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

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Popularity of the Baby Name Happy

Number of Babies Named Happy

Born in the U.S. Since 1880

Posts that Mention the Name Happy

“Jeopardy!” Baby Names: Alancia and Brannon

jeopardy, game show

Last week, Becca commented with some interesting Jeopardy! contestant names (e.g., Hobie, Dorcas) and mentioned J! Archive, which lists tens of thousands of Jeopardy! contestants going back to 1984, when the show premiered.

I skimmed through all the contestants from 1984 to 2015 (as we don’t have baby name data for 2016 yet) and spotted hundreds of unusual names. And it looks like at least two of them got a boost thanks to the show:

Alancia

The name Alancia was a one-hit wonder that popped up in 2000:

  • 2001: unlisted
  • 2000: 9 baby girls named Alancia [debut]
  • 1999: unlisted

One-time player Alancia Wynn, a family practice physician from Virginia, was on Jeopardy! in October of 1999.

Brannon

The name Brannon saw an increase in usage in 1998:

  • 1999: 118 baby boys named Brannon
  • 1998: 158 baby boys named Brannon
  • 1997: 113 baby boys named Brannon

One-time player Brannon Denning, a graduate student from Connecticut, was on Jeopardy! in September of 1998. (Looks like Brannon Denning is now a law professor at Samford University.)

Alaric & Ezgi …?

These two names may have gotten a slight boost as well, though it’s hard to tell.

  • Alaric, in 2005. One-time player Alaric Smith was on the show in October of 2005.
  • Ezgi, in 2015. One-time player Ezgi Ustundag was on the show in October of 2015.

Ezgi is a female name that means “melody” in Turkish.

Anjali (false positive)

“Kids Week” contestant Anjali Tripathi was on the show in September of 1999. The same year, the baby name Anjali more than doubled in usage:

  • 2001: 222 baby girls named Anjali
  • 2000: 230 baby girls named Anjali
  • 1999: 202 baby girls named Anjali
  • 1998: 93 baby girls named Anjali
  • 1997: 80 baby girls named Anjali

But this was a suspiciously steep rise. And it was accompanied by the debut of an alternate spelling (Anjalie). And usage didn’t drop back to normal levels the next year, as one would expect. These facts pointed me to something more high-profile than a Jeopardy! contestant.

Turns out the very successful Hindi coming-of-age romantic comedy Kuch Kuch Hota Hai had been released in 1998. The movie featured not one but two main characters named Anjali.

More names!

Here are the rest of the names that caught my eye, sorted by year:

  • 2015: Chandreyi, Dava-Leigh, Desta, Ezgi, Kynan, Mags, Praggya, Rook, Tiombi
  • 2014: Ben-Hur, Dinu, FeiFei, Gudrun, Ilissa, Kenesha, LaWanda, Leszek, Mariusz, Myfanwy, Osei, Shloka, Sirena
  • 2013: Arne, Berek, Diva, Kelton, Kinu, Nilai, Nishanth, Ramsin, Rhea, Salvo, Shuli, Sonrisa, Tahne, Twyla, Waymond, Xan, Yellowlees
  • 2012: Anshika, Benton, Bing, Deniz, Injee, Jessamine, Jia-Rui, Mithun, Pian, Shaanti,
    Vamsi, Vinayak
  • 2011: Bhibha, Boomie, Cosi, Gabor, Gitta, Idrees, Karawan, LuEllen, Milind, Raphie
  • 2010: Huat, Kemi, Marianthe, Raghuveer, Shaama, Surabhi
  • 2009: Ariella, Claxton, Cyn, Daphna, Drusha, Hayes, Henok, Jove, Lysette, Nirav, Ranjan, Seyi, Shyra, Tui (TOO-ee), Wright
  • 2008: Anurag, Babatope, Delano, Elza, Gilah, Kew, Murtaza, Naren, Srinivas, Vibin, Zia
  • 2007: Arlynda, Bethlehem, Clé, Haritha, Khoa, Kai-Ning, Kizzle, Lateefah, Lenzy, Marvene, Mehrun, Ssezi, Tigger, Toho, Tope
  • 2006: Dianisbeth, Iddoshe, Karmie, Lizard, Nemanja, Nissan, Oz, Ozgun, Papa, Pinki, Raena, Reda, Sioux, Tawney
  • 2005: Alaric, Corinth, Jayanth, Kem, Kingslea, LeeAundra, Ruchi, Ruvani, Vanamali
  • 2004: Denele, Kermin, M’Liss, Nithya
  • 2003: Alicen, Amasa, Eok, Freya, Nulty, Snowden, Vane
  • 2002: Anagha, Dileep, Gadi, Hikma, Jara, Kirik, Kunle, Manoj, Muzy (MYOO-zee), Omid, Quyen, Rafi, Seveen, Shasa, Tana, Umiko
  • 2001: Aki, Babu, Gosia, Marek, Mittie, Neha, Ulhas, Vinita
  • 2000: Akshai, Arrington, Celiane, Cinnamon, Iyesatu, Jeeks, Manx, Meri-Jane, Mitali, Sabin, Tarun
  • 1999: Ajuan, Alancia, Anjali, Chacko, Davine, Happy, Mihee, Seale, Wellington, Yancy, Yoni
  • 1998: Ardys, Brannon, Creswell, Kemp, Melizza, Sinan
  • 1998: Boze, Jolyn, Rokshana
  • 1997: Akiva, Atish, Breck, Brick, Davia, Girish, Mita, Murat, Pooja, Sahir, Tanis, Vartan, Zinie
  • 1996: Myretta, Rima, Ulf, Vandana
  • 1995: Albina
  • 1994: Graydon
  • 1993: Bronwyn, Ferris, Leif
  • 1991: India, Kareem
  • 1990: Ardwight, Avrom, Murdock, Peji
  • 1989: Darbi, Ouida
  • 1988: Blaze, Cigus, Doak, Scooter
  • 1987: JoFrannye
  • 1986: Chub, Zanete

Which of the above names do you like best?

P.S. Thanks again, Becca!


Andy Go To School

First there was Fussy Gotobed, now there’s Andy Go To School!

Andy Go To School, Indonesia

Indonesian police officer Andy Go To School was born on the island of Java. He’s the second of three boys.

The first boy arrived on the first day of 1979 and was named Happy New Year — a phrase his father had heard the English-speaking tourists using.

As a young boy, Happy New Year did not enjoy school. In fact, he’d often run away to avoid attending.

So when his brother was born in 1986, their father chose the name Andy Go To School, hoping that this second son would be a more diligent student than the first.

And we was one…though he frequently misbehaved. Perhaps because the other students often teased him, calling him “Andy Go To Hell.”

So when the third baby boy arrived in 1990, their father chose the name Rudi A Good Boy, hoping that this last son would be better behaved than the first two.

In his own family, Andy Go To School has continued the tradition of bestowing English words as names, calling his two sons Virgenio Silvero Goes To Paradise and Lucky Star Beloved Mother.

Sources: Kisah di Balik Pemberian Nama Happy New Year, Andy Go To School, dan Rudy A Good Boy, What’s in a name? Let’s ask Indonesian police officer Andy Go To School
Image: © Jawa Pos Group

Popular Baby Names in Quebec, 2015

According to data from Retraite Québec, the most popular baby names in Quebec in 2015 were Emma and Thomas/William (tied).

Here are the province’s top 10 girl names and top 10 boy names of 2015:

Girl Names Boy Names
1. Emma, 615 baby girls
2. Léa, 535
3. Olivia, 475
4. Alice, 471
5. Florence, 460
6. Zoe, 429
7. Chloe, 398
8. Beatrice, 390
9. Charlotte, 381
10. Rosalie, 350
1. Thomas, 754 baby boys
2. William, 754 baby boys
3. Jacob, 663
4. Liam, 661
5. Félix, 638
6. Nathan, 630
7. Samuel, 583
8. Logan, 576
9. Alexis, 554
10. Noah, 537

In 2015, Emma replaced Lea as the top girl name, William joined Thomas as the top boy name, Beatrice replaced Charlie in the girls’ top 10, and Noah replaced Olivier in the boy’s top 10. (Here are the 2014 rankings.)

[UPDATE, May 2017 – The Quebec rankings for 2015 have since been updated and it looks like William has pulled ahead of Thomas to become the sole #1 name.]

Of all 9,096 girl names on Quebec’s list in 2015, 74.5% of them were used a single time. Here are some of the unique girl names:

  • Allegresse – the French word allégresse means “joy, elation.”
  • Angelhephzibah
  • Brightness
  • Cathalaya-Skuessi
  • Clerilda
  • Confiance – the French word confiance means “confidence, trust.”
  • Doxalyah
  • Etky
  • Eubenice
  • Evlly
  • Exaucee – the French verb exaucer means “to grant a wish.”
  • Flory Comfort
  • Garance – the French word garance refers to a shade of red created from the root of the madder plant.
  • Glad Marie
  • Glody
  • Graytchelle Mayssa – a Gretchen + Rachel smoosh?
  • Greasy-Elizabeth
  • Happy Moussoni
  • Janiphee
  • Kalliah
  • Kzy
  • Luneve – reminds me of Leneve.
  • M Mah Bourgeois
  • Mingolou Oracle-Kidj
  • Nebraska
  • Nina-Symone
  • Nomad
  • Paphaelle – typo?
  • Poema
  • Praise Peter
  • Protegee
  • Relilah – typo?
  • Shamash-Cleodaine
  • Skodrina
  • Symphony Melody
  • Uqittuk
  • Uri Wonder
  • Winola – this one reminds me of early 20th-century America.
  • Zoalie
  • Zhya

Of all 7,920 boy names on Quebec’s list in 2015, 76.5% of them were bestowed just once. Here are some of the unique boy names:

  • Anakyn
  • Appamatta – the Pali word appamatta means “diligent, careful.”
  • Aunix
  • Axeliam
  • Bleart
  • Bradley Prague
  • Brady Bullet – this one reminds me of modern America (e.g. Shooter, Trigger).
  • Cedrick Wolynsky
  • Chrysolithe – a type of gem (a.k.a. peridot).
  • Cirrus
  • Dejgaard
  • Diamond-Heliodor – two more gems.
  • Drake Luke
  • Dublin
  • Dugaillekens
  • Elliottt – the only triple T’s in the U.S. data so far are Mattthew and Britttany. Probably typos, but you never know.
  • Eviee
  • Exauce – the masculine form of Exaucee.
  • Ezzeldeen
  • Garnet – another gem.
  • Glovacky
  • Gningnery Yoshua
  • Hervenslaire
  • Icky Neymar
  • Iola Stevie
  • Jimmy Johnny
  • Jyceton
  • Jyfr
  • Kbees
  • Keylord
  • Ludo-Vyck
  • Mathis-Adorable
  • Messy
  • Michael Antares – reminds me of an earlier Antares.
  • Napesis – the Cree word napesis means “boy” or “little boy.”
  • Nyquist
  • Perlcy
  • Rowdy Chance
  • Skogen
  • Sosereyvatanack
  • Tysaiah Jay
  • Whidjley Densly
  • Woobs Therly
  • Zogan

For more sets of rankings, check out the name rankings category.

Source: Retraite Québec – List of Baby Names

It’s Christmas, so…Happy Thanksgiving!

I didn’t see this in time to post it on Thanksgiving, so I’ll post it on Christmas instead.

A month ago, Richard Chin of the Pioneer Press interviewed Minnesotans with holiday-inspired names. Most of the names were Christmas-related (Christmas Eve, Mary Christmas, Merry Eve) but the one that caught my eye was Happy Thanksgiving.

How did Dr. Happy Thanksgiving Reynolds, a Minneapolis woman born in 1970, come by her unusual name?

“I was the child of hippies,” Reynolds said. And not just the occasional bell-bottom, bead-wearing hippies, according to Reynolds. They were a hard-core, tofu-making, co-op founding couple who didn’t have a name picked out for their new baby because they believed in letting the universe help choose the name on the day of her birth.

“It was total universe magic time for them,” Reynolds said.

So when the day happened to be Thanksgiving, the universe seemed to be deciding that Reynolds’ first and middle names should be Happy Thanksgiving. The first snowfall of the season also occurred that day, Reynolds said.

“I narrowly missed the name Snow,” she said.

How does Happy Thanksgiving like her name?

Reynolds said her name has been an “unintentional gift.”

She isn’t shy about using her full name in her professional life. After medical school, “I said, ‘You know what, I’m Dr. Happy Thanksgiving Reynolds.’ That’s just who I am.”

She’s gotten job interviews because people want to meet someone named Happy Thanksgiving. “I’m someone you’re not going to forget based on the name,” she said.

I’ve found other people named Thanksgiving — one went by the cute nickname Givie — but Reynolds is the only Happy Thanksgiving I know of.

If you want some holiday-themed names more appropriate for this time of year, check out these posts from last year: Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, Merry Christmas, Christmas Carol, Christmas Tree, Happy New Year.

Source: Her name is Happy Thanksgiving, and she’s not the only one with a holiday handle (via Neatorama)

Holiday Baby Name: Happy New Year

fireworks

Happy New Year, everyone!

Time for the first post of 2013.

And my question is: Have any babies ever been named after the New Year?

The answer is yes.

Most notably, at least seven people have been named Happy New Year:

  • Happy Newyear Boor, female, born in 1926 in Pennsylvania
  • Happy New Year Dennis, female, born in 1920 in South Africa
  • Happy New Year Grierson, born in 1896 in Oregon
  • Happy New Year Kauakahi, female, born circa 1906 in Hawaii
  • Happy New Year Kapahu, male, born circa 1907 in Hawaii
  • Happy Newyear Kerwenzee, female, born 1877 in Ontario
  • Happy New Year Ribs, male, born circa 1912 in South Dakota

Several hundred others have simply been named New Year.

The earliest examples I’ve seen come from the 1600s:

  • Newyear Dale, male, baptized on January 6, 1675, in York, England.
  • Newyear Harrison, male, baptized on January 2, 1687, in York, England.
  • New Year Carlile, female, baptized on January 12, 1690, in Cumberland, England
  • New Years Mitchinson, male, baptized on December 31, 1691, in Cumberland, England
  • New Year Ireland, male, baptized on February 5, 1694, in York, England

Here are three more from the 1700s:

  • New Year Dowthwait, male, baptized on January 1, 1731 in York, England
  • New Year Prudget, male, baptized on January 15, 1737, in Suffolk, England
  • Hannah New Year Chamberlain, female, baptized on January 7, 1759 in Northampton, England

And three more from the 1800s:

  • William New Year Sadler, male, baptized on January 2, 1819, in Norfolk, England. Here he is in the Norfolk parish register:
    William New Year Sadler
  • Frances New Year Tobin, female, born on December 31, 1872, in Minneapolis, Minnesota
  • New Year Bowman, female, born on January 1, 1881, in Ontario, Canada

And three more in the 1900s:

  • Columbus New Year Clanton, male, born on January 1, 1900, in Alabama
  • Curtis New Year Cooper, male, born on January 1, 1905, in Texas
  • New Year Bell Sunday, female, born on January 1, 1912
  • New Year Mahu, male, born circa 1916 in Hawaii

The most recent New Year I’ve spotted was born in Micronesia in 2002. (The most recent U.S. New Year I’ve seen was born in 1930.)

More holiday baby names: Christmas Eve, Merry Christmas, Christmas Day, Christmas Carol, Christmas Tree