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Category: classic boy names



How Long Do Popular Names Stay Popular?

top 10 baby names

By Pamela Redmond Satran

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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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The James Gang

baby name James

Among the classic boys’ names, James shines out as one of the most enduring, likable and versatile, still stylish after centuries of popular usage. Here are some of the many nicknames and variations of James, including his charming international counterparts.

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classic boys' names

Last week we asked you to name your favorite classic name for girls; now it’s the boys’ turn.

What’s your favorite classic boys’ name?  Do you prefer one of the classic classics such as James or William or a fashionable classic such as Henry or (thanks to England‘s young prince) George?

There are quiet classic boys’ names such as Robert and Richard and John, no longer quite in style yet undeniably classics.  And then there are trendy names such as Noah and Sebastian that may or may not qualify as classics in your book.

What’s your very favorite classic boys’ name?  And yes, sure, you can mention more than one.

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brother names

One of our favorite fantasies here on Nameberry is to name imaginary families.  Today’s challenge: Tell us what names you’d choose for two brothers.

A classic pair like Henry and William?  Or a stylish duo such as Sebastian and Jasper?

Two boys’ names with matching initials?  Traditional family names, or maybe a modern androgynous pair?

And how do your feelings about raising boys and boy name trends today factor into your decision?

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By Pamela Redmond Satran

Looking for a classic boys’ name that’s also unusual?

Way beyond the Williams and Henrys you hear every day are dozens of boys’ names that achieve this golden combination.  These names have deep roots and have been used for centuries, yet are given to only a handful of boys each year.

These classic boys’ names include choices from ancient cultures and the Bible, names sailing out of style (So long, Sherman) along with those heading in: Welcome, Grey, Linus, and Finnian!

Here, more than 100 classic boys’ names you’ll find hiding below the U.S. Top 1000, ordered from those given to the most babies in 2012 (Gordon, at 194) to the least (Mercury, at just five):

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