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Boys’ Baby Names: 9 Ways to Name a Son

boys' names

By Abby Sandel, Appellation Mountain

Naming a boy has always been a little bit different.

It isn’t harder, necessarily.  For some parents, settling on a son’s name is a picnic compared to naming a daughter.

But there are definitely some differences in the way we think about boys’ names.

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thomasedward

Which classic boys’ name do you love the best?

Classic boys’ names encompass those that are traditionally popular such as John, William, and Thomas, along with classics fashionable today like Henry and Alexander.

And classic names for boys may also include biblical names such as Jacob and Joshua, along with classics that are newly back in style, from Atticus to Arthur.

But for this Question of the Week, you can only pick one.

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Classic Names: A trio of Theos

throose

The Theo family of names is moving on up, en masse.

The pater familias, Theodore, progressed thirty places this year on the Social Security list, rose 115% on Nameberry searches and was the only boy’s name to register more than once on our latest Quarterly Report, plus it’s been the choice of several celebrities, including Dallas Bryce Howard, Natascha McElhone and Ali Larter.

 It’s a name with so much to recommend it—as one of the classic names that has a lot more personality than many others, being serious but with a sense of humor, and boasting a choice of great nicknames.

In this country, Theodore’s history is very much tied to our youngest president ever, the ebullient, energetic, charismatic Theodore Roosevelt (who was a Theodore, Junior), the U.S. Chief Executive from 1901 to 1905. It was in that period that the name hit its highest peak, reaching Number 30 in 1904, then staying in the Top 100 until 1944. One thing that didn’t catch on, though, was his childhood nickname of Teedie.

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classboyblog

Classic names are just as hot for boys as they are for girls right now—but there’s a difference. Most of the vintage boys’ names that are rising in popularity aren’t the  traditional classics like William and James, which have never been subject to the whims of fashion, or fusty Victorian vestiges like Clarence or Elmer, but are mainly names that date from further back in time.
The classic boys’ names that are hottest–and coolest–at this moment are either a) offbeat biblical choices rarely heard in modern times, or b) true classics dating from the Roman era.  Those listed below—some of which might surprise you—all feature on the official list of fastest-rising boys’ names in the past year.

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henry5

Why does Henry consistently rank as one of the top two Nameberry favorite boys’ names? (Finn is the other one.)

Because in many ways Henry is the most perfect of the classic boys’ names—as historic as James and John and William –yet with a quirkier edge that makes it seem modern, and even hip.

Henry has a lot going for it.  Let us count the ways:

HENRY IS POPULAR, WELL-LIKED, BUT NOT EPIDEMICALLY TRENDY.

At #67 on the Social Security list last year, Henry was given to a little over 6,000 boys across the country—as compared to almost 22,000 Jacobs.  Henry was much more commonly heard in the past, having been #10 in 1900, 12 in the 1910s, 18 in the twenties, 25 in the thirties, then dipping to a low of 146 in 1994, after which it started its edge back up.

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