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Name Sage: Traditional Boy Names Needed

a Name Sage post by: Abby View all Name Sage posts
Traditional boy name

Sarah writes:

My husband and I are expecting our third baby on February 7. We have decided that we won’t find out the gender. We’ve already used the two boy names we have always loved for our two sons: Henry Hiram (often called Hal) and Joseph Magnus. Both names carry personal and religious significance for us.

If this baby is a girl, we are considering Mary Grace. Whenever I tell people we’re thinking about the name Mary, they wince and seem to really not like it! They say it’s too common, even though my kids do not know one little girl with the name and very few people of any age with the name anymore. We also like Elizabeth and Lydia.

I have a gut instinct, however, that this next child will be another boy. My husband and I are so stuck! Nothing seems right.

I like Thomas, James, Patrick, John, or perhaps Charles. My husband doesn’t like any of these, and the name I love the most, Patrick, has been rejected because of the starfish on SpongeBob SquarePants. He has suggested Abraham called Bram, Sven, and Simon Peter – which seems very heavy to me. Ephraim is a possible middle name. We have ruled out Brigham, Phillip, Benjamin, Ezra, Judah, Caleb, and Theodore.

We tend to like more traditional first names with less conventional middles. All of a sudden, February 7th seems so close, and if this baby is a boy, he does not have a name at all!

The Name Sage replies:

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The Names We Choose, Those We Refuse

jane

By Abby Sandel

Here’s something that fascinates me: the difference between the names that we truly love, but don’t use, and the names that we actually bestow upon our children.

My own shortlist tends towards the daring – Leif, March, Everild, Swan. But would any of those names make it on to my child’s birth certificate? Maybe.

Carrie Underwood recently dished about the names that she and husband Mike Fisher considered for son Isaiah, and the reasons that they rejected some of their favorites. She sounded remarkably like almost every mom I’ve ever heard explain why certain names just couldn’t be The Name for their new arrival.

This week’s baby name news was all about the names that we choose and the names that we consider before moving on.

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How Long Do Popular Names Stay Popular?

top 10 baby names

By Pamela Redmond Satran

We are working on a major upgrade to the site and user lists are temporarily unavailable. Sorry for the inconvenience but your lists are safe and will be available again shortly.

A Nameberry reader recently asked: How long do baby names in the US Top 10 tend to remain in the Top 10?

Good question, we thought, and so with the help of our commando researcher Esmeralda Rocha, we did some investigation.

The short answer: It’s complicated. While girls’ names in the current Top 10 have been there fewer years on average – 12 years versus 14 for the boys – those numbers are skewed by the amazing durability of Emily at 24 years and, even more dramatically, Michael at 72. Take Emily and Michael out of the equation and the balance reverses, with girls’ names staying on top an average of 10 years versus only 7.5 for the boys!

But this doesn’t tell the whole story either, given that classic boys’ names such as William and James have been in the Top 10 for most of the 135-year history of the data, though they dipped out and returned only recently. And on the girls’ side, Elizabeth had been in the Top 10 most of those years, only to slip out in 2014.

Here, a closer look at the popularity durability of all the names of both genders in the current US Top 10.

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Classy Classics Picked by Celebs

mary

By Linda Rosenkrantz

John and Mary? Not exactly the starbaby names that hit the headlines. And yet, under the radar, there are a number of celebs who have quietly chosen from the canon of traditional names–not the trendier classics like Beatrice and Charlotte, but the solid old historic stalwarts, the most established of the perennial classics. Which kind of makes John and Mary and Jane and Joseph register surprising picks today.

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A Celebration of Classic Baby Names

classic baby names

By Abby Sandel

After writing about baby names for the last eight years, I sometimes think that nothing can surprise me. I’m always ready to explain why a baby called, say, Pomegranate, isn’t really so outlandish.

And yet, some weeks I do breathe a sigh of relief when the names feel classic, controlled, inspired by family. Even understated.

That’s not to say that they lack style. A classic name doesn’t have to be dull or stodgy. Call them the George and Charlotte names. They’re traditional, yes, but with a crisp, tailored appeal.

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