Category: 2011 baby names
I have a friend, a pretty quirky guy, who has one of those generic boys’ names: Bill. I was thinking recently what an advantage it is for Bill to be named Bill rather than something like Jasper or Jarvis, one of those boys’ names that’s his equal in quirkiness. Bill takes the edge off his eccentric attitudes and offbeat style. It’s almost like the name Bill runs interference for my friend, telling the world: Don‘t worry, he may seem odd, but at heart he’s just a regular guy.
Of course, today naming your child Bill wouldn’t have the same effect. Bill is too mid-century a name and so seems old-fashioned or stodgy, not a regular guy of 2018 or 2025 at all. It’s one of those names that count as Regular Guy Names for dads or grandpas, but not for babies. These include:
It’s astonishing to think that Hattie – just Hattie, all by itself, not Harriet — was Number 27 in 1880, until you realize that many other short forms were among the top choices that year. Minnie was all the way up at Number 5, Annie was Number 11, Nellie, 18, and Bessie, 23. Other nicknames for girls in the Top 50 included Carrie, Jennie, Mattie, Jessie, and Fannie (and obviously, the ie ending was the popular one).
Twin names pose special challenges and special pleasures, for the namer and name enthusiast alike. Here, Nameberry intern and guest blogger Hannah Tenison chooses her favorite twin pairs and tells us why they work so well.
Since the days of Ancient Rome and Greece, when the stories of Remus and Romulus and Castor and Pollux circulated among the public, twins have been a source of intrigue; but when Mary–Kate and Ashley burst onto the screen in the 80s sitcom “Full House” as the lovable Michelle, they became positively marketable.
The Olsen twins gave way to “The Parent Trap,” starring Lindsay Lohan as twins Hallie and Annie; Tia and Tamera Mowry, who starred in the 90’s Disney show “Sister, Sister,” and later, Dylan and Cole Sprouse in “The Suite Life of Zack and Cody.” There’s “Harry Potter”’s Fred and George Weasley as well as Padma and Parvati Patil, along with “A Series of Unfortunate Events’” Duncan and Isadora Quagmire, and in music, there’s the duo Benji and Joel Madden of Good Charlotte, and indie pair Tegan and Sara.
But of course, the most interesting thing about twins is their names – at least from a name nerd’s perspective. Here, a list of my personal favorite twin name pairs, from starbabies to royalty, and why I think they work well together.
Thornton and Theophilus Wilder (Thornton wrote the play “Our Town”): Unusual, distinguished, and somewhat stodgy, these names sound old-world cool, and the shared “th” sound makes them similar without taking it over the top. I like that Thornton, whose unfussy surname vibe couldn’t be more different from the antiquated sound of Theophilus, still manages to sound like the latter’s twin.
Since our last round-up of Nameberry’s actual baby names of 2011 in June, there’s been a bonanza of beautifully named newbies posted on our forums–and I’m sure they’re just the tip of the iceberg. Once again Pam and I are blown away by the fantastic choices being made—from the elegant classics to the more imaginative selections, including great multiple pairings and sibsets. Not to mention all the consistently awesome level of berry-to-berry advice, guidance and support that often leads to those choices.
Of course we can only know about the names posted on the Birth Announcements, so we really hope you’ll enter your upcoming happy news there for all to share. The names below cover the period from July 1st to right now– if we’ve missed any from that time frame, please post them under Comments and we’ll be sure to add them to the list.
Last week we brought you our underground list of most popular girls’ names 2011; now it’s the boys’ turn.
But we’ve got a quieter, less obvious, but potentially more interesting list for you: those boys’ names that don’t make the Top 100 but that are attracting a dramatic rise in interest in 2011 compared with 2010.
While not all of these names are destined for future popularity, the baby namer in search of a name that will feel as fresh in ten years as it does today should take heed. Unlikely as it may seem, the ultracool Booker may be tomorrow’s Cooper or Parker; Alden might be as hot as Aiden by 2015.
Our list of secretly popular boys’ names 2011: