Autumn Names: A harvest of great choices

A couple of momberries-to-be who are expecting Fall babies have written in to ask for some Autumn name suggestions, and so, as we come close to the official onset of the season, here is our annual, updated round-up of Autumn names.

AUTUMN — Autumn is ironically the hottest season name, the only one in the Top 100 where it’s maintained its status for over a decade now.  The name Autumn first entered the U.S. Top 1000 in 1969, inspired by the hippie nature names and word names.  While it’s still attractive, however, it’s hardly fresh.

Names from other cultures that provide a newer route to Autumn include the Japanese girls’ names Aki and Akiko, the Turkish girls’ name Hazan, the Vietnamese Thu, and, in Chinese, Qiu for either girls or boys.

Fall month names are not quite as usable as those of the other seasons.

September – Why are MarchMayJune, August and even January hot while September (along with OctoberNovember, and December) is not?  Maybe there’s something chilly about that “ber” ending.  Still, this has an attractive sound and is certainly unusual.  The Latin Septimus, which means “seventh son,” sounds a bit Harry Potter and is perhaps too redolent of things septic.  But Seven, as recently chosen as the middle name of little Harper Beckham, might have some potential.

October – An equally unusual month name that gets an extra helping of cool from hipster writers Dave Eggers and Vendela Vida, who chose it for their daughter.  Perhaps more attractive are the Latin pair Octavius and especially Octavia, both of which mean (as does October) “eighth.”  Other Octavius and Octavia variations you might  consider:  OctavianOctavianaOctavienne, the Italian Ottavio or Ottavia, or the nicknames Tavy or Tavia.

November Certainly as usable as September and October, which is to say, not very unless you’re extremely adventurous.

Nature names that summon up an image of fall include tree names, particularly:

Ash (any of the Ash names – AsherAshley – relate)

Birch

Branch

Cedar

Forrest

Hazel

Juniper

Laurel

Leaf

Linden

Maple

Oak

Olive (and Oliver and Olivia)

Pine

Willow

The following may be a stretch, but other names that mean tree in a less obvious way include:

Adair – Scottish and Irish unisex name that relates to oak trees.

Cormac – This handsome Irish boys’ name means “tree trunk,” which is close enough.

Daphne – Classic name that means laurel tree.

Keziah – Beautiful Old Testament name that means cassia tree.

Lennox – A Scottish name that relates to the elm tree.

Nima – Middle Eastern favorite, also found as Neema and Neemah, that means margosa tree.

Perry – Boy’s name that works for girls too, and means “pear tree.”

Rowan – A unisex name that’s also the name of a tree with red berries and that means “little redhead.”  Related names include RowenaRhonwenRoan, andRowney.

Fall’s brilliant colors might also provide baby-naming inspiration.

Names that mean red include:

Adam

Carmine

Crimson

Omaira

Radley

Rory

Ruby

Scarlett

If golden is the fall hue you prefer, try:

AureliaAurelioAurelius

Crisanta

Dory

FlaviaFlavieFlavius

Oriel or Orla

Tawny

Xanthe

Zarina

Even brown, fall’s ultimate color, relates to some appealing names:

Baize – A French girls’ name that means “dark brown”

Bruno or Bruna

Kiona – A Native American girls’ name that means “brown hills”

Roux – Unisex and pronounced “roo,” this might make a good middle name

Sorrell – Can be spelled with one or two r’s and l’s

Some other ideas?

Seasonal signs of the zodiac:

Libra

Scorpio

Fall birthstones:

SapphireSeptember

OpalOctober

Citrine, TopazNovember

Harvest goddesses:

AnnonaRoman, personification of plenty

CeresRoman

Cerridwen – Welsh nature goddess

Demeter—Greek

Gaia – Greek goddess of the earth

Jeyriall—Santharian

Persephone—goddess of harvest and the underworld, daughter of Demeter

Rhea – Greek goddess of the earth

And one god-

Lugh—connected with a harvest festival

Other international names with autumnal meanings:

Ashoun – Armenian—autumn

Chyoh—Chinese –autumn

Jora/Jorah – Hebrew—autumn rain

Liqiu – Chinese — beautiful autumn

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11 Responses to “Autumn Names: A harvest of great choices”

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linzybindi Says:

September 16th, 2011 at 1:35 am

I love Autumn! It is my absolute favorite time of year so these names are perfect for me.

September – could work as a middle name
November – with November Rain being so popular I can’t believe people don’t use this more. Nova would be a super cute nickname!
Birch – nice for a middle
Cedar – I really like this
Forrest – great name!
Hazel – lovely
Juniper – very fun…could go by June or Juni
Linden – nice but sounds feminine by recent standards
Maple – something about this is super cute!
Oak – I like it!
Adair – kind of like it for a girl
Cormac – love this!
Daphne – beautiful!
Perry – wonderfully underused name
Adam – timeless and strong
Ruby – cute
Scarlett – lovely
Sapphire – super fun!
Annona – something about this I like
Gaia – this is nice
Persephone – funky and fun!
Rhea – nice nickname

i.heart.nerds Says:

September 16th, 2011 at 8:49 am

I could see using November with the nicknames Nova, Vemmy or Ember. Kind of cool.

Marginamia Says:

September 16th, 2011 at 8:50 am

Amazingly beautiful list!

I worked with a September long ago. She had be given the name in the late 60’s…yes, at birth.

November (I profiled recently) is just one of the prettiest words around. I wish it would get some use, especially in the middle slot, if putting it up front is too bold for some.

Roux, Maple (Nona was almost a Maple), Branch and Opal are also frequently featured as favorites of mine. Hubby nixed Roux and frowned upon Opal, but I’d have used them in a nanosecond!

I love the suggestions Sapphire, Annona, Xanthe,Crimson and Oriel!!! Nicknames Sapphy and Crim are so amazingly adorable!

I would also add:
Pomme
Orchard
Pomeline
Apple
Eple
Hallow
Crysanthemum
Fig
Sage
Aster
Golden/Goldie
Saffron
(most of these are from a recent food-name post. I love a name I can eat or smell! ha!)

belatrix Says:

September 16th, 2011 at 9:51 am

My daughter is a Crimson and she has been called by the following nicknames at various times in life:
Crimsy
Crims
Crimmy
Crim Reaper
Nora Belle (from middle Eleanor)

and her favorite: Christmas (from her preschool years and classmates who couldn’t say her name!)

Lola Says:

September 16th, 2011 at 12:31 pm

Autumn is my second least favorite season (give me summer!), but I do like a handful of these: Daphne, Keziah, Perry (boy only), Aurelia, Aurelius & Xanthe. Lovely choices for any time, really! 🙂

OliviaSarah Says:

September 17th, 2011 at 6:31 am

There are lots of lovely names here. The only one that really jumped out at me was Annona. It’s just gorgeous. Certainly has a place on my long list.

sabrinafair Says:

September 17th, 2011 at 11:50 am

These are on my list for future children:

AUTUMN — as a middle name for girl (though I like it works on a boy too)

September – either but prefer boy

October – either

November – boy

Ash – middle name for boy

Birch – girl

Cedar – either

Forest – girl

Hazel – boy

Juniper – either

Laurel – boy’s middle name

Leaf – middle name for either

Linden – boy

Maple – girl

Willow – either

Lennox – boy

Rowan – boy

Crimson – boy

Radley – girl

Scarlet – girl, as middle name for a boy

Aurelius – middle name boy

Xanthe – girl but could work for middle nae or first for a boy!

Sapphire – middle name girl

Topaz – girl or boy but prefer girl

Dearest Says:

September 17th, 2011 at 4:44 pm

I wonder where Harvest is on this list, it’s a beautiful name in its own right IMO 🙂

I love so many of these, but I have issues with October and Septemner being used for girls, they’re a bit rough sounding for me, especially October with its many O sounds.
November is better for girls since it has Nova as the most intuitive nickname.

These make me smile the most:
Cedar
Maple
Nima
Omaira
Crisanta
Flavia
Flavius
Oriel
Libra
Citrine
Anona (I don’t like it with two N’s)
Demeter
Gaia
Rhea
Ashoun
Jora

lemon Says:

September 18th, 2011 at 2:53 pm

I do find Autumn to be fresher than Summer, but both have a friendly feel. Winter? Modern and luxurious. And Spring? She seems to be the forgotten season name…

There are so many great names on this list! November sure seems like she could work with Nova or Ember as nicknames, and why not use October if you can call him or her Toby? Love that! September feels like the roughest one to wear, actually. I like Tavia, Ash, Asher, Birch, Hazel, Juniper, Laurel, Linden, Maple, Olive, Oliva, Willow, Adair, Lennox, Rowan, Adam, Radley, Rory, Scarlet, Aurelia, Tawny, Roux, Annona, and Rhea. So many exciting and interesting options!

And, yes, I agree that Harvest, Apple, Pommeline, and Sage should be included. What about apple varieties? Jonathan? Gala? Or is Gala, well, too gala…?

CountryLizB Says:

September 22nd, 2011 at 2:48 pm

I like Anona. I think it would be a good way to honor my friend named Autumn.

AutumnR Says:

April 5th, 2012 at 5:25 am

I have to admit,I’ve never disliked my name. My mother attempted to name me something that wasn’t easy to be teased about, but I suppose she didn’t think about it rhyming with Bottom…a couple other things I’ve been called is:Automobile and Sadamizer (I was furious when I found out what that meant!)I named my daughter Aunestie (sounds like honesty)So far no teasing has come from that.I was born in November & have always liked that as a name and I never thought about Ember but am now considering it as a middle name for Auricca.Thanks!

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