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Ten Great Names You’re Not Using


It’s a curious thing that, even when people prefer quirky or unusual names, they often prefer the same quirky or unusual names. Why is Clementine such a darling, for instance, while brother name Clement languishes? Why are Nora, Cora, and even Florence hot, while the equally lovely Flora is ignored?

In the nameberry spirit of promoting great unusual, underrated, unappreciated names, we bring you the latest in a series of names nobody’s using…..but should be.

CAIO – Variation of an ancient Latin name that means “rejoice”, Caio – pronounced not kay-oh or chow but kye-oh – takes the trendy Kai one step further. Contemporary artist Caio Fonseca is a noted bearer.

CALANDRA – One of the Cal- family of Greek girls’ names popularized by Calista Flockhart, Calandra means “lark” and has a formal, elegant feel.

COLETTE – The new movie Cheri with Michelle Pfeiffer may at least bring this name of the scandalous French writer back into contemporary consciousness. Out of the Top 1000 for more than two decades, Colette is derived from Nicholas.

FIFERSister name Piper is, well, piping hot, but Fifer has so far escaped the spotlight. Yet it’s arguably softer and less of a word name, and so more appealing. Scottish roots may add appeal for some parents.

OMRI – Old Testament king’s name that makes an intriguing modern choice.

OZIAS – Why Oscar and not Ozias? Why indeed. This Greek name, also apelled Osias, feels biblical (but isn’t) and means salvation, and also gets you to the cute nickname Ozzie.

SASKIA – The name of Rembrandt’s wife well-used throughout Europe, including Britain, but nearly unknown in the U.S. A perfect choice for an art lover or someone who wants a name that feels seriously exotic but is easy to understand and pronounce.

THADDEUS — This New Testament name – another name for the Apostle Jude – has been hovering at the bottom of the Top 1000 for several years now. Seems both traditional and jaunty, with appealing short forms Thad, Tad, and Latinate variations Tadeo or Taddeo.

TORIL – Scandinavian girls’ name related to Thor, the God of thunder, pronounced TOR-il. Simple and pretty and ripe for import along brothers Soren and Stellan.

ZEBULON – Old Testament name with a fire and brimstone feel, used during Colonial times and perfectly suited to join such former greybeards as Abraham and Jedidiah in the modern world, with short form Zeb.

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