Fresh Classics

From the tough to exotic to romanic, these Classics aren't stuck in the past.
  1. Anya
    • Origin:

      Russian diminutive of Anna
    • Meaning:

      "grace"
    • Description:

      Anya is a Russian variation of Anna, which came from the Hebrew name Hannah. Anya is the form found most frequently in Russia, Poland, and other East European countries, while Anja is the spelling usually preferred in Germany Norway, Denmark, Germany, Sweden, and The Netherlands. In the Hungarian language, Anya also means mother.
  2. Atticus
    • Origin:

      Latin
    • Meaning:

      "from Attica"
    • Description:

      Atticus, with its trendy Roman feel combined with the upstanding, noble image of Atticus Finch in To Kill a Mockingbird, is a real winner among boy names. Atticus entered the US Top 1000 in 2004 and is a firm Nameberry favorite.
  3. Bonnie
    • Origin:

      Scottish
    • Meaning:

      "beautiful, cheerful"
    • Description:

      Bonnie is an adorable nickname name, heading back up the popularity list after a 50-year nap. A Top 100 girls' name throughout the rest of the English-speaking world, Americans are later to jump on the Bonnie bandwagon but now it's trending here too.
  4. Cillian
    • Origin:

      Irish
    • Meaning:

      "war strife or church"
    • Description:

      Cillian is one of the native Irish names that, along with Aiden and Declan, is becoming an unlikely favorite in contemporary America. The Killian spelling has been more popular in the US, but Cillian's star is rising, perhaps thanks to Irish actor Cillian Murphy, star of Oppenheimer and Peaky Blinders.
  5. Cora
    • Origin:

      Greek
    • Meaning:

      "maiden"
    • Description:

      Cora is a lovely, old-fashioned girls' that has been recently rejuvenated by its contemporary-feeling simplicity. In fact, Cora seemed headed straight for the top of the popularity list when the coronavirus pandemic somewhat weakened its appeal.
  6. Ezra
    • Origin:

      Hebrew
    • Meaning:

      "help"
    • Description:

      Ezra has a lot going for it: the strength of its heroic Biblical legacy, its quirky sound, and its fresh but familiar feel. Ezra is now at its highest point ever, but its intuitive streamlined spelling and deep roots could make it a worth successor to Elijah in the Top 10 -- or even to Liam or Noah at Number 1.
  7. Freya
    • Origin:

      Norse
    • Meaning:

      "a noble woman"
    • Description:

      Freya has long been popular in the U.K. but has only taken off in the US in the last decade, along with the entire category of mythological names. Derived from the Old Norse name Freyja, meaning "Lady, noble woman", Freya is the name of the Norse goddess of love, beauty, and fertility.
  8. Hadrian
    • Origin:

      Latin
    • Meaning:

      "dark-haired"
    • Description:

      Most parents would find this old Roman name pretentious compared to the more accessible Adrian, but some history buffs just might want to commemorate the enlightened emperor.
  9. Iantha
    • Maisie
      • Origin:

        Scottish diminutive of Margaret or Mary
      • Meaning:

        "pearl or bitter"
      • Description:

        Maisie, a charming name long popular as a nickname for Margaret or Mary, entered the Top 1000 as itself ten years ago and continues to rise. Game of Thrones star Maisie Williams helped propel the name back into the limelight, along with the that of her character, Arya.
    • Roland
      • Origin:

        German
      • Meaning:

        "famous throughout the land"
      • Description:

        Roland is a chivalrous old name made famous by the supposedly eight-foot-tall romantic hero and nephew of Charlemagne, celebrated in medieval poetry and song. It is more widely heard in the US now in its Spanish form, Rolando. You might want to consider rollicking short form Rollo, either on its own or as an abbreviation of Roland. Orlando is the graceful Italian form.
    • Vera
      • Origin:

        Russian
      • Meaning:

        "faith"
      • Description:

        Vera was the height of fashion in 1910, then was for a long time difficult to picture embroidered on a baby blanket. Now, though, it has come back into style along with other old-fashioned simple names such as Ada and Iris.
    • Zelda
      • Origin:

        Diminutive of Griselda
      • Meaning:

        "gray fighting maid"
      • Description:

        Classified as an early beauty, Zelda has long and often been used as such for characters in books and films. Since 1986, Zelda has been a prime Nintendo name, as in the Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess.