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Names

Say Goodbye to These Favorite Names…

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Flashback to: • “Y2K” panic• Destiny’s Child ruling the radio• “Friends” ruling television• Palm Pilots being the height of techno cool Yep, it’s been a while since the year 2000. Long enough, in fact, that we’ve seen a generational turnover in baby names. I calculated the names that have fallen the farthest since the year 2000: the names that have just turned the generational ...

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Modern Names for Your Flower Child…

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The 1970’s brought us word names like Heather, Crystal, and Dawn, lovely nature-inspired choices that embodied the hippie vibe of the previous decade. While bell-bottoms may have gone out of style, the desire for peace and love (and nonconformist names) certainly hasn’t! The legacy of the hippie movement continues today in popular names like Summer, Harmony, and even Paisley. If ...

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The 2017 Name of the Year is Harvey…

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I sometimes describe the Name of the Year as a time capsule in name form, and that’s especially true of this year’s choice. Unlike past selections, the 2017 NOTY Harvey points to two separate stories, both of which have sent shock waves through the year. The devastation of Hurricane Harvey in Houston, Texas and the torrent of accusations of sexual ...

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Not-Quite Surnames…

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The lure of surnames as baby names is that they can be fresh and familiar at the same time. A name like Harlow, Anderson or Landry comes with built-in roots and culture – and established spelling – even if you’ve never met anyone by that name. You couldn’t just make up a new name in the surname style. Or could ...

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Fearless Names for Boys…

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Messiah, Odin, Maverick – what do these grand and gallant names have in common? All three names are the most popular they’ve ever been, indicating a trend among modern parents. Though each comes from a unique tradition, namers are drawn to the heroic sound present in each. Why not choose a name for your little boy that is sure to ...

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From Aalaya to Zyriah: A Close Look at a Trend…

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What’s the difference between the names Jakiya and Jakiyah? Up until the 1990s, the question would have been moot. Neither name existed. Since then, thousands of American girls have received the two names, and the question of the final H turns out to be part of the story. Over the past two decades, we’ve seen an explosion of three-syllable girls’ ...

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Nominations, Please! What Was the Name of the Year for 2017?…

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As the end of 2017 approaches, I invite you to look back over the year and grasp its essence, in a name. What name was unique to the events, the style, the experience of our times? What was the Name of the Year? The Baby Name Wizard Name of the Year isn’t necessarily the most popular baby name, or even ...

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The Two Kinds of Place Names…

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Here’s a curious fact about two geographical baby names, Bridger and Boston. Bridger is most popular near the places named for mountain man Jim Bridger, in Montana, Wyoming, Idaho and Utah. Boston, meanwhile, is most popular in…exactly the same places. In the region around Boston, Massachusetts, the name Boston is almost never heard. That’s a fundamental divide among place names. ...

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Adventurous Word Names…

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With names like Haven, River, and Journey ranking among the 300 most popular names, it seems that parents have adventure in mind. These word names embody excitement and discovery, but also sound elegant enough for a birth certificate. If you’re a fan of travel- and exploration-inspired names, check out this list of fifteen uncommon choices. These word names work for ...

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Name That Bo!…

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Try to think of an American man called Bo. You can probably name a few, like musician Bo Diddley, Oscar-winning screenwriter Bo Goldman, multi-sport athlete Bo Jackson, or fictional Bo Duke of “The Dukes of Hazzard.” Guess what? None of them were actually named Bo. In fact, until “Dukes of Hazzard” debuted in 1979, almost no Americans were named Bo. ...

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