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

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Popularity of the Baby Name Craig

Number of Babies Named Craig

Born in the U.S. Since 1880

Posts that Mention the Name Craig

Cryptography Names – Alice, Bob, Eve

protocolSince the late 1970s, cryptographers have been using personal names (instead of labels like “person A” and “person B”) to describe various communications scenarios. Many of these scenarios involve two communicating parties named Alice and Bob and an eavesdropper named Eve.

Extra parties are assigned names alphabetically (e.g., Carol, Dave) unless they play a specific role within the scenario. For instance, a password cracker is named Craig, a malicious attacker is named Mallory, an intruder is named Trudy, and a whistle-blower is named Wendy.

In zero-knowledge protocols, the “prover” and “verifier” of a message are typically named Peggy and Victor…but Pat and Vanna (after Wheel of Fortune presenters Pat Sajak and Vanna White) are sometimes used instead.

Here’s more about Alice and Bob from American cryptographer Bruce Schneier:

And you’d see paper after paper, and [in] the opening few paragraphs, the authors would explain what they’re doing in terms of Alice and Bob. So Alice and Bob have a storied history. They send each other secrets, they get locked in jail, they get married, they get divorced, they’re trying to date each other. Anything two people might want to do securely, Alice and Bob have done it somewhere in the cryptographic literature.

Question of the day: If you were tasked with updating the names of “person A” (female) and “person B” (male), what new names would you choose?

Sources: Alice and Bob – Wikipedia, ‘Replace crypto-couple Alice and Bob with Sita and Rama’, Bruce Schneier – Who are Alice & Bob? [vid]
Image: Protocol by Randall Munroe under CC BY-NC 2.5.


Name Quotes for the Weekend #15

betty white quote, "I love Cadillacs and name them after birds."

From an interview with Betty White in Parade Magazine:

Ask White if she still drives and she replies, “Of course!” She owns a silver Cadillac nicknamed Seagull. “I love Cadillacs and name them after birds.” Her previous ride, the pale-yellow Canary, was preceded by the green Parakeet.

From an article about how political preferences influence baby name choices in the Washington Times:

“If innovative birth names first appear as expressions of cultural capital, then liberal elites are most likely to popularize them, especially given that liberals are typically more comfortable embracing novelty and differentiation,” the study said. “Sometime afterwards, the name will diminish as a prestige symbol as lower classes begin adopting more of these names themselves thus sending liberal elites in search of ever new and obscure markers.”

When elite liberal parents do search for novelty, the authors write, they are “less likely to make up a name rather than choose a pre-existing word that is culturally esoteric (e.g., ‘Namaste,’ ‘Finnegan,’ ‘Archimedes’), because fabricating a name would diminish its cultural cachet.”

After all, they note, “the value of cultural capital comes, not from its uniqueness, but from its very obscurity.”

From an article on Chinese names in the LA Times:

In China, unusual names are viewed as a sign of literary creativity, UCLA sociology professor Cameron Campbell said.

[…]

“Picking a rare character is kind of like a marker of learning,” Campbell said, while in the United States, one-of-a-kind names are sometimes viewed as odd.

From an article about keeping your baby’s name a secret in the StarPhoenix:

“With our first we did not keep the name a secret. We told everyone. Then at 36 weeks, my cousin got a puppy which she named the same name as I had picked for our baby. When I asked why she used the name she choose she said she had heard it somewhere and really liked it but couldn’t remember where. I was devastated. Baby ended up coming at 37 weeks and we had not yet picked a new name! After that we kept the names quiet until they were born.” – Nicole Storms

From an interview with Ta-Nehisi Coates (b. 1975) at Bookslut:

Last month, on the blog he writes for The Atlantic, Ta-Nehisi Coates explained the origin of his first name:

[F]or the record Ta-Nehisi (pronounced Tah-Nuh-Hah-See) is an Egyptian name for ancient Nubia. I came up in a time when African/Arabic names were just becoming popular among black parents. I had a lot of buddies named Kwame, Kofi, Malik (actually have a brother with that name), Akilah and Aisha. My Dad had to be different, though. Couldn’t just give me a run of the mill African name. I had to be a nation.

Coates’s father was a former Black Panther who raised seven children by four mothers, while running an underground Afro-centric publishing house from his basement. When Bill Cosby complained about black parents naming their children “Shaniqua, Taniqua and Mohammed and all of that crap, and all of them are in jail,” he may very well have been thinking of Paul Coates.

From a blog post about choosing a baby name by Jodi of Jodilightful! (via Abby of Appellation Mountain):

But if we learned anything from the process of naming Niko and watching him become that name, it was this: we could have called him anything we wanted to, and it would have been fine.

From an essay by Craig Salters in the Hanover Mariner:

I was watching the Little League World Series the other day and the team from New Castle, Indiana has a great bunch of kids and much to be proud of.

But, unfortunately, that wasn’t what I noticed first about them. What I noticed was the first names of their lineup card: Mason, Janson, Cayden, Hunter, Niah, Bryce, Jarred, Blake, and Bryce (again).

So no John? No Jimmy, Bobby, Richard, or Chris? There’s nothing wrong with their names — like I said, their parents should be bursting with pride — but, as an apprentice old fogey, it’s hard to get used to.

[…]

I myself was named after Craig Breedlove, a daredevil who broke all sorts of land speed records in what was pretty much a rocket on wheels. I absolutely love my name and am proud of my namesake, but I always feel I’m letting Mr. Breedlove down when I putter along Route 3 at 55 miles per hour, content to listen to sports radio and let the world pass me by.

From a tweet by Sherman Alexie (via A Mitchell):

We gave our sons names they could easily find on souvenir cups, magnets & shirts. Childhood is rough enough.

A poem, “Möwenlied” (Seagulls), by German poet Christian Morgenstern (1871-1914):

Die Möwen sehen alle aus,
als ob sie Emma hiessen.
Sie tragen einen weissen Flaus
und sind mit Schrot zu schießen.

Ich schieße keine Möwe tot,
ich laß sie lieber leben –
und füttre sie mit Roggenbrot
und rötlichen Zibeben.

O Mensch, du wirst nie nebenbei
der Möwe Flug erreichen.
Wofern du Emma heißest, sei
zufrieden, ihr zu gleichen.

…and now the translation, by Karl F. Ross:

The seagulls by their looks suggest
that Emma is their name;
they wear a white and fluffy vest
and are the hunter’s game.

I never shoot a seagull dead;
their life I do not take.
I like to feed them gingerbread
and bits of raisin cake.

O human, you will never fly
the way the seagulls do;
but if your name is Emma, why,
be glad they look like you.

Want more name quotes? Check out the name quotes category.

Road Trip Roundup: Evil Knevil

Evel Knievel bikeNope, that title isn’t a typo.

After learning a bit about Robert Craig “Evel” Knievel at the Sturgis Motorcycle Museum, I wondered: have any babies ever been named after him?

Yes, at least one.

Evil Knevil Fregia was born to Raymond and Betty Fregia of Liberty, Texas, in 1975.

Where did Knievel’s nickname “Evel” come from?

After a police chase in 1956 in which he crashed his motorcycle, Knievel was taken to jail on a charge of reckless driving. When the night jailer came around to check the roll, he noted Robert Knievel in one cell and William Knofel in the other. Knofel was well known as “Awful Knofel” (“awful” rhyming with “Knofel”) so Knievel began to be referred to as Evel Knievel (“Evel” rhyming with “Knievel”). He chose this misspelling because of his last name and because he didn’t want to be considered “evil.”

[What’s this road trip all about?]

Source: Evel Knievel @ Wikipedia
Image: Evel Knievel Exhibition by Leo Reynolds

Names Needed for Baby Boy

A reader named Leigh will be having a baby boy within the next few weeks. She writes:

I am a teacher and have heard so many names that I don’t want to name our child. My husband and I really like the name Miles, however, there are many new baby boys in my friend circle, named Miles. I really like Emmett, but my husband is afraid he’ll be mocked because people might only know of his name from the Twilight series. We’re interested in two or three syllable strong, unique (not necessarily unusual) names. A current front runner is Anders, possibly Anders Gray Hollyard*. We also like the name Lars. I guess I’m finding we like names that end in s!

First name and possible middle name suggestions to go with Anders would be greatly appreciated.

*Their surname isn’t Hollyard, but a like-sounding two-syllable h-name.

A few thoughts on the current favorites:

  • Miles: The popularity of this one has been on the rise for years, so it makes sense that you’re hearing it more often. I’m sure this has already come up, but just in case: Have you considered Milo or Niles as alternatives? They both sound a lot like Miles, but they’re not nearly as popular (i.e. only 29 babies were named Niles in 2010).
  • Emmett: Personally, I associate this name with Emmitt Smith, not the fictional vampire. And I’m not even a sports fan. This Twilight craze will blow over one day (thankfully!) and, when it does, these vampire/werewolf associations will fade. Exception: Renesmee.
  • Anders: I really like this one. I especially like that it shortens to the nickname Andy, allowing anyone with this name to flip back and forth between formal/unusual and informal/familiar, depending on the occasion. Versatility is always a good thing.
  • Lars: I have a strong association with this one as well, though I’m not sure how many others have it — Metallica drummer Lars Ulrich. So this one may prompt people to ask about the possible Metallica connection. Much cooler than a Twilight question, anyway.

Here are some other names, many with s-endings:

Adam
Boris
Clark
Curtis
Elliot
Ellis
Eric
Felix
Grant
James
Jasper
Jens
Joel
Levi
Linus
Lucas
Marcus
Marius
Matthias
Max
Neil
Nils
Oliver
Oscar
Peter
Reed
Thomas
Victor

As far as middle names for Anders go, I think Gray is great. I think a one-syllable name with a hard sound (that g) sounds good in that spot. Other names that fit this description are Brett, Craig, Drake, Frank, Grant, Jack, Kent, Mark and Paul.

Which of the above names do you like best? What other names would you suggest to Leigh?

Update: The baby has arrived! Scroll down for the name (or just click here).

Baby Born in Car Named After Singer Adele

Sonia Holgate of Essex, England, went into labor in February of 2008. She and her husband Craig drove to Queen’s Hospital in Romford, but didn’t make it past the parking lot–their baby girl was born in the back seat of the car, with the help of medical personnel. One of the medics noticed that “Chasing Pavements” by Adele [vid] was playing on the car radio, so he suggested that Sonia and Craig name their daughter Adele. And so they did.

What was the singer’s response?

That’s so lovely of them. I’m really flattered. I’d love to give them a hug.

Source: Adele of a birth for car baby

Boy Name Needed for Brother of Catherine and Luke

A reader named Rebecca has two children named Catherine (Cate) and Luke. Both of their names are family names. She says:

We are due with our third, a boy in November and I just can’t think of anything I like that doesn’t sound out of place with those two names.

She’d appreciate some name suggestions, and she’d also like some “recommendations on how to connect with a name.”

I thought that second request was really interesting. It seems to me that most parents who don’t like a name right away usually just need some time to adjust. But there isn’t a lot of time in this case, so here are two tricks that might work:

  • Use the name as if it’s already his name (in your head, so as not to confuse others). For instance, whenever you use the word “baby” in conversation, mentally replay the statement and replace “baby” with the name. See if you can force a perspective shift this way.
  • Look for meaningful associations. Sift through your personal history–favorite friends, teachers, neighbors, authors, artists, public figures–and keep and eye out for the name you’re considering. A positive personal association might help you see the name in a new light.

I can’t wait to see what others ideas people come up with.

Now for the suggestions. Rebecca mentioned that the names Graham, Douglas and William have been disqualified for various reasons, so those three are out. Catherine and Luke are classics, so that’s what I stuck with for the most part:

Adam
Adrian
Anthony
Benjamin
Calvin
Charles
Craig
David
Duncan
Finn
Gabriel
Grant
Gregory
Jeffrey
Joseph
Jude
Kenneth
Mark
Matthew
Nicholas
Noah
Patrick
Paul
Peter
Philip
Richard
Sebastian
Seth
Steven
Theodore
Thomas
Timothy
Vincent

I almost included Nathan, but Nate rhymes with Cate. That won’t work. We want a name, not a nursery rhyme. :)

Which of the above names do you like best for the brother of Cate and Luke? What other boy names would you suggest to Rebecca?

Baby Name Needed – Strong, Unusual Boy Name

Cassandra is expecting a baby boy in early June and she’d like some name suggestions.

She’s looking for “strong, unusual names” with one or two syllables. So far, Cassandra likes the name Fox and her partner prefers Aston. The baby’s surname will begin with an L and have one syllable. (Think Ladd.)

When I hear “strong,” I think of plosives (p, b, t, k, etc.). So I focused on short names with strong sounds that aren’t currently in the top 100. Here’s what I came up with:

Bennett
Brent
Brett
Brock
Cash
Chet
Clark
Colt
Corbin
Craig
Dane
Dax
Deacon
Drake
Duke
Emmett
Flint
Frank
Garrett
Grant
Gray
Holt
Jax
Jett
Kai
Keaton
King
Knox
Paxton
Pierce
Quinn
Rex
Rhett
Stone
Tate
Trent
Tucker
Victor
Zack
Zane

Which of the above do you like best? What other names would you suggest to Cassandra?

Update: The baby has arrived! Click here to see the name.