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Twin Names with Inspired Links

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Twins not matchy-matchy

By Kara Cavazos @ The Art of Naming

Here in the US, some of the most popular twin sets include names like Matthew & Michael, Daniel & David, Hailey & Hannah or Ella & Emma. Yet others are even matchier such as Lillian and Jillian, Bryan & Ryan or Jesse & Jessica. While there isn’t technically anything wrong with matching names together like this, there are plenty of ways to be more creative when naming twin while still allowing them to have their own identities.

I’ve come up with three ways to help parents make sure their twins won’t have overly matchy names. We will examine twin names that are linked together by meaning while still being different from one another, names that sound very different but still work together stylistically, and names that share a common sound without rhyming or being too sound-alike.

1. Linked by meaning

These names don’t rhyme or sound alike but they do share a similar meaning. This is great for parents who feel the urge to make twin names matchy but don’t want to rhyme or have the names start with the same letter.

Female Twins: 

Aurora & Roxanne (“Dawn“)
Eve & Zoey (“To Live” / Life”)
Corinna & Imogen (“Maiden”)

Male Twins:
Joshua & Isaiah (“God is Salvation”)
Derek & Henry (“Ruler of People / Home Rule“)
Matthew & Theodore (“Gift of God”)

Male/Female Twins:
David & Cara (“Beloved“)
Beau & Calista (“Beautiful”)
Brendan & Sarah (“Prince / Princess“)

Or the rare instance where the meaning of a name is also a name:

Margaret & Pearl (“Pearl“)
Susannah & Lily (“Lily“)
Daphne & Laurel (“Laurel“)
Hannah & Grace (“Grace“)
Ione & Violet (“Violet“)
Erica & Heather (“Heather“)

2. Very different sounds

These names may be of a similar style or origin but they do not sound the same. They do not rhyme; they might not even have any of the same letters in common. These names stand together but have their own identities.

Female Twins:

Charlotte & Matilda
Emma & Chloe
Molly & Jessica
Daisy & Lola
Jade & Tabitha

Male Twins:
Tyler & Brandon
Hunter & Mason
Kevin & Patrick
Oliver & Flynn
Jacob & Gideon

Male/Female Twins:
Cole & Brianna
Gavin & Alexandra
Jeremy & Nicole
Evan & Isabella
Benjamin & Emily

3. Complementary sounds

These names share a similar sound or two, but they are not overwhelmingly similar and they do not rhyme. Often, these sounds will be emphasized differently and the names will have different syllable counts.

Female Twins:

Brooke & Rebecca  (B & R)
Natalie & Lauren (N & L)
Ivy & Genevieve (V)

Male Twins:
Milo & Dominic (M)
Vincent & Oliver (V)
Lewis & Maxwell (W & L)

Male/Female Twins:
James & Tessa (S)
Phillip & Seraphina (Ph)
Brooks & Aubrey (Br)

What do you think of this list?  Whether you like or dislike the idea of making twin names overly matchy, perhaps you can share in the comments some examples of names that you appreciate on twins.  Do you have twins of your own? Do you have twin names picked out just in case? Where do you draw the line between the names being subtly linked and being too close for comfort?

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Twin Names: Seven Ways to Link

twin names

There are lots of ways to link twin names, from the obvious — sharing a first initial — to the so-subtle-it’s-nearly-invisible.  Here, we look at the seven major ways to link names for twins, with examples of specific names that work…..and a few that don’t.  Even if you’re not expecting twins but want to link your children’s names in some way, this is a good general guide to the possibilities.

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Twin Names, A to Z


A while back, we asked you to list your favorite names, one for a girl and one for a boy, from A to Z.

Now we’re inviting you to reprise that exercise, but with a pair of twin names for each letter.

You are welcome to mix it up: some girl-girl twin names, some boy pairs, and some girl-boy mixes.  Create pairs with clever matching themes or flow, if that’s your preference, or choices that are very distinct from one another and are connected mainly by their first initial.

The only rule is that each pair of twin names start with the same first letter.

So your list might read:

Alice & Arthur

Beatrice & Bridget

Cassius & Cicero

…..and so on.

Your turn!

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Twin Names: 8 Fresh Ways to Link


It’s always so disappointing to see the most popular twin names in the U.S.   The majority are connected in such obvious ways, or in several obvious ways at the same time.  They’ve got the same first initial, they rhyme or at least have a similar rhythm, they share a derivation and/or a meaning, they’re identical in style and/or popularity and/or image – and often they’ve got all those factors going on at once.

Dominant pairs include Jada and Jayden, Taylor and Tyler, Ella and Emma, London and Paris.

But we think you can do better, much better, and we’re going to help you.  The point is to find twin names that share a strong bond yet remain distinct individuals, just as you would wish for your children.   Some ideas for fresh links between names are below — you might want to use these for finding compatible sibling pairs too!

Same first initial, different sound

Connecting twin names by using the same first initial may feel like the easiest and, let’s face it, most predictable and boring way to link.

But you can give the powerful initial connection a fresh twist by choosing names that share the initial but sound different.  Some first initials accommodate this idea better than others.  A few examples:

Cybele and Clio

Genevieve and Garrett

Imogen and Isla

Patrick and Philip

If you want to use a first initial that sounds the same no matter what, at least vary the second letter to give the overall sound of each name a distinct feel.  Examples:

David and Drew

Mabel and Murray

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One of our favorite twin names blogs ever was on distinct names that had shared meanings: Esme and Imogen, which both mean beloved, for instance, or Asher and Felix, which mean happy.

So we’ve decided to reprise the idea with a whole raft of new pairs of twin names.   As before, the idea is to choose names that are compatible yet clearly individual — no shared first initials or other overly-obvious links — yet that are joined in a more subtle way by a common meaning.

In the girl-boy pairs below, the girl’s name goes first as per Nameberry style; in single-gender pairs, the names are organized alphabetically.

Anoush and Eulalia – sweet

Balthasar and Rex – king

Celeste and Juno  – heaven

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