The Boys of Summer: Apollo, Elio and Leo

The Boys of Summer: Apollo, Elio and Leo

Looking for the perfect name for your summer born boy? Here are 18 cool options to consider, or see our full list of summer baby names for even more seasonal ideas.


The powerful name of the Greek god of the sun is currently heating up in the US, especially since it was chosen by Gwen Stefani and Gavin Rossdale for their son. Fictional Apollos have appeared in the Rocky films, in the Percy Jackson books and in video games. The space program reference is another definite plus. The Roman version Phoebus is a more unusual possibility.


This Sanskrit name is the modern form of Aruna, the Hindu god charioteer who drives the sun god Surya across the sky; it is also the name of a river in West Sussex, England, giving it some nature cred. Arun was in the UK Top 500 from 1996 to 2008.

August, Augustus and Augustine

For a summer boy baby, there are several Augustan possibilities, starting with August itself. With its split-screen image of distinguished word name (emphasis on the second syllable) and sunlit month, it has been enjoying a moment in the sun lately.

August is currently rising towards the Top 100, Augustus is hovering just below the Top 500, and saintly Augustine is at #617. Augustin is a Top 50 name in France.


There are many salty sea names appropriate for a summer boy, but Caspian — established in books by C. S. Lewis — is our favorite. Used by Neve Campbell for her son in 2012, Caspian is one of the fastest rising boy names of recent years.


A Persian name meaning ‘sun’, Cyrus has a distinguished history via the ancient Persian leader known as Cyrus the Great. The name has made a recent comeback, especially since it was chosen by Claire Danes and Hugh Dancy for their son in 2012, and has also appeared on Gossip Girl and Scandal. On the latest US listings, Cyrus is #427—and 120 on Nameberry.


A popular Turkish name related to the sea that’s a lot more jazzy than Dennis, used for both sexes in its native land.


Elio is the Italian form of Helios, the Greek god of the sun. Not as popular in Italy as it once was, it still feels fresh and energetic here and is also a high-ranking name in France. Elio is the young main character in Call Me By Your Name played by Timothée Chalamet, for which he earned an Oscar nomination.

Julian and Julius

If your summer son is due in July, Julian could be the perfect choice. A rapidly rising star, charming Julian now ranks at #33 and was chosen by several celebs, including Jerry Seinfeld. More serious cousin Julius is a more under-the-radar alternative.

Leo or Leon

If your boy is born between July 23rd and August 22nd, he’s a Leo and a legit owner of one of the leonine names, which are riding an international wave of popularity. Leo is an international favorite, but Leon is also popular across Europe. More intriguing variants include Lionel, Leonardo, Leone and Lev.


A jaunty Irish surname connected to summer via its meaning of ‘sea warrior’.


Like River, Ocean is a water name flowing back onto the shores of the baby name landscape, conjuring up nice beachy images. It entered the Top 1000 for boys in 2020 and for girls too in 2021.


Ravi, meaning "sun" in Sanskrit, is a title of the Hindu god of the sun. Associated with the supreme sitar player Ravi Shankar, it was on the UK popularity list in the late 90s, and is a Top 150 name in the Netherlands.


By far the most popular of the water-related names, River is cool fir both sexes. It has been chosen by such celebs as Keri Russell, Taylor Hanson, Jamie Oliver, Jeff Goldblum and Megan Fox for their sons.


The super-strong biblical Samson means ‘sun child, bright sun’. Parents have begun turning to Samson as an alternative to Samuel, and it also offers the bonus summery nickname Sonny or Sunny.


How about a surname that relates to the season? The English-Scottish Seaton means ‘town or farm by the sea’ and has the popular ‘on’ ending.


The image of this long forgotten grandpa nickname for Solomon changes radically when seen as the Spanish and Portuguese word for sun. In the US, Sol peaked in 1913, a period of intense Jewish immigration. But it's feeling fresh and cool again today.


As opposed to the Scandinavian Soren, Sorin derives from a Romanian word for "sun" and is quite common in its native land. For literary cred, Sorin is a character in Chekov’s The Seagull.


This rarely heard Greek name, meaning "summer", makes for a cool seasonal alternative to Theo or Thaddeus.

About the Author

Linda Rosenkrantz

Linda Rosenkrantz

Linda Rosenkrantz is the co-founder of Nameberry, and co-author with Pamela Redmond of the ten baby naming books acknowledged to have revolutionized American baby naming. You can follow her personally at InstagramTwitter and Facebook. She is also the author of the highly acclaimed New York Review Books Classics novel Talk and a number of other books.