The Newest, Hottest, Oldest Baby Names

hot baby names

by Pamela Redmond Satran

Every year, the US government issues a list of the names that are making the biggest leaps up the popularity list.  And there, among the reality TV-inspired Daleyzas and Jayceons, sprinkled in with the new-fangled Jurnees and Zayns, is a collection of vintage names that for a range of reasons have suddenly become hot.

Sometimes, the inspiration is a film or television show, as with Marjorie and Game of Thrones or Walter and Hank from Breaking Bad.

A name’s choice by celebrity parents can make it go from sleepy to sizzling too, as happened with Olive after it was used for their daughter by Isla Fisher and Sacha Baron Cohen.

Here, 40 vintage baby names making big leaps up the popularity list.  The +number indicates how many places each name moved up the US popularity list in 2013.  And the second number is the name’s standing on the popularity list.  Please note: Only those names in the Top 1000 are tracked.


Marjorie, +735, to 910

Mabel, +338, to 707

Rosie, +235, to 883

Leona, +176, to 734

Alma, +154, to 701

Mercy, +143, to 854

Hattie, +138, to 570

Millie, +124, to 598

Dorothy, +115, to 808

Beatrice, +102, to 593

Pearl, +80, to 677

Anastasia, +79, to 257

Vera, +77, to 422

Felicity, +76, to 579

Mae, +74, to 674

Olive, +73, to 291

June, +70, to 362

Frances, +70, to 693

Sadie, +69, to 50

Rosemary, +68, to 533


Enoch, +178, to 836

Harvey, +176, to 616

Cassius, +172, to 760

Clyde, +160, to 999

Samson, +129, to 671

Theo, +129, to 666

Gilbert, +112, to 885

Thaddeus, +105, to 797

Otto, +89, to 696

Francis, +86, to 506

Roland, +77, to 665

Lionel, +74, to 733

Reuben, +72, to 896

Hank, +58, to 626

Frederick, +46, to 492

Augustine, +45, to 955

Uriah, +34, to 539

Walter, +34, to 342

Franklin, +33, to 495

Ephraim, +32, to 972

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15 Responses to “The Newest, Hottest, Oldest Baby Names”

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lesliemarion Says:

February 19th, 2015 at 12:24 am

Oh thank God for these names. I do not like misspelled, creatively spelled, smooshed, or otherwise alternative names. I like name names. Like these! Names with a history and backbone.

augusta_lee Says:

February 19th, 2015 at 1:19 am

These are, almost without exception, fabulous names. I particularly love Marjorie, Mabel, Mercy, Anastasia, Vera, Felicity, June, Rosemary, Harvey (LOVE), Cassius, Theo (I know two, both my age), Thaddeus, Otto, Roland, Reuben, and Walter.

peacebird10 Says:

February 19th, 2015 at 7:32 am

Ah, some refreshingly solid names!

Touktouk Says:

February 19th, 2015 at 9:08 am

Fun list! How do you pronounce Enoch?

mill1020 Says:

February 19th, 2015 at 10:52 am

I think Mabel has become a lot more wearable due to “Gravity Falls” and the celebrities that have recently used it. Dunno how much higher Uriah’s gonna go, though.

bowtiful Says:

February 19th, 2015 at 11:25 am

So many lovely names. I LOVE Pearl and Theo as a sibset – too sweet!

SimoneKadele Says:

February 19th, 2015 at 12:32 pm

Mabel, Mae, Theo, and Uriah are my favorites…

mother_dragons Says:

February 19th, 2015 at 12:42 pm

I love classic names like this! My favourites are Rosie, Anastasia, Felicity, Mae (I prefer it as a MN, though), June, Sadie, Lionel (although you can’t use it here without people thinking you’re obsessed with Messi), Frederick (LOVE the nickname Fred) and Walter (my favourite uncle’s name). Simple, solid names like this with easy spelling and lot of history are the apple of my eye

epowell Says:

February 19th, 2015 at 2:23 pm

Some good options. I can’t believe how far some have jumped in ONE year!

amf0224 Says:

February 19th, 2015 at 2:58 pm

I LOVE so many of these! I just added Marjorie, Mabel, Leona, Vera, and Harvey onto my lists and already had Rosie, Beatrice, Pearl, Anastasia, Olive, Theo, and Otto on my lists! Such good, classic, and vintage names that have a modern and fresh feel!

maggiemary Says:

February 19th, 2015 at 6:20 pm

I absolutely love and would use in a heartbeat…

Hattie (as nn for Harriet)


JH Says:

February 20th, 2015 at 12:08 am

My three week old is Frederick! It’s such a classy and strong name. I’m unsure how I feel about Otto, but I think I like it. Although with a very German last name, and my Leo and Frederick, Otto might be a little too much if we have a third boy.

bjoy Says:

February 20th, 2015 at 4:19 pm

I think Jory/Jorie is a super cute nickname for Marjorie. Lots of fantastic names on this list!

LuMary Says:

February 22nd, 2015 at 7:25 pm

I love the vintages! No doubt Pope Francis is helping the male Francis. In Chicago, we have a retired Archbishop Francis George, and a newly installed archbishop, Blase Cupich. I’m liking Blase on account of him, as well as its recent attention on Nameberry.

LuMary Says:

February 22nd, 2015 at 7:26 pm

I love May, but don’t care for Mae. May can be the next Rose, as far as middles go.

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