Category: hot boys’ names
Just like Oz, Nameberry has a Wizard: Our engineer and partner Hugh Hunter. One of the wonderful things Hugh can do, besides creating the digital structure of the site and keeping it running, is to produce lists of names that meet certain statistical criteria: Names whose popularity peaked in 1937, for instance, or names never searched on Nameberry (hmmmmmm).
So when we recently asked Hugh if he could generate a list of names that had reentered the U.S. Top 1000 in 2011 — names that had been on the list before, dropped off, and now had reappeared — the answer was of course. What we didn’t know was how interesting that list would be.
Many people—berries included –sometimes complain that it’s harder to find names for a boy than a girl, that we’re running low on male names that are usable but not overused (outside of or as far down the Top 1000 as possible), interesting, distinctive, appealing, and authentic—names that would fit into our old Fitting In/Standing Out category. But don’t give up the ship—there are still any number of names that belong in that golden triangle, and here we offer eight of the best underused boys’ names.
1. Auberon/Oberon—This pair of boys’ names is actually a twofer, because though they sound the same, they have somewhat different visual images: the Au-beginning lends a certain softness that the starker O-starter doesn’t have. Auberon might be a variant of Aubrey—the grandfather of writer Auberon Waugh’s (son of Evelyn), for example, was called Aubrey. Oberon is the Shakespearean spelling, used for the King of the Fairies in A Midsummer’s Night’s Dream, based on a thirteenth century French fairy character. Both versions have a strong but creative feel, and could go by the attractive nickname Bron.
2. Benno –Here’s one lively o-ending boy’s name that’s been overlooked, despite the familiarity of its ben beginning. A German name meaning ‘bear’ and also a novel variant of Benjamin, it came to attention in the U.S. via the father and son duo of Benno Schmidt Sr and Jr. Senior was the venture capitalist who invented the term venture capitalist and Junior was the President of Yale University. Benno is also a saint’s name, belonging to the twelfth century Saint Benno of Meissen, the patron of fishermen, weavers, and the city of Munich.