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

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Popularity of the Baby Name Elora

Number of Babies Named Elora

Born in the U.S. Since 1880

Posts that Mention the Name Elora

Sorsha & Elora: Baby Names from “Willow”

The baby name Sorsha debuted in the U.S. baby name data in 1989.

The movie Willow was released in May of 1988 — exactly 30 years ago this month. It didn’t do a thing for the baby name Willow, which hadn’t become trendy yet, but it did affect a couple of other character names: Sorsha and Elora.

Sorsha

The character Sorsha (played by Joanne Whalley) was the red-haired princess/soldier who was the daughter of the evil queen. She was also the love interest of Madmartigan (played by Val Kilmer). She started out as a bad guy, but changed sides mid-movie and was a good guy by the end.

The baby name Sorsha debuted in the U.S. data right on cue in 1989:

Year Usage of Sorsha Usage of Sorcha
1992 5 baby girls 5 baby girls
1991 5 baby girls 5 baby girls
1990 . 6 baby girls
1989 5 baby girls [debut] 5 baby girls [debut]
1988 . .
1987 . .

Curiously, parents opted for the spelling Sorcha as often as they opted for Sorsha. Why?

I couldn’t find any typos in contemporary sources — newspapers all used the more logical “Sorsha” — so my best guess is the baby name books.

Expectant parents wanting to know the definition of Sorsha would have instead encountered the Irish name Sorcha in those books. They would have learned the meaning (“bright”), but probably not the pronunciation, which is unfortunate because Sorcha isn’t pronounced SOR-sha. It’s more like SUR-kha. (Irish names that sound more like Sorsha include Saoirse, SEER-sha, or even the male name Seoirse, SHOR-sha.)

Elora

The character Elora Danan was the adorable read-haired baby at the center of the action. Her birthmark identified her as the one destined to depose Queen Bavmorda, so of course the queen wanted her found and destroyed. It was Willow’s job to deliver Elora Danan safely to those who would raise her.

The baby was given a good amount of screen time. Film critic Roger Ebert even complained about it: “One of the crucial problems…is that we see so much of this baby.”

As a result, the baby name Elora re-emerged in the data in 1988 and saw a distinct jump in usage in 1989/1990. The rise of Alora was even greater.

Year Usage of Elora Usage of Alora
1992 34 baby girls 72 baby girls
1991 63 baby girls 84 baby girls
1990 91 baby girls 108 baby girls
1989 87 baby girls 103 baby girls
1988 30 baby girls 11 baby girls
1987 . .

Many similar-sounding names (like Ellora) also got a boost, and several (like Alaura and Allora) appeared for the first time in the data in the late ’80s. And I spotted even more spelling variants when I did records searches.

Speaking of the records…they revealed (unsurprisingly?) that many of the babies with these various Elora-like first names also had Danan-like middles. “Danan” was the most common spelling, but another I saw repeatedly was “Dannon” — possibly influenced by the yogurt brand being advertised on TV during those years.

…What are your thoughts on the baby names Sorsha and Elora? Which one would you be more likely to use for a baby girl?

Sources: Willow (film) – Wikipedia, “Willow” Review by Roger Ebert


My 10 Favorite Uniquely ’80s Baby Names

80s baby names

Love baby names? Love the ’80s? Then you’ll love this list!

Out of the nearly 12,000 baby names that debuted on the charts from 1980 to 1989 (inclusive), here are 10 that are particularly symbolic of the ’80s.

All 10 are legit baby names straight from the SSA’s lists!

  1. MacGyver. The baby name MacGyver, inspired by TV character Angus MacGyver, debuted on the baby name charts in 1989.
  2. Rambo. The baby name Rambo, inspired by movie character John Rambo, debuted on the baby name charts in 1984.
  3. Cheetara. The baby name Cheetara, inspired by ThunderCats character Cheetara, debuted on the baby name charts in 1985.
  4. DeLorean. The baby name DeLorean, inspired by the car, debuted on the baby name charts in 1982.
  5. Cetera. The baby name Cetera, inspired by singer Peter Cetera, debuted on the baby name charts in 1987.
  6. Malcolmjamal. The baby name Malcolmjamal, inspired by Cosby Show actor Malcolm-Jamal Warner, debuted on the baby name charts in 1986.
  7. Atreyu. The baby name Atreyu, inspired by the NeverEnding Story character Atreyu, debuted on the baby name charts in 1985.
  8. Martika. The baby name Martika, inspired by singer Martika, debuted on the baby name charts in 1986.
  9. Luka. The baby name Luka, inspired by the song “Luka” by Suzanne Vega, debuted as a girl name on the baby name charts in 1987.
  10. Jareth. The baby name Jareth, inspired by the Labyrinth character Jareth, debuted on the baby name charts in 1986.

Runners-up: Axl, Enya, Jeanluc, Jordache, Roxette, Wrangler.

Do YOU have any favorite ’80s baby names?

P.S. Here are my 10 favorite uniquely ’70s and ’90s baby names.

Note: Updated in March of 2015.

Babies Named for California Getaways

Susie Albin-Najera and Rick Najera of California have three kids, each of whom is named for a location in California:

  1. Son Julian was named after Julian, California.
  2. Daughter Sonora was named for Sonora, California.
  3. Daughter Kennedy was named after the Kennedy Meadows resort.

“All our kids are named after places we love,” Albin-Najera said.

Other babies named after special locations include Aquinnah, Brighton, Elora and Georgian.

Source: Morris, Mike. “Couple names baby after Kennedy Meadows.” Union Democrat 29 Oct. 2007: A1+.

Baby Named Elora After Gorge in Ontario

I was reminded of this story when I saw the name Elora on yesterday’s list of baby girl names outside the top 1,000:

Several years ago, Elaine Yuen named her daughter Elora after the Elora Gorge in Ontario, Canada. She was mainly paying tribute to fond memories of hiking in the area, but also liked that Elora began with El- (like her name) and that it’s a “short form of Elnora, derived from Eleanor, which means light.”

[That last part is incorrect. The name of gorge comes from the name of a town, which comes from the name of a ship, which comes from the name of the Ellora Caves in India. So, no connection to Eleanor. Also (kind of a moot point now) Eleanor probably doesn’t mean “light,” though many sources claim that it does. It’s more likely to mean “the other Aenor.”]

In any case, Elora Gorge Conservation Area superintendent Dan Morden said that, as far as he knew, Elaine’s Elora was the first baby to be named after the gorge.

Sources:

  • Connon, John. The Early History of Elora, Ontario and Vicinity. Waterloo, ON: Wilfrid Laurier University Press, 1974.
  • Rushowy, Kristin. “Beautiful place, beautiful baby.” Toronto Star 26 July 2008.

Baby Girl Names Outside of the Top 1,000

[UPDATE: Check out the Popular Baby Names page to see lists of the top 2,000 since 2000!]

The top 1,000 baby girl names of 2009 can be found at the SSA website. But what about all the other names that were doled out last year? Those names are also available via the SSA I recently discovered (thanks Kelly!).

Just a few hours ago I posted a list of boy names that didn’t make the top 1,000 last year, but were still given to 100+ babies. Here is the equivalent (and much longer) list of girl names, grouped by the number of babies that received each name:

  • 263: Nyasia*
  • 262: Alayah, Areli, Bree, Essence
  • 261: Abigayle, Nathalia, Pearl
  • 260: Emersyn
  • 259: Amaris, Ashanti, Winter
  • 258: none
  • 257: Donna
  • 256: Carleigh, Kristin, Roxanne
  • 255: Gina, Kyndall, Marin, Tegan
  • 254: Dalilah, Dania
  • 253: Keily, Rhianna
  • 252: Emory, Krista, Willa
  • 251: none
  • 250: Braelynn
  • 249: Ashtyn, Bryleigh, Gracelynn, Kaley, Leigha, Sawyer, Selina
  • 248: Braylee, Gillian, Kinsey, Lucero, Sky
  • 247: Desirae, Jackeline, Kaila, Kendyl, Shea
  • 246: Shyann
  • 245: Emmalyn, Kailynn, Naima
  • 244: Kianna, Zaniya
  • 243: Chasity, Kimber, Samiya, Zariyah
  • 242: none
  • 241: none
  • 240: Cierra, Shayna, Yamileth
  • 239: none
  • 238: Amalia, Jalynn, Jamiyah, Jolene, Karis, Leticia
  • 237: Ariah
  • 236: Charli, Laurel, Mae, Silvia, Treasure, Zuri
  • 235: Arya, Celine, Jana, Kaylah
  • 234: Adele, Adison, Gisele, Keeley, Samira
  • 233: Abbygail, Brittney, Chelsey, Farrah, Tyler
  • 232: Carrie, Galilea, Kai, Micaela
  • 231: Addie, Anabel, Esme, Johana, Kairi, Shirley
  • 230: Aleigha, Annette, Nova
  • 229: Maren
  • 228: Berenice, Lyra, Makaila, Sariyah
  • 227: Abrielle, Anais, Blair, Brookelynn, Delia, Izabelle, Rivka
  • 226: Anjali, Blake, Christiana, Monique
  • 225: Brandy, Giavanna, Joelle
  • 224: Aurelia, Joselin, Keila, Rocio, Sally
  • 223: Emme, Kalia, Raylee, Roxana
  • 222: Aubrianna, Deasia, Dorothy, Lesley, Makaylah, Suri
  • 221: Aditi, Estella, Iyanna, Noor
  • 220: Ashton, Destini, Kori, Susana
  • 219: Abrianna, Analise, Graciela, Kayli, Lianna, Rileigh
  • 218: Jersey, Noa
  • 217: Harlee, Jailyn, Kamiyah, Nariah, Sonya
  • 216: Karmen, Lilith
  • 215: Iyana, Kamora, Maddie, Sarina, Zahra
  • 214: Gracyn, Hailie, Laniya, Leilah, Shreya
  • 213: Elina, Nyah, Saanvi
  • 212: Aya, Colleen, Jamiya, Jemma, Kalyn, Violeta
  • 211: Dallas, Dani, Denisse, Malaysia, Yarely, Zainab
  • 210: Darlene, Rhea, Tayla, Tina
  • 209: Ananya, Arleth, Aubri, Blanca, Jazmyne, Kaidence, Margarita, Renata, Tatianna
  • 208: Addilyn, Adelina, Aniah, Evalyn, Luisa, Shaniyah, Tayler
  • 207: Julieta, Maiya, Melinda
  • 206: Ailyn, Aliah, Justine, Sofie, Toni
  • 205: Dalila, Maite, Tatyana
  • 204: none
  • 203: Ariyana, Bridgette, Brookelyn, Colette, Jaleah, Laniyah
  • 202: Annalee, Elissa, Elyssa, Lidia
  • 201: Geraldine, Jaclyn, Jazzlyn, Landry
  • 200: Gwyneth, Janie, Kathy, Litzy, Noelia, Rhiannon, Stevie
  • 199: Amyah, Brandi, Cloe, Hillary
  • 198: Bayleigh, Kya, Kyndal, Maylee, Promise
  • 197: Dayanna, Selene
  • 196: Analeigh, Anita, Candace, Kamille
  • 195: Annabell, Antonia, Astrid, Audriana, Kelis
  • 194: Katlyn, Kaycee, Lilyann, Maura
  • 193: Jessa, Lacy, Lillyan, Milana
  • 192: Arlene, Katy, Nelly
  • 191: Annaliese, Kamilah, Saylor
  • 190: Carsyn, Lacie, Maliya, Vivianna
  • 189: Annelise, Calista, Citlali, Estefania, Izabel, Journee, Sandy, Yvette
  • 188: Brissa, Kenia, Malak
  • 187: Bryana, Carli, Carson, Honesty, Kirra, Soleil, Stacey
  • 186: Greidys, Lizette
  • 185: Alize, Breana, Carol, Christian, Karleigh, Lillyanna, Makiyah, Meagan, Mercy, Milena
  • 184: Alaysia, Gwen, Jazlene, Laci, Lillyana, Natali, Nicolette, Samya
  • 183: Amayah, Amia, Fallon, Hunter, Yara
  • 182: Asha, Kensley
  • 181: Chiara, Estefany, Lilyan, Priscila
  • 180: Aanya, Amariah, Candice, Charleigh, Devin, Gizelle, Makiya, Nya
  • 179: Abygail, Anneliese, Audrianna, Celina, Ericka
  • 178: Alycia, Briella, Jaeda, Nikki, Noel, Romina
  • 177: Aida
  • 176: Adilene, Blakely, Caitlynn, Camden, Ivana, Jaedyn, Kacey, Trista
  • 175: Camdyn, Jordynn, Kaleah, Robyn, Samaya
  • 174: Ayden, Beatriz, Drew, Emani, Mayte, Robin, Yuridia
  • 173: Alanah, Caelyn, Cordelia, Isha, Makenzi, Vanesa, Wynter, Yaneli
  • 172: Alex, Dina, Fabiola, Jacklyn, Liv, Mariella
  • 171: Constance, Ebony, Kacie, Pyper, Xochitl
  • 170: Alessia, Bonnie, Harmoni, Nadine, Nichole, Peighton, Soraya
  • 169: Audra, Brea, Ellery, Elliot, Josselyn, Kalli, Marian, Sheila, Zaira
  • 168: Aubriana, Elliott, Geneva, Karolina, Marlen, Sahara, Sheyla
  • 167: Arden, Joana, Juniper, Malina
  • 166: Alli, Maylin
  • 165: Amerie, Emmaline, Marcella, Temperance, Yahaira
  • 164: Ariyah, Ayva, Ginger, Kailani, Kalani, Kalea, Lucinda, Melia, Tahlia
  • 163: Adela, Evangelina, Harlie, Kamiya, Preslee, Rita
  • 162: Reilly, Ryley, Shaelyn
  • 161: Cayleigh, Kelsi, Malayah, Nahla, Savana, Yolanda
  • 160: Adamaris, Berkley, Emerald, Ivette, Izzabella, Jackelyn, Joslynn, Katharine, Susanna
  • 159: Anaiah, Haidyn, Juana, Lela, Remi, Samaria, Sunny, Thea
  • 158: Adrian, Brylie, Dasia, Jaela, Leena, Lourdes, Malka, Neha, Tracy
  • 157: Alyse, Aviana, Flor, Jaya, Jazelle, Margot, Nalani, Rilee
  • 156: Alora, Cayden, Estelle, Heavenly, Janaya, Jasmyn
  • 155: Avianna, Elia, Kaci, Raya, Rosalyn
  • 154: Bryn, Lluvia, Miyah
  • 153: Aubry, Lanie, Shira
  • 152: Allyssa, Avani, Betsy, Jaycie, Kami, Shakira
  • 151: Alexys, Amberly, Ariyanna, Brianne, Cloey, Dianna, Estefani, Kenadie, Kloey, Lillyann, Sahana
  • 150: Antonella, Calli, Candy, Chastelyn, Kora, Kynlee
  • 149: Aundrea, Emmie, Katerina, Madysen, Sydnie
  • 148: Analy, Ema, Emalee, Katarina, Madisen, Mandy, Vivien
  • 147: Alexandrea, Anissa, Annaleigh, Betty, Carmella, Coral, Danae, Grecia, Jailynn, Jamiah, Lilli, Roxanna, Trisha
  • 146: Chelsie, Iman, Kaylani, Mika, Priya, Sloan, Tyra
  • 145: Avalon, Eleni, Mabel, Rosario, Taliah, Zahara
  • 144: Alianna, Bentley, Breonna, Ellison, Jaci, Katia, Nariyah, Shaila
  • 143: Alysa, Annmarie, Brynna, Desire, Elayna, Eryn, Jaquelin, Lupita, Roxy, Yaretzy
  • 142: Anisa, Charlene, Elisha, Gabriel, Gracey, Jalyn, Jenifer, Katalina, Tristan
  • 141: Annamarie, Clementine, Jenesis, Jorja, Mackenna, Maryn, Melani, Skylee, Starr, Xitlali
  • 140: Alysia, Ellianna, Jasleen, Leela, Lucie, Tanvi, Vianney
  • 139: Anayah, Caylin, Dariana, Gwenyth, Haily, Loren, Magnolia, Mylie, Rhyan, Star
  • 138: Ania, Beverly, Cailey, Capri, Harleigh, Jurnee, Kasandra, Kristine
  • 137: Anali, Janya, Jaslynn, Kameryn, Mariya, Mayah, Nailah, Yazmine
  • 136: Andi, Brionna, Carys, Elly, Emmerson, Faye, Felicia, Lamya, Linnea, Louisa, Mari, Maxine
  • 135: Andie, Arionna, Audrie, Azalea, Eunice, Holland, Katelin
  • 134: Brook, Darby, Emmalynn, Haiden, Jaime, Kalynn, Keren, Kyrie, Maryann, Rianna, Rosie, Triniti, Yessenia, Zaylee
  • 133: Alyssia, Daria, Emerie, Joseline, Kierstyn, Leann, Marcela, Mareli, Marli, Melisa, Vianey, Vienna, Wren
  • 132: Belle, Citlaly, Dior, Elana, Kaniyah, Kayle, Lexus, Lori, Maycee, Montserrat, Petra, Sabina
  • 131: Alea, Beatrix, Diane, Irelyn, Jacie, Jalissa, Janell, Khadija, Ria, Semaj, Stormy, Veda
  • 130: Aja, Aniston, Clover, Colbie, Dasha, Halie, Jackie, Kaniya, Markayla, Remy, Sylvie
  • 129: Alliyah, Evolet, Jael, Jayna, Layna, Leanne, Maricela, Taleah
  • 128: Ari, Cielo, Montana, Paislee, Randi, Simran, Yoselyn
  • 127: Ameera, Darcy, Delanie, Farah, Karime, Keegan
  • 126: Anushka, Ayah, Harmonie, Kalina, Kari, Keziah, Liza, Sade, Saniah, Yarel
  • 125: Anaiya, Austyn, Darla, Elora, Frankie, Jamia, Jayme, Jeanette, Norma, Vicky
  • 124: Brooklynne, Ellis, Julisa, Kamaria, Leilany, Lisbeth, Makaela, Makiah, Nellie, Rosalinda, Yvonne
  • 123: Adelle, Emmeline, Freya, Hattie, Ila, Jiselle, Kiya, Lynette, Milla, Sanjana, Saphira, Zoya
  • 122: Aysia, Baylie, Brynley, Cienna, Kaydance, Malena, Mariajose, Nayla, Tamya
  • 121: Adina, Adrianne, Akeelah, Cameryn, Christa, Jolee, Josslyn, Juanita, Olyvia, Shriya, Taylee
  • 120: Jacquelin, Kaiden, Lexy, Martina, Shianne, Sonja
  • 119: Alexi, Avril, Baileigh, Carrington, Coraline, Devon, Isadora, Issabella, Jalia, Jessenia, Kaylan, Taelyn, Xitlaly, Yulissa
  • 118: Ariela, Carter, Chloee, Halo, Kaelin, Mariel, Marjorie, Milani, Olga, Rachelle, Sahasra, Siri
  • 117: Aleksandra, Alyna, Aminah, Araya, Emmaleigh, Gladys, Ivory, Keara, Kenadee, Lyndsey, Makyla, Raniya, Shaylynn
  • 116: Amora, Antoinette, Chanelle, Christy, Gissel, Kristy, Mindy, Mylah
  • 115: Cailin, Carmela, Cate, Everly, Jaila, Jamaya, Jania, Kyara
  • 114: Ariadna, Della, Evalynn, Karyme, Kenadi, Kennadi, Maisie, Mazie, Raniyah, Shae, Yasmeen
  • 113: Brihanna, Jianna, Josalyn, Lexis, Madelin, Remington, Sapphire, Stefany, Viola
  • 112: Aiden, Ailani, Angely, Chyna, Davina, Jahzara, Jovie, Kadyn, Katheryn, Kaydee, Layne, Mayrin, Scarlette
  • 111: Aleyah, Blessing, Chloie, Hollie, Kaily, Kamdyn, Keyonna, Kiarra, Laela, Leeann, Yajaira
  • 110: Amarie, Ciera, Dawn, Egypt, Jazleen, Judy, Kameron, Misha, Rain
  • 109: Adria, August, Emi, Joanne, Magaly, Marion, Moira, Nala, Rania, Sana, Tristyn, Ysabella, Zaniah
  • 108: Addelyn, Addisen, Alonna, Analisa, Anessa, Angeles, Anyah, Arlette, Braylin, Cecily, Daniya, Emelyn, Kyah, Tallulah, Zaina
  • 107: Ani, Aubrielle, Dafne, Grayson, Kaidyn, Kaylei, Kimani, Maleigha, Octavia, Ramona, Reanna, Sania, Shay, Stefanie, Sydni, Yael
  • 106: Abbigale, Adisyn, Alessa, Avalyn, Calla, Casandra, Caylie, Georgina, Jaina, Jocelin, Keilani, Keylee, Kloie, Preslie, Sabine, Valencia
  • 105: Acacia, Adilyn, Ayesha, Daniyah, Irelynn, Italia, Jadelyn, Janeth, Khalia, Maryah, Nadya, Trinitee
  • 104: Adaline, Amaiya, Anayeli, Angelia, Chevelle, Cianna, Gianni, Joscelyn, Kahlan, Karely, Magdalene, Penny, Scout, Shoshana, Skylah, Whitley
  • 103: Anisha, Delila, Evan, Jesse, Lariah, Naya, Nyomi, Samarah, Samia, Sariya, Shamya, Taylin
  • 102: Audree, Aven, Flora, Jalyssa, Jena, Josey, Kaylene, Kenlee, Kennady, Misty
  • 101: Ahtziri, Ariadne, Baila, Cambree, Claira, Danya, Edna, Eternity, Honor, Jaydah, Kaileigh, Kellie, Laina, Sinai, Violette
  • 100: Allegra, Amaia, Annemarie, Arihanna, Arissa, Chase, Deisy, Dora, Dream, Ela, Elli, Elysia, Greydis, Janna, Louise, Maliha, Mallorie, Marlena, Shaina, Zaida

*Nyasia could have made the top 1,000. In fact, it should have made the top 1,000. It was given to 263 babies, just like the names that ranked 996th-1,000th (Gretchen, Karli, Kloe, Lilyanna and Mireya). But it came in last alphabetically, so in the eyes of the SSA it’s name #1,001. Sad, sad…