favorite character names

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  1. Cadence
    • Origin:

      Latin
    • Meaning:

      "rhythm, beat"
    • Description:

      The musical word name Cadence, seemed to come out of nowhere to zoom up the charts; it rose over 700 spots between 2002 and 2004, and showed up in the Top 200 in 2007. It's gone down in the popular names list since then, though. Some might see it as a feminine relative of the popular Caden. Kadence and Kaydence are also rising.
  2. Carmen
    • Origin:

      Spanish variation of Carmel
    • Meaning:

      "garden"
    • Description:

      Carmen has long been associated with the sensuous, tragic heroine of Bizet's opera, based on a novel by Prosper Merimee; more recently it has called to mind two other bombshells: Carmen Miranda (born Maria) and Carmen Electra (born Tara), as well as the great jazz singer Carmen McRae. In the celebrity baby name world, this classic Spanish name for girls was used by Hilaria and Alec Baldwin for their daughter.
  3. Caroline
    • Origin:

      French, feminine variation of Charles
    • Meaning:

      "free man"
    • Description:

      Caroline is a perennial classic, one of the elite group of girls' names that's ALWAYS ranked among the Top 1000 and that's been in the Top 100 since 1994. Elegant yet strong, Caroline calls to mind the Kennedy Camelot years and Princess Caroline of Monaco.
  4. Cassandra
    • Origin:

      Greek
    • Meaning:

      "shining or excelling man"
    • Description:

      The name of the tragic mythological Trojan princess who was given the gift of prophecy by Apollo, but was condemned never to be believed, Cassandra has been used for striking characters in movies and soap operas. Ethereal and delicate, Cassandra was in the Top 70 throughout the 1990s but is now descending in popularity.
  5. Catherine
    • Origin:

      Greek
    • Meaning:

      "pure"
    • Description:

      Catherine is one of the oldest and most consistently well-used girls’ names, with endless variations and nicknames. The Catherine form feels more gently old-fashioned and feminine than the more popular K versions. Most stylish nickname for Catherine right now: Kate...or Cate, a la Blanchett.
  6. Charlotte
    • Origin:

      French, feminine diminutive of Charles
    • Meaning:

      "free man"
    • Description:

      Charlotte, the name of the young Princess of Cambridge, is the latest classic name to join Sophia, Emma, Olivia, and Isabella at the top of the popularity list. It is now among the most popular girl names in many English-speaking and European countries.
  7. Chloe
    • Origin:

      Greek
    • Meaning:

      "young green shoot"
    • Description:

      Chloe is a pretty springtime name symbolizing new growth. Though slightly off its peak in the Top 10 in 2010, Chloe still ranks in the Top 20 and is solidly a modern classic.
  8. Christopher
    • Origin:

      Greek and Latin
    • Meaning:

      "bearer of Christ"
    • Description:

      Christopher derived from the Greek Christophoros, which is composed of the elements Christos, referring to Christ, and phero, meaning "to bear."
  9. Connor
    • Origin:

      Irish
    • Meaning:

      "lover of hounds"
    • Description:

      Connor, the appealing name of an early semi-legendary king of Ulster in Irish mythology, sits firmly in the Top 100 and taken together with its alternate spellings would rank even higher. In its native Ireland the Conor version is one of the highest charting boys’ name.
  10. Eleanor
    • Origin:

      English variation of French Provencal Alienor, meaning unknown
    • Description:

      Eleanor's straightforward feminine image combined with its royal medieval history is striking just the right note for parents in search of a girls' name that combines substance and style.
  11. Ellie
    • Origin:

      English, diminutive of Eleanor and Ellen
    • Meaning:

      "bright shining one"
    • Description:

      Ellie first took off in the UK—yes, in this nickname form—and this warm and friendly name has also become hugely popular here. In 2011, Ellie entered the US Top 100 girl names for the first time and has remained near the top of the charts ever since.
  12. Elliot
    • Origin:

      Anglicization of Elijah or Elias
    • Meaning:

      "Jehovah is God"
    • Description:

      Elliot (which boasts several spellings depending upon how many 'l's or 't's you want to use) is a winner -- it has the ideal quality of being neither too common nor weirdly unique. Elliot had a style boost back in the early 1980s via the young hero of the movie E.T. , who was named Elliott. Since then there have been Elliots on Law & Order: SVU and Mad Men.
  13. Ellis
    • Origin:

      English surname derived from Elijah or Elias or Welsh
    • Meaning:

      "benevolent"
    • Description:

      Ellis is a former Old Man Name turned gender-neutral choice for the 21st century. It's one of the less used names in the currently popular El-family.
  14. Eloise
    • Origin:

      French and English variation of Heloise
    • Meaning:

      "healthy; wide"
    • Description:

      Well balanced between sleek, sweet, strong, and vintage, newly chic Eloise re-entered the US Top 1000 in 2009, following a 50 year absence. In 2022, it broke into the Top 100 in the US and across the pond in the UK. Given to nearly 3000 babies each year, Eloise is showing no sign of stepping out of the spotlight.
  15. Elsa
    • Origin:

      German diminutive of Elisabeth
    • Meaning:

      "pledged to God"
    • Description:

      Lost in limbo for decades and decades, Elsa now stands a good chance of following along in the progression from Emma to Ella to Etta, thanks to the ice queen heroine who "Let It Go" in the wildly popular Disney movie Frozen. The name shot all the up to Number 286 (its highest ranking since the 1890s) in the year after the release of the movie, though it's now dropped back down the list in the US.
  16. Emilio
    • Origin:

      Spanish and Italian variation of Emil
    • Meaning:

      "rival"
    • Description:

      Dashing and suave, with a hint of poetry and gentleness, Emilio is an appealing and international choice. A solid favorite in Italy, it is also on the rise in the US, France, Austria, and the UK.
  17. Felix
    • Origin:

      Latin
    • Meaning:

      "happy, fortunate"
    • Description:

      Felix is one of those ancient but nontraditional names for boys that have come into favor over the past few decades, a favorite of parents who want a masculine name with history and heft that breaks ranks with the standard Franks and Freds. Felix is also an international darling, ranking in the Top 100 in several European and English-speaking countries.
  18. Georgia
    • Origin:

      English, feminine variation of George
    • Meaning:

      "farmer"
    • Description:

      Georgia is so rich, lush and luscious, it's almost irresistible. Georgia's now a rising star among the feminizations of George, helped by associations with the southern state (named for British King George II) and painter Georgia O'Keeffe, with the Ray Charles song "Georgia On My Mind" or maybe "Sweet Georgia Brown" playing in the background.
  19. Haley
    • Origin:

      English
    • Meaning:

      "hay field"
    • Description:

      The second most popular spelling of this name is also the most straightforward.
  20. Helen
    • Origin:

      Greek
    • Meaning:

      "torch; shining light"
    • Description:

      Helen is a name that has connoted beauty since ancient times – Helen of Troy was the the mythological "face that launched a thousand ships," over whom the ten-year Trojan War was fought.