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Year’s End Baby Name News

December 27, 2017 Clare Green

By Clare Bristow

This week’s news includes Christmas babies, thankful names for miracle babies, and inspiration from high society.

Christmas birth announcements: Angel and Santa

While some of us were enjoying mince pies and Monopoly on Christmas day, others out there were busy having babies.

One was Poppy, born in a car in Minnesota – her parents say they might add a Christmassy middle name to mark the occasion. In England, baby Angel’s parents quickly changed their name plans when she arrived on Christmas day. Originally she was going to be called Daisy, but dad felt she needed something more festive.

Elsewhere in England, Santa visited a hospital – to give birth. It made the news when a mother called Santa had a baby girl called Rebeka on Christmas day, but it’s not an uncommon name in the mother’s home country of Latvia: it was in the top 100 until 2010.

Stars honoring their ma’s and pa’s

Celebs have been busy welcoming babies over the Christmas period, too. Several new arrivals have names that honor their grandparents and great-grandparents.

Mindy Kaling has revealed her daughter Katherine’s middle name, Swati – the name of Mindy’s late mother.

TV presenter Sara Haines has also used her mother’s name for her new daughter, Sandra Grace. Big in the 1950s and 60s, Sandra is a surprising choice for a girl born today, but the family meaning is lovely.

Movie legend Kirk Douglas has a new great-granddaughter, Lua Izzy. Her middle name honors Kirk’s Belarusian birth name: born as Issur, he was known growing up as Izzy.

Nicky Hilton Rothschild (whose full first name, incidentally, is Nicholai) has welcomed the newest member of the dynasty, Teddy Marilyn. Marilyn is the name of Nicky’s grandmother. Tomboyish nickname Teddy matches the style of rising girls’ names like Frankie and Charlie, while being much less popular. I wonder if we’ll see more of it in 2018?

High society baby names

The gossip mag Tatler has published a list of the poshest baby names of all time… except they’re actually pretty normal. Ok, so some – like Yseult, Xerxes and Youngblood – might raise a few eyebrows. But most are both classy and classic, like Lucy, Grace, Henry and Jonathan.

If you’re really looking for a name with a ring of the upper classes, may I recommend Eleanor Nickerson’s analysis of the 100 “poshest” names in Britain. Or for some tongue-in-cheek inspiration, like the names Debonaire, Figgy, Uxorious and Yak, Tatler’s list from last year should hit the spot.

Grateful names: Hope, Faith and Raye

With 2017 ending and a new year approaching, it’s a time for reflection and looking forward. With that in mind, here are some name stories about gratitude and hope.

Parents in England have named their daughter Abbey Raye Loxley: Abbey after a doctor named Abey who helped with their fertility treatment, Raye as in a ray of sunshine, and Loxley after a clinic they used. As the clinic is in Nottingham, I imagine it’s named after local hero Robin Hood’s traditional birthplace. The name Loxley is new on the radar in the US: it first appeared on the charts in 2010, and 29 girls got the name in 2016. Combining the sounds of more popular names like Lexi and Oakley, it could be one to watch.

A baby born in Wisconsin earlier this year was named Joshua after the doctor who saved his mother’s life, showing that even popular names can have very special meanings. I like that the doctor’s surname, Medow, would also have worked had baby Joshua been a girl – maybe with the usual spelling, Meadow.

Here’s a story of sisters named Faith, Grace and Hope (and their brothers, Christian and Timothy) in the territory of Guam – along with other multicultural names from the Pacific island.

Names meaning blessing, gratitude, praise and grace are very popular with parents in Ghana too, according to this article.

If you’re expecting a new year baby and considering a name to mark the time of year, here’s a list of new year’s names relating to beginnings, hope, and a new dawn. And don’t forget these thankful names, too.

Inventing Star Wars names

Speaking of new hope, have you ever wondered how writers come up with names for the Star Wars universe? This article explains some of the techniques they use. You might find them helpful if you’re creating a name for a character, or even a person. One method is to take a known name and change one letter – for example, biblical cowboy Obadiah becomes Star Wars bartender Okadiah.

It’s not just writers who use this technique. It’s a popular game in the Nameberry forums, and parents do it too, whether they realise it or not. Like the sound of Paxton? Why not change it up to Daxton, or Maxton? If you like Nora, you might like Flora, if you like Ella, you might like Stella… you get the idea.

Finally, if you just need a Star Wars name fast, try this name generator for instant inspo from a galaxy far, far away.

About the author

Clare Green

Clare Green writes Nameberry's weekly round-up of the latest baby name news, including celebrity announcements, unusual naming stories, and new statistics from around the world . Clare, who has been writing for Nameberry since 2015, lives in England, where she has worked in libraries and studies linguistics. You can follow her personally on Instagram and Twitter.

View all of Clare Green's articles

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