Boy Names Always in the Top 1000

Boy Names Always in the Top 1000

The Top 1000 boy names change every year, but there are just under 200 names that have ranked among them since the US government began keeping records in 1880. The classic boy names here — such as Oliver and William — are included among that elite group that has been perennially popular.

Along with Oliver and William, other perennial top 1000 boy names include Noah, Elijah, James, Benjamin, Mason, Alexander, Henry, and Jacob. You may be surprised to learn that less conventional names such as Troy, Jefferson, Harley, and Dallas have maintained their memberships to this exclusive club.

The number of boy names that have always been in the Top 1000 is almost double that of girl names. Boy names have traditionally been more stable in popularity, although now we are seeing a shift as boy names become more trend-driven.

Names such as Gerald, Ralph, Jerome, and Mike recently dropped out of the Top 1000, relinquishing their status, and Harold, Melvin, Rodney, or Maurice could be the next to go.

If you’re looking for an unshakable classic name for a son, one of these always-in-the-top 1000 boy names might be the right choice for you. Browse all the timeless boy names below, ordered by their current popularity on Nameberry.

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Boy Names

Popular Names

  1. Theodore
    • Origin:

      Greek
    • Meaning:

      "gift of God"
    • Description:

      As unlikely as it may seem, Theodore is a hot new hit name, vaulting into the Top 10 in 2021 for the first time ever and rising three more points last year to rank at Number 7.
  2. August
    • Origin:

      German form of Latin Augustus
    • Meaning:

      "great, magnificent"
    • Description:

      The name August is at its highest point since the 1890s, when it ranked among the Top 100 boy names in the US. And deservedly so, given its great meaning, historic roots, and cool nicknames.
  3. Felix
    • Origin:

      Latin
    • Meaning:

      "happy, fortunate"
    • Description:

      Felix is one of those ancient but nontraditional names for boys that have come into favor over the past few decades, a favorite of parents who want a masculine name with history and heft that breaks ranks with the standard Franks and Freds. Felix is also an international darling, ranking in the Top 100 in several European and English-speaking countries.
  4. Henry
    • Origin:

      German
    • Meaning:

      "estate ruler"
    • Description:

      Henry is back. The classic Henry climbed back onto the Top 10 in the US in 2021 for the first time in over a century, and now stands at Number 8.
  5. Oliver
    • Origin:

      Latin
    • Meaning:

      "olive tree or elf army"
    • Description:

      Oliver is an international star, ranking near the top of the charts in the US and throughout the English-speaking world, along with a host of European and Latin American countries, from Norway to Chile, Slovenia to Switzerland.
  6. James
    • Origin:

      English variation of Jacob, Hebrew
    • Meaning:

      "supplanter"
    • Description:

      James is one of the classic Anglo-Saxon names, a stalwart through the ages that is more popular—and yes, stylish—than ever today. It recently came out Number 1 in a poll of America's favorite boys' baby names, and is the most common male name, counting people of all ages, in the US.
  7. Arthur
    • Origin:

      Celtic
    • Meaning:

      " bear"
    • Description:

      Arthur, once the shining head of the Knights of the Round Table, is, after decades of neglect, now being polished up and restored by stylish parents, inspired perhaps by the new generation of royals. Arthur has led the list of possible names for the young British princes, chosen as a middle name for Prince Louis, son of William and Catherine, Prince and Princess of Wales.
  8. Oscar
    • Origin:

      English or Irish
    • Meaning:

      "God spear, or deer-lover or champion warrior"
    • Description:

      Oscar is one of the most stylish Old Man Names of our era. While it's softened slightly in popularity over the past 20 years, that may be considered a very good thing.
  9. Jasper
    • Origin:

      Persian
    • Meaning:

      "bringer of treasure"
    • Description:

      Jasper originated as a variation of the Latin Gaspar, which ultimately derived from the Persian word ganzabara, meaning "bringer of treasure." As a given name, Jasper’s etymology is unrelated to that of the gemstone, which comes from a Semitic word meaning "speckled stone." Jasper is the usual English form for one of the Three Wise Men who brought gifts to the infant Christ according to medieval tradition and appears in the Bible as a reference to the stone itself in Revelations 4:3.
  10. Everett
    • Origin:

      English variation of the German Eberhard
    • Meaning:

      "brave as a wild boar"
    • Description:

      Everett is a preppy but outdoorsy name, with wintery New England vibes. In the last decade, it’s had a leap in popularity, perhaps because of its similarity to trendy girls’ names like Ava and Scarlett, or perhaps because it offers a fresh alternative to 90’s style Evan and Brett.
  11. Noah
    • Origin:

      Hebrew
    • Meaning:

      "rest, repose"
    • Description:

      Noah is nearly a patriarch of popular baby names at this point, going from Old Testament graybeard to Top 10 name in 2009, hitting Number 1 in 2013, and now settled into second place in the US for the past seven years.
  12. Cyrus
    • Origin:

      Persian
    • Meaning:

      "sun"
    • Description:

      Cyrus is one of those surprising names that have always ranked among the Top 1000 boy names in the US. On an upward trend since the mid-90s, Cyrus now sits in that comfortable place between too popular and too unusual.
  13. Elias
    • Origin:

      Greek variation of Elijah, Hebrew
    • Meaning:

      "Yahweh is God"
    • Description:

      Strong, charismatic, and sleek, Elias has followed in the footsteps of Elijah and Eli to become a popular choice among parents today.
  14. Leo
    • Origin:

      Latin
    • Meaning:

      "lion"
    • Description:

      Leo is a strong-yet-friendly name that was common among the Romans, used for thirteen popes, and is now at its highest point ever in the US thanks in part to Leonardo "Leo" DiCaprio.
  15. Miles
    • Origin:

      English form of Milo
    • Meaning:

      "soldier or merciful"
    • Description:

      Miles, which has a permanent veneer of cool thanks to jazz great Miles Davis, is a confident and polished boys' name that's an American classic. Always ranking in the US Top 1000, it's been drifting up the charts for the past half century but has never been TOO popular.
  16. William
    • Origin:

      German
    • Meaning:

      "resolute protection"
    • Description:

      William is one of the most enduring of classic names for boys. It's also among the most popular boys' names, as American parents see it as being ideally conservative yet contemporary, and hands-down the most popular baby name beginning with W of all time.
  17. Owen
    • Origin:

      Welsh
    • Meaning:

      "young warrior; well-born"
    • Description:

      Owen, a resonant Celtic name, has ranked among the Top 100 boys' names in the US for 20 years and is now at its highest point ever.
  18. Ellis
    • Origin:

      English surname derived from Elijah or Elias or Welsh
    • Meaning:

      "benevolent"
    • Description:

      Ellis is a former Old Man Name turned gender-neutral choice for the 21st century. It's one of the less used names in the currently popular El-family.
  19. Levi
    • Origin:

      Hebrew
    • Meaning:

      "joined, attached"
    • Description:

      Levi, lighter and more energetic than most biblical names, with its up vowel ending, combines Old Testament gravitas with the casual flair associated with Levi Strauss jeans.
  20. Elijah
    • Origin:

      Hebrew
    • Meaning:

      "Yahweh is God"
    • Description:

      The Top 10 boys' name Elijah is derived from the Hebrew name Eliyahu, composed of the elements ’el and yah, both of which refer to God. In the Old Testament, Elijah was the prophet who went to heaven in a chariot of fire, a story sure to inspire any young Elijah.