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Amazing Names Below the Top 1000

unusual baby names

By Pamela Redmond Satran

The hallowed Top 1000 baby names in the US end with Kai, given to 262 baby girls last year, and Rylen, used for 205 little boys.

But what about the baby names right below the Top 1000, hiding just out of sight but prime for plucking by the clever baby namer?

We chose 25 names for girls and 25 names for boys we found swimming just beneath the surface of the Top 1000.  These baby names strike the perfect balance between unusual and familiar.

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Best 100 Cool Unusual Boys’ Names

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Cool unusual boys’ names come in styles to suit every taste.  Some of our favorite types:

Best Cool Unusual Biblical Boys’ Names – Are there really any good unusual boys’ names left in the Bible? Beyond Aaron and Asher, we’ve got hundreds of cool biblical names.

Undiscovered Classic Names for Boys —  These classic boys’ names have fallen off the radar but deserve a fresh look.

Cool Modern Names for Boys — Surname names newly used as first, place names and word names, and newly-invented names that sound fresh and cool…here’s what’s new in cool names for boys.

The boys’ names here are the best of all different styles.  They’re highly unusual, given to  only ten or fewer boys in the US.  These rare choices include names both classic and new-fangled, plain and fancy — as long as they are cool.

Among the 100 best are several names that are among our all-time favorites: Barnaby and Birch, Jupiter and Rafferty, Osias and Witt.

And there are many more great choices on the bottom rungs of the extended popularity list.  You can download the complete list here.

If it’s the Best 100 Cool Unusual Girls’ Names you’re interested in, click here.

Our picks for the Top 100 Cool Unusual Boys’ Names are:

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Is there only one Romeo?

Romeo

In our first book Beyond Jennifer & Jason, we talked about One-Person Names — appellations like Elvis (at that time) and Oprah and Aretha that were tied inextricably to one person.

The same phenomenon applies to some names from pop culture, though these can change over time.  Juliet has definitely transcended its Shakespearean associations, though is Romeo still rooted to the tragic stage?  What about Clementine, which for decades would inspire a chorus of “Oh My Darlin'” but now may have escaped that fate?

Our question of the week is:

Which names are still tied to one person, character, association?

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Stump the Masters!

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Sometimes we feel we’ve heard every name in the book…..until someone introduces us to a new one.

Actually, that happened just now, when our friend the wonderful photographer Fran Liscio, who took the picture of me and Linda on the home page, just wrote to say she’d heard an unusual name in a 1941 movie called Smiling Through — Moonyean.  Had we ever heard of the name Moonyean?, she wondered.

Nope, we told her: She’d stumped the masters.

Which made us think it might be fun to challenge YOU to stump the masters, i.e. tell me and Linda and the rest of the Nameberry community about an unusual name you’ve heard that you think we may not have come across.

All names already in the Nameberry database are off limits, naturally.  When you suggest a new name, all documentation — movie character lists, newspaper stories, non-U.S. baby name sites — are helpful.  Plus tell us as much as you know about the origin, meaning, and background of the name.

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Unusual Boys’ Names Ready To Pop

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Last week we brought you our selection of rare girls’ names destined for stardom; now we bring you our pick of unusual boys’ names ready to climb the popularity ladder.These are names given to fewer than 100 boys last year in the U.S.   But in Nameberry’s analytics, we see them drawing twice as much attention as other names.What that means: No matter how unusual these names are by the numbers, they’re attracting considerable buzz. And that’s bound to translate over the coming years into usage for a lot more babies.

As with the girls’ names, these names share much beyond their potential popularity.  Most are ancient names, slumbering for centuries.  While they hail from a range of cultures, a quorum are rooted in Ancient Rome or mythology.  And as has been the trend with boys’ names, how they end — in n, r, us, or o — seems to be more important to their fashion status than their first initial.

Here, 9 unusual boys’ names we see ready to pop.

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