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Category: unusual girls’ names



posted by: karacavazos View all posts by this author
girl name alternatives

By Kara @ The Art of Naming

As you probably know, the US Social Security Administration tallies up the names of all the babies born within a year and reveals which names were most popular. While there are clearly thousands of parents who are happy using popular names, there are also parents who would rather avoid them.

For those parents who may secretly like the sound of the top names but hate their popularity, I’ve created a list of alternative options to the Top 10 names for girls.

The names may be similar in sound, syllables, initial letter, meaning, origin or a combination of those. None of the alternate names below rank on the SSA’s Top 1000 most popular names chart in 2014.

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By Abby Sandel, Appellation Mountain

When it comes to naming a daughter, imagination reigns.  From Hollywood birth announcements to literary powerhouses, blog babies to the most random of name spottings, a great name can come from anywhere.

This week’s potential seismic name influence?  Disney’s big screen retelling of Sleeping Beauty.  This time, we’re getting the villain’s side of the story in Maleficent.  Angelina Jolie might make the two-horned headdress look elegant, but I doubt she can sell her character’s name to future parents.  Maleficent is too downright evil!  But plenty of other choices associated with the big summer film could get a boost.

On a sad note, this was also the week the world said farewell to the towering Maya Angelou.  If Francis has gained currency as a hero name, could the widely admired writer’s names – first and last – be next?

Together, they point towards some of the most interesting sources for naming daughters in our age: myth, fable, and literature, much of it ancient and well-worn, but some of it modern, even newly invented.

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By Linda Rosenkrantz

If you scan the annals of distinguished women in American history, culture and science, you’ll find that a surprising number of them had distinctive names as well, names that could provide unique-ish choices with interesting back-stories. Several of them have a funky, fusty period flavor that may or may not appeal. What do you think?

Abba Goold Woolson– a turn-of-the-last century teacher-author, remembered for her liberating efforts against ‘the physical discomfort and disease caused by corsets and other constricting forms of dress.’

Adelina Patti, christened Adela, was a renowned operatic soprano, the daughter of Italian opera singers, who could sing some of the most difficult arias by the age of four.

Albion Fellows Bacon (named for her father)— a housing reformer who pushed laws to regulate housing sanitation of tenements.

Alta Weiss was a double threat—a pitcher with a men’s semi-pro baseball team who went on to become a doctor.

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posted by: waltzingmorethanmatilda View all posts by this author

Our thanks to Anna Otto of Waltzing More than Matilda for allowing us to reprint this condensed version of her fascinating blog.  See the whole post here.

Royal babies have been on everyone’s mind lately, and we recently saw two babies born in the royal family within less than a month of each other.

Not only have been people been doing web searches for Prince George and Maud Windsor, they’ve been searching for royal baby names in general, uncommon royal names, and royal names that nobody else is using. So here is a list of queens and princesses connected to English royal houses by either birth or marriage, whose names aren’t popular or common.


Adeliza of Louvain married Henry I, and became queen of England. She didn’t  produce any royal heirs; however, after Henry’s death she re-married, and had seven children and is an ancestor of many of the noble English families. William the Conqueror had a daughter called Adeliza, named after his sister – the name wasn’t uncommon amongst Norman-French aristocracy. Adeliza is a medieval English form of Adelais, a short form of the original old Germanic form of Adelaide. It’s pronounced ad-uh-LEE-za. Although it doesn’t have any connection to the name Elizabeth, it looks like a combination of Adele and Eliza, and might feel like a way to honour relatives who have variants of these names.

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Share Your Secret Baby Names!


Every so often, we nominate a list of names that most visitors to Nameberry aren’t using….but should be.

But this time, we thought we’d turn the question back to you. What are your favorite undiscovered baby names, the names that are off most people’s radar but that you believe deserve more widespread use?

Let’s dig deep, beyond berry favorites like Beatrice and Imogen and Jasper. What are the truly obscure names — ancient or exotic, newly-minted or dust-covered — that you think are most worth sharing with your fellow berries?

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