Category: wild baby names
By Linda Rosenkrantz
A look at the year’s Craziest Baby Names has become a Nameberry tradition.
Every year, after we’ve parsed the most popular names, we dive deep into the extended popularity list to names given to only five or six babies in the past year to find the names that have moved from creative to crazy.
The 12 names below, all of them—believe it or not—given to at least five American babies in 2016—win the dubious honor of being our picks for the craziest of this year’s crazy baby names.
The name Fox has cracked into the UK’s 1000 most popular names, while Kate Winslet and Alicia Silverstone are both raising children named Bear. But if you’re not quite up for naming your baby directly after an animal, consider the many names that have some majestic and inspiring animals hiding in their origins.
A Pack of Canines
Caleb, 2015’s 37th most popular boy name, might literally mean “dog,” from the Hebrew keleb, with a sense of “devotion.”
By Abby Sandel
Just last week, we were enjoying a mini-revival in classic baby names. There was the nicely-named – and beautifully alliterative! – Christopher Carlton Cumberbatch, a Mary Cecilia called Mamie, and lots of kids named Lucy and Oliver.
Then along came this week, and it’s a very different story. The names are bold, surprising, and in many cases, absolutely new.
Now a growing number of boys are sharing their names with the zoo’s residents – and not just any residents, but the fiercest of creatures. The trend owes something to nature choices like River and Sky, as well as tough names for boys like Gunner and Slade.
It isn’t completely new. Plenty of given names refer to animals. Wolfgang is a traditional German appellation worn by the legendary Mozart. Factor in nicknames and the list grows. There’s Coach Bear Bryant, only his mama named him Paul. Comedian Bobcat Goldthwait? He was born Robert Francis.
For parents leaning towards hyper-masculine options like Cannon and Blaze, choosing an apex predator for a son’s name might feel just right. The more dangerous members of the animal kingdom offer more options than you might imagine, though some are extreme.
I have to offer a disclaimer: this just isn’t my style, though I find some of these intriguing. Would you consider any of the animal names for your child? And is there a difference between a gentle creature and a more aggressive one?
Caiman – Part Cayden, part tropical island. The Caymans take their name from this native word for alligator. You wouldn’t name your son crocodile, but this feels surprisingly wearable.
Dhole – It looks like a kreatif spelling meant to distance Dole from the pineapple and/or the politician. But dholes are actually wild dogs native to India, China, and Vietnam. When hunting in a pack, they’re tough enough to take down a tiger.