like “a conservative small town in New England” works too.

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