Category: baby name Liam
By Lisa Spira
Before Liam became the second most popular baby name in the United States, as it has been since 2013, it was a lesser-known Irish short form of William. It was distinctively Irish. Today, however, Liam is so popular that it feels more “American” than anything else.
Which names from other cultures might be the next popular American names?
By Linda Rosenkrantz
There was a time when the top baby name lists of different countries reflected their own distinctive native cultures. When John and Mary headed those of most English-speaking countries, just as Giovanni and Maria and Juan and Maria and Jean and Marie et al were in first place elsewhere.
But that has changed. With the homogenization of culture in general, with an increase in international travel, the spread of the internet and global audiences watching the same TV shows, we are no longer surprised to find the Irish appellation Liam ranking high on the list in Switzerland or the Old Testament Ethan suddenly Number 3 in Monaco. This is a moment when certain names, often in a variety of indigenous forms, are spreading epidemically across the world.
We’re just days away from the new year! As 2014 draws to a close, plenty of websites and hospital systems have released their top baby names for the past twelve months.
The official 2014 US data doesn’t come out until May 2015. But this early information lets us read the tea leaves and guess – or hope! – which names might come out on top when we see the official numbers in a few months.
With the holidays in full swing, I thought it was time for a wish list.
I’d love to magically know how to pronounce every child’s name at first glance.
A crystal ball to find out which noun names will wear well, and which just plain won’t work. Or, alternately, a detailed explanation as to why Pilot and Apple still seem outrageous while Chase and Genesis are mainstream.
A trip to the most fashionable of playgrounds in Paris and the ability to speak fluent French in order to grill expectant mamans about their favorite baby names. Cosette probably isn’t one of them … but in Pittsburgh or Pensacola, I think she could be a smash. Or wait, maybe I’ll visit Toronto, because their list is just different enough from the US to pique my curiosity.
The nine baby names that inspired my wish list are also this week’s nine most newsworthy appellations: