Game of Thrones Names
Game of Thrones names have invaded the mainstream culture, with names from George R. R. Martin's series of books and TV shows climbing the popularity lists. Few other fictional worlds this side of Harry Potter have had its cultural impact.
A lot of the show’s appeal derives from its fully thought-out, immersive world. Every facet of the universe was designed with care. And names are no exception.
Martin devised a whole new world of names for his books — one loosely based on, but by no means contiguous with, our own. The character names in the A Song of Ice and Fire series are as distinctive as those of any fictional world since Lord of the Rings.
Most of Martin‘s characters’ names are based on specific names in the real world, but they usually have a slight tweak — anything from one letter changed or added to a new suffix.
Arya is by far the biggest hit baby name from Game of Thrones. It entered the Top 100 girl names in the US in 2019, and has dropped only slightly in popularity since then.
Along with Arya, other hit baby names from the series include Khaleesi, Daenerys and even Snow, which is moving up for both boys and girls.
Unique Game of Thrones names bold namers might want to consider include Sansa, Cersei and Ygritte for girls, or Ned, Bran and Tyrion for boys.
Options from the new prequel series House of the Dragon that have baby name potential include Alicent, Rhaenyra, Daemon, Otto and Corlys.
Here, a guide to the most iconic names from the Game of Thrones universe, ordered by current popularity on Nameberry.
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.
Description:Otto is cool again. Long a quintessential Old Man Name, Otto has been promoted to trending darling of adventurous baby namers.
Description:Jonah, the name of the Old Testament prophet who was swallowed by the whale, only to emerge unharmed three days later, is increasingly appreciated by parents looking for a biblical name less common than Jacob or Joshua, yet not too obscure. Plus, Jonah comes with a ready-made nursery-decorating motif.
Description:Asha is an Indian name that comes from the Sanskrit word for hope or desire, but it is also a Swahili name derived from Aisha, meaning life. Since the ascendance of Ashley through the 1980s and 90s, all baby names Ash-related have been used in the U.S. for both girls and boys, from Ashlyn to Ashby, Ashton to Asher. Despite its separate roots, Asha is part of this group.
Description:Jason, the Number 3 name for the entire decade of the 1970s -- thus the title of our original baby-naming book, Beyond Jennifer & Jason -- is more likely to be dad's name now than baby's, but it's still a widely used name.
Description:Serena, a name used since Roman times, was given fresh life by tennis star Williams, and then again with the leading character on Gossip Girl, Serena van der Woodsen. There have also been Serenas on soap operas and other shows from Bewitched to Law & Order.
Origin:Bird name; or English, diminutive of Robert
Description:Now that it's no longer fashionable for girls, Robin is rising for boys again. Robin Hood, Robin Williams, Christopher Robin, and Robin the Boy Wonder are all male namesakes, after all. It reentered the US Top 1000 boys names in 2015 for the first time since 1999 and continues to bounce around the lower end of the Top 1000.
Origin:English variation of Damian
Description:Damon is a name with a strong, pleasing aura (much like the persona of Matt D.) and extremely positive ancient associations. From the classical myth, Damon and Pythias have become symbols of true friendship, as Damon risked his life to save his friend from execution. And Damon of Athens was the fifth century philosopher who taught both Pericles and Socrates.
Origin:English from German
Description:Robert was derived from the ancient Germanic name Hrodebert, from the elements hrod, meaning "fame" and bertha, "bright." Robert was the name of three kings of Scotland, including Robert the Bruce, who freed Scotland from English rule. The name was brought to England by the Normans.
Origin:Variation of Johanna
Meaning:"God is gracious"
Description:Joanna derives from the Greek name Ioanna, which in turn came from the Hebrew name Yohannah. It is featured in the New Testament as a woman who accompanied Jesus on his travels and eventually reached saint status. Other names related to Joanna include Joan, Joanne, Johanna, and Jana.
Description:The multicultural Yara is also the name of a beautiful green-skinned Brazilian goddess and might make a more unusual spin on Mara or Sara.
Description:Calla is a lily name that is much more distinctive and delicate than Lily. Rarely heard today, it did appear in the popularity lists in the last decades of the nineteenth century.
Description:Theon, an ancient name attached to a noted Greek teacher of mathematics and astronomy, also father to the first woman mathematician, might appeal to parents in this field. You can think of Theon as Theo with something a little extra.
Origin:English variation of Alicia
Description:Alyssa was in the Top 20 from 1997-2010 and peaked as the 11th most popular girls’ name in 1998 and 1999 but has become less popular in recent years. It's related to the flower alyssum as well as to the classic Alice and variants. Alyssa Milano helped give it a bounce back when she was still a child sitcom star.
Origin:English, diminutive of Edward
Description:Ned is a gently old-fashioned Nancy Drew-Bobbsey Twins-era short form for Edward that sounds cooler than Ed and is enjoying a small style renaissance.
Meaning:"member of the Gauts tribe"
Description:Jocelyn has gotten new life and popularity as a result of the current passion for lyn endings. Though it was a male name in medieval times, now Jocelyn couldn't sound more softly feminine.
Origin:English word name
Description:Joy is from an older generation of word names, which also included Merry, Bliss, and Glory -- all of which exert a certain amount of personality pressure on a child. One interesting name that means the same thing: Chara.
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:American invented name
Description:Khaleesi is an invented name introduced to the world by inventive and prolific author George R. R. Martin for his wildly popular Game of Thrones series—it's Dothraki for "queen" and is one of the titles of the character Daenerys. It entered the US Top 1000 in 2014.