Baby Names 2013: Our newest hot names

We’ve got our first count of popping baby names for 2013, and there are a lot of surprises on the list. Influences include television characters and romantic literary heroes, celebrity babies and classic jazz musicians. Here, Nameberry’s 13 hottest names for 2013…so far.


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Christian has been a popular name for boys for two decades now, yet interest in it has tripled in the first quarter of 2013 over the same period last year. What happened? Fifty Shades of Grey and hero Christian Grey added their notoriety to the already-romantic image conveyed by actors Christian Bale and Christian Slater along with designers Christian Dior, Lacroix, and Louboutin.

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43 Responses to “Baby Names 2013: Our newest hot names”

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liviajoan Says:

April 4th, 2013 at 11:41 pm

My cousin’s name is Linnea (Lyn-AY-ah). She, our friend Tamora, and I (Olivia) all hung out together while we were young. We were all long haired and artsy. Bahah!

sarahmezz Says:

April 5th, 2013 at 1:34 am

Cute names. I like Marlowe, but I’m a bit wary of its sudden popularity boom. Nelly is a cute nickname for Penelope (definitely beats Penny!).

Rin Says:

April 5th, 2013 at 2:05 am

Phaedra is the only one I genuinely like. The rest, i’m not so keen on; especially Mingus, which sounds like an insult.
Eg: Oi! Ya MINGUS!

shellezbellez Says:

April 5th, 2013 at 3:01 am

I like Finnegan and Linnea; I LOVE Phaedra. By the way, one of the most popular contemporary fantasy series is the Kushiel series by Jacqueline Carey; the first three novels (Kushiel’s Dart, K’s Chosen, K’s Avatar) in the nine-novel set are specifically about a courtesan named Phedre (and let me tell you, 50 Shades was like a bedtime story for her…). It’s a great series and she’s recognized as being a fantastic heroine, but there are definitely some adult themes in the novels!

Anakiwa Says:

April 5th, 2013 at 5:06 am

Mavis and Thor are high on my list of names. I do also like Meave though. I really do not like Nelly, it sounds to little girl only to me.

Mclevine Says:

April 5th, 2013 at 5:43 am

Interseting blog! I really liked Nelly(I have a soft spot for nickname names:)), Linnea and Finnegan(my long-time favorite). Not so sure about Mavis(sounds made-up), Severine(Sever means “north” in Russian, seems too cold) or Phaedra(not pretty at all IMO).
I actually know a boy named Thor. He is such a quirky boy and his unusual name suits him very well. I wouldn’t use it myself though it’s interesting choice. Maybe I am not brave enough:)
And I don’t care about Christian at all. I don’t like the names what contain “Christ” and in my view the association with erotic book makes it unacceptable for a baby.

M2Mom Says:

April 5th, 2013 at 6:15 am

I cringe at Mavis being associated with Maeve. Maeve stands alone!

zippy Says:

April 5th, 2013 at 7:06 am

Regarding Mingus: first, you should update your pop culture references to indicate that he’s the son of Norman Reedus on “The Walking Dead.” (What? He’s more relevant than Helena at this point!)

Also, I have many friends from the British Isles, where “minging” is NOT something to aspire to. So every time I hear this name I just feel really, really bad for the kid.

name-obsession Says:

April 5th, 2013 at 7:09 am

I HAD ONE OF THOSE DOLLS! The Linnea doll, as well as the book, made the name known to me. I absolutely love it. I also love Nellie/Nell as a nickname for Helen.

jc54 Says:

April 5th, 2013 at 7:58 am

Wow, I really love all of these names! especially Marnie & Christian. Very chic!

skizzo Says:

April 5th, 2013 at 9:19 am

wow Mingus just screams “minger!”, which is the same as “fugly”. Poor kid.

I like Phaedra and Linnea, and Marlow for boys. The rest I dont like at all. Christian? It needs to go away, overused and dated.

peach25 Says:

April 5th, 2013 at 10:09 am

Thor is actually a name on our family tree, but it’s from the English colonial Thoroughgood.

Ysaline Says:

April 5th, 2013 at 10:14 am

Mingus is also the name of a character played by Chris Rock in the 2012 movie Two Days in New York, though my bet would be that the Walking Dead character would be much more influential than a film that was not exactly a blockbuster.

As I commented on another post, Mavis does not mean songbird in French; it’s derived from a word in Old French meaning songbird. This may seem an insignificant difference, but I think it’s worth pointing out, because French speakers would certainly be puzzled if you informed them that your daughter Mavis’s name means songbird in their language.

I’m pretty out of the loop when it comes to current pop culture, so I appreciate the explanations for the rise in interest in names like Phaedra and Mavis.

LexieM Says:

April 5th, 2013 at 10:14 am

I’m loving Mavis and Thor!

sweets12 Says:

April 5th, 2013 at 10:34 am

For the name Christian, it’s spelled Louboutin, not Laboutin…

jpruitt76 Says:

April 5th, 2013 at 12:02 pm

Marnie, Nelly, Phaedra (nn Phae is darling) and Marlo (prefer this spelling/girl only)have been longtime faves of mine. And I definitely prefer Finnegan for a boy for those who find Finn too short. Finley is too unisex to me these days and I just prefer Finnegan to Phineas, esp if one wants the Finn spelling for a nickname.

I have never cared for Christian as a name – it seems to really put a lot of pressure on a child to uphold a certain set of values/beliefs that he might not even choose to follow. I feel the same for the name Hunter – what if the poor child is a vegetarian who hates the idea of hunting?!

Mingus makes me think of Dingus. And I just can’t get on board with Bruce for some reason. I can’t quite see it making a comeback – I haven’t heard of a single one in my area at least.

JH Says:

April 5th, 2013 at 1:12 pm

I love Nellie, it’s one of my best friends’ names. I had never heard Wilder before, but that’s the name that my friend’s sister is thinking of for her baby if it’s a boy. So funny to see it here now!

encore Says:

April 5th, 2013 at 2:01 pm

I like Linnea, Christian and Finnegan.

Aurra Says:

April 5th, 2013 at 3:50 pm

Mavis is one of my top names. The first time I heard it wasn’t on the Hotel Transylvania character but in the anime/manga Fairy Tail. That Mavis was a childish girl who was also very intelligent and strategic, and so I do not see the name being old lady at all, but more of a spunky vintage such as Cora or Josephine.
I also adore Phaedra, nn Fay. I think the pronunciation is fairly obvious to English speakers. If I keep my current last name and name a daughter Phaedra, it will have an alliterative ring that doesn’t sound too childish but memorable.

Mingus just sounds off to me. I much prefer Magnus, which also boasts the cool nicknames Mac and Max.

danahc Says:

April 5th, 2013 at 8:39 pm

I thought of Marnie on “Guys with Kids”. lol. I love Marlowe as well.

arifoster Says:

April 5th, 2013 at 9:12 pm

Mingus is my kitty’s name! I don’t quite like it for a child though. I DO quite like Norman Reedus though… Ha!

jackilugg Says:

April 6th, 2013 at 6:04 am

Phaedra is my daughter’s name. 🙂

MeleriHaf Says:

April 6th, 2013 at 1:22 pm

I had two or three grade-school teachers in a row who were completely obsessesed with the book Linnea in Monet’s Garden. It was not charming by the time it had been shoved down your throat forty times. And that makes me sad, because I will stumble across the name Linnea sometimes and think, “What a lovely name,” before the associations come rushing back and I start to hate that name again. I find it so interesting what odd, random associations can do for perfectly lovely names.

frustratedauthor Says:

April 6th, 2013 at 3:21 pm

I love the name Christian. It’s a family name on both sides of my family. The connection to the book doesn’t bother me. I don’t think people will remember it much 10 years from now. I’d probably do it as a middle name if I ever used it.

I LOVE Mavis. It’s been on my long list for a while. I love the potential for May as a nn.

tibervalleygirl Says:

April 6th, 2013 at 3:34 pm

Nelly/Nellie is adorable! I want to like Bruce, but I keep hearing “bruise,” and I’m not sold on Phaedra — in Euripides’ play “Hippolytos,” she tries to seduce her stepson, fails, kills herself and, in her suicide note, accuses her stepson of raping her.

missmarguerite Says:

April 6th, 2013 at 5:29 pm

I really like Linnea and Marlowe. Mavis brings back (not so fond) memories of Mavis Beacon’s typing program and seems a bit stiff and old-lady to me… I much prefer Maeve! I really want to love Phaedra, but for some reason it reminds me of “phat” which ruins everything. Also not keen on Bruce and Mingus.

katybug Says:

April 6th, 2013 at 7:38 pm

The nurse at my son’s pediatrician’s office is named Mavis. Hearing it on a real person really made me appreciate it. I was not aware of the Hotel Trnasylvania connection, but I makes me happy to hear that there may be more little Mavises running around because of it! It’s a great name!

mlavonne Says:

April 6th, 2013 at 9:27 pm

My name is Mavis and I was born during the 30s. I am delighted that the name is making a comeback. There is also a character in J D Robbs books named Mavis. I have always liked my name. Saw the peace on NBC NIGHTLY NEWS.

tori101 Says:

April 7th, 2013 at 1:42 pm

I love the majority of these names excluding Mavis, Bruce and Nelly. The rest however are really gorgeous choices.

tori101 Says:

April 7th, 2013 at 1:50 pm

Ah I love the majority of these names. I especially love Marlow (the combination Violet Marlow is gorgeous), Finnegan is brilliant and I also love the Greek mythology inspired choices as well, I love that ancient Greek names are being used as their so lovely. I like Christian but I wouldn’t be able to use the name personally.

Muffinoffunk Says:

April 7th, 2013 at 9:11 pm

Yay i am so glad the name ‘marnie’ has made it onto a popular name list. I was always wondering when it was going to get the recognition that it deserved.

My name is Marney and i love my name. Unique without being too over the top. Easy to pronounce. Didn’t get teased about my name at school.

Plus there is a clothing label and a Alfred Hitchcock film using the name ‘marnie’ – how much cooler can u get?

A Kid Named Mingus. Says:

April 8th, 2013 at 4:46 pm

[…] The Quiet Lunch. April 8, 2013 0 Comments Pin It Turns out Mingus is one of the top baby names of 2013. The good folks over at Nameberry recently released their statistics and the surname of great […]

dancingwithdad Says:

April 9th, 2013 at 5:31 am

Bruce was seen as effeminate?

GrecianErn Says:

April 9th, 2013 at 9:15 am

I know a Linnea, Christian, and a Thor. Linnea is a teen, but the others are under 5 yrs old.
Thor’s mom is of Nordic decent.
I love Marlowe for a girl.
I also love Penelope, but think it’s going to be too popular soon.
I hate Nelly – It reminds me of Nellie Olson from “Little House on the Prairie,” and she was just awful.

anniebee Says:

April 11th, 2013 at 7:29 pm

Shhhhh!!! Linnea has been one of my favorites for years because I have a science background and love the connection. I also adore Nelly.

The rest, meh. Mavis reminds me of that dorky typing tutorial program and Marlow/e, Mingus, Thor, Wilder, etc. sound like they are trying waaaaay too hard. At least to me!

abbyw06 Says:

April 15th, 2013 at 5:58 pm

Y’all, my maiden name is Wilder, and I’ve wanted to use it for a boy’s name for literally 4 years. I’d like to take credit for that 200 percent increase in searches as just me googling it myself. 🙂 Hopefully it’s not going to have some upsurge! I kind of doubt it.

We’re pregnant now and we find out in 6 weeks if it’s a boy or a girl. Can’t wait! We have a girl name picked out too.

101.7 The One 13 Hot Baby Names for 2013 | 101.7 The One Says:

April 16th, 2013 at 5:49 am

[…] has released its list of the 13 Hot Baby Names for 2013. […]

Famous Name: Thor | Waltzing More Than Matilda Says:

April 17th, 2013 at 3:03 am

[…] long ago, Nameberry announced Thor was shaping up as one of the hot names of 2013 (along with other mythological names), and at the end of last year, told us that Scandinavian would […]

Mnmemily15 Says:

April 21st, 2013 at 9:54 pm

Linnea can also be pronounced as just La-NAY. My family came from sweden just a couple generations ago and it was my great aunts name. That’s how my old swedish “great” relatives pronounced it 🙂

lalala__lauren Says:

August 23rd, 2013 at 9:29 pm

I know a 10-year-old named Wilder; according to his parents he is so named because they wanted to see if he’d be wilder than his dad.

lexical Says:

November 7th, 2013 at 12:08 pm

Mingus is also, for the comic book geeks out there, the name of Tommy Taylor’s flying cat sidekick in The Unwritten! Decent cat name. Terrible people name.

ozdust Says:

May 10th, 2014 at 10:39 am

I know a Thor in his 20s.
I pray my top name that is mentioned here (starts with an L) doesn’t start becoming popular…. though it’s out of the top 1000 *fingers crossed*

iain_lmta Says:

May 23rd, 2014 at 7:24 pm

You have the name “Mingus” on your list.

Sure, “MINGUS” is how it sounds (rhymes with RING-US) but the spelling is another matter.

When it’s heard as Mingus, the spelling is actually MENZIES.

Old Scottish-Gaelic fact!

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