Gone with the Wind Names

  1. Archie
    • Origin:

      Diminutive of Archibald, Teutonic
    • Meaning:

      "truly brave"
    • Description:

      Archie made global news as the surprise first name of the newborn royal baby, son of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex aka Harry and Meghan. Archie has now officially transcended Archie Bunker and Riverdale's Archie to take the, um, throne as the quintessential retro nickname name.
  2. Ashley
    • Origin:

      English
    • Meaning:

      "dweller near the ash tree meadow"
    • Description:

      It may have peaked at #1 for girls in 1991 and 1992 in the US, but Ashley actually has a long history as a male given name, as evidenced by the sensitive Ashley Wilkes in Gone With the Wind. It's always been more popular for boys in England and Wales, where it currently ranks at #414.
  3. Beau
    • Origin:

      French
    • Meaning:

      "handsome"
    • Description:

      Beau suggests someone devilishly handsome, with a large measure of southern charm—a nice image to bestow on your boy. Often solely a nickname in the past, it's now standing firmly on its own. Beau has been on the Social Security list non-stop since 1969.
  4. Belle
    • Origin:

      Short form of Isabelle or French
    • Meaning:

      "beautiful"
    • Description:

      Belle has nothing but positive associations, from "belle of the ball" to "Southern belle" to the heroine of Disney's Beauty and the Beast. As if this weren't enough good things, Belle is also one of the most familiar and usable names that mean beautiful. Though it has been overshadowed by the Twilight-influenced Bella and longer forms like Isabella and Annabella, Belle has its own Southern charm and would make a pretty choice as a first or middle name.
  5. 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.
  6. Brent
    • Origin:

      English
    • Meaning:

      "dweller near the burnt land"
    • Description:

      One of several blunt B names just this side of the gender divide. While its short and to-the-point sound may feel modern, it has been declining steadily since the 1980s.
  7. 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.
  8. Charles
    • Origin:

      French from German
    • Meaning:

      "man, free man"
    • Description:

      Charles derives from the Germanic name Karl, meaning "man" or "freeman", and is a royal name in multiple European countries. A famous early bearer is Charlemagne, King of the Franks and Lombards and then Roman Emperor in the 8th-9th centuries.
  9. Charlie
    • Origin:

      English, diminutive of Charles
    • Meaning:

      "free man"
    • Description:

      Charlie derives, of course, from the classic name Charles which, in turn, comes from a German word meaning "free man." Charles became very popular in France during the Middle Ages due to the fame of Charles the Great, also known as Charlemagne. Charley is an alternate spelling.
  10. Dolly
    • Origin:

      English, diminutive of Dorothy
    • Meaning:

      "gift of God"
    • Description:

      Hello, Dolly! Okay, we couldn't resist, but be warned: Most people who meet your little Dolly won't be able to either. This nickname-name, rarely heard since whatever decade Dolly Parton was born, is singing a fashionable note again along with sisters Dottie and Dixie; it was chosen for one of their twin girls by Rebecca Romijn and Jerry O'Connell.
  11. Ella
    • Origin:

      German; English
    • Meaning:

      "all, completely; fairy maiden"
    • Description:

      Ella is a sweet, simple name that owes much of its current popularity to the popularity of other names, from Emma to Bella to Emily to Ellie.
  12. Ellen
    • Origin:

      English variation of Helen
    • Meaning:

      "torch; shining light"
    • Description:

      An medieval English form of Helen, the sensitive but clear-eyed Ellen has swung in and out of style for centuries, often alternating with the parent name. Ellen was the more common in medieval England, until after the Renaissance, when Helen overtook her. In Edith Wharton's The Age of Innocence, set at the end of the nineteenth century, one character wonders why another has not changed her "ugly" given name to something prettier, like Elaine—a statement few would make today.
  13. Emmy
    • Origin:

      Diminutive of Emily and Emma
    • Meaning:

      "work; universal"
    • Description:

      Long a nickname for all the Em-names, as well as an annual award, Emmy is now being given on its own, as are soundalikes Emme and Emmi. Might be too identified with the TV awards--though that doesn't seem to have hurt Oscar or Tony. We think Emmy is a little too cutesey, and is probably best kept as a nickname for something that ages a little better.
  14. Frank
    • Origin:

      Diminutive of Francis or Franklin
    • Meaning:

      "Frenchman or free man"
    • Description:

      A Top 10 name from the 1880s until the 1920s, Frank has been falling for decades but last year reversed course for the first time in a century, edging up the popularity list a few notches. And Frank still has a certain warm, friendly real-guy grandpa flavor that could come back into style, like other such choices as Jake and Jack.
  15. Gerald
    • Origin:

      English and Irish from German
    • Meaning:

      "ruler with the spear"
    • Description:

      Both a saint's name and a presidential one via Gerald Ford—who was born Leslie—Gerald is a quintessential 1930s-40s name, when it ranked as high as Number 19. Hence all those nice middle-aged and senior Jerrys we've known and loved. Gerald has always been popular in Ireland, accounting for the prevalence of Fitzgeralds there. Though not considered stylish, Gerald remains on the popularity charts. Cousin Gerard has a similar profile, Geraldo is the well-used Spanish version, and Geraldine is the most promising of the family, in line to follow the path of Josephine to imminent revival.
  16. Honey
    • Origin:

      Word name
    • Description:

      A term of endearment turned cute British celebrity baby name, used by actress Kate Winslet, chef Jamie Oliver, and TV presenter Fearne Cotton, among others. Honey was given to only 40 girls in the US in 2017, but it's relatively popular across the pond, where it ranks in the current Top 500 baby names for girls.
  17. India
    • Origin:

      Place name, from the River Indus
    • Description:

      Euphonious and long stylish in England, India was one of the fastest-rising names on the 2013 list, after jumping 240 spots back into the Top 1000.
  18. John
    • Origin:

      Hebrew
    • Meaning:

      "God is gracious"
    • Description:

      John reigned as the most popular of all boys' Christian names for 400 years, from the time the first Crusaders carried it back to Britain until the 1950s. Then American baby namers finally seemed to tire of this straight-arrow, almost anonymous John Doe of names, replacing it with fancier forms like Jonathan and the imported Sean and Ian.
  19. Jonas
    • Origin:

      Greek variation of Jonah
    • Meaning:

      "dove"
    • Description:

      Jonas has a slightly more grandfatherly image than the English version of his name, but that only adds to its retro appeal. And though it may lag behind Jonah in this country, Jonas is riding a huge wave of popularity in Europe, where it ranks highly in Germany, Switzerland, Austria and Norway.
  20. Melanie
    • Origin:

      Greek
    • Meaning:

      "black, dark"
    • Description:

      Gone with the Wind inspired a generation of girls named Melanie, though it looks as though Scarlett will triumph in the end.