These Rare Names Are Still in the Charts…Just
Rare baby names at the bottom of the popularity charts are an endless source of interest and inspiration. As the US baby name data for 2019 is due to be released next month, let’s take a final look deep down in the 2018 lists, as it could be the last time we see some of the names there.
When we say “unique” names, we mean those that were only given to five girls or five boys in one year. (Any fewer than that, and they don’t appear in the public data.) They’re not literally one-of-a-kind names. But unless they’re specific to a local area, it’s very unlikely these children will ever meet a namesake.
Interestingly, some of the names given to five children were once in the Top 200, like Teri and Latasha. Their heyday has long since passed, and now they’re on the verge of disappearing. Others have always been rare, but dip in and out of the charts.
What sort of names do we find here? You’ve probably guessed: all sorts! Of the hundreds of names given to five children, some are respellings of more popular names — like Jette and Pheona, Antjuan and Ryder. Others are probably hyphenated but show up on the list de-punctuated, like Lunamaria and Luismiguel. But many more are original names in their own right.
We’ve rounded up some of the best rare names in style categories. It may be too late to save them for 2019, but they won’t be forgotten.
Ladies and gentlemen
Let’s kick it off with some of the grandest names on the list: some are whimsical, some are vintage, and all are teetering on the edge of use.
Some of the hottest names right now pay tribute to iconic figures, both historic and fictional: think Lennon and Hendrix, Atticus and Luna. If you’re looking for something less popular, here are some lesser-used options.
A lot of on-trend names mix and match from a pool of syllables, so you have Kayden and Kayson and Bryson and Brylee and Kaylee… and so on. The names below combine elements that are rare, but fit perfectly into this style.
Recently we looked at the coolest nicknames for babies, and now we bring you some of the rarest. These are full of casual style and — at least for five babies — stand alone without a longer form.
We can all think of popular names that are also words: Grace, Lily, Carter, Maverick. But a few parents delve much deeper into the dictionary. Here’s a selection of word names that we’d be sorry to see slip off the charts.
Cosmic: Chaos, Life, Universe
Superlatives: Alpha, Maximum, Million, Prime, Stellar
Here are even more words you won’t believe have been turned into baby names.
If you speak another language, there’s a whole world of vocabulary that could become a name. Here are some of the most stylish words from other languages that were given to five children in 2018.
Change one letter
Have you ever made a typo in a name and created a new name that sounds pretty great? (Caution: this doesn’t always work. No matter how many emails I sign as “Calre” it doesn’t get any more usable.) Or have you played the long-running game Change One Letter in the Nameberry forums?
The names here operate on the same principle. Take a well-known name, change or add or remove one letter, and you might end up with something new and ready to use.
A lot of the rarest names on the charts come from languages and cultures all over the word. Many are well-known in their home country, but undiscovered in the States. It’s hard to whittle the list down to just a few… but we’ve tried!
Which of these rare baby names do you hope to see on next year’s charts?
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