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100 Most Common Names for Boys

100 Most Common Names for Boys

The most common names for boys are not the same as the most popular popular names. Common male names are those most often found among the total population for the past century.

Along with James and William, other common boy names that remain in the US Top 50 include Alexander, Benjamin, David, Gabriel, Henry, Jacob, Noah, and Samuel. The common names for boys that have fallen the farthest in popularity include Ralph, Willie, Gerald, and Billy.

Some popular names for boys today, such as Number one Liam, don't yet make it onto the list of the century's most common male names. Over time, older names such as Gary and Eugene will pass away, to be replaced by names such as Aiden and Jackson given to so many baby boys today.

The 100 most common names for males in the US in the past century are James at the top of the list, followed by John, Robert, Michael, and William. This list is ordered by their current popularity on Nameberry.

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Most Common Names for Girls

Boy Names

  1. ArthurHeart
    • 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.
  2. EthanHeart
    • Origin:

      Hebrew
    • Meaning:

      "strong, firm"
    • Description:

      Ethan is a name that succeeds in being at once classic and fashionable, serious and cheery, strong and sensitive.Ethan, which was given a big boost via the name of the Tom Cruise character in the Mission Impossible film series, is still popular but dipping a bit, peaking at Number 2 in 2009 and 2010.
  3. AlexanderHeart
    • Origin:

      Greek
    • Meaning:

      "defending men"
    • Description:

      Alexander is derived from the Greek name Aléxandros, composed of the elements aléxein, meaning "to defend," and aner, meaning "man." According to Greek legend, the first Alexander was Paris, who was given the nickname Alexander by the shepherds whose flocks he defended against robbers. He was followed by Alexander the Great, aka Alexander III, who conquered much of Asia.
  4. LouisHeart
    • Origin:

      German and French
    • Meaning:

      "renowned warrior"
    • Description:

      Kate and William shocked the world when they announced that they'd named their third child Louis -- Prince Louis Arthur Charles, to be more precise. But we've been predicting a comeback for this classic name for a long time.
  5. JamesHeart
    • Origin:

      English variation of Jacob, Hebrew
    • Meaning:

      "supplanter"
    • Description:

      James is an English derivation of the Hebrew name Jacob. James is biblical (the name of two apostles in the New Testament), royal (kings of both England and Scotland), presidential (with more U.S. Chief Executives named James (six) than any other name), and it is shared by countless great writers and entertainers.
  6. ZacharyHeart
    • Origin:

      Hebrew
    • Meaning:

      "the Lord has remembered"
    • Description:

      Zachary, a Top 20 name throughout the 90s, is now sliding down the rankings though it remains in the Top 200. With its ancient roots and modern feel, it's easy to understand why Zachary has been such a longtime winner.
  7. ThomasHeart
    • Origin:

      Aramaic
    • Meaning:

      "twin"
    • Description:

      Thomas is the Greek variation of the Aramaic name Ta’oma’. It came about because there were too many apostles named Judas; Jesus renamed one Thomas—meaning "twin"—to distinguish him from Judas Iscariot and the Judas also known as Thaddeus. At first, it was used only for priests.
  8. VincentHeart
    • Origin:

      Latin
    • Meaning:

      "conquering"
    • Description:

      Vincent is a name with a complex image. After being quietly used for centuries, it is suddenly seeming stylish, along wih other V names. Even the nickname Vince has been given a reprieve via actor Vince Vaughn and country singer Vince Gill. Vin Diesel was born with the more prosaic name Mark Vincent.
  9. HenryHeart
    • Origin:

      German
    • Meaning:

      "estate ruler"
    • Description:

      Henry was derived from the French Henri, which ultimately comes from the Germanic name Heimrich, made up of the components heim, meaning "home" or "estate," and rich, meaning "ruler." The most famous wearer is Henry VIII of England, best known for having six wives—two of whom he beheaded for not bearing him sons. It’s been used in the British royal family many times since.
  10. SamuelHeart
    • Origin:

      Hebrew
    • Meaning:

      "told by God"
    • Description:

      Samuel was derived from the Hebrew name Shemu’el, meaning "told by God." In the Old Testament, Samuel was one of the great judges and prophets of the Israelites, destined for a holy life from birth. He established the Hebrew monarchy, anointing both Saul and David as kings.
  11. NoahHeart
    • Origin:

      Hebrew
    • Meaning:

      "rest, repose"
    • Description:

      Noah was derived from the Hebrew name Noach, which itself came from the root nuach, meaning "rest." In the bible, Noah was deemed the only righteous man of his time, singled out by God to survive the great flood sent to punish the world. Noa is generally a separate feminine Hebrew name, although it's also found as a variant spelling of the male name Noah.
  12. WilliamHeart
    • Origin:

      German
    • Meaning:

      "resolute protection"
    • Description:

      William is derived from the Germanic name Wilhelm, composed of the elements wil, "will," and helm, referring to a helmet or protection. The name was introduced to England by William the Conqueror, with William being the Norman variation of the name. In Central and Southern France, it was translated as Guillaume.
  13. JackHeart
    • Origin:

      English, diminutive of John
    • Meaning:

      "God is gracious"
    • Description:

      Jack is a derivative of John that originated in medieval England. The name went from John to Johnkin to Jankin to Jackin to Jack. The name was so common in the Middle Ages that Jack became a generic term for a man.
  14. PatrickHeart
    • Origin:

      Latin
    • Meaning:

      "noble, patrician"
    • Description:

      Patrick, long tied to a hyper-Irish image, is enjoying something of a renaissance as a stylish classic, as it has long been considered in England. Along with such choices as Charles and George, Patrick has escaped overuse in recent decades.
  15. KennethHeart
    • Origin:

      Scottish and Irish
    • Meaning:

      "born of fire, handsome"
    • Description:

      Kenneth may have lost much of its luster now, but Kenneth has had its moments of glory. The first king of Scotland was Kenneth, and Sir Kenneth, a Christian crusader, was the hero of the Sir Walter Scott novel The Talisman.
  16. BenjaminHeart
    • Origin:

      Hebrew
    • Meaning:

      "son of the right hand"
    • Description:

      Benjamin is derived from the Hebrew name Binyamin, from the elements ben, meaning "son" and yamin, "right hand." In the Old Testament, Benjamin was the youngest of the twelve sons of Jacob and Rachel in the Book of Genesis, and he was one of the founders of the twelve tribes of Israel. Nicknames for Benjamin include Ben, Benny, Benji, and Benno.
  17. AndrewHeart
    • Origin:

      Greek
    • Meaning:

      "strong and manly"
    • Description:

      Andrew is a variant of the Greek name Andreas, ultimately derived from the element aner, meaning "man." In the New Testament, Andrew was one of the twelve apostles and the first disciple to be called by Jesus. Although the origins of the name are Greek, Andrew is the patron saint of both Scotland and Russia, as well as Greece. It has associations with two of America's most famous artists, Wyeth and Warhol.
  18. AnthonyHeart
    • Origin:

      Latin
    • Meaning:

      "from Antium"
    • Description:

      Anthony is derived from the Roman family name Antonii, and was initially used as Antony, without the "h." The name evolved into Anthony in the 17th century, when it was speculated that it derived from the Greek word anthos, meaning "flower." In England, whether it's spelled Anthony or Antony, the name is often pronounced as the latter, while Americans typically utter the "h" if present.
  19. GeorgeHeart
    • Origin:

      Greek
    • Meaning:

      "farmer"
    • Description:

      Iconoclasts though we may be, we like Fred, we like Frank, and we like George, which was among the Top 10 from 1830 to 1950, when the number of little Georges started to decline. Solid, strong, royal and saintly, yet friendly and unpretentious, we think that George is in prime position for a comeback, especially since it was chosen by Britain's royal couple.
  20. NathanHeart
    • Origin:

      Hebrew
    • Meaning:

      "given"
    • Description:

      Nathan was derived from the name Natan, which came from Hebrew verb natan, meaning "gave." In the Old Testament, Nathan was the name of a prophet and also that of one of King David's sons. Nathaniel and Jonathan are related names.