What’s your favorite classic boys’ name…and why?

Which classic boys’ name do you love the best?

Classic boys’ names encompass those that are traditionally popular such as John, William, and Thomas, along with classics fashionable today like Henry and Alexander.

And classic names for boys may also include biblical names such as Jacob and Joshua, along with classics that are newly back in style, from Atticus to Arthur.

But for this Question of the Week, you can only pick one.

What’s your favorite classic boys’ name, and why?

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86 Responses to “What’s your favorite classic boys’ name…and why?”

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lesliemarion Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 12:07 am

One name… wow.

I am torn between my father’s name (Robert), my brother’s name (Gordon), and my son’s name (Owen).

So I will choose another, what I would name a son if I had one now: Graham.

Soft, strong, sensitive, artistic, sexy Graham.

A true classic.

Polina Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 12:13 am

James. It’s just so handsome.

Ani77 Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 12:16 am

For me it’s Arthur. It’s just so regal, strong yet soft sounding. To me it conjures images of knights, maidens and magic. I was so disappointed the new British prince wasn’t named Arthur πŸ™
Would I use it myself? I don’t know…I’m not sure Arthur fits in my family but I’d recommend it to anyone who’ll listen πŸ™‚

JH Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 12:19 am

I have to vote for Leo, which is my son’s and grandpa’s name. It’s simple, clean, and strong with a great history.

ClaraOswinOswald Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 12:27 am

I’d have to say Nicholas. No matter how often I’ve heard it it doesn’t cease to appeal to me. It’s just very attractive sounding and I wish more Nicks went by their full names!

mill1020 Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 12:48 am

James. It’s my dad’s middle name, my husband’s late grandfather’s name, and the name of our oldest. Sweet Baby James, whose name has a gentle, swooping letter ‘J’ at the beginning, a symmetrical ‘m’ in the middle, and a definitive ‘s’ at the end. He is sleek, suave, simple, and timelessly handsome.

emekct Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 1:06 am


Classic, handsome. Equally workable on a shy young boy, precocious youngster, or a little spitfire.
The wonderful nicknames Jay and Jamie.
I can see it in adulthood on an educated professional, artist, chef, or tradesman.

Giinkies Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 1:12 am

I’m gonna agree with some previous posters and say James. There is just something magical about the name.

Erinm Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 1:14 am

I’d go with James too. James can be a doctor, lawyer, writer, hairdresser, dancer, tradesman, and jazz it up with a funky middle name and he can be an athlete or a musician/artist. Plus it’s my uncle’s name, and no matter how many times I say it I never get tired of it.

The only thing is I dont really like most of the nicknames

Close runner up is Ben. Haven’t yet met any Bens I don’t like.

indiefendi Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 1:22 am

If Caleb counts as a classic it’s my absolute favorite. Mainly the Biblical classics are my favorites: Isaac, Benjamin, Matthew, Noah, etc.

indiefendi Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 1:23 am

Oh and I like Edward as well.

Elenath Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 1:42 am

Torn between Sebastian and Balthazar, but I’m not sure if Balthazar would count as a classic, so I’ll go for …


Gummibear Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 1:50 am

Just so perfect in every way.

Liztheartist Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 1:52 am

I’m another fan of James. It is so regal and lovely.

XmintieX Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 2:20 am

So many names pop to mind – James, Alexander, Henry, Sebastian & Vincent. But my absolute favourite would have to be James. It’s strong without being over the top, regal and handsome. The name also has family ties for me and my partner.

maggiekathleen Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 2:32 am


It is obviously my favorite because as soon as I got the chance, we used it for our first born, a son, Arthur. πŸ™‚

Now he is a blur at 20 months old- always on the move. He is fearless, and adorable. Anyone who has heard his name since his birth wants to know why we picked it. Was it a family name? (Nope.) Everyone who stops us to talk about it loves his name though.

I love the name Arthur because it is an underused classic, it has a long history of use, the nicknames “Art” and “Artie,” and there is a history to the name.

amandaaylwin Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 3:14 am

Luke. Classic, yet fresh and not uber popular!

kyemsma Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 4:51 am

James! Handsome and classic, James goes from babyhood to adulthood easily.

Littlemeg Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 5:06 am

Jude….it’s the name my fiancΓ©e and I will use when we decide to have children. Jude is a name that has lasted thousand of years, it’s not overly popular, yet not odd. I also love the reference to St Jude and the children’s hospital. The name always felt like a beacon of hope to me.

Missmolly Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 5:31 am

Peter. Strong, bright, a rich historic and literary background, instantly familiar, yet underused. What’s not to like?

Elina Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 6:07 am

Edmund. A name with a rich and interesting history.

maggiemary Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 6:15 am

Samuel – it’s my dad’s name, and for that reason alone, it is my favorite classic name.

Sunflowerist Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 6:21 am

I love the name Noah, wish it was less popular so I could use it but it is way too popular for me to consider as a first name!

jessamine13 Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 6:48 am

Alexander. It’s my son’s middle name and a family name. I like the x in the middle.

ashsare Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 6:57 am

Luke. The name itself means “light” and as such, it just sparks for me. It is also my father’s and my son’s name.

peach25 Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 7:04 am

Nicholas. Or Alexander. But not together — too czarish.

laurakatex Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 7:13 am

Emmett or Atticus.

Emmett has always been a favourite of mine, it’s string and handsome and a name that will grow with a little boy.

Atticus because I love Atticus Finch, to kill a mocking bird is one of my favourite books.

befx217 Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 7:42 am

James! I just love it & think it goes beautifully with both classic & more edgy middle names. Also, I love the nicknames that you can get from it.

Lo Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 7:45 am

It’s great to see all the love for James. That’s my 3rd son’s name! Thomas is probably my favorite of all the classics followed by Paul.

DrHenry Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 8:24 am

So tough to pick one! Well I need to pick something other than James now, just to feel unique:) James, Henry and William have been used in all or a combo of the two in the names of all the men in my family for many many many generations. I love them all. But could just be for sentimental reasons. So if I had to pick a name outside of family tradition I think it would be David. David sounds strong and masculine but soft. George is runner up.

I just asked my husband to choose a single classic boy name. . He picked Edmund James and Henry. I made him re pick names we haven’t already used. He chose Edward but said Charles was close.

savedgracie Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 8:31 am

I’m torn between Benjamin, Michael, and John.

Just one? I’d vote John. It’s strong and a true classic.

chellemma1 Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 8:54 am

Ian or Adam. Both strong and masculine names that would fit any boy or man.
I also really like James.

lawsonhaley Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 9:05 am

I have far too many!

Louis (Lou-EE)

dramagrl19 Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 9:15 am

I love Jameson, Samuel, Henry, William, Barnaby, Paul, Oliver, Harrison, Theodore, Patrick, Thomas, Andrew, George, Matthew, Nathaniel, and Zachary.

DotDraper Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 9:18 am

Oh how I love Henry. I’ve loved it forever. Henry has really boomed in popularity and I can’t even be bothered by it… I’m really happy so many people appreciate the ever-handsome Henry.

findemaxa13 Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 9:27 am

James or David. I do not want to pick, but I’d have to go with James, for reasons stated by others and the fact that I love all the James nicknames and don’t particularly like any of the ones for David.

mel_finch Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 9:28 am

I think I’d have to say Matthew. Something about it has always really appealed to me. I like that it works on a small boy, a teenager or an adult, and is Biblical without feeling too religious. Matthew could be a lawyer, football player, actor, author, doctor, nurse, computer programmer, whatever. Plus, Mattie is adorable, Matt is friendly and Matthew is handsome. It’s just a really great name.

niteowl13 Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 9:35 am

Traditional – Jack. I am surprised nobody else has chosen it.
I also agree with James. My grandfather was a James (Jim). It is a very handsome name.
Classic, but not overused – My absolute fave is August. It is fresh and crisp sounding. So stylish! I love it! I adore Gus as well, but mostly love it as a full name. Gus is like Jack and Jim. A dapper gentleman.
Sorry, that was three. πŸ™‚

LuzVictoria Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 9:35 am

My vote goes to Antonio. It’s a family name, so it holds a place in my heart for that reason, it’s Shakespearean, representative of my family’s Italian and Cuban ancestry, and it’s always been in the top 1,000, so I think it counts as a classic :).

gabbygrace1915 Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 9:58 am

Mine has to be William πŸ™‚ It’s been my favorite boy name for forever and I just pray that my future Hubby loves it as much as I do. I just find William to be so handsome and strong. It has the adorable and friendly nickname Will and the strong full name William. It was hard for me to pick just one name, classics are my favorite style of name, my top 5 boys names are William, Jackson, Eli, Paul and Luke, all names that I find pretty classic.

sarosch6 Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 10:17 am

My favorite is Samuel! I just love the name, as well as the nickname Sam.

SeaZuno86 Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 10:19 am

Torn between Owen and Benjamin. I think I have to go with Benjamin As my all time favorite though as I just love the nn Ben- strong, handsome, sporty and smart sounding all at once. now if it would just drop a bit in popularity!

tori101 Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 10:20 am


This is my favourite boys name; it’s just effortless, handsome, soft in sound, and feels very soft yet masculine. Levi is just great! I do view this name as a classic because Levi is a biblical figure, featured heavily within the Jewish faith (my mother is Jewish), and deemed a classic in my mother’s home country so even though it’s not like other gorgeous classics like William or James I still deem this my favourite classic because it’s just so handsome.

You gotta love Levi basically!!

mickie86 Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 10:35 am

Definately Michael! (for obvious reasons) However, I’ve always loved and respected the name because of all the Michael’s and associated names in my family. πŸ™‚ Plus….St. Michael the Archangel is definately the coolest! πŸ™‚

miloowen Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 10:46 am

Thomas, my son’s name. It’s a family name, it’s a strong name, it can be formal (Thomas) or friendly (Tom), and it can be translated into so many different languages.

My other classic favourites: George, William, Hugh, David, Jonathan, Philip, Frederick, Louis, Joseph, Giles.

Michell Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 10:57 am

Nathaniel. It has a strong and capable, yet sensitive sound to it. Nathaniel could be an artist, an outdoorsman, teacher, lawyer, or any number of vocations/hobbies. And lastly Nathaniel’s nicknames are charming, who couldn’t love a Nat or Nate?

So far it’s our frontrunner if baby #1 is boy.

MaryKathryn Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 11:06 am

I will forever be a devote lover of the name Benjamin. Benjamin was the first boy name I ever loved and will always have a special place in my heart and my baby name bank! I also am I HUGE fan of Samuel, James, Edmund, Oliver, George, and Henry. All of these names have so much culture and solidity to them that I love. Samuel is strong and I love the cute, simple nickname Sam. James is a classic (If we can have classic books, bands, movies, and TV shows, we can have classic names). Edmund is so British and if their is one thing I can admit about myself it’s that I am an anglophile. Oliver is so handsome and a good aging name. George is all about my boy George Harrison who, with a little help from his friends, created the Beatles! I once had a love affair with name Henry, and now it is placed upon this adorable little boy I babysit and could not have chosen a better name for him myself!

PinkPenguin87 Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 11:15 am

I would have to say Thomas. If I had another son that would be his name. I love it!

ClaireDarling Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 11:39 am

I have to pick Samuel, nicknamed Sam. I find it to be an endearing, every-man name. Sam seems approachable, sweet, simple, and kind. If I had a boy, he’d be a Sam!

AprilRobin Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 11:41 am

If I had to pick I would have to say Henry because I have always liked the name.

splendiferous_samantha Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 12:29 pm

Right now, I’d have to say Walter! Really it’s between Walter and Wallace, but for now Walter’s winning. πŸ™‚ Classic and well-known, but not as popular as some of the others out there, he’s a breath of fresh air for me.

frenchsc Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 12:30 pm

Clark. Fitzgerald. Michael. John. Martin.

All strong, sturdy, smart boy names and classics in their own right. πŸ™‚

saraallison Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 12:37 pm

This is hard. I will say my top fave is my son’s name, Seth–soft but strong. My other top choices are Andrew (hubby’s name), Patrick and Alexander (top contenders if we ever have another son).

lookingahead Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 12:51 pm

I love the name Walter. Unfortunately the hubby is not so fond. But I’d give anything for a little Walt.

EmmaF Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 1:06 pm

My favorite has always been James. But I also love George, Frederick, Thaddeus, and Henry.

flowercait Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 2:01 pm

I have four that I love, George, Arthur, Frederick and Henry

thiswastheirworld Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 2:05 pm

William! It’s strong, soft, and it has the wonderful nickname Will. I adore it.

CsprsSassyHrly Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 2:34 pm

Just one? That’s too hard! If I had to pick one, I’d probably pick Max. I think it’s strong and masculine. It can also grow with him from childhood to adolescents to adulthood.

Runners-up are definitely James, Henry, Alexander and Samuel.

frustratedauthor Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 2:54 pm

If I have to pick only one, it has to be William. It’s a family name–worn by my grandfather, uncle, great-grandfather, and many others. It’s strong, handsome, and has many nickname possibilities.

BritishAmerican Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 3:02 pm


It’s my oldest son’s name. I like names with the short soft “e” sound in them – they just sound friendly to me. I also like that the name has an English vibe, since my son is half British. And I like that there are nickname options: Harry, Hank, Hal.

southern.maple Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 3:56 pm

Atticus? Classic? Definitely not. I think “classic” is a tricky term because everyone seems to have their own idea of what a classic name is. Classic to me is John, James, William, Thomas, Henry, George, Charles, Richard, Edward… names that, despite whether or not they’re in the top 20 now, have stood the test of time and could work just as well on a modern child as they would have on a child 300 years ago.

Even though it isn’t currently on my list, my favorite classic boy’s name is James. James could be the perfect name for any boy or man. I love that it feels sweet and cuddly on a little boy but reliable and distinguished on a grown man. I know so many guys whose given names are James, but it doesn’t seem like very many of them actually go by James. That disappoints me, because I don’t think there are enough Jameses in the world. Of all ages.

I also love Samuel, Edward, George, Benjamin, Thomas… I’m tempted to add Arthur, but I’m not sure if it’s quite “there” on the classic scale.

Narwhal87 Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 4:05 pm


It’s my mathernal grandfather’s name and the name of a paternal uncle. It’s been the name of kings and other royalty as well. If only I liked the classic nicknames for it, I would definitely use it as a first name. Alas, Dick, Rick, and Rich hold no appeal to me so it will likely be used as a middle name for a future son.

Other than Richard, I also love James, Nicholas, Matthew, Samuel, Andrew, and Frederick.

explorach1 Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 4:26 pm

Charles. Charlie is my nephew, and I love his name!

dixiegirl02 Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 4:38 pm

I love so many classic names for boys! I think my favorite is Andrew. It is my husband’s name, it is strong and Biblical and it wears well for both a child and an adult. An Andrew could truly be an age from a baby to an 80 year old man. I also like Benjamin and Daniel, but they are both so popular.

gipro2003 Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 5:37 pm

James and Charles! I also love Edward.

jacquigirl Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 6:29 pm

Ugh thats so hard! I love so many … James, John, Paul, Thomas, Charles… but if I had to choose one I would choose Henry. Its handsome, ages well, and would fit every boy. Its old and full of history, and also modern enough for a boy in this generation.

livia Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 6:33 pm

If Lucas counts as a classic then definitely that. It’s technically a biblical name so it’s stood the test of time, so I guess it would count. William would be a close second.

labelo Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 6:42 pm

Arthur. It’s regal with neat literary ties and we love the fun nickname Ari.

vito208 Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 7:05 pm

James of course !

sarahmezz Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 7:12 pm

Henry. But I love lots of traditional boys names! My other favourites would be: Albert, Arthur, Edward, Frederick, James, Rupert, Theodore and Walter.

paw Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 7:19 pm

Daniel. And Joseph are my favorite classic boys names.

tintri Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 7:42 pm

I am really crushing on Timothy right now. Classic and strong, but at the same time there’s something very sweet about it. I’ve never met a young Timothy – what a refreshing choice!

bearcub27 Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 7:43 pm

Hugh for sure. I love its meaning, the sound, the namesakes…everything! It’s a must for a future son. Other classic boy names that I love include: Edmund, James, Henry, George, Samuel, Joseph, Theodore, Philip, and Peter.

peachie Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 7:57 pm

James! It’s my son’s name and it’s perfect πŸ™‚

William is my second choice.

LorenK Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 8:28 pm

I love Graham, Nicholas, and Harry.

sorciereblanche Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 9:21 pm

The photo basically had me wheezing with laughter because when my brother and I were little, he was obsessed with Thomas! Naturally, we had 3684 DVDs and all of his stuffed animals were named after Thomas characters.
As for the actual question, perhaps Sebastian and William? I’m not into classic boys names very much.

Mrs_Darling Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 10:20 pm

My favorite is Benjamin followed closely by James. Both names have such a friendly vibe.

ella17 Says:

February 19th, 2014 at 11:29 pm

Gosh I am also having a hard time with what is considered a classic name! So I am going to say Zachary and hope that fits the criteria! πŸ™‚

KateMP91 Says:

February 20th, 2014 at 12:04 am

Such a hard question!

I will have to go with Michael.

AllisonMY Says:

February 20th, 2014 at 12:27 am

Easiest question you’ve ever asked. πŸ™‚ Alexander! I have one, named after my grandfather and great-great grandfather. My Alex was born in 1988, just before it starting surging up the popularity chart (damn you, Alex P. Keaton).

emilybk Says:

February 20th, 2014 at 12:06 pm

Pretty much all the men in my family are named Samuel, Joseph, or Francis. All classic names that I love, and so many nicknames to choose from!

Pemdas Says:

February 20th, 2014 at 6:51 pm

Peter! I don’t know why but I just love it. Some people’s definition of classic is quite interesting.

Komazalea Says:

February 20th, 2014 at 9:26 pm

Charles! I love Charlie/Charley, but not a big fan of chuck..

Auntie_A Says:

February 21st, 2014 at 9:31 am

If I had to pick one it’d probably be Benjamin! But I love Charles, David, Daniel, Andrew.. are Lewis & Jonathan classics?

AveryMaelyn Says:

February 22nd, 2014 at 5:47 pm

I’ve recently begun to fall in love with the name Roger. Besides that, I also like James, Henry, Atticus, Jude, Charles, George, etc.

wickedjr89 Says:

February 24th, 2014 at 4:41 pm

I’m torn between Joshua and Alexander. I just love them both!

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