How popular is the baby name Grace 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 Grace.

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Popularity of the Baby Name Grace


Posts that Mention the Name Grace

Popular Baby Names in South Australia, 2020

According to the Government of South Australia, the most popular baby names in the state last year were Charlotte and Oliver.

Here are South Australia’s top 10 girl names and top 10 boy names of 2020:

Girl Names

  1. Charlotte, 118 baby girls
  2. Olivia, 103
  3. Amelia, 99
  4. Ava, 96
  5. Isla, 94
  6. Grace, 83
  7. Ella, 79
  8. Harper, 75
  9. Willow, 67
  10. Ivy, 66

Boy Names

  1. Oliver, 147 baby boys
  2. Henry, 116
  3. Noah, 107
  4. Leo, 106 (tie)
  5. William, 106 (tie)
  6. Charlie, 101
  7. Jack, 85
  8. Lucas, 80
  9. James, 78
  10. Elijah, 77

In the girls’ top 10, Ella and Harper replaced Sophie and Mia.

In the boys’ top 10, Lucas, James, and Elijah replaced Oscar, Harvey, and Mason.

In 2019, the top two names in SA were also Charlotte and Oliver.

Source: Popular Baby Names – Data.SA

Popular Baby Names in Western Australia, 2020

According to Western Australia’s Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages, the most popular baby names in Western Australia last year were Isla and Oliver.

Here are WA’s top 10 girl names and top 10 boy names of 2020:

Girl Names

  1. Isla, 176 baby girls
  2. Olivia, 165
  3. Mia, 160
  4. Charlotte, 149
  5. Ava, 138
  6. Amelia, 135
  7. Grace, 133
  8. Ella, 125
  9. Matilda, 123
  10. Isabella, 121

Boy Names

  1. Oliver, 221 baby boys
  2. Noah, 213
  3. Jack, 169
  4. Leo, 164
  5. Charlie, 150
  6. William, 146
  7. Lucas, 141
  8. James, 138
  9. Thomas, 136 (tie)
  10. Elijah, 136 (tie)

In the girls’ top 10, Matilda and Isabella replaced Harper and Lucy.

In the boys’ top 10, Elijah replaced Mason.

In 2019, the top two names were Olivia and Jack.

Sources: Popular Baby Names – DOJ – Govt of Western Australia, Isla and Oliver top choices for baby names in 2020

Popular Baby Names in Northern Ireland, 2020

According to the Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency (NISRA), the most popular baby names in Northern Ireland last year were Grace and James.

Here are the Northern Ireland’s top 10 girl names and top 10 boy names of 2020:

Girl Names

  1. Grace, 176 baby girls
  2. Emily, 146
  3. Isla, 144
  4. Fiadh, 138
  5. Olivia, 133
  6. Sophia, 125
  7. Sophie, 123
  8. Amelia, 115
  9. Lucy, 112
  10. Freya and Ella, 101 each (tie)

Boy Names

  1. James, 190 baby boys
  2. Jack, 175
  3. Noah, 174
  4. Charlie, 169
  5. Oliver, 134
  6. Thomas, 119
  7. Finn, 112 (tie)
  8. Theo, 112 (tie)
  9. Harry, 111 (tie)
  10. Cillian, 111 (tie)

In the girls’ top 10, Fiadh, Lucy and Freya replaced Anna and Evie.

In the boys’ top 10, Finn, Theo, and Cillian replaced Jacob, Daniel, and Alfie.

Now, Northern Ireland doesn’t technically release data on all baby names…but their downloadable tables do include two extra alphabetized sets of names below those that were given to 3 babies. My strong hunch is that these were the names given to 2 babies and 1 baby, respectively, and that the numbers/rankings were simply stripped out.

So, going with that theory, here are some of the names from the second alphabetized set (the names that I’m assuming were used just once in Northern Ireland last year):

Unique Girl NamesUnique Boy Names
Annagold, Butjilo, Castalia, Dhana, Elmamay, Fodla, Ghalia, Harrie, Jonatha, Krystal-Lake, Lorcagh, Madmazell, Nurvi, Ozde, Riabh, Sauleja, Taleen, Vespa, Wanda, ZilvaniaAdvencio, Alfadil, Boss, Cannis, Dualtagh, Elnino, Fhaolain, Gazza, Herkus, Jailandas, Kai-Bob, Liadhnan, Mitko, Nugmanali, Ocean-Gray, Rathlan, Sujoy, Togi, Vivaan, Weller, Zaslan

(I posted even more of Northern Ireland’s unique baby names over on Patreon.)

NISRA didn’t release the 2019 data during 2020, so I never wrote a post with the 2019 rankings. But I did post about the 2018 rankings, which were topped by Grace and James/Noah.

Next door in the Republic of Ireland, the top names of 2020 were Grace and Jack.

Source: Baby Names – NISRA

Where did the baby name Nedenia come from?

dina merrill, nedenia, baby name, 1960s
© 1960 Life

In 1960, the name Nedenia showed up in the U.S. baby name data for the first and only time:

  • 1962: unlisted
  • 1961: unlisted
  • 1960: 9 baby girls named Nedenia [debut]
  • 1959: unlisted
  • 1958: unlisted

Where did it come from?

Actress and socialite Dina Merrill, whose real name was Nedenia Hutton.

Often compared to Grace Kelly. Merrill was most famous in the late ’50s and early ’60s. In 1960 specifically, she could be seen in the movies The Sundowners and BUtterfield 8. (When Merrill appeared on the game show What’s My Line? in August of 1960, one of the panelists remarked: “I must say that Miss Merrill has had more publicity than I think any actress in America in the course of the last year.”)

I think a more precise explanation, though, is “She Has Too Much Money” — an article with an eye-catching title that ran in Parade (the nationally distributed Sunday newspaper magazine) in March of 1959. It primarily focused on Dina’s wealth, but divulged Dina’s full legal name at the time, Nedenia Hutton Rumbough, in the second paragraph.

Nedenia Hutton was born in 1923 to Post Cereals heiress Marjorie Merriweather Post and stockbroker Edward Francis Hutton. Her birth name was an elaboration of her father’s nickname, Ned. (Her stage surname, Merrill, was borrowed from another well-known stockbroker: Charles E. Merrill.)

Do you like the name Nedenia?

Sources:

P.S. Through her father’s family, Nedenia was related to Barbara Hutton, mother of Lance Reventlow.

Name Quotes #98: Judith, Xochitl, Rajaonina

From an article about famous people reclaiming their names in The Guardian:

Earlier this year, the BBC presenter formerly known as Ben Bland changed his surname to Boulos to celebrate his maternal Sudanese-Egyptian heritage.

[…]

The Bland name had masked important aspects of his identity that he had downplayed as a child, not wanting to be seen as in any way “different”, including his Coptic faith, Boulos said. “Every name tells a story – and I want mine to give a more complete picture of who I am.”

Boulos’s grandparents, who came to Britain in the 1920s, had chosen the surname Bland because they feared using the Jewish-Germanic family name “Blumenthal”. “They decided on the blandest name possible — literally — to ensure their survival,” he wrote.

(Two more quotes on name-reclaiming were in last month’s quote post.)

Actress Camila Mendes [vid] talking about her name on The Late Late Show With James Corden in 2017:

So my name is Camila Mendes, and there’s a singer called Camila Cabello, and a singer called Shawn Mendes. And people seem to think my Twitter is a fan account for that relationship.

From the book I Speak of the City: Mexico City at the Turn of the Twentieth Century (2015) by Mauricio Tenorio-Trillo:

Babies were baptized with new and strange names, particularly in the 1920s, names taken from the titles of various socialist experiments (for instance, in Tabasco with Garrido Canaval, who established socialist baptisms), and as a result of the emergence of the radio and the indigenist turn of the city’s language. Masiosare became a boy’s name (derived from a stanza of the national anthem: “Mas si osare un extraño enemigo…”), but also Alcazelser (after the popularity of Alka-Seltzer), Xochitl, Tenoch, Cuauhtémoc, Tonatihu (the biblically named Lázaro Cárdenas named his son Cuauhtémoc).

From a Good Morning America article about ’90s sitcom Saved by the Bell:

The names of characters came from people [executive producer Peter] Engel knew growing up.

“I knew a guy named Screech Washington. He was a producer. I said I’m not going to hire him, but I’m going to steal your name,” he said. “Slater was a kid who was in my son’s kindergarten class, Zack was named after my dear, dear friend, John DeLorean. […] His son’s name was Zack. Lisa Turtle was a girl I knew and Mr. Belding, Richard Belding, had been my cranky editor when I worked at Universal.”

From the book Cecil B. DeMille’s Hollywood (2004) by Robert S. Birchard:

DeMille interviewed Gloria Stuart for the part of the high school girl [in This Day and Age], Gay Merrick, and said she was “extremely enthusiastic,” and he also considered Paramount contract player Grace Bradley, but ultimately he selected a former model who called herself Mari Colman. In April 1933 Colman won a Paramount screen test in a New York beauty competition, and DeMille was apparently delighted by the innocent image she projected.

In a comic sequence in David O. Selznick’s 1937 production of A Star Is Born, the studio’s latest discovery, Esther Blodgett, is given a new name more in keeping with her status as a movie starlet. As This Day and Age was getting ready to roll, Mari Colman was subjected to the same treatment as DeMille and Paramount tested long lists of potential screen names. Among the suggestions were Betty Barnes, Doris Bruce, Alice Harper, Grace Gardner, Chloris Deane, and Marie Blaire. Colman herself suggested Pamela Drake or Erin Drake. On May 15, Jack Cooper wrote DeMille that he had tried several names on seventeen people. Eleven voted for the name Doris Manning; the other six held out for Doris Drake. Somehow, the name ultimately bestowed upon her was Judith Allen. DeMille and Paramount had high hopes for Allen, and she was even seen around town in the company of Gary Cooper, one of the studio’s biggest stars.

From an academic paper by Denis Regnier called “Naming and name changing in postcolonial Madagascar” (2016):

Nowadays, most names borne by individuals in Madagascar are a particular mix of foreign names (mainly Christian, French, or British but sometimes Muslim) and Malagasy names. This is because the spread of the Christian faith in the nineteenth century resulted in people increasingly giving names from the Bible to their children. These biblical names were often modified to follow the phonological and morphological rules of the Malagasy language (e.g., John becomes Jaonina or Jaona), and often the honorific particle Ra-, the word andriana (lord), or both were added to them (e.g., Rajaonina and Randrianarijaona). While at the beginning of Christian evangelization most people still had, in traditional Malagasy fashion, only one name, progressively the most common structure of names became “binomial,” as Gueunier calls it (Gueunier 2012, 197). In this case, a Christian name (or other foreign name) is often juxtaposed to a Malagasy name, although sometimes both names are of Malagasy origin or, more rarely, both names are foreign.

And let’s end with a related quote about Madagascar’s very long names:

Names were reduced in length when French colonization began in 1896 — the shortest names today include Rakotoarisoa, Rakotonirina, Andrianjafy or Andrianirina, and tend to have around 12 characters minimum.