Boy Names That Mean Life
Boy names that mean life are an elite group, but one that includes several excellent choices. None of the boy names that mean life are particularly popular or even well-known, with few exceptions, such as Brooks and Hayden. But you may consider the meaning more important than style or popularity.
Along with Brooks and Hayden, other boy names that mean life in the US Top 1000 include Banks, Bo, Bridger, Dean, Lyle, Moses, Ryland, and Zayd. Among the lively boy names that deserve more attention are Rhodes, Shaw, Barnes, and Hawthorne. Also included here are many names that refer to the place or the setting where the person lives, as well as names with meanings connected to growth, blood, and breath. Life is a wonderful meaning for a name, one that may inspire and uplift a child of any gender. See our complete collection of boy names that mean life, below, ordered by their current popularity on Nameberry.
Description:Hayden – a formerly obscure name that's risen to huge popularity – has dipped in this year's ratings. Though Hayden is among the most distinctive of the bunch, it gets lost in the crowd of Jaidens, Bradens, Aidans, and endless variations. Associated with Hayden Christensen, of Star Wars fame.
Meaning:"of the brook"
Description:Surname name, nature name, and word name, with a more masculine slant than Brook or Brooklyn. Brooks Robinson was one of the greatest third basemen ever, playing for the Baltimore Orioles from 1955 until 1977. Brooks might be considered one of the new wave of stylish English names for boys.
Description:Abel, the name of Adam and Eve's unfortunate younger son, compensates with positive connotations: capable, competent, ready and willing.
Meaning:"where roses grow"
Description:A Greek island and a prestigious scholarship make an upper-crusty first name with the uber-stylish S ending. Rhodes was recently chosen by actress Emma Roberts for her son, born in 2020.
Meaning:"one who lives on the hillside or riverbank"
Description:Banks is a topographical surname that refers not to those places where people keep their money but to riverbanks or hillsides, and specifically the people who live on them. Just as Fields is a last name that relates to people who lived in, yes, fields, so Banks was a name originally given to people who dwelled on the banks of a river. Today, used as a first name, Banks is more likely to sound like an upwardly-mobile name related to financial establishments, okay if you're going for the glitter.
Description:Dean may sound to some like a retro surfer boy name, but it is once again climbing up the popularity chart in the USA. For decades it was associated with Dean (born Dino) Martin; more recent representatives include Dean Cain, Dean McDermott and Dean Koontz -- not to mention Jared Padalecki's dreamy Dean Forester in Gilmore Girls.
Description:The name of Rip Van Winkle – and Rip (born Elmore) Torn – will probably never be ready for further consumption, if only because of the implications of R. I. P. The only thing that could save it is Rip Wheeler, the handsome ranch foreman on the soapy Western Yellowstone.
Description:A popular name in Denmark, in this country Bo has some cowboy swagger and a lot of substance in its minimal two letters. In Mandarin Chinese, Bo means "wave".
Origin:Scottish and English from French
Meaning:"someone who lives on an island"
Description:Straightforward single-syllable name, though children named Lyle may get tired of hearing "Lyle, Lyle, Crocodile". Lyle was at the height of fashion in the 1920s, which makes him due for a comeback right about now. The double L certainly gives it a fashionable sound.
Origin:English and Irish
Meaning:"someone who lives near marshland"
Description:A short but sophisticated, long-neglected name you might want to consider.
Meaning:"lives near a high cliff"
Description:Clive used to be stereotyped as a clipped British name in a pith helmet and pencil-thin moustache, as in English military hero Clive of India--but this image has been turned on its ear by hunky Clive Owen.
Meaning:"full of life"
Description:Vivaan is a life-related name from India that has made its way onto the US Top 1000 for the first time in 2014. While unusual, it has a familiar and appealing lively sound and feel. However, be aware that people unfamiliar with the name may misread and mispronounce it as Vivian.
Meaning:"lives where hawthorn hedges grow"
Description:The great American novelist sets this above many other surnames (and nature names, for that matter), but it's still an imposing and adventurous choice. Do nicknames Hawk or Thorne make it more approachable? The timid should stick with Nathaniel.
Description:Zayd (or its most common variant Zaid), an old and still well used Arabic name, was a enslaved man whom Muhammad adopted as his son.
Meaning:"delivered from the water"
Description:Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin's choice of this white-bearded Old Testament name helped bring it into the modern age, along with brethren Elijah, Isaiah and Isaac. User-friendly nicknames include Moe and Mose.
Meaning:"dweller near the river where wisteria grows"
Description:To honor the majestic mountain.
Description:Old World Italian name that might become fashionable in a so-far-out-it's-in way, like Enzo and Rocco. Main recommendation: It's among the rare boy names that mean life.
Meaning:"lives near a grove of trees"
Description:Forget the furry blue Muppet, forget corpulent President Cleveland (not too difficult), and consider this name anew. We think it's spunky, a little funky, and well worth a second look.
Meaning:"place where Rye is grown"
Description:This name, similar to Ryan and Rylan, dropped out of the Top 500 in 2016 after a six year stint in it. It's the full birth name of legendary musician Ry Cooder.
Meaning:"lives near the bridge"
Description:A recent addition to the Most Popular list, Bridger has the trendy two-syllables and 'er' ending, and a historical reference to Jim Bridger, a foremost nineteenth-century frontiersman, explorer, trapper, scout, and teller of tall tales.