Dantea's Baby Names

{April 7, 2012}   Indiana City Names — Boys

Name                         Origin                         Meaning

Anderson                  Scandinavian             “Son of Anders” For reasons unknown to me, Anderson has been getting more and more popular. Maybe it’s because the the news anchor Anderson Cooper? In any case, Anderson has a bunch of literary namesake including the famous Hans Christian Anderson. It has a nice sound and the nickname Anders, which is kind of cute.

Carlisle                       English                          “From the walled city’ This is definitely a stuffy name. I think it has a nice sound, but it’s not even on the top 1000. However, it might gain some unexpected popularity because of the character in Twilight, Carlisle Cullen.

Chandler                    French                          “Candle Maker” Chandler got popular with Friend’s on air, but since Friends has faded away into reruns, Chandler hasn’t seen too much attention. It’s getting close to the 500s so it’s safely off the map, and I like that. I think Chandler sounds sporty and fun, but I can also picture a dark haired, mischievous boy.

Clayton                       English                         “Place with good clay” It almost fits in with the Aiden/Jaden etc trend but is much more traditional. I think of it as more of a western name.

Clifford                        English                         “lives near the ford by the cliff” Beginning to overcome a slightly stodgy intellectual image and showing signs of possible revival. Kids might or might not like the association with the big red dog. Cliff is a nice, modern nickname.

Cory                             Irish                              “From the hollow” I’ve seen that Cory/Corey is becoming unisex recently and I think that’s ridiculous. I like Cory/Corey. I think it has a soft sound but is still boyish enough to work. It’s still in the 300s so I guess there’s still people out there with me.

Dale                              English                         “Valley” This name, while still masculine, seems a little outdated to me. I do think with the right middle name, something more modern and right now, this name could really be good.

Ferdinand                  German                       “Bold voyager” Ferdinand has a sort of clumsy sound when heard and spoken by an English speaker, but for someone with a more European heritage, this name is a pretty cool choice. I think it sounds neat and Dinan is a cool nickname I would use.

Garrett                        Irish                              “Spear strength” I just love Garrett. It’s one of my favorite Irish boy names. It sounds very masculine and strong, with it’s hard consonant sounds, but still friendly and approachable. Gary is a nice but old nickname if you like it, but I wouldn’t use a nickname with Garrett.

Griffin                        Welsh                              “Strong lord” I love Griffin and would use it on a baby if I could find a way to. Griffin is one of the more popular Welsh surnames, and it’s also a mythological creature, half eagle, half lion. I would use it in full, but Griff and Finn are nice nicknames.

Griffith                       Welsh                             “Strong fighter” It’s a cool, classic Welsh name that comes off a little softer than Griffin but has the TH sound at the end that might make it a little harder for some people to say. I love it though.

Hamlet                       Danish                          The “To Be or Not to Be” jokes, via Shakespeare’s tortured prince, will get old very fast. However, as a middle name it could work. Juliet, Ophelia, Cordelia, Auberon…those are all Shakespeare names being used, so why not stick Hamlet in the middle as a tribute to the bard?

Harlan                        German                         “Rocky land” It has a pleasant enough sound but all I can think of the sci-fi writer Harlan Ellison. I really dislike that writer, so it’s bad for me, but you may love him! Harley could be a cool nickname.

Hayden                      English                          “heather grown hill” Though Hayden is one of the better of the bunch, it gets lost in the crowd of Jaidens, Bradens, Aidans, and endless variations, and is being used increasingly for girls. I find it way too popular right now (There are 3 babies with this name in my daycare), but other people might be okay with that.

Homer                       Greek                              “Security, Pledge” Homer has gone from being the name of a wonderful ancient Greek scribe to the name of Bart Simpson’s idiotic dad. It’s also been the pick of such celebrities as Richard Gere, Bill Murray, Anne Heche, and Matt Groening, Simpson’s creator, whose father and sons name is Homer. Because of the epic scope of The Odyssey and The Iliad, the term ‘homeric’implies work on an enormous scale, while ‘homeric laughter’ references the unrestrained laughter of the Greek gods. With all this going for it, Homer might just make a comeback.

Lafayette                  French                           “faith” This is a such a guilty pleasure name for me. It’s got a nice sound and a distinguished namesake, Marquis de Lafayette who fought in the American Revolution.

Leo                              Latin                               “Lion” Love Leo. I like it much more than any of the longer forms. Leo is a strong-yet-friendly name that was common among the Romans, used for thirteen popes, and it’s getting popular now. Leo has a lot going for it; its association with lions and strength, its Zodiac reference, and the O ending which is stylish right now.

Leopold                    German                          “Brave people” This is definitely not my favorite Leo name, as I prefer Leo on it’s own, but it’s still pretty cool. It has an older sound to it, but Leo spices it up for sure. Besides that, it’s a royal name, used my Queen Victoria to honor her uncle King Leopold of Belgium. In literature, the name is famous via Leopold Bloom, the central character of James Joyce Ulysses. In music is associated with the distinguished conductor Leopold Stokowski, and is also a saint’s name.

Leroy                         French                           “The King” That’s an interesting meaning for a name I can only manage to associate with hillbillies. Don’t get me wrong though, I live in the South so the only Leroy’s I’ve ever met were hillbillies. You could manage to get Leo as a nickname for this though, which would spice it up a bit.

Lewis                         English                          “Renowned Warrior” This is a neat name and the phonetic spelling of the French Louis. It’s been #1 or 2 in Scotland since 2000 according to my sources, but parent’s in the USA are just noticing it. Lewis Carroll, of Alice in Wonderland fame, is probably the most famous bearer of the name here in the US. Louis Armstrong pronounced his name like Lewis. It’s got a great nickname, Lew.

Lowell                       French                          “Young Wolf” Lowell has a soft, sensitive sound that I associate with the Poet Robert Lowell. I think it’s definitely got a nice sound, but I can’t think of any good nicknames at all.

Maxwell                   Scottish                        “Great stream” Maxwell might be my favorite Max name. It’s not as pretentious as Maximillion or as feminine sounding as Maxence. Max is a cool nickname too. Lance Armstrong just chose it for his son and it makes me think of the Beatle’s song Maxwell’s Silver Hammer.

Mitchell                   English                           “Who is like God?” Mitchell has gone up and down in popularity. Sometimes people like it, sometimes they don’t. Personally, I’d like to meet a little Mitchell instead of another Michael. Mitch is nice too.

Morris                      English                           “Dark-skinned” I’ve never heard this one in life, but I think it could work wonderfully. It fits nicely in with all those other surname names going around lately.

Napoleon                Greek                              “Lion of the new city” Overly ambitious choice, recently borne by the hapless hero of cult movie hit Napoleon Dynamite. All I can think of Napoleon Bonaparte. I think it would be cool for the middle though, and the nickname Leon is very cool.

Paxton                     Latin                                “Peace town” OOOH. Love Paxton! It’s one of my guilty pleasure names. Paxton has a lovely peaceful feel to it but the ever popular -ton/-on ending. It’s rising fast on the popularity charts, but it’s still very distinctive. I just love the nickname Pax.

Quincy                     French                            “Estate of the fifth son” Quincy is quirky in that it’s a Q name and most Q names tend to be quirky. I kind of like Quincy but it almost feels like the name for stodgy British professor. It wouldn’t if more people would use it! Love Quinn and Quince as a nickname.

Ramsey                   English                            “Low-lying land” I actually like Ramsey on someone else’s kid. I think it has an upper class feel, but is still accessible like Rory.

Riley                         Irish                                 “Courageous” Riley, a friendly, popular surname choice, is rising faster now for girls than boys. That makes me so sad too, because I love Riley on a boy. It makes me think of a mischievous little boy with a dimpled smile.

(Saint) Anthony   Latin                                “Priceless One” Anthony is strong and classic, but it is #10, which means more than 15,000 boys had this name last year. However, that shouldn’t matter if you love it. Anthony is the patron saint of Italy and the poor. It’s also a Shakespearean name via Anthony and Cleopatra.  Tony is still just as strong as the whole name.

(Saint) John           Hebrew                           “God is Gracious” John reigned as the most popular of all boys’ Christian names for four hundred years, from the time the first Crusaders carried it back to Britain until the 1950s, at which point American baby namers finally seemed to be tiring of this most straight-arrow, almost anonymous John Doe of names and started to replace it with fancier forms like Jonathan. John was a key name in early Christianity, borne by John the Baptist, John the Apostle, John the Evangelist, plus eighty-four saints and twenty-three popes, as well as kings, and countless other illustrious notables.

(Saint) Paul            Latin                                 “Paul” Paul was a popular name in the Roman and Medieval times so that shows how ancient it is. It’s not very fashionable nowadays, but that doesn’t mean anything. It’s scarce right now, but that’s nice. There’s also Paul Revere as a name sake.

Scipio                       Latin                                 “Staff or walking stick” Scipio is the surname of a Roman invader of Africa. I really like the way it sound, pronounced SIP-ee-oh. I think with all the other classic and ancient names starting to get attention, Scipio deserves his share too.

Seymour                 English                             “Marshy land near the sea” When I hear Seymour, I immediately think of Seymour Skinner, the mommy’s boy principal from the Simpsons. I think it’s still pretty dated.

Vernon                    English                             “Place of Alders” Once aristocratic British surname that now conjures up gas pumps as does the nickname Vern. I also think of Harry’s awful uncle in the Harry Potter series.

Wallace                    English/French            “A Welshman/Celt” It’s so far away from being popular that it could conceivably make a comeback. Wally is adorable.

Walton                     English                             “Fortified town” It sound a little more modern than Walter, what with that trending -ton/-on ending, but barely. Walt is nice, but the name still seems old.

Winslow                  English                              “Friends hill” Winslow is like Prescott, interesting with a cool nickname, Win, but a little pretentious sounding.

Wyatt                       English                         “Brave in war” Wyatt is definitely a cowboyish name to me. Makes me think of Wyatt Earp. I think it is interesting and has a cool sound, but I just don’t like the cowboy feel.


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