Vintage Baby Names: What’s your era?
VINTAGE NAMES: What era are you?
Unless you’re a baby namer focused on finding a newly created or cutting-edge name, chances are you’ve considered using one from the past. But which part of the past? An ancient name or one from earlier in the 20th century?
So, the question of the week is: Which of these, if any, are you partiularly attracted to?
- Ancient names like Atticus?
- Medieval names like Isolde?
- Puritan like Prudence?
- Frilly Victorian valentines?
- 1880s-90s names like Minnie or Oscar?
- 1900s-10s choices like Ruby or Raymond?
- 1920s-40s like Betty or Billy?
- 1950s-60s such as Kimberly or Kevin?
- 1970s -80s like Amy, Ashley or Amanda?
Needless to say, many if not most names move across time and are rarely connected to only one decade or even era–future berries just might think of Atticus as a 2010s name.
You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.
on January 12th, 2011 at 6:03 am
The 80s had the best names!
How could you not love the top boys names which are true classics?
Even the top 80s girls names still are timeless even 30-20 years later.
They’re all stylish and classic. What else is there?
Kim W Said
on January 12th, 2011 at 7:23 am
I love the 1910s names. Here are some of my favorite from the top 25:
There is something so soft and strong about these names — no frills, just solid, gentle choices.
on January 12th, 2011 at 8:52 am
I am attracted to Ancient and Medieval names. In fact Isolde is the girl choice for this baby. I am also really attracted to names like Bertram and Gertrude as well and while these names are ancient they would also be considered just old and fusty.
British American Said
on January 12th, 2011 at 9:08 am
I like the 1880s – 1910s. From Kim W’s post, I guess I especially like the 1910s, because we have a Rose & a Henry. Planning on using a similar style of name for #3.
on January 12th, 2011 at 9:10 am
Definitely 1880 as both names are at the top of my current list!
on January 12th, 2011 at 9:28 am
1890 – 1920 for me. I love the solid classics of thos eras for boys and the sassy nicknames in use for girls. I must, since I have kids named Leo, Simon & Josephine/Josie.
I also adore ancient & mythological names butt use those for pets.
on January 12th, 2011 at 10:13 am
on January 12th, 2011 at 10:33 am
I LOVE the name Isolde, I think it is so underused! Other names I love are classic British names… i.e. most names from Jane Austen novels! I find them elegant and timeless. When I here those names, I just think of something very beautiful!
on January 12th, 2011 at 10:41 am
Definitely 1800s-1910s…we have a Henry, Violet, Annie and Joseph. I love that era.
on January 12th, 2011 at 10:45 am
Frilly Victorian valentines, lol. I love royal names, British names, and classic names with style.
on January 12th, 2011 at 11:03 am
I think Sylvia counts as ancient. Silvia Rhea was the mother of the twins that founded Rome. I just picked a slightly more common modern spelling for my daughter. Several of the other girl names I have on my list are of the more ancient variety… Miriam (Moses’ sister), Helena (Helen of Troy), Lydia and Tabitha (a couple of the first disciples).
For boys, maybe 1880’s era? Theodore, Malcolm, Martin, Desmond. Solid classics that aren’t overused today.
on January 12th, 2011 at 11:15 am
I LOVE both the Late Victorian and Edwardian Period and the Regency. Almost everything about them, style-wise.
T-O-L-C: I love Art Deco and Art Nouveau, Jane Addams and Lucy Maud Montgomery. Names like Daisy, Louisa and Nellie.
Regency: Empire-waisted dresses and Hessian boots. Regency architecture. Names like Augusta, Lydia and Edwina.
on January 12th, 2011 at 1:28 pm
I love the Ancients and the Medievels.
on January 12th, 2011 at 2:27 pm
I’m pretty keen on anything from the 1880s-1940s
on January 12th, 2011 at 4:31 pm
I love names from the late 1800’s and the early 1900’s! Names from that period in time are my favorites!
on January 12th, 2011 at 4:45 pm
I am definitely drawn to more Ancient/Colonial/Medieval/Romantic style names. My favorites are…
Atticus, Cassius, Cyrus, Justus, Magnus, Titus, Athalia (but the history is horrible!!!), Cassia, Junia, Livia, Tullia, Thaddeus, Amos, Ezekiel, Lemuel, Levi, Micajah, Solomon, Amity, Phoebe, Prudence, Selah, Susannah, Verity.
Aside from these groupings I have a hard time pinpointing my true taste in names. You should try to create something where we could input names and it could tell us our “style”. That would be great!
on January 12th, 2011 at 5:17 pm
Love the early 20th century! We have a baby Walter who would have been Virginia (Ginny), had he been a girl!
on January 12th, 2011 at 6:06 pm
I love names that are from Regency England, Victorian, Edwardian and British royals.
Adelaide, Eliza, Beatrice, George, Henry, William, Katherine, Oliver, Alice.
Kim W Said
on January 12th, 2011 at 7:49 pm
Oh KatieKR, I love Walter! I would love to have a baby Walter — so cute!
on January 12th, 2011 at 11:35 pm
I would say I like the 1880’s-1910! Oscar was on the short list for my baby boy due in June but however we chose Jude!
on January 13th, 2011 at 1:40 am
Funny, my mom’s father’s sib-set included a Ruby and a Raymond (and my grandfather Dexter and a June), they were indeed born in the 1910s….which happens to be my current fave era for names. Though we have a thing about NOT using family names, for a number of reasons.
on January 13th, 2011 at 1:45 am
The names I would use dont seem to come from an era in particular, so if I had to pick an era it would be the botanical girls names I think were very popular during 1900’s-1930’s. Like Lily, Rose, Poppy, Cherry, Ivy, Daisy, Iris, Rosemary, Flora, Petunia, and my own name Hazel. Names I would use, boys & girls, seem to come from a wide range of eras, ancient to current, but are mostly fairly modern, uncommon, but not too strange: GIRLS: Skye, Liana, Liah, Nikita, Charlotte, Hermione, Rosanna, Gabriella, Allegra, Scarlette, BOYS: Matthew, Dominic, Tristan, Alex, Owen, Jason, Kai, Kuen, Reily, Tyler, Nicholas, Julian, Aiden.
Emmy Jo Said
on January 13th, 2011 at 3:09 pm
Most of my favorites seem to be late Victorian; a few are Edwardian. I just plugged all my favorites into the SSA database and the popularity peaks were nearly all from 1880-1900, with a few peaking as late as the 1920’s. Since the data was not collected before 1880, it’s possible a few of these could have peaked before then, so maybe they are mid-Victorian instead of late-Victorian choices.
The names I tested were Clara, Susanna, Eleanor, Celia, Caroline, Marian, Julius, Gideon, Theodore, Frederick, and Calvin. Gwendolyn and Rosalind were the only anomalies — although their popularity was rising during the Edwardian era, they didn’t peak until the 1950’s.
A lot of my favorite names have ancient or medieval roots, but I think it would be better to describe their overall “feel” as Victorian/Edwardian. After all, I named my son Julius instead of Laurentius, and Eleanor made my favorites list but not Joveta. 🙂
on January 14th, 2011 at 10:43 pm
I definitely gravitate to names from the Regency/Jane Austen era: Caroline and Louisa are my two favorites, plus William and Andrew for boys. I also love Emma, Eva, Madeleine and Georgiana; plus, for boys, Dennis, Peter, Thomas and Henry.
on January 22nd, 2011 at 7:50 pm
lol. I don’t even know. I’m all over the place. I have a Kellie, Crimson, Rejeanne, and Cyrus. Rejeanne is an old Quebecois family name. Kellie is kinda ’60’s, Crimson is kinda hippy/goth and Cyrus is ancient Persian/biblical.
I think I have a naming identity disorder.
on March 29th, 2011 at 7:09 am
I love Medieval names, especially names from Arthurian legend, two of my favourites being Morgana and Guinevere. I also adore Jane Austen names, and Georgiana is my favourite girls name ever, followed by Lydia, Elizabeth and Katherine!
With boys, I am all over the place! I love the Medievals like Tristan, Percival and Arthur, but also some of the Recencies, a few Ancients and some Victorians, as well as more modern ones. My favourites are Lucas, Cassius, Hugo, Gabriel, James and Benjamin.
on April 6th, 2011 at 6:31 pm
My name is Theory, for real. Theoryanne to be exact. I would love to know if there is any history behind it that perhaps the professionals would have an easier time tracking down. I’ve been told numerous different stories as to why my parents chose this for me, but am really wanting to research it now.
After nearly 40 years of having this name, I’ve decided to embrace it (sort of), and started a blog, conveniently titled:
What’s Theory Thinking?
Feel free to visit at: http://www.whatstheorythinking.blogspot.com
It is only in the beginning stages, but I am trying to use it as an outlet for me to document the ups and downs of turning 40! And, with a name like, Theory…..I do believe I am destined to do something great with my life, I just haven’t quite figured it out yet! So, I’m blogging about it =)
Any information would be greatly appreciated!
on April 11th, 2011 at 11:51 pm
I love classic vintage names as well. My son is Theo for Theodore and my daughter is Lyla. Both were pretty popular in the early 1900s. Most people though think Lyla is Layla which drives me nuts. I should have picked the spelling Lila instead. Whatever. If I ever have #3, I am leaning towards Ezra/Owen for a boy or Eleanor (Ella)/Cora/Evangeline (Evie) for a girl. Different but not totally off the wall!
on May 6th, 2011 at 6:52 pm
I love ATTICUS to death. We’ll use it if we have a boy. AESON is another favorite of ours and so is ARIADNE (for a girl). Both are mythological names, so therefore, “ancient” in a sense. Another favorite of mine is EDISON.
on May 24th, 2011 at 8:57 pm
I like older — even ancient — European names, usually either French, Italian, or Norse. Examples of such are Aurelie/Aurelia, Freya, Isolde, Elodie, Astrid, Johanna, Lucia, and Sloane for girls, and Soren, Cormac, Claude (Only as a MN, and only to honor Monet!), and Anton for boys.
However, I am extremely partial to turn-of-the-century girls’ nicknames — Attie, Etta, Dezzie, Effie, Letty, etc. They’re just wonderful. I’d seriously consider naming my future daughter Euphemia just so I could call her Effie.
on May 27th, 2011 at 11:32 am
My daughters names are:
All from diffrent eras.
on July 29th, 2011 at 9:30 pm
My name is one of the favorites in my country, Brazil. I love classic names and I want to have three children. I would like a boy and two girls. The boy- I think- would be Eduardo. The girls would be Isabela and Olívia. I would like to put Sofia, but my older sister did it.
on December 20th, 2011 at 6:26 pm
I guess I like a mix of names my top 2 are classics Mollie and Sophie that have remained popular for many years. My third choice Miranda is a Shakesperian name. My fourth and fith choice are trendy names Harper and Piper
on February 5th, 2012 at 5:09 am
As well as Yasmine and Zoe and for boys Eamon and Tiago
on March 7th, 2012 at 8:55 pm
Definitely Victorian to the early 1920’s. Emphasis on Victorian though.
on June 8th, 2012 at 2:50 pm
It’s Edwardian for me with a special mention for Ancient and Medievel.
on March 12th, 2019 at 10:11 am
The kids down the street when I was growing up 1960+ were Johnny, Joey, Debbie, Tommy, Bobby, Stevie, Nancy, Patty, Cathy, Susie etc. There were other groups, more trendy or named after movie stars but the ie and y names were big. Some of the others I remember were Anita, Pamela, Craig, David, Michael, Christopher, Dale Karen, Jeffrey. Debbie was the first name I fell in love with.
leave a reply
You must be logged in to post a comment.