My Favorite Names

  1. Adelina
    • Origin:

      Italian, Spanish, Portuguese and Slavic variation of Adeline
    • Meaning:

      "noble, nobility"
    • Description:

      Adelina is back in the Top 1000 after an absence of nearly a century, thanks to the meteoric rise of her sister name Adeline -- along with Adelaide, Adele, and Ada. Some parents choose Adelina because they want to get to cute vintage nickname Addie, but others favor it as a slightly more unusual form of this sweet vintage girls' name. A lot of attention was focused on it recently via the women's figure skating gold medal winner at the Sochi winter olympics--Adelina Sotnikova.

      While Adeline is usually pronounced in the U.S. with a long i in the last syllable, to rhyme with mine, Adelina is pronounced with the long e sound at the end, as in 'lee-na'.

  2. Aiden
    • Origin:

      Irish
    • Meaning:

      "little and fiery"
    • Description:

      Aiden in all its spelling variations is the Anglicized version of the Irish Aodhán, which was originally a pet form of the Irish name Aodh (pronounced 'ee'), who was the old Celtic god of the sun and fire. St. Aidan was a famous seventh century Irish saint, noted for his kindness and generosity and for spreading Christianity.
  3. Alvin
    • Origin:

      English
    • Meaning:

      "noble friend, friend of the elves"
    • Description:

      Alvin has a sturdy, no-frills sound that belies its somewhat whimsical meaning. Interesting potential namesakes include British rocker Alvin Stardust, and US footballer Alvin Williams, and African-American dance legend (and activist) Alvin Ailey.
  4. Amelia
    • Origin:

      German
    • Meaning:

      "work"
    • Description:

      Amelia is one of the hottest girls' names, a successor to the megapopular Emma and Emily. Amelia, which spent several years at Number 1 in England, is now comfortably ensconced in the US Top 10.
  5. Angelina
    • Origin:

      Greek, Italian, Spanish, Russian diminutive of Angela
    • Meaning:

      "angel"
    • Description:

      The gorgeous Angelina Jolie has promoted the star power of her name and changed Angelina's image from delicate to intense, from older Italian mama to stylish multi-cultural child. Kids might relate to the dancing mouse in the series of charming children's books, Angelina Ballerina, or to the Harry Potter character, Angelina Johnson Weasley, a member of Dumbledore's army.
  6. Astrid
    • Origin:

      Scandinavian
    • Meaning:

      "divinely beautiful"
    • Description:

      Astrid has been a Scandinavian royal name since the tenth century, and many people associated it with the Swedish author of the Pippi Longstocking stories, Astrid Lindgren. Astrid is derived from the name Ástríðr, which is made up of the Old Norse elements that mean "god" and "beautiful."
  7. Bianca
    • Origin:

      Italian
    • Meaning:

      "white"
    • Description:

      Bianca, the livelier Italian and Shakespearean version of Blanche, has been chosen by many American parents since the 1990s, just as Blanca is a favorite in the Spanish-speaking community. Its meaning of white relates to snow, making it one of the prime names for winter babies.
  8. Boudicca
    • Origin:

      Celtic
    • Meaning:

      "victory"
    • Description:

      First century queen who led her Brittonic Iceni tribe in revolution against the Romans occupying England. Also found as Boudica, Boadicea (as in bodacious) and in Welsh as Buddug, the historic namesake was defeated and committed suicide, but is still celebrated in England as intelligent and brave. One ancient name that, while unheard these days, could be revived along with such choices as Atticus and Cassius.
  9. Brandon
    • Origin:

      English
    • Meaning:

      "broom-covered hill"
    • Description:

      Brandon, a forebear of the Braden-Caden pack, had a great run of popularity over several decades, being in the Top 10 from 1992 to 1998, one of its inspirations being hearthrob Brandon Walsh played by Jason Priestley on the original Beverly Hills 90210--and it was aso the name of several soap opera characters.
  10. Calliope
    • Origin:

      Greek mythology name
    • Meaning:

      "beautiful voice"
    • Description:

      Calliope is the name of the muse of epic poetry -- and also the musical instrument on the merry-go-round. Bold and creative, it would not be the easiest name for a girl lacking such qualities. It debuted in the US Top 1000 in 2016. While Americans usually pronounce this name with a long I sound and the emphasis on the second syllables, Greeks pronounce it with the emphasis on the third syllable -- ka-lee-OH-pee.
  11. Callista
    • Origin:

      Greek
    • Meaning:

      "most beautiful"
    • Description:

      Calista Flockhart spotlighted this lovely Greek name that has a long future in the English-speaking world. Kallista is another spelling; Calixta and Calixto are related.
  12. Calypso
    • Origin:

      Greek
    • Meaning:

      "she who hides"
    • Description:

      This hyper-rhythmic name has two evocative references. In Greek mythology, she was an island nymph, a daughter of Atlas, who delayed Odysseus from returning home. It is also a genre of West Indian music, originating in Trinidad and Tobago and largely popularized in the States by Harry Belafonte.
  13. Clarissa
    • Origin:

      Elaboration of Clara
    • Meaning:

      "bright, clear"
    • Description:

      Clarissa, the daintier version of Claire, has a long literary history of its own, having been featured in the novels of Samuel Richardson, Charles Dickens, and Virginia Woolf—Clarissa was the title character of Mrs. Dalloway—not to mention the 1990s teen sitcom, Clarissa Explains it All.
  14. Claudia
    • Origin:

      Feminine variation of Claude
    • Meaning:

      "lame; enclosure"
    • Description:

      Claudia is a classic name with ancient Roman roots. Never truly in or truly out, Claudia feels like a strong, modern choice that hits the sweet spot between too popular and too unusual..
  15. Conall
    • Origin:

      Irish
    • Meaning:

      "strong as a wolf"
    • Description:

      Too many Connors in your neighborhood? This name--spelled with one 'l' or two--is equally authentic and much more unusual.
  16. Corbin
    • Origin:

      English and French surname
    • Meaning:

      "crow, raven"
    • Description:

      Corbin, the name of the castle where the Holy Grail was said to be hidden, came to the fore in the 1980s via actor Corbin Bernsen when he was the high profile star of LA Law, but its use is only now escalating as part of the mania for two-syllable names starting with c or k, as well as from the more youthful image of Corbin Bleu, the attractive actor-model-dancer-singer who was one of the stars of the Disney hit High School Musical.
  17. Damian
    • Origin:

      Greek
    • Meaning:

      "to tame, subdue"
    • Description:

      Damian has sidestepped its demonic horror movie overtones, leaving a basically friendly and charming Irish image. A well-used upper-class name in England, it is growing in popularity here.
  18. Danika
    • Origin:

      Eastern European
    • Meaning:

      "morning star"
    • Description:

      Spelling variation of Danica with a modern update.
  19. Daphne
    • Origin:

      Greek
    • Meaning:

      "laurel tree, bay tree"
    • Description:

      In Greek mythology, Daphne was the nymph daughter of Peneus, a river god. Peneus saved Daphne from Apollo’s romantic obsessions by transforming her into a laurel tree. It is from this myth that the plant genus daphne, which contains the laurel species, gets its name.
  20. Drusilla
    • Origin:

      Latin
    • Meaning:

      "fruitful"
    • Description:

      Drusilla is an ancient Roman name, (probably) borne by descendants of Antony and Cleopatra, and is one of the 'illa' names that are ready for a comeback, especially with its cute short form Dru.