Amy loves writing about her favorite topics, such as health, alternative healing, dreams, crystals, and spirituality.
Traditions of Naming a Baby
It's a lot of fun to think up baby names when you are expecting. It can also be a bit of a challenge—after all, your baby will carry the name you give them for the rest of their lives. It is an important decision to make, and there are thousands of baby name books on the market.
Naming a baby wasn't always such a difficult decision to make. Names were much more traditional and sometimes even boring in past eras. As recently as the 1960s, people have been coming up with more unique and interesting names for their children. That's just the western part of the world. Many regions and cultures stick to the traditions.
Many African Americans give their babies unique names, while pride in their African roots has also inspired African and Muslim names.
Similarly, Mormons often give their babies unique names. One common practice is to combine a grandmother's and grandfather's names. Mormons may have also started the trend of using surnames as first names.
In the Jewish tradition, babies receive a naming ceremony about eight days after birth. Jewish people often believe in naming their children after a charitable person in hopes that the new baby will take after that person. Naming ceremonies are not so unusual. Indians and Buddhists also have naming ceremonies.
Many Europeans have customs of naming their children after their parents: a newborn boy will take the father's name, and although less commonly, a baby girl will take the mother's name.
In Italian, Greek, and Spanish cultures, the first boy and girl are named after their paternal grandparents. The French honor grandparents by using their first names as middle names for their newborns.
Americans tended to name their babies traditional names taken from the Bible, books, and loved ones. Naming the firstborn son after his father is still very common. Modern America is becoming more and more creative in naming their babies.
Top 5 Girl Names Through the Decades
Names were never that unique up until as recently as the 1960s. For example, the name Mary remained the #1 name in the US from 1880 all the way until 1960.
Read More From Wehavekids
Top 5 Boy Names Through the Decades
In the last 100 years, the top boy names haven't changed much, and even recently, many of the names that were popular in decades past are still in the top ten. This could have to do with naming male children after their fathers. Male names have been getting broader; recently, names like Jacob and Jayden have come into fashion.
Names of the Ancient Gods and Goddesses
If you love mythology, why not take a name from a god or goddess from Greek and Roman mythology? Each god has a distinct personality and has a special purpose.
Powerful Male Gods
Roman and Greek
Music, healing, and light
The north wind
The south wind
God who held heaven on his shoulders
Wine, parties, and festivities
Strength and power
Strength and triumph
Messenger for the gods
Transitions, doorways, and new beginnings
Guardian of spirits
Fictional (The Matrix)
Founder of Rome
Oaths and good faith
Courage and military
The sky; ruler of all gods
Strong Goddess Names
Love and passion
Hunting and childbearing
Founder of Athens; goddess of wisdom
Earth and agriculture
The hunt, virgins, and women
Fame and fortune
Marriage and women
Family, hearth, and home
Rainbows; messenger for the gods
Marriage and women
Spring and rebirth
Wine and good health
Intellect and prophecy
Fertility; mother of Zeus
The moon and logic
The earth and fertility
While names taken from the Bible have been used for centuries, there are some less-common names that may suit your child.
Names Taken From Places Around the World
Some Names for Your Flower Child
Tough-Sounding Boy Names
Common Girl Names and Their Meanings
Worthy of love
Beloved by all
Messenger of God
Favor of grace, prayer
Lioness of God
One who lives near the ash tree
Born in the fall
Follower of Christ
God has favored me
Devoted to God
God is gracious
The bay or a laurel plant
Devoted to God
Fire born, wise ruler, good-looking
Rebellion, bitterness, mother of Christ
A bee or honey
Olive, peace symbol
God has healed
From the border
The fruit and its tree
Common Boy Names and Their Meanings
He ascends, strength
Follower of Christ
Follower of Dionysus
Of the Lord
Free and truthful
He who grasps the heel
Combination of Jason and Aiden
God's will increases
God is salvation
Just and righteous
Gift of God
He who gives
Victory of the people
To be heard
The Lord recalled
Weird Names Celebrities Have Given Their Kids
Celebrities like to give their children unusual names. Some names, like Angelina Jolie's daughter, Shiloh or Katie Holme's daughter Suri, are quite different but could hardly be called bizarre. So as a final note, here are some of the craziest names celebrities have chosen for their unfortunate children. I know it looks like I made some of these up, but I didn't.
|Baby Name(s)||Celebrity Parent(s)|
Talulah, Scout, and Rumer Willis
Demi Moore and Bruce Willis
Dweezil, Moon Unit, and Diva Thin Muffin
Fifi Trixibelle, Heavenly Hirani Tiger Lily
Calico and Sonora Rose
Zolten and Moxie Crime Fighter
Prince Michael I and Prince Michael II (aka Blanket)
Sean Penn and Robin Wright
babynology from New York on July 20, 2013:
Your hub became a useful reference for them who looking for baby names. Many Thanks
Emily from Florida on April 07, 2013:
A lot of interesting information. I never knew some of the facts you dug up. Definitely going to keep this hub in mind if I have more kids!
Cecelia Kramer from Everywhere but mostly Cali on February 21, 2013:
Interesting list of names. It's hard to pick a name for a child now a days since the name will be the same as 900 other kids or a very unique name the kids might not like later in life because he or she gets teased for it. I know where to look though to find some good names right here.
Amy DeMarco (author) from Chicago on July 29, 2011:
Cabodavid- those are some great names you picked guys picked out! I love all of those names you chose for your daughter. Mercedes is very pretty, so is Arabella. Thanks for commenting!!
cabodavid from Cabo San Lucas, Baja California Mexico on July 27, 2011:
We agonized over the first child's name in the early 1980's and finally agreed on Nicholas Alexander. Number 2 child was more difficult - after many fights - it came down to Alexander Channing (C. a famous Unitarian). Still can't figure out why she didn't like Basil...
Daughter came along and there was no compromising so we went with all of them- Mercedes Theresa Chouinard Arabella Ming Mandich we call her Mer, Mercy and Mercedes. No regrets on any of them and the children like their names. Living in Mexico - Mercedes is very common as was Ming when we lived in the Chinese community.
ruffridyer from Dayton, ohio on July 04, 2011:
I understand George Forman named his five boys george his daughter he name geogia. That just seems lazy to me.
I didn't name either of my boys after me, I don't believe in it. I think every boy deserves his own name. Also If I named him after me he would be called junior even when he's fifty or little earl even if he is built like a line backer.
KidsPartyFavors on June 29, 2011:
This is so important for me! Thanks again for posting!
Amy DeMarco (author) from Chicago on June 27, 2011:
Thanks for commenting! I hope the article gave you some ideas. Feel free to share this article with your sisters!
Cecelia Millhouse from Sanford, North Carolina on June 27, 2011:
Thanks for this very informative and intresting with 2 pregnant sisters I am always looking for unique suggestions
Amy DeMarco (author) from Chicago on June 26, 2011:
Glad you enjoyed it :)
mama_em on June 25, 2011:
Really interesting. Thanks for a great Hub!
Amy DeMarco (author) from Chicago on June 25, 2011:
Thank you for the comment, I'm glad you enjoyed it. Jennifer is a beautiful name also the name to one of my best friends. I know the celebrity names would be a hit! As always, I appreciate all your warm comments!
Alastar Packer from North Carolina on June 25, 2011:
Wow amymarie, you've done a great hub here on baby names, really well done with the research and how its written. Jennifer is one of my fave girl's names. Any boy baby named Eros will have a lot to live up for in life...lol. In the future from what I know and hear around, there's going to be a lot of Hunters and Conners running about. Thanks and that is the cherry on top with the weirdest celebrity baby names.