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Vintage Nicknames for Boys

Vintage Nicknames for Boys

Vintage nicknames that were once widely used for boys and might be revived by modern parents include those on the following list. Some of these vintage nicknames for boys are still heard today: Theo or Archie, for instance.

Other old-fashioned nicknames are so antiquated they are not heard at all, such as Con and Fate. And then there are those nicknames you might not want to use for a modern boy: We can't see Ham going over so well on the playground.

Along with Archie and Theo, other vintage nicknames for boys in the US Top 1000 include Hank, Sonny, and Gus. Old-fashioned nicknames lost to the time capsule — but potentially worth reviving! — include Brose, Cleve, Lige, and Odie.

If you're tired of the same old Jacks and Sams, you might want to consider these vintage boy nicknames. View our full list, below, ordered by their current popularity on Nameberry.

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Boy Names

Vintage Names

Nicknames: The Ultimate Guide

  1. TheoHeart
    • Origin:

      Diminutive of Theodore
    • Meaning:

      "gift of God"
    • Description:

      Many modern parents use Theo as the short form for Theodore rather than the dated Ted--including some celebs, such as Dallas Bryce Howard-- but others bypass the Grandpa name Theodore entirely and skip right to the hip nickname Theo. Short and ultra-chic, Theo's a cool, contemporary baby name choice.
  2. KitHeart
    • Origin:

      English, diminutive of Christopher
    • Meaning:

      "bearer of Christ"
    • Description:

      Actor Kit Harington, aka the dreamy Jon Snow on Game of Thrones, has given this nickname-name new style and appeal for boys. Actress Jodie Foster used it for her son.
  3. ArchieHeart
    • Origin:

      Diminutive of Archibald, Teutonic
    • Meaning:

      "truly brave"
    • Description:

      Archie made global news as the surprise first name of the newborn royal baby, son of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex aka Harry and Meghan. Archie has now officially transcended Archie Bunker and Riverdale's Archie to take the, um, throne as the quintessential retro nickname name.
  4. PercyHeart
    • Origin:

      French surname from place name Perci-en-Auge
    • Description:

      Percy is an adorable old name that is finally shedding its pampered Little Lord Fauntleroy image in this new era of boys with soft yet traditionally male names like Jasper and Elijah. Originating as an aristocratic Norman name, Percy became fairly widespread in England--and to some extent in the US--as an offshoot of the fame of the poet Percy Bysshe Shelley.
  5. SonnyHeart
    • Origin:

      English
    • Meaning:

      "son"
    • Description:

      Sonny is one of the generic boy nickname names making a surprise reappearance, and it was recently used by actor Jason Lee. Another surprise: It's been on the US Top 1000 list every year since 1927, reaching a peak in 1975, when it hit Number 428.
  6. MacHeart
    • Origin:

      Scottish or Irish
    • Meaning:

      "son of"
    • Description:

      In Ireland and Scotland, Mac and Mc mean "son of"; here, Mac is a generic fella, or a short form cooler than either Matt or Max. Mac can be a nickname of any longer Mac or Mc starting name such as McCoy or Macalister. If you want to make it feel more complete, you can always spell it Mack.
  7. GusHeart
    • Origin:

      Diminutive of Augustus, Angus, Gustave, Augustin, Augusten, Augustine, August
    • Description:

      Gus is a homey grandpa nickname name that can work as a short form for any of the above or stand on its own as a cutting-edge replacement for Max and Jake--though it was off the Top 1000 from 1978 until 2016, when it squeaked in at Number 999.
  8. ZekeHeart
    • Origin:

      Diminutive of Ezekiel
    • Meaning:

      "God strengthens"
    • Description:

      Zeke is a casual form of the name Ezekiel, an important prophet from the Old Testament. How well Zeke holds up depends on the boy: it could be a cooler alternative of Zack, or it could prove too close to "geek." Both Zeke and Ezekiel lag behind in popularity on the UK charts.
  9. TeddyHeart
    • Origin:

      Diminutive of Theodore or Edward
    • Meaning:

      "gift of God or wealthy guardian"
    • Description:

      Teddy is in some ways one of those midcentury boys' nicknames -- like Jimmy or Bobby or Billy -- yet because it was never that popular, it feels timeless too. The preferred short form of Theodore these days may be Theo and of Edward may be....Edward, but Teddy can work adorably for either and grows up to Ted. And of course, let's not forget the inevitable teddy bear.
  10. KiahHeart
    • Origin:

      Short form of Hezekiah, Hebrew
    • Meaning:

      "God gives strength"
    • Description:

      Drawn from old record books, Kiah is an antiquated nickname that feels perfectly appropriate for modern times -- maybe more so than father name Hezekiah.
  11. KiahHeart
    • Origin:

      Short form of Hezekiah, Hebrew
    • Meaning:

      "God gives strength"
    • Description:

      Drawn from old record books, Kiah is an antiquated nickname that feels perfectly appropriate for modern times -- maybe more so than father name Hezekiah.
  12. HuckHeart
    • Origin:

      Diminutive of Huckleberry, word name
    • Description:

      Though forever tied to Huck, short for Huckleberry, Finn, this is an undeniably cute short form that may have some life as part of the hipster taste for names like Duke and Bix.
  13. JulesHeart
    • Origin:

      French form of Latin Julius
    • Meaning:

      "youthful; soft, downy"
    • Description:

      Though Jules hasn't been on the US popularity list in fifty years, it is a current hit in its native France—where it's currently in the Top 10—and we can definitely see it making a comeback here, being far more romantic than, say, Jim.
  14. HankHeart
    • Origin:

      Diminutive of Henry, German
    • Meaning:

      "estate ruler"
    • Description:

      Hank is a midcentury guy nickname (which actually dates back to the seventeenth century) of the Al/Hal/Dick school, which has been on recess from the playground for decades. Now it's just beginning to be given on its own again, appreciated for its earthy, sportsguy cool. Hanks Aaron and Greenberg (born Henry) and Hank Williams (born Hiram) Sr and Jr. are worthy namesakes.
  15. BramHeart
    • Origin:

      Dutch variation of Abraham
    • Meaning:

      "father of multitudes"
    • Description:

      Bram has an unusual measure of character and charm for a one-syllable name; it started as a hipper-than-Abe diminutive of the biblical Abraham, but is also an independent Irish and Dutch name, made famous by Irish-born Dracula creator Bram (nee Abraham) Stoker. Bram is currently Number 16 in the Netherlands; Bram Howard was a character on The West Wing.
  16. OzHeart
    • Origin:

      Hebrew
    • Meaning:

      "strength, powerful, courageous"
    • Description:

      This may be a legitimate Hebrew name denoting power, but to any American kid, it will evoke ruby slippers and a yellow brick road. The full Hebrew name is Ozni, who was a grandson of Jacob in the Bible.
  17. AlbieHeart
    • Origin:

      Diminutive of Albert, Alban or Albus
    • Description:

      This cute masculine nickname -- with connections to princes, Hogwarts headmasters and the Manzo family of "Real Housewives of New Jersey" -- almost has enough heft to stand on its own. But all of its precursor names have merit.
  18. RafeHeart
    • Origin:

      Variation of Ralph
    • Meaning:

      "wolf-counsel"
    • Description:

      Used almost exclusively in England; would make an equally amiable short form here for Raphael or Rafferty -- and could also stand on its own. If you're looking for boys' names starting with R, this is one of your cooler choices.
  19. SolHeart
    • Origin:

      Spanish
    • Meaning:

      "sun"
    • Description:

      Although pinochle-playing partner Sam came out of retirement, we don't see it happening to Sol. Near soundalike Saul has more of a shot.

  20. CyHeart
    • Origin:

      Diminutive of Cyrus, Persian
    • Meaning:

      "sun"
    • Description:

      This evocative short name is suddenly chic — it was recently chosen by Jennifer Lawrence for her baby boy. JLaw's son's name honors Cy Twombly, the influential mid-century American artist. Born Edwin Parker Twombly Jr., both Cy Twombly and his father shared a nickname after baseball player Cy Young (himself born Denton True Young).