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Names that Peaked in 1958

MichaelHeart

  • Origin:

    Hebrew
  • Meaning:

    "who is like God?"
  • Description:

    Michael was derived from the name Mikha’el, which comes from the rhetorical question mī kā’ēl, meaning "who is like God?" in Hebrew. In the Bible, Michael is the archangel who led the other angels to victory in a war against Satan, one of only two archangels (the other is Gabriel) recognized by Jews, Christians and Muslims alike. The widespread popularity of Michael Jackson and Michael Jordan were major contributors to its long-running success.

MaryHeart

  • Origin:

    Hebrew or Egyptian
  • Meaning:

    "drop of the sea, bitter, or beloved"
  • Description:

    Mary is the English form of Maria, which ultimately was derived from the Hebrew name Maryam/Mariam. The original meaning of Maryam is uncertain, but theories include "drop of the sea" (from Hebrew roots mar "drop" and yam "sea"); "bitter" (from Hebrew marah "bitterness"); and "beloved" (from the Egyptian root mr).

SusanHeart

  • Origin:

    English short form of Susannah, Hebrew,"lily"
  • Meaning:

    "lily"
  • Description:

    Although Susan had her heyday from the thirties to the sixties, and is now common among moms and new grandmas, and though most modern parents would prefer Susanna/Susannah, we have spotted some flickers of interest in a revival. It still retains a certain black-eyed-Susan freshness.

StevenHeart

  • Origin:

    English variation of Stephen
  • Meaning:

    "garland, crown"
  • Description:

    Steven, the phonetic and now predominant spelling of the classier Stephen, has finally dropped out of the Top 100 after seventy years. Steve has become one of the ultimate regular-guy names, right up there with Dave and Joe. and there have been innumerable pop-culture role models among its bearers--from Steven Spielberg to Steven Soderbergh to Steve Jobs.

DaleHeart

  • Origin:

    English
  • Meaning:

    "valley"
  • Description:

    A light and breezy nature name that's currently in style limbo, despite its pleasant meaning.

VonHeart

  • Origin:

    Norse
  • Meaning:

    "hope"
  • Description:

    One of those midcentury shortenings that are starting to sound cool again, though we prefer Van.

GinnyHeart

  • Origin:

    English, diminutive of Virginia, American place-name and Latin
  • Meaning:

    "virginal"
  • Description:

    Ginny was more common before Jenny and its myriad variants came along.

CherylHeart

  • Origin:

    Modern invented name, variation of Cherie, French
  • Meaning:

    "darling"
  • Description:

    As frozen in the pre-Beatles era as short white gloves.

BlaneHeart

  • Origin:

    Scottish
  • Meaning:

    "yellow"
  • Description:

    Blane is the attractive surname name of an important seventh-century Scottish saint, but is in danger of sounding slightly feminine and soap opera-ish.

DelHeart

  • Origin:

    English, diminutive
  • Meaning:

    "small valley"
  • Description:

    The kind of name last found in northern Wisconsin in the 1950s, and even then it was probably a nickname for Delbert.

MelHeart

  • Origin:

    English, diminutive of Melvin
  • Meaning:

    "council protector"
  • Description:

    Though most Mels are playing pinochle with Murray and Morris, there was a notable Saint Mel. He is one of the earliest Irish saints, a nephew of St. Patrick. He became a priest, then built a great monastery where he served as abbot.

RickyHeart

  • Origin:

    Diminutive of Richard or Frederick
  • Meaning:

    "dominant or peaceful ruler"
  • Description:

    Gone with Richard and Rick, Ricky has been falling since the turn of the 21st century. Probably still suffering from overuse in the 1990s.

DarleneHeart

  • Origin:

    English
  • Meaning:

    "darling"
  • Description:

    A modern(ish) invented name, only in widespread use since the 20th century. It is a combination of the English word darling and the popular midcentury suffix -lene.

SalHeart

  • Origin:

    English, diminutive of Salvador or Salvatore
  • Description:

    The sidekick in almost every movie or TV show with an Italo-American setting.

RickHeart

  • Origin:

    Diminutive of Richard, Frederick
  • Description:

    Last cool when Bogie roamed Casablanca.

CathyHeart

  • Origin:

    Diminutive of Catherine
  • Meaning:

    "pure"
  • Description:

    One of the most popular nicknames of the fifties and sixties -- and who could forget the romantic heroine of "Wuthering Heights"? -- now largely ignored in favor of Cate or Kate.

KathyHeart

  • Origin:

    Diminutive of Katherine and Kathleen
  • Meaning:

    "pure"
  • Description:

    There are lots of Kathy moms and grandmas but very few babies, most of whom are now called Kate or Katie.

LeisaHeart

  • Origin:

    Spelling variation of Lisa
  • Meaning:

    "pledged to God"
  • Description:

    While Liesa is the German short form of mother name Elizabeth, Leisa is a spelling variation and is pronounced just like Lisa, though some people say it Lee-sha.

ValHeart

  • Origin:

    Diminutive of Valentina, Valerie, etc
  • Description:

    Occasionally used as an independent name, but why.

PatriceHeart

  • Origin:

    French variation of PATRICIA
  • Meaning:

    "noble"
  • Description:

    Patrice is a more modern-sounding and polished unisex alternative to Patricia.