How popular is the baby name Brave in the United States right now? How popular was it historically? Find out using the graph below! Plus, check out all the blog posts that mention the name Brave.

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Popularity of the Baby Name Brave


Posts that Mention the Name Brave

Pop Culture Baby Name Game, 2020

Happy birthday, Elvis!

It’s hard to put into words just how bizarre 2020 was.

Despite this…people still had babies in 2020, and people still paid attention to pop culture in 2020. (In fact, thanks to quarantine, many people probably paid a lot more attention to pop culture than usual last year.) So, let’s put the seriousness of 2020 aside for a second and kick off the annual Pop Culture Baby Name Game!

Of course, “pop culture” includes not just things like movies and music and social media, but also anything that was in the news — including COVID-19, Black Lives Matter, and the U.S. presidential election.

Which baby names will see higher usage — or appear for the very first time — in the 2020 SSA baby name data thanks to pop culture?

Here are some initial ideas (plus some context):

  • Aalam, DJ Khaled’s baby
  • Ahmaud, shooting of Ahmaud Arbery
  • Amala, Doja Cat album
  • Azula, character from Avatar: The Last Airbender (made available on Netflix in mid-2020)
  • Breonna, shooting of Breonna Taylor
  • Bryant, death of Kobe Bryant
  • Casme, contestant on season 19 of The Voice
  • Catori, Chris Brown’s baby (suggested by alex)
  • Chadwick, death of Chadwick Boseman
  • Charli, singer Charli XCX
  • Corona, coronavirus
    • Not to mention the brand new Daddy Yankee song “Corona” [vid]…
  • Crozier, naval captain Brett Crozier (suggested by elbowin)
  • Daisy, Katy Perry and Orlando Bloom’s baby
  • Desz, contestant on season 19 of The Voice
  • Doja, singer Doja Cat
  • Domhnall, Irish actor on (canceled) HBO series Run
  • Dua, singer Dua Lipa
  • Esty, character on the Netflix miniseries Unorthodox
  • George, killing of George Floyd
  • Gianna, death of Gianna Bryant
  • Greta, Swedish activist Greta Thunberg
  • Isaias, hurricane
  • Jack, death of Chrissy Teigen and John Legend’s unborn baby
  • Kamala, Vice President-elect Kamala Harris
  • Kamiyah, character in the Lifetime movie Stolen by My Mother: The Kamiyah Mobley Story*
  • Kaori, Kevin Hart’s baby
  • Katara, character from Avatar: The Last Airbender
  • Kobe, death of Kobe Bryant
  • Kraken, NHL expansion team (Seattle)
  • Larriah, contestant on season 19 of The Voice
  • Laura, hurricane
  • Lenin, Starbucks barista Lenin Gutierrez (suggested by elbowin)
  • Liberty, Meghan McCain’s baby
  • Lovella, singer Matt Bellamy’s baby
  • Lynika, death of Lynika Strozier (suggested by elbowin)
  • Lyra, Ed Sheeran’s baby
  • McGivney, beatification of Fr. Michael McGivney
  • Neowise, comet (suggested by elbowin)
  • Onyx, Iggy Azalea’s baby
  • Raddix, Cameron Diaz and Benji Madden’s baby
  • Rayshard, shooting of Rayshard Brooks
  • River, Joaquin Phoenix and Rooney Mara’s baby
  • Robinette, President-elect Joseph Robinette Biden (suggested by elbowin)
  • Rona, coronavirus
  • Rue, Teyana Taylor and Iman Shumpert’s baby
  • Rumble, model Lucky Blue Smith’s baby
  • Ruth, death of RBG
  • Sovereign, Usher’s baby
  • Tchalla, death of Chadwick Boseman (who played T’Challa in 2018’s Black Panther)
  • Wenliang, Chinese doctor Li Wenliang (suggested by elbowin)
  • Willa, Joe Jonas and Sophie Turner’s baby
  • Win, Ciara and Russell Wilson’s baby
  • Yara, actress Yara Shahidi
  • Zuko, character from Avatar: The Last Airbender (here’s one Zuko from 2020)

Some of the names from the 2019 game could be applicable to the 2020 data as well.

Also, feel free to zoom out and consider name trends this year. Here are a few ways in which baby-naming may have been influenced by our collective experience of COVID-19, for instance:

  • “In my opinion this unprecedented situation will affect naming towards something “bolder” or “more badass” baby names and so you’ll probably see a spike of certain names like King, Major or Royal.” (Gheba)
  • “I’d bet on the rise of virtue names, or at least modern version of virtue names, like Brave/Bravery, Courage, Honor, etc. And I’d say names like Legend, Messiah, Legacy, Major, King, will probably rise some more too.” (Skizzo)
  • “I think it will also affect which media influence names this year. Eg we’ll miss out on names inspired by Olympic athletes, but might see even more from Netflix and YouTube.” (Clare)

What other names (or name trends) should we add to the list? Let me know by leaving a comment below. Just remember to make a note of the pop culture influence!

I’ll post the results as soon as I can after the SSA releases the 2020 data (in May of 2021, hopefully).

*Did you know that the actress who played Kamiyah in that Lifetime movie is named Rayven Symone Ferrell? Certainly a nod to Raven-Symoné

What Do You Think of “Verve”?

I learned recently that actress Shawnee Smith (remember The Blob?) had a daughter in 1999 and named her Verve, in part “after a British band” that she and her then-husband really liked.

That band must have been The Verve; their 1997 song “Bitter Sweet Symphony” [vid] was extremely popular circa 1999.

The name Verve has never been used enough to appear in the SSA’s publicly available dataset (which excludes names bestowed fewer than 5 times per year). But similar-sounding word-names like Brave, Ever, and Valor have been picking up steam lately, so do you think we might see Verve in the dataset one day soon? (Would you use it?)

Source: Sitting Pretty – People

Pert – Possible Baby Name?

pert kelton
Pert Kelton

Recently I’ve spotted several female movie characters named Pert:

  • Pert Martin – Take It Big (1944)
  • Pert – Danger! Women at Work (1943)
  • Pert Kelly – Why Be Good? (1929)
  • Pert Barlow – Checkers (1913 & 1919)

Plus there was the American actress Pert Kelton (b. 1907), who was named with the Checkers character in mind. (The story ultimately comes from the 1896 book Checkers: A Hard-luck Story by Henry M. Blossom.)

Despite this usage in early cinema, though, the name never really caught on; it has never appeared in the SSA data.

But it has seen some usage, according to the records. And, interestingly, that usage seems to skew masculine.

The male Perts were probably named with the surname Pert in mind. The surname can be traced back to the Old French word apert, meaning “skilled” or “experienced.” (Apert in this case is a variant of espert, from the Latin word expertus.)

But I think the female Perts — like the characters above — were more likely named with the English word in mind. The Oxford Dictionary defines pert as “attractively lively or cheeky.” This version of pert can also be traced back to apert, but, this time, apert comes from the Latin word apertus, meaning “opened, uncovered.”

In this era of word-names (e.g., Brave, Brazen, Hardy, Moxie, Sassy, Valiant, Valor), do you think Pert has a place? Would you use it?

Sources:

  • Hanks, Patrick. (Ed.) Dictionary of American Family Names. New York: Oxford University Press, 2003.
  • Pert – Wiktionary

Top Girl Name Debuts of 2015

top baby name debuts of 2015
More girl name debuts below. Here are the boy name debuts.

The music-inspired name Kehlani was the top debut name for baby girls in 2015.

In order for a rare baby name to debut on the Social Security Administration’s annual baby name list, it has to be given to at least 5 U.S. babies of either one gender or the other within a given year.

Of all the girl names that debuted in 2015, the following were the most popular:

1. Kehlani, 48 baby girls
2. Dayelin, 34
3. Abrish, 29
4. Alahia, 22
5. Hazelgrace, 22
6. Brave, 17
7. Nadyalee, 17
8. Hoorain, 15
9. Aitanna, 14
10. Aithana, 14
11. Aytana, 14
12. Brexley, 14
13. Jeshia, 14
14. Averyrose, 13
15. Absalat, 12
16. Kassiani, 12
17. Ovi, 12
18. Viyona, 12
19. Charlestyn, 11
20. Ditya, 11
21. Kylierae, 11
22. Mansirat, 11

And a handful from the 10-and-under group: Tanvika, Espn (it arrives for girls, finally!), Heavenlyjoy, Wylder, Yemariam, Carver, Edelweiss, Gloricely, Darasimi, Elshaddai, Ezoza, Maggiemae, Zeppelyn, Amitis, Anthem, Moxley, Wellesley, Witten, Gatsby, Skyland, Adorable, Brizleth, Lameese, Ludovica, Maleficent (Maleficent!), Maori, Stellaluna, Vaiga, Vydia.

Where do the names above come from? Here are a few explanations:

  • Kehlani – from Kehlani Parrish (stage name Kehlani), American R&B singer.
  • Hazelgrace – from Hazel Grace Lancaster, a character from The Fault in Our Stars (2014).
  • Nadyalee – from Nadyalee Torres, Puerto Rican model, finalist on Nuestra Belleza Latina 2015.
  • Hoorain – from celebrity baby Hoorain, born in July of 2015 to Pakistani actors Ayeza Khan and Danish Taimoor.
  • Aitanna, Aithana, and Aytana – from celebrity baby Aitana, born in August of 2014 to Mexican actors Alessandra Rosaldo and Eugenio Derbez.

Can you come up with explanations for any of the others?

Here are the top girl name debuts of 2014.

U.S. Baby Names 2015: Most Popular Baby Names, Top Debuts: Girl Names, Top Debuts: Boy Names, Biggest Changes in Popularity: Girl Names, Biggest Changes in Popularity: Boy Names, First Letter Popularity, Name Length Popularity

Overconfident Baby Names

Overconfident baby names like Classy, Epic, Majestic, Handsome and Einstein.

Overconfident Baby Names

The ones I’ve blogged about so far are Envy, Foxy, Suave and Unique.

Here are some of the baby names that didn’t make the cut: Aristotle, Artist, Boss, Brave, Couture, Czar, Dandy, Emperor, Fancy, Fantasy, Great, Hercules, Legacy, Ninja, Peerless, Pride, Pristine, Ritzy, Romeo, Royalty, Sassy.

If you know anyone who appreciates baby name humor, please share!

See also: Embarrassing Baby Names.