The Baby Name Coraline

CoralineNeil Gaiman’s fantasy book Coraline (2002) tells the story of young Coraline Jones. The book was turned into a movie in 2009.

The book did inspire a few baby names, but watch what happens when the movie comes out:

  • 2013: 385 baby girls named Coraline
  • 2012: 325 baby girls named Coraline
  • 2011: 224 baby girls named Coraline
  • 2010: 237 baby girls named Coraline
  • 2009: 120 baby girls named Coraline
  • 2008: 11 baby girls named Coraline
  • 2007: 5 baby girls named Coraline
  • 2006: 7 baby girls named Coraline
  • 2005: unlisted

Since 2012, the name Coraline has been among the top 1,000 baby girl names in the U.S.

How did Gaiman come up with the name? Here’s what he said in his recent University of the Arts Class of 2012 commencement speech [9:17 to 9:43]:

Fourthly, I hope you’ll make mistakes. If you make mistakes, it means you’re out there doing something. And the mistakes in themselves can be very useful. I once misspelled Caroline in a letter, transposing the A and O. And I thought, “Coraline…looks almost like a real name.”

(h/t Tim Ferriss)

Related: Yvaine is another Neil Gaiman character name.


2 thoughts on “The Baby Name Coraline

  1. I love the name Coraline and it’s nickname Cora! Unfortunately, C and K are off limits because my other half dislikes alliteration names.

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