Japan Announces New Top Baby Names
Himari — A nature name, Himari means “sunflower.” Omamori Himari is a Japanese manga series in which Himari, a cat spirit in human girl form, is one of the main characters.
Yua — Means “to bind with affection”, Yua is also a genus of plant related to the grapevine.
An — Derived from the Chinese ?n, meaning “peace” or “quiet”, An is also used in China and Vietnam.
Ren — Depending on the kanji used, Ren can be considered to mean “lotus” or “love.” It’s one of the few Japanese names to rank in the US Top 1000. This is perhaps in part due to familiarity via characters Ren MacCormack from Footloose or Ren Hoek from Ren and Stimpy.
Haruto — Haruto has many kanji combinations. One possible meaning is “a person born in the Spring“. Haruto is also related to a Chinese constellation, making it a celestial name. Haruto K? was a 20th century Japanese poet.
Arata — Means “new” or “fresh.” It’s also a surname in both Italy and Japan, where the kanji used often give it the meaning “uncultivated field.”
Minato — The Japanese word for “harbor.” As such, it’s used in many Japanese place names. Minato City is a neighborhood in Tokyo.
Japanese Baby Names in the US
Below are 28 Japanese names that easily translate for a child growing up in Western culture. None of these are currently common in the US. But be warned: Choices like Mika, Rumi, and Zen are heating up.
What do you think of the top names in Japan? Would or did you ever consider a Japanese name for your child?
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on December 3rd, 2019 at 7:13 am
I really love Himari, such a lovely name with a lovely meaning. And I’ve always loved Aoi, I have a female friend in her 20s called this, it is truly a unisex name. Japanese names have so much depth to them due to the pictorial nature and meanings of the kanji – we miss out so much in English having such a literal alphabet!
on December 3rd, 2019 at 2:23 pm
Actually *himawari means sunflower
on December 4th, 2019 at 5:05 pm
A lot of things I would like to go over about this so sorry if it seems too long of a comment.
The rankings put forth are for writings (what I mean is that 凛 for girls, most popularly read as Rin, and 蓮 for boys, most popularly read as Ren, are the top baby names by writing according to Meiji Yasuda). When looking at top names by reading, Haruto is, as usual, the top baby boy name with Mei being the girl equivalent, taking over Yui. The rest of the top 5 include Sōta/Himari, Minato/Hana, Yūto/Rin and Riku/Sakura. Regarding Briar’s comment, yes, Himawari (which is used as a somewhat uncommon female name) does mean “sunflower,” Himari is just a truncation of that.
It’s not just MYL that posts their data, them being the latest one I’ve seen. The other two sources which released their own data last month are Tamahiyo and Baby Calendar. I don’t want to drag on too long but I do have a thread over on my Twitter @maybeitsdaijiro as I explain their data a bit more in depth (spoiler: Haruto is ranked 1st overall on these 2 other sources as well, so that should tell you how popular this name still is after around a decade).
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