Menu

Baby Names Hot in the UK, Not in the US

February 11, 2013 Pamela Redmond
British baby names

There are many baby names that are popular on both sides of the Atlantic: Olivia and Oliver, Charlotte and William both rank high in the US and the UK.

And then there are those baby names that are evidence of how wide the gulf is between the British and the American cultures.

We found 29 baby names — 20 for girls and nine for boys — that rank in the current British Top 200 (or so) that do not appear at all in the American Top 1000.  (Note: We did skip spelling variations such as Hollie and Isobel.)

And another five Top 200 baby names for girls and nine for boys that are down at the bottom of our Top 1000; in other words, vastly less popular in the US than in the UK.

One kind of name that much more popular in Britain than America: the nickname name, with choices like Evie and Maisie, Alfie and Archie in their Top 25 but not ranking as proper names in the US.

Then there are baby names with ethnic origins more usually found in the UK than the US, expected derivations such as the Irish Niamh and the Welsh Cerys but also more surprising ones such as the Eastern European Zuzanna, which also shows up on the Irish popularity list.

Some more classic British names have achieved popularity there by filtering down from the upper classes, while in the US we tend to name our babies after reality stars more often than viscounts.  Examples of posh names that have been adopted by the hoi polloi include Freya and Harriet.

The baby names that are hot in the UK, with their British popularity standing in parenthesis, and not in the US, where they don’t appear in the Top 1000, are:

girls

Evie  (11)

Poppy  (14)

Freya  (19)

Maisie (22)

Imogen (32)

Florence (43)

Harriet (71)

Niamh  (81) and Neve  (146)

Darcy  (110)  (Darcey and Darcie are also popular)

Seren (127)

India (130)

Lottie (138)

Faye (142)

Orla (155)

Georgina  (157)

Zuzanna (171)

Ffion (183)

Cerys (184)

Honey (200)

Honorable Mention: Millie, Matilda, Esme, Tia, Lara

boys

Alfie  (4)

Archie  (24)

Freddie (42)  (The Freddy spelling squeaks onto the US list at 905)

Jenson (67)

Ewan  (143)

Rio (160)

Fraser  (195)

Oakley (222)

Honorable Mention: Reuben, Frankie, Alfred, Fletcher

Britberries, please enlighten us on any inside reasons for these names’ success!

And Ameriberries, which of these names do you think can successfully cross the pond?

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

Comments

38 Responses to “Baby Names Hot in the UK, Not in the US”

You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.

leave a reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.