One-Syllable Baby Names
Description:Pax, one of the variations of names meaning peace that are newly popular in these less-than-peaceful times, got a lot of publicity when chosen by Brad & Angelina for their Vietnamese-born son. Parents attracted to Pax may also want to consider Paz, the unisex Spanish version, or Paxton, a growing-in-popularity surname choice that shares that magical X-factor.
Description:Bryn is an up-and-coming gentle, yet substantial, Welsh name that would also be effective in the middle spot. In Wales it's a traditional boys' name, but it's far more popular for girls now in the US.
Origin:English variation of Johanna
Meaning:"God is gracious"
Description:Joan was the perfect name choice for one of the leading characters on Mad Men, being a quintessential girls' name of the period. A Top 10 name in the 30s, a Top 50 name from the 40s through the early 60s, it was the fifth most popular name in the country for three years running and ranks as one of the most common names for girls in the 20th century. But alas, Joan hasn't even appeared in the Top 1000 for a dozen years, and these days it's primarily associated with Joans of the generation of Joan Crawford, Joan Collins and Joan Rivers--just a few of the noted Joans whose ranks also include the singers Joan Sutherland, Joan Baez, Joan Armatrading and Joan Jett. But it's possible that modern parents who are reviving Jane might move on to Joan, inspired by Joan Hollaway Harris.
Origin:Scottish, contraction of surname Gregor; Latin
Description:This attractive Scottish surname choice, has a certain amount of glamour thanks to feisty British-born red-haired forties Academy Award winner Greer Garson, who was born Eileen Evelyn Greer Garson--Greer was her Irish mother's maiden name). Greer was chosen much more recently by Kelsey Grammer for his daughter and by Brooke Shields in the Grier form. As a surname, it's associated with feminist writer/activist Germaine Greer.
Origin:English tree name
Meaning:"tree from the genus Quercus"
Description:Oak, a symbol of solidity, strength, and longevity, is joining Cedar and Pine as a viable name, one that would work especially well in the middle.
Description:Windswept and dramatic, but perhaps asking for trouble. Quite popular in Denmark and Sweden, where it derives from Stromr, which is a fairly common surname. Storm Thorgerson is a famous bearer of the name - he designed iconic album covers for Led Zeppelin, Black Sabbath, the Cranberries, Anthrax, and Pink Floyd.
Description:This simple, elegant name offers something for many kinds of parents, from writers and history buffs to photographers to Pennsylvania dwellers. Most famous bearers are comedian Penn Jillette and Gossip Girl hottie Penn Badgley, both of whom were given this distinctive name at birth. Long obscure, Penn seems destined for greater usage.
Origin:French "king,"; Celtic "red-haired"
Description:We've seen Ray regain his cool, but could this country/cowboy name epitomized by Roy Rogers (born Leonard Slye), Acuff, and Clark, do the same?
Roy came into use in the late nineteenth century, probably influenced by the main character of Sir Walter Scott's novel Rob Roy, in which the historical character Robert M'ac Gregor is nicknamed Roy for his red hair.
There have been lots of notable non-country namesakes, including baseball's Roy Campanella, humorist Roy Blunt, Jr., Walt's brother and partner Roy Disney, singer Roy Orbison and pop artist Roy Lichtenstein. Roy Hobbs was the protagonist of the Malamud novel The Natural, played in the film by Robert Redford.
Description:Fay, also spelled Faye, who had been napping quietly since the 1930's, has, like cousins May/Mae and Ray/Rae, sat up and started rubbing her eyes, ready for a mini-comeback, especially as a middle name. In 2014, Faye hopped back onto the US Top 1000, though Fay is used much more quietly as a first name.
Description:Brock is a rock solid name, with a touch of preppy sophistication. It ranked solidly in the 200s-300s from 1975 until 2014, but has since tumbled a bit.
Description:Always the top spelling of the name; Neil peaked in the 1950s, but then enjoyed a second coming following the fame of such Neils as astronaut Armstrong and singers Sedaka, Diamond, and Young. Now semiretired.
Description:Cove is an up-and-coming nature name whose cool sound and peaceful image saw it rising for both sexes... until COVID-19 hit. It decreased slightly for boys in 2020, but actually increased for girls, although it remains a seriously rare and distinctive choice for either gender.
Origin:German variation of Charles
Description:This no-nonsense German variation of Charles is strong and still well used, but lacks much sensitivity or subtlety; the Latin forms have far more energy.
Origin:Diminutive of Thomas
Description:Just like Sam and Ben, Tom could be revived as a simple, well liked name on its own. Tom, just Tom, is one of the Top 100 Boy Names in France
Description:Dane is a more masculine Dana alternative, with added style edge. Dane has been on the US Top 1000 for more than seventy years, having entered the list in 1945.
Description:Vaughn, also commonly spelled Vaughan, has been used quietly over the years, reaching a peak of Number 349 in 1949. It is now in the process of rediscovery, being seen as a good Sean alternative or an updated way to honor an ancestral Paul (which also means small).
Description:This cross-cultural name, found in Wales, Brittany, and Spain, is a surprise star in the U.S. in recent years, largely thanks to actor Gael Garcia Bernal. It's especially popular in Texas.
Origin:Irish variation of John
Description:Sean, after a long reign as one of the top Irish boys' names in the US, has now slipped as parents look to fresher Irish choices such as Liam and Aidan. In Ireland, Sean is still highly popular, but variation Senan, an Anglicized spelling of diminutive Seanan, is also stylish in Ireland. While Sean is the Irish form of John, Seanan and Senan may be thought of either as Sean diminutives or relatives of the Latin word "senator".