28 Surprising Baby Names on the Rise

October 17, 2013 Pamela Redmond
baby name Azalea

Swimming just below our Most Popular lists are other baby names that are attracting new levels of attention. Some of these are unusual names from traditional sources like the Bible and nature. Others are classic choices that have suddenly gone from dowdy to stylish.Many of these names share a darkness, an edginess I didn’t notice until I began researching illustrations to accompany the text. It may be that, in these vampire-threatened times, we’re more drawn to myths and pop culture sources that have a shadowy underside. Or it may just be that we’re looking harder for unusual names, in places parents may have shied away from in the past.Wherever we find them, here are 28 surprising baby names on the way up:


The Biblical king’s name Asa is being rediscovered after a midcentury slumber thanks young actor Asa Butterfield, soon to be much more famous with his starring role in Ender’s Game, in movie theaters November 1. A Puritan favorite, Asa relates to fellow hot choices Asher and Ace. Another soft-and-simple Biblical name attracting attention on Nameberry: Seth, the name of Adam and Eve’s third son.

About the author

Pamela Redmond

Pamela Redmond is the cocreator and CEO of Nameberry. The coauthor of ten bestselling baby name books, Redmond is an internationally-recognized name expert, quoted and published widely in such media outlets as the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, The Today Show,, CNN, and the BBC. Redmond is also a New York Times bestselling novelist whose books include Younger, the basis for the hit television show of the same name.

View all of Pamela Redmond's articles


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