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Unique Baby Names in the News

August 21, 2019 Clare Green
By Green This week’s news includes unique baby names, the hottest names in Switzerland, celebrity baby names that make a statement, and parents who changed their baby names to keep their families happy...would you?

Top Swiss baby names: Liam and Lenia

Switzerland is a small country with a diverse range of languages and names. If you need proof, just look at the top baby names of 2018. The Top 20 names include names from different languages including Lena. Did you notice anything about that girls’ list? Elin. For all their different languages, Swiss parents have a lot in common when it comes to name style. And the top names? In the whole country, and for Mara.

Statement names: Emanuel

Speaking of international baby names, we had high expectations of Gigi. Another striking birth announcement this week was Danny Gokey - and c) that they’re not afraid to reuse sibling names not once, but twice. I’ve seen some discussion about this recently, with some saying “why not?” and others preferring to give each child a name that’s all theirs. Where do you stand? Ten years ago, Hero

When Grandma hates the name

Would you let your family have a say in your children’s names? Two sets of parents in the news did just that. Australian footballer Parker Foxx
instead. Meanwhile, these parents in Piper
- moments after she was born. Except...the family soon divided into pro-Pipers and anti-Pipers. To keep the peace, they moved it to the middle name spot. Parents are often advised to “use the name you love”, but perhaps there’s also a case for using a name your family doesn’t hate. Then again, there’s a difference between really hating a name, and having a knee-jerk reaction because you’ve never heard of anyone called Piper before. Ultimately, both these children got names that their parents were happy with - partly because their wider families were happy with them too.

Spelling sagas

What do you see when you look at this classroom board? I see an interesting mix of on-trend names. More than half of them are in the Top 1000, and the rest - Elexia, Reagyn and Zerachiel - are mostly spelling variants on more popular names, or else easy to understand and pronounce. Oh, and I see that the kids with these names are all welcome in the classroom. So adults of the internet, why you gotta be so mean? Then along comes an example of why you can’t judge a name by its cover. At first glance, MyCole - as in footballer MyCole Nicholas, which means “people’s victory”, and for mother and son, that’s what is means to them. Which is appropriate now that he’s a sportsman. Every name tells a story! -- England, where she has worked in libraries and studies linguistics. You can follow her personally on Instagram and Twitter.

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Clare Green


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