Noah surprised the baby name world in 2013 to become the new Number 1 among baby boy names, unseating Jacob after a 13-year reign, and it has maintained its top ranking each of the past three years.
Noah, the name of the Old Testament patriarch of the ark, is one of those unexpected fashion hits. It seems Noah has definitely shaken off its ancient image. In 2009, Noah made it into the Top 10 for the first time in history, and then became the first new top boys' name of the 21st century.
As every Sunday school alumnus knows, Noah was deemed the only righteous man of his time, singled out by God to survive the great flood sent to punish the wicked world: a righteous namesake. Noah has risen on the style charts along with other formerly long-beard names such as Abraham, Moses, and even Elijah, unthinkable a generation ago.
Actor Rupert Graves and singer Michael Buble both have sons named Noah. Billy Ray Cyrus, responsible for the name Miley, crossed gender lines to call another of his daughters Noah. The feminine homonym Noa -- which isn't a form of the Biblical male Noah (it's a separate female name from the Old Testament) -- is currently the most popular girls' name in Israel. And Noah itself, with its vowel ending, is evidence of the trend toward softer sounds in boys' names, along with brothers Joshua and Asher.
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