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

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Popularity of the Baby Name Justin

Number of Babies Named Justin

Born in the U.S. Since 1880

Posts that Mention the Name Justin

The Top Baby Names in Maryland in 2011?

Maryland’s Open Data website includes a single table of Maryland baby name rankings (2011) broken down by race/ethnic group. This is cool because New York City does the exact same breakdown, and we happen to have the equivalent NYC baby name rankings (2011). So we ought to be able to compare and contrast the two sets of rankings, right?

Yeah, that’s what I thought…until I started looking more closely at Maryland’s data.

According to the SSA, these were the top 10 boy names in Maryland in 2011:

  1. Mason
  2. Jacob
  3. Michael
  4. Ethan
  5. Ryan
  6. William
  7. Alexander
  8. Noah
  9. Daniel
  10. Aiden (tied for 10th)
  11. Jayden (tied for 10th)

But according to the state of Maryland, the top 10 boy names were quite different:

Rank OVERALL Asian &
Pacific Isl.
Black Hispanic White
1 Aiden Aiden Jaiden Christopher Lucas
2 Christopher Lucas Aiden Anthony Mason
3 Jayden Alexander Christopher John Jackson
4 Mason Muhammed Cameron Alexander Jacob
5 Lucas Ethan Elijah Daniel John
6 Jacob Nathan Jeremy Matthew Aiden
7 Alexander John Michael Brian Alexander
8 Nathan Andrew Isaiah Justin Liam
9 Michael Justin Mason Jaiden William
10 Ethan Jacob Caleb Kevin Ryan

It isn’t totally implausible that Aiden and Jayden might have ranked 1st and 3rd in 2011, but Christopher in 2nd? Maybe if this were a dataset from thirty years ago, but not five years ago. The SSA indicates that Christopher ranked closer to 18th in the state that year.

And what’s with the two different spellings of Jayden/Jaiden?

Plus there are some sizable raw number discrepancies, such as:

  • Aiden: 588 babies (MD data) vs. 281 babies (SSA data for MD)
  • Christopher: 584 babies (MD data) vs. 256 babies (SSA data for MD)
  • Jayden: 498 babies (MD data) vs. 281 babies (SSA data for MD)
  • Mason: 463 babies (MD data) vs. 432 babies (SSA data for MD)

And now the girl names. According to the SSA, these were the top 10 girl names in Maryland in 2011:

  1. Sophia
  2. Olivia
  3. Isabella
  4. Madison
  5. Ava
  6. Emma
  7. Abigail
  8. Chloe
  9. Emily
  10. Elizabeth

According to the state of Maryland, though, the top 10 girl names in the state were these:

Rank OVERALL Asian &
Pacific Isl.
Black Hispanic White
1 Sophia Sophia Chloe Sophia Sophia
2 Isabel Chloe London Emily Isabel
3 Chloe Isabel Layla Allison Abigail
4 Ava Caitlin/Kate Madison Isabel Olivia
5 Madison Hannah Kennedy Ashley Ava
6 Olivia Olivia Aaliyah Angelina Riley
7 Emily Sara(h) McKenzie Natalie Madison
8 McKenzie Abigail Zoe(y) Genesis Emily
9 Abigail Emily Payton Gabrielle McKenzie
10 Riley Lillian/Lily Taylor Kimberly Chloe

Not only does Isabel magically replace Isabella in the Maryland data, but McKenzie and Riley rank 8th and 10th — even though the SSA says they should be closer to 77th (!) and 28th.

Not to mention the raw number discrepancies, such as:

  • Sophia: 503 babies (MD data) vs. 367 babies (SSA data for MD)
  • McKenzie: 325 babies (MD data) vs. 71 babies (SSA data for MD)
  • Riley: 298 babies (MD data) vs. 118 babies (SSA data for MD)

Intriguing parallels between the MD data and the NYC data do exist. In both locations, Elijah and Isaiah were in the top 10 for African-American boys only, and London, Aaliyah, and Taylor were in the top 10 for African-American girls only.

But if we can’t trust the data, we can’t draw any meaningful conclusions.

Labels like “Caitlin/Kate,” “Sara(h),” “Zoe(y)” and “Lillian/Lily” suggest that variant names were combined here and there. I suspect this is also what happened with Isabel/Isabella, Sophia/Sofia, Aiden, Jayden, MacKenzie, Riley, and maybe even Christopher (perhaps Maryland merged all the “Chris-” names). What are your thoughts on this?


Popular Boy Names: Biblical vs. Non-Biblical

How has the ratio of Biblical names to non-Biblical names changed over time (if at all) among the most popular baby names in the U.S.?

This question popped into my head recently, so I thought I’d take a look at the data. We’ll do boy names today and girl names tomorrow.

First, let’s set some parameters. For these posts, “Biblical” names are personal names (belonging to either humans or archangels) mentioned in the Bible, plus all derivatives of these names, plus any other name with a specifically Biblical origin (e.g., Jordan, Sharon, Genesis). The “most popular” names are the top 20, and “over time” is the span of a century.

For boy names, the ratio of Biblical names to non-Biblical names has basically flipped over the last 100 years. Here’s a visual — Biblical names are in the yellow cells, non-Biblical names are in the green cells, and a borderline name (which I counted as non-Biblical) is in the orange cell:

Popular boy names: Biblical vs. non-Biblical, from Nancy's Baby Names.
Popular boy names over time: Biblical (yellow) vs. non-Biblical. Click to enlarge.
  • Biblical names: Adam, Alexander, Andrew, Austin (via Augustus), Benjamin, Daniel, David, Elijah, Ethan, Jack (via John), Jackson (via John), Jacob, James, Jason, John, Jonathan, Joseph, Joshua, Justin (via Justus), Lucas, Mark, Matthew, Michael, Nathan, Nicholas, Noah, Paul, Stephen, Steven, Thomas, Timothy, Zachary
  • Non-Biblical names: Aiden, Albert, Anthony, Arthur, Billy, Brandon, Brian, Charles, Christopher, Dennis, Donald, Dylan, Edward, Eric, Frank, Gary, George, Harold, Harry, Henry, Jayden, Jeffrey, Kenneth, Kevin, Larry, Liam, Logan, Louis, Mason, Raymond, Richard, Robert, Ronald, Ryan, Scott, Tyler, Walter, William
  • Borderline name: Jerry (can be based on the Biblical name Jeremy/Jeremiah or on the non-Biblical names Jerome, Gerald, Gerard)
    • It felt strange putting an overtly Christian name like Christopher in the non-Biblical category, but it doesn’t appear anywhere in the Bible, so…that’s where it goes.

      Here are the year-by-year tallies:

      Year Top 20 names
      given to…
      # Biblical # Non-Biblical
      1914 40% of baby boys 5 (25%) 15 (75%)
      1924 43% of baby boys 6 (30%) 14 (70%)
      1934 43% of baby boys 7 (35%) 13 (65%)
      1944 47% of baby boys 7 (35%) 13 (65%)
      1954 46% of baby boys 11 (55%) 9 (45%)
      1964 42% of baby boys 11 (55%) 9 (45%)
      1974 38% of baby boys 11 (55%) 9 (45%)
      1984 36% of baby boys 14 (70%) 6 (30%)
      1994 27% of baby boys 14 (70%) 6 (30%)
      2004 19% of baby boys 14 (70%) 6 (30%)
      2014 14% of baby boys 14 (70%) 6 (30%)

      But there’s a huge difference between sample sizes of 40% and 14%, so let’s also take a look at the 2014 top 100, which covers 42% of male births.

      By my count, last year’s top 100 boy names were half Biblical, half non-Biblical:

      Biblical names (49) Non-Biblical names (51)
      Noah, Jacob, Ethan, Michael, Alexander, James, Daniel, Elijah, Benjamin, Matthew, Jackson (via John), David, Lucas, Joseph, Andrew, Samuel, Gabriel, Joshua, John, Luke, Isaac, Caleb, Nathan, Jack (via John), Jonathan, Levi, Jaxon (via John), Julian (via Julius), Isaiah, Eli, Aaron, Thomas, Jordan, Jeremiah, Nicholas, Evan, Josiah, Austin (via Augustus), Jace (via Jason), Jason, Jose, Ian, Adam, Zachary, Jaxson (via John), Asher, Nathaniel, Justin (via Justus), Juan Liam, Mason, William, Logan, Aiden, Jayden, Anthony, Carter, Dylan, Christopher, Oliver, Henry, Sebastian, Owen, Ryan, Wyatt, Hunter, Christian, Landon, Charles, Connor, Cameron, Adrian, Gavin, Robert, Brayden, Grayson, Colton, Angel, Dominic, Kevin, Brandon, Tyler, Parker, Ayden, Chase, Hudson, Nolan, Easton, Blake, Cooper, Lincoln, Xavier, Bentley, Kayden, Carson, Brody, Ryder, Leo, Luis, Camden

      (Christian, Angel, Xavier, Dominic…all technically non-Biblical, despite having strong ties to Christianity.)

      50%-50% isn’t quite as extreme as 70%-30%, but it’s still noticeably more Biblical than 1914’s 25%-75%.

      Do any of these results surprise you?

Biggest Changes in Boy Name Popularity, 2014

Which boy names increased and decreased the most in popularity from 2013 to 2014?

Below are two versions of each list. My version looks at raw number differences and takes all 13,977 boy names on the 2014 list into account. The SSA’s version looks at ranking differences and covers the top 1,000 boy names (roughly).

Biggest Increases

Raw Numbers (Nancy’s list) Rankings (SSA’s list)
  1. Oliver, +2,116 babies (7,249 to 9,365)
  2. Sebastian, +1,707 (7,530 to 9,237)
  3. Logan, +1,256 (12,323 to 13,579)
  4. Carter, +1,044 (9,555 to 10,599)
  5. Grayson, +996 (5,536 to 6,532)
  6. Noah, +965 (18,179 to 19,144)
  7. Karter, +929 (1,174 to 2,103)
  8. Luke, +885 (9,546 to 10,431)
  9. James, +799 (13,502 to 14,301)
  10. Theodore, +778 (2,413 to 3,191)
  1. Bode, +645 spots (1,428th to 783rd)
  2. Axl, +624 (1,474th to 850th)
  3. Gannon, +426 (839th to 413th)
  4. Bodie, +333 (1,314th to 981st)
  5. Royal, +327 (900th to 573rd)
  6. Coen, +290 (1,188th to 898th)
  7. Anakin, +281 (1,238th to 957th)
  8. Killian, +250 (766th to 516th)
  9. Reyansh, +226 (1,221st to 995th)
  10. Ronin, +219 (773rd to 554th)

Here’s what the SSA says about the rise of Bode: “[It] might have had something to do with the Winter Olympics in early 2014, where Bode Miller continued his outstanding alpine skiing career by collecting his sixth Olympic medal.”

And on the rise of Axl: “[It’s] a nod to both rock legend Axl Rose of Guns N’ Roses and Axl Jack Duhamel, son of Stacy Ann “Fergie” Ferguson and Josh Duhamel.”

Biggest Decreases

Raw Numbers (Nancy’s list) Rankings (SSA’s list)
  1. Jayden, -1,834 babies (14,712 to 12,878)
  2. Jacob, -1,360 (18,072 to 16,712)
  3. Joshua, -997 (11,761 to 10,764)
  4. Christian, -905 (9,293 to 8,388)
  5. Brayden, -873 (7,412 to 6,539)
  6. Justin, -858 (4,849 to 3,991)
  7. Tyler, -833 (6,618 to 5,785)
  8. Jase, -826 (4,545 to 3,719)
  9. Ryan, -824 (9,850 to 9,026)
  10. Gavin, -820 (7,402 to 6,582)
  1. Bently, -289 spots (902nd to 1,191st)
  2. Damion, -262 (856th to 1,118th)
  3. Amare, -239 (601st to 840th)
  4. Isiah, -234 (824th to 1,058th)
  5. Xavi, -198 (930th to 1,128th)
  6. Sidney, -187 (958th to 1,145th)
  7. Deegan, -180 (961st to 1,141st)
  8. Jair, -174 (820th to 994th)
  9. Juelz, -165 (908th to 1,073rd)
  10. Corban, -156 (979th to 1,135th)

Jase, last year’s biggest raw number increase, is now 8th on the list of decreases. Mason, which topped the list of raw number increases two years in a row (2010 and 2011), is now 18th on the list of decreases. (It was 3rd in 2013.) And Jayden, the trendy name that shot up the charts to become the 4th most popular baby name in the nation in 2010 and 2011, has since fallen to 15th.

Finally, here are the big winners and losers from the last few years:

  • 2013: Jase/Jayceon (biggest increases) and Ethan/Austyn (biggest decreases)
  • 2012: Liam/Major (biggest increases) and Jacob/Braeden (biggest decreases)
  • 2011: Mason (biggest increase) and Jacob (biggest decrease)
  • 2010: Mason (biggest increase) and Joshua (biggest decrease)

Sources: Change in Popularity from 2013 to 2014, Noah and Emma Top Social Security’s List of Most Popular Baby Names for 2014

U.S. Baby Names 2014: Most Popular Names, Top Girl Name Debuts, Top Boy Name Debuts, Biggest Girl Name Changes, Biggest Boy Name Changes, Top First Letters, Top Lengths

Name Quotes for the Weekend #29

Here are some interesting snippets about names/naming to end the week…

From “Sandra Bernhard, rebellious as ever” (The Villager, 2006) by Jerry Tallmer:

Though Bernhard, rebellious as ever, says: “I can’t stand sitting in theater, it drives me insane,” and has time for movies “only on television…or in airplanes,” she did appropriate from Oscar Wilde’s “The Importance of Being Earnest” the name Cicely that graces Bernhard’s daughter born July 4, 1998, nine or so months after the flamethrowing actress/singer/faghag/friend of the famous said to herself one fine day: “Enough! Get real.”

From a “Names of boundless mirth” (Philippine Daily Inquirer, 2003) by Ambeth Ocampo (who is quoting a reader who e-mailed him this story):

“I was once a MedTech intern assigned in a rural Cebu town. Back then it was common to encounter names of kids such as ‘Tom Cruise Duhaylungsod,’ ‘Jacky Chan Labadan,’ ‘Fernando Poe Capunay,’ etc. Certainly a vast improvement over those Spanish-era saintly names of old (mine included). You would think parents of those kids were diehard movie fanatics who wanted to append their idol’s screen names to their kids’. But once, while taking a blood sample from a baby girls with [a] profusely runny nose and ‘Phoebe Cates’ as a given name, I kidded the mother that she must be a Phoebe Cates fan. To which she replied that living in a rural barrio she seldom watched movies actually, not to mention that she could hardly afford it; she didn’t know it was a movie star’s name until much later. It was the midwife who attended to her when she gave birth to her baby who pinned a paper with that name on the baby’s lampin. Needless to say, she and her husband found it unique. So the name stuck. Go figure how many more babies that midwife christened with her own idols’ fancy names. The baby’s parents nevertheless were proud of it, mind you.”

From the BBC article “‘Unique’ Roman tombstone found in Cirencester“:

The tombstone was found near skeletal remains thought to belong to the person named on its inscription, making the discovery unique.

Archaeologists behind the dig in Cirencester, Gloucestershire, said they believed it marked the grave of a 27-year-old woman called Bodica.

[…]

Mr Holbrook has suggested the name Bodica was of Celtic origin.

“Perhaps Bodica is a local Gloucestershire girl who’s married an incoming Roman or Gaul from France and has adopted this very Roman way of death,” he said.

And that BBC article reminded me of this BBC article, “Queen Khentakawess III’s tomb found in Egypt“:

Archaeologists in Egypt have unearthed the tomb of a previously unknown queen, Egyptian officials say.

The tomb was found in Abu-Sir, south-west of Cairo, and is thought to belong to the wife or mother of Pharaoh Neferefre who ruled 4,500 years ago.

Egyptian Antiquities Minister Mamdouh el-Damaty said that her name, Khentakawess, had been found inscribed on a wall in the necropolis.

Mr Damaty added that this would make her Khentakawess III.

From “Why I Changed My Name and What It Taught Me About Who I Am” by Belle Beth Cooper:

My dad did feel a bit taken aback by it. Although he knew I was using my new name already, talking to him about the process of changing it legally was pretty tough. That conversation was a huge lesson for me in empathy and communication. My dad suggested I was changing my name out of anger towards my parents, almost in revenge or as a way to hurt them. That’s a pretty hard thing to hear from someone you love and respect, and it wasn’t easy to explain why I was changing my name and to convince him it was no reflection on my relationship with him or my mum at all.

From “Social change and the Fatima Index” by Justin Thomas in The National (and found via Clare’s Name News):

In spite of the great developments and massive social changes that have taken place across the UAE over the past few decades, the names Emirati families give to their babies has remained incredibly stable.

For more quote posts, check out the NBN name quotes category.

Biggest Changes in Boy Name Popularity, 2013

Which boy names increased/decreased the most in popularity from 2012 to 2013?

We just looked at the girl names, so now let’s check out the boy names.

Below are two versions of each list. My version looks at raw number differences and takes all 13,958 boy names on the 2013 list into account. The SSA’s version looks at ranking differences and covers roughly the top 1,000 boy names.

Biggest Increases

Raw Numbers (Nancy’s list) Rankings (SSA’s list)
  1. Jase, +3,410 babies (1,123 to 4,533)
  2. Jayceon, +1,658 (180 to 1,838)
  3. Jace, +1,649 (4,692 to 6,341)
  4. Oliver, +1,313 (5,896 to 7,209)
  5. Camden, +1,276 (2,592 to 3,868)
  6. Liam, +1,246 (16,756 to 18,002)
  7. Jaxon, +1,198 (6,281 to 7,479)
  8. Lincoln, +1,112 (2,898 to 4,010)
  9. Hunter, +890 (7,997 to 8,887)
  10. Silas, +882 (2,485 to 3,367)
  11. Noah, +815 (17,275 to 18,090)
  12. Ryker, +815 (1,647 to 2,462)
  13. Grayson, +805 (4,695 to 5,500)
  14. Lucas, +781 (10,670 to 11,451)
  15. Sebastian, +778 (6,717 to 7,495)
  16. Jaxson, +774 (3,644 to 4,418)
  17. Henry, +750 (8,052 to 8,802)
  18. Josiah, +748 (5,475 to 6,223)
  19. Jayce, +737 (1,906 to 2,643)
  20. Mateo, +715 (2,832 to 3,547)
  21. Easton, +680 (3,935 to 4,615)
  22. King, +656 (1,429 to 2,085)
  23. Ezra, +628 (2,080 to 2,708)
  24. Leo, +605 (2,868 to 3,473)
  25. Benjamin, +600 (12,773 to 13,373)
  1. Jayceon, +845 spots (1,051st to 206th)
  2. Milan, +650 (1,192nd to 542nd)
  3. Atlas, +614 (1,403rd to 789th)
  4. Jayse, +495 (1,469th to 974th)
  5. Duke, +429 (1,147th to 718th)
  6. Castiel, +418 (1,374th to 956th)
  7. Zayn, +410 (1,310th to 900th)
  8. Thiago, +374 (859th to 485th)
  9. Forrest, +340 (1,181st to 841st)
  10. Kyrie, +278 (868th to 590th)
  11. Lochlan, +263 (1,201st to 938th)
  12. Azariah, +247 (1,081st to 834th)
  13. Deacon, +232 (673rd to 441st)
  14. Gannon, +231 (1,074th to 843rd)
  15. Kalel, +222 (1,187th to 965th)
  16. Jase, +215 (304th to 89th)
  17. Harlan, +211 (1,067th to 856th)
  18. Jair, +199 (1,019th to 820th)
  19. Anson, +190 (1,158th to 968th)
  20. Magnus, +179 (1,137th to 958th)
  21. Enoch, +178 (1,014th to 836th)
  22. Harvey, +176 (792nd to 616th)
  23. Cassius, +172 (932nd to 760th)
  24. Stetson, +169 (1,119th to 950th)
  25. Yair, +162 (1,125th to 963rd)

Commenter Rita wrote up a great list of explanations for many of the above.

Josiah and Ryker were both featured in the regionally popular names post from a few months ago.

Biggest Decreases

Raw Numbers (Nancy’s list) Rankings (SSA’s list)
  1. Ethan, -1,494 babies (17,621 to 16,127)
  2. Jayden, -1,413 (16,069 to 14,656)
  3. Mason, -1,329 (18,920 to 17,591)
  4. Aiden, -1,313 (14,840 to 13,527)
  5. Ryan, -1,106 (10,914 to 9,808)
  6. Brayden, -1,099 (8,483 to 7,384)
  7. Christopher, -1,084 (11,849 to 10,765)
  8. Tyler, -1,084 (7,674 to 6,590)
  9. Justin, -1,040 (5,867 to 4,827)
  10. Jacob, -1,023 (18,999 to 17,976)
  11. Andrew, -998 (12,566 to 11,568)
  12. Anthony, -980 (13,144 to 12,164)
  13. Joshua, -907 (12,587 to 11,680)
  14. Gavin, -856 (8,235 to 7,379)
  15. Brandon, -834 (7,014 to 6,180)
  16. Jonathan, -833 (9,311 to 8,478)
  17. Evan, -806 (7,876 to 7,070)
  18. Nathan, -768 (10,388 to 9,620)
  19. Michael, -710 (16,076 to 15,366)
  20. Matthew, -691 (13,917 to 13,226)
  21. Angel, -679 (6,999 to 6,320)
  22. Jordan, -646 (7,774 to 7,128)
  23. Landon, -641 (9,320 to 8,679)
  24. Nicholas, -630 (7,708 to 7,078)
  25. Hayden, -588 (3,521 to 2,933)
  1. Austyn, -330 spots (899th to 1,229th)
  2. Masen, -299 (726th to 1,025th)
  3. Trevon, -287 (925th to 1,212th)
  4. Jaidyn, -276 (978th to 1,254th)
  5. Bently, -264 (638th to 902nd)
  6. Jarrett, -257 (991st to 1,248th)
  7. Brennen, -239 (765th to 1,004th)
  8. Devan, -211 (989th to 1,200th)
  9. Osvaldo, -204 (755th to 959th)
  10. Karsen, -203 (993rd to 1,196th)
  11. Jaeden, -189 (849th to 1,038th)
  12. Donte, -187 (912th to 1,099th)
  13. Brendon, -186 (801st to 987th)
  14. Yandel, -177 (976th to 1,153rd)
  15. Teagan, -171 (758th to 929th)
  16. Johann, -169 (942nd to 1,111th)
  17. Yehuda, -168 (900th to 1,068th)
  18. Jionni, -161 (869th to 1,030th)
  19. Trystan, -160 (975th to 1,135th)
  20. Kael, -155 (992nd to 1,147th)
  21. Giovanny, -155 (762nd to 917th)
  22. Camilo, -155 (839th to 994th)
  23. Braiden, -154 (605th to 759th
  24. Damari, -153 (874th to 1,027th)
  25. Aydan, -148 (702nd to 850th)

Eight -ayden names between both lists, eh?

And check out Mason — from the biggest winner in 2011 and 2010 to the 3rd-biggest loser in 2013. Fast to rise, fast to fall.

Winners/losers in years past:

  • 2012: Liam/Jacob, or Major/Braeden
  • 2011: Mason/Jacob
  • 2010: Mason/Joshua

Source: Change in Popularity from 2012 to 2013

U.S. Baby Names 2013: Most Popular Names, Top Girl Name Debuts, Top Boy Name Debuts, Biggest Girl Name Changes, Biggest Boy Name Changes, Top First Letters, Top Lengths, Top Girl Names by Letter, Top Boy Names by Letter, Top 1-Syllable Names