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Category: Italian names

italboy

Until recently, Italian names–particularly for boys– have rarely ventured outside their own neighborhoods, but lately we’ve seen several popping up in the celebrisphere—though usually, if not always, used by celebs with Italian roots.  There have been at least four Mateo/Matteos, two Roccos, two Romeos, Annabeth Gish’s Enzo, Ricky Martin’s Valentino, and Jill Hennessey’s Marco Gianni.

These are names that have all been pretty firmly assimilated, but there are loads more undiscovered rhythmic and romantic nomi belli that could be considered—a few of which have already gained entrance via their female forms.  Here are the Nameberry Picks of 15 of the best underused Italian boys’ names.

Alessioif Alessandro feels a bit too bulky, how about this more compact, equally handsome short form?

Amatoit means beloved, darling one—as loving and heartfelt as the beginning-to-be-used Valentino

Bello –as handsome as Bella is beautiful, and rarely heard outside the Italian community.

BrandoYes, people will thinking this is in honor of great screen actor Marlon (who wasn’t Italian), but it is actually a streamlined form of Brandano

Flaviopronounced FLAH-vee-o, from an old Roman family name meaning fair, golden—a flavorful name that would be perfect for a blond bambino

Gianluca—the Italians are great name smooshers: other appealing combos include Giancarlo, Gianfranco, Gianpaolo, Pierluigi

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Cheery-O Names

O--teddy bear

From the time we wrote our very first name book, we’ve both been totally charmed by the unique verve and spirit of  names ending in the letter ‘o’.  And, over time, our love for them has only increased.  We’re glad to see that more and more people seem to be agreeing with us; lately there’s been an infusion of newly popular choices–and, surprisingly, this is beginning to be true for girls as well as boys.

Here are some of the currently coolest boys’  names, many of then reflecting the ever-growing globalization of baby names:

ALDO, ARLO & ARNO

BRUNO

COSMO & COSIMO

ENZO

HORATIO

HUGO

INDIO & INDIGO & INIGO

LASZLO

LEO

MATEO /MATTEO

MILO

ORLANDO

OTTO

RIO

ROCCO

ROMEO & VALENTINO — two choices previously considered uberly-romantic, now sudden celebrity faves

THEO

VIGGO

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danube-river

We think and talk a lot about place names–countries like China, states like Georgia, cities like Dallas, even boroughs like Brooklyn.  And we also think and talk about nature names, of flowers and trees.  Well there’s one category that merges the two together, and that’s river names.

I was planning to put together a list of interesting river names worldwide, but I came upon so many intriguing and unusual possibilities in Western Europe alone, that I decided to save our own country, England and Ireland and others farther afield for some time in the future.  Some of those listed here are major waterways like the Seine, others are much smaller streams; and some run through more than one country.  And I’m sure you’ll notice that there are those that sound decidedly masculine (Arno), while others could be possible girls’ names (Adaja).

Not surprisingly, some of the most appealing  names come from the French countryside:

AIRE

ALZETTE

ANDELLE

ANOUX

ARLY

AUBETTE

CALAVON

CEROU

CLAREE

CREUSE

DADOU

EAULINE

ESTERON

LAITA

LAQUETTE

LOIRE

MIDOU

RAVILLOU

RHONE

VARENNE

VIENNE

And here are some Latinate choices from Italy, Spain, and Portugal:

ADAJA

ARAGON

ARBIA

ARNO

BREGGIA

CAIA

EBRO

ELVO

ENZA

JABALON

JALON

JARAMA

MAIRA

MARANO

MINO

NAVIA

OLONA

ORBA

PO

SELLA

TAJO

TIBER

TURIA

ULLA

ZANCARA

ZEZERE

And finally a few found in Germany, Austria, Holland, Belgium and Greece

ARDOS

AXIOS

DANUBE (which is shown in the illustration)

ELBE

ISAR

KRIOS

LADON

LEDA

LYS

MAURINE

MOSELLE

NEDA

NETTE

ORLA

RABA

REGEN

SENNE

THAYA

TYRIA

VLIET

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