Naming Twin Boys: Double Trouble
Our daughter is named Tallulah, a name we could not love more and which suits her perfectly. Her little brother is Maximilian but is always called Max, a name we both always loved despite its popularity.
Other names in the running that we more or less agree on are Abe, Jasper, Henry (Hank) and Wolf. My husband is pushing for Blaise or Mars but I’m just not convinced. I love Felix and Forest but he does not. We could always each name one baby! But we’d really like to agree on their names! Any suggestions?
We’d like to avoid giving the boys’ names that start with the same letter if we can, and some names just sound weird with our one-syllable last name that rhymes with ‘News’.
The Name Sage replies:
The thought of naming twins always thrills me. Two babies! Double the names!
But when it comes time to narrow the list to two actual names for these new human beings? It’s harder than it looks.
Our Twin Naming Guide describes the right choice this way:
Each name in the set is distinct from the other yet they make a harmonious pair – exactly what most parents would wish for the twins themselves.
The good news is that many of your choices feel like they’d work beautifully together, and fit nicely with Tallulah and Maximilian “Max,” too. And you’re absolutely right: better to agree on both names that each choose one.
I would cross out Fox as too close to Max, but also maybe Mars. And if avoiding popular choices matters, Henry strikes me as name that might disappoint. It’s a personal favorite of mine, but at Number 22 and rising, you’re likely to meet a lot of little Henrys.
Maybe the biggest challenge of naming twin boys is this: Tallulah and Maximilian are long, dramatic names. But Max is a friendly, accessible, mini name, just one syllable. And the boys’ choices on your current list top out at two.
I suspect that your style for boys leans more towards the latter. The perfect compromise might be two longer, unexpected names, both with a short nickname. But I’ll throw in some other options, too.
Abraham, called Abe or Bram – This feels like an obvious choice. Abe is already on your list, and while Abraham ranks in the Top 200, it doesn’t feel too common. Nickname Bram, as in Stoker, is another option that’s even less often heard.
Callahan, Calder, or Calvin called Cal – There are scores of longer names that easily shorten to Cal, which feels like a companion for Max and Gus and Hank. Calvin ranks in the current Top 200, but Calder and Callahan don’t even crack the US Top 1000.
Ezekiel, called Zeke – One of the fun things about Max is that letter X. It’s on your list with Felix, too, so I wonder if you might like Z names for boys? Ezekiel falls just outside of the current Top 100, but it doesn’t feel too common.
Leonidas, Leopold, or Leonardo, called Leo – As with Cal, possibilities for a longer name abound. I’m guessing you might know a little Leo or two already. But if Max having a longer, and less common, given name helps in that case, would Leonidas called Leo work every bit as well?
Nicodemus called Nico – Nicholas dominated the 90s, but there are plenty of Nic– names to choose from. I have a soft spot for Nicodemus, but Dominic and Nicanor are options, too. Nick is an easy option, but Nico feels more like a sibling for Tallulah and Max.
That’s the easy part! But since we’re choosing two names, let’s look at some possible pairs.
Ezekiel + Abraham, called Zeke and Bram – This is my favorite duo from the list! They feel a little more offbeat and unexpected, even though they’re really fairly familiar. They strike me as nicely balanced for twin brothers, but also compatible with Tallulah and Max. I like Jasper and Zeke together, too.