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Most Popular Baby Names, A to Z

January 28, 2015 Pamela Redmond
popular baby names

by Pamela Redmond Satran

We were so entranced with the blog Eleanor Nickerson–aka Elea— did for us on most popular British baby names by letter that we decided to recreate it using the American popularity list.

Our research intern Megan Garon pored over the US statistics to compile the following list of the top girls’ and top boys’ name for every letter from A to Z.   Well, not every letter as it turns out there is no girls’ name starting with U in the Top 1000!

Other interesting facts that emerge when looking at the US popularity list through the alphabetical lens:

— Some letters (E, for instance) include names that are a lot closer to the top of the list than others (F, to cite a nearby example).  This is hardly earth-shattering news and yet, the differences are notable.

— While there are plenty of traditional names heading their letter’s popularity rank, a remarkable number of the top names are new ones.  Take H, for example, where Harper and Hunter trump classics Helen and Henry, or P, where Peyton and Parker dominate rather than Patricia and Paul.

— In a few cases, the top names for a letter for girls and boys are remarkable similar — Riley and Ryan, for instance, and Willow and William, and especially Quinn and Quinn!  This is evidence of the trend toward boys’ and girls’ names taking their sound and style cues from each other.

— When you look at most popular names this way, a few really unusual choices come to the fore by leading their little pack.  We’re looking at you, Ximena, Yaretzi, and Yahir.

Here, the most popular names for every letter in 2013 in the US, with overall standings for the names in parentheses.

A

Ava (5)

Alexander (8)

Brooklyn (28)

Benjamin (14)

C

Charlotte (11)

Christopher (26)

D

Delilah (135)

Daniel (10)

E

Emma (2)

Ethan (6)

F

Faith (89)

Francisco (218)

G

Grace (22)

Gabriel (24)

H

Harper (16)

Hunter (36)

I

Isabella (4)

Isaac (29)

J

Julia (75)

Jacob (3)

K  

Kaylee (41)

Kevin (72)

Lillian (26)

Liam (2)

Mia (6)

Mason (4)

N

Natalie (21)

Noah (1)

Olivia (3)

Owen (38)

Peyton (51)

Parker (74)

Q  

Quinn (118)

Quinn (356)

R

Riley (45)

Ryan (30)

S

Sophia (1)

Samuel (25)

Taylor (59)

Thomas (61)

U  

N/A

Uriel (482)

V  

Victoria (25)

Vincent (101)

Willow (155)

William (5)

Ximena (162)

Xavier (83)

Y

Yaretzi (304)

Yahir (480)

Z

Zoey (24)

Zachary (73)

What’s your favorite letter pair?

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, and its new sequel, Older.

View all of Pamela Redmond's articles

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