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The Top 5 Baby Names of Every US State

May 13, 2021 Namerology 1 min read 2 Comments

Olivia unites us, Theodore divides us, and Oliver is the King in the North. Those are some of the takeaways from a new look at the most popular baby names in every US State in 2020. Olivia, the nation’s top girl’s name, ranks in the top 5 in every single […]

4 Things We Learned From the 2020 Baby Name Data

May 9, 2021 Namerology 4 min read 1 Comment

Some quick notes on themes emerging from the new national baby name statistics. 1. Masculinity Through Word NamesOver one thousand names made their all-time debuts in this year’s name stats, 500+ each for boys and girls. Common English words appeared three times more often among the boys’ names. I suspect […]

The Fastest-Rising Names of the Year, 2020

May 7, 2021 Namerology 3 min read 11 Comments

2020 was a year like no other. In a time of loss, division and moral reckoning, the fastest rising names of the year were not hot new celebrity names, but memorials. Basketball superstar Kobe Bryant and his 13-year-old daughter Gianna died in a helicopter crash in January, 2020. Kobe was […]

America’s New Top Baby Names

May 7, 2021 Namerology 1 min read No Comments

Just in: the official ranking of the most popular baby names in the USA for the year 2020.  BOYS GIRLS 1 Liam Olivia 2 Noah Emma 3 Oliver Ava 4 Elijah Charlotte 5 William Sophia 6 James Amelia 7 Benjamin Isabella 8 Lucas Mia 9 Henry Evelyn 10 Alexander […]

Namerology Challenges

“Tell Me Your Name Without Telling Me Your Name”

April 27, 2021 LauraWattenberg 2 min read 28 Comments

A social media craze is taking on names. And, my fellow name enthusiasts, I think we can do it better. The game is called a #TellMeChallenge, or “tell me without telling me.” The goal is to convey a piece of information in a sideways manner, with a reference that makes […]

Double Trouble: Transformer Names

April 21, 2021 Namerology 2 min read 4 Comments

Nicknames are a change of pace. Any formal name that comes with an appealing nickname can be a 2-for-1 bargain, letting you adjust your name to suit your setting. But some names take the style versatility further: from elegant to bold, from Bruce Wayne to Batman, from banker to buzzsaw. […]

Header image: "Namerology Trends"

The Surprising Story of Boys Ending in -A

April 13, 2021 LauraWattenberg 2 min read 3 Comments

Once upon a time, something happened to boys’ names ending in the letter A. Or rather, two somethings. Starting around 1970 the typically female -a ending was twice transformed, and the sound of American boys hasn’t been the same since. See for yourself. The top black line in this chart […]

Vintage cartoon with the caption "Joyce means 'sportive'"

Is There Any Hope for the Names of the ’40s and ’50s?

March 26, 2021 LauraWattenberg 2 min read 6 Comments

These are strange times for Carol and Glenn. As hot baby names of the 1940s and ’50s, they’ve fallen into a black hole of fashion. They’re not yet antiques, and they’re not aggressively contrarian in style like Mildred or Floyd. They’re just invisible, a stylistic blind spot that parents don’t […]

Look Ma, No Consonants!

March 18, 2021 LauraWattenberg 2 min read 5 Comments

Vowels have been squeezing out consonants in names for years. Now they’re cutting out the middleman. More and more, vowel sounds follow one another in baby names without any consonant buffer—just ask Liam or Noah.

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