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

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Popularity of the Baby Name Lucy

Number of Babies Named Lucy

Born in the U.S. Since 1880

Posts that Mention the Name Lucy

Popular Baby Names in Northern Ireland, 2016

According to data released on April 27 by the Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency (NISRA), the most popular baby names in Northern Ireland in 2016 were Emily and James.

Here are the Northern Ireland’s top 10 girl names and top 10 boy names of 2016:

Girl Names
1. Emily, 237 baby girls
2. Grace, 198
3. Olivia, 191
4. Anna, 164
5. Sophie, 155
6. Lily, 151
7. Amelia, 150
8. Ella, 142
9. Ava, 136
10. Sophia, 135

Boy Names
1. James, 254 baby boys
2. Jack, 243
3. Oliver, 207
4. Charlie, 204
5. Noah, 201
6. Harry, 188
7. Jacob, 173
8. Daniel, 159
9. Matthew, 142
10. Alfie, 139

In the the girls’ top ten, Lily and Sophia replace Aoife and Lucy. In the boys’ top ten, Jacob and Alfie replace Thomas and Jake.

The top names in 2015 were also Emily and James.

Source: Baby Names – NISRA


Early Recognition of the “Great-Grandparent Rule”

grandmotherA baby name becomes trendy for one generation. For the next two generations, while those initial babies are parent-aged and grandparent-aged, you can expect the name to go out of style. But during the third generation, once the cohort reaches great-grandparent age, the name is free to come back into fashion.

Evelyn is a name with a usage pattern that fits this description well.

I’ve seen it described elsewhere as the 100-Year Rule, but I prefer to call it the Great-Grandparent Rule, as it makes more sense to me to frame it in terms of generations.

Essentially, the pattern has to do with a name’s main generational association shifting from “a name that belongs to real-life old people” to “a name that sounds pleasantly old-fashioned.”

I used to think the pattern was one we’d only recently discovered — something we needed the data to see — but it turns out that at least one observant person noticed this trend and wrote about it in The San Francisco Call more than 100 years ago (boldface mine):

Time was — and that not very long ago — when old fashioned names, as old fashioned furniture, crockery and hand embroideries, were declared out of date. The progress of the ages that replaced the slower work of hand by the speed of machines cast a blight on everything that betokened age.

Spinning wheels were stowed away in attics, grandmothers’ gowns were tucked into cedar chests, old porcelain of plain design was replaced by more gaudy utensils and machine made and embroidered dresses and lingerie lined the closets where formerly only handwork was hung.

So with given names. Mary, Elizabeth, Jane, Sarah, Hannah and Anne, one and all, were declared old fashioned and were relegated to past ages to be succeeded by Gladys, Helen, Delphine, Gwendolyn, Geraldine and Lillian and a host of other more showy appellations.

Two generations of these, and woman exercised her time honored privilege and changed her mind.

She woke suddenly to the value of history, hustled from their hiding places the ancient robes and furnishings that were her insignia of culture, discarded the work of the modern machine for the finer output of her own fair hands, and, as a finishing touch, christened her children after their great-grandparents.

Old fashioned names revived with fervor and those once despised are now termed quaint and pretty and “quite the style, my dear.”

Pretty cool that this every-third-generation pattern was already an observable phenomenon three generations ago.

The article went on to list society babies with names like Barbara, Betsy, Bridget, Dorcas (“decidedly Puritan”), Dorothea, Frances, Henrietta, Jane, Josephine, Lucy, Margaret, Mary, Olivia, and Sarah (“much in vogue a century ago”).

Have you see the 100-Year Rule/Great-Grandparent Rule at play in your own family tree? If so, what was the name and what were the birth years?

Source: “Society” [Editorial]. San Francisco Call 17 Aug. 1913: 19.
Image: Frances Marie via Morguefile

Top Dog and Cat Names in San Diego, 2016

dog, catIn August of 2016, the San Diego County Department of Animal Services (SDDAC) released lists of the most popular names for licensed dogs and licensed cats in the region.

The top ten dog names were…

1. Bella
2. Max
3. Buddy
4. Lucy
5. Daisy
6. Charlie
7. Molly
8. Bailey
9. Roxy
10. Lola

Bella was also #1 on the 2015 list. In the top 10, Lola replaced Maggie. Just outside the top 10 were Rocky, Coco, Maggie, Sadie and Jack.

And the top ten cat names were…

1. Kitty
2. Tiger
3. Smokey
4. Baby
5. Princess
6. Tigger
7. Shadow
8. Lucy
9. Max
10. Missy

The rather unimaginative “Kitty” was also the top pick in 2015. Princess and Missy replaced Sassy and Cleo in the top 10. Just outside the top 10 were Oreo, Charlie, Blackie, Midnight and Bella.

Here are San Diego’s top baby names for 2016, if you’d like to throw in yet another species.

Sources: Top Dog Names in San Diego County, Top Cat Names in San Diego County

Popular Baby Names in Scotland, 2016

According to provisional data released yesterday by National Records of Scotland (NRS), the most popular baby names in the country in 2016 were Olivia and Jack.

Here are Scotland’s projected top 10 girl names and top 10 boy names of 2016:

Girl Names
1. Olivia, 492 baby girls
2. Emily, 490
3. Sophie, 392
4. Isla, 367
5. Ava, 343
6. Amelia, 323
7. Jessica, 294
8. Ella, 268
9. Lucy, 264
10. Charlotte, 250

Boy Names
1. Jack, 465 baby boys
2. James, 402
3. Oliver, 368
4. Lewis, 301
5. Logan, 288
6. Harry, 284
7. Noah, 283
8. Leo, 282
9. Charlie, 280
10. Alexander, 279

On the girls’ list, Olivia replaces Emily as the #1 name and Charlotte knocks Lily out of the top 10.

On the boys’ list, Jack retains the top spot and Harry, Noah, and Leo take the place of Lucas, Harris and Daniel in the top 10.

But this data only covers the first eleven months (or so) of the year; the finalized data will be out in mid-March. (Here’s the finalized data for 2015.)

Finally, have you ever wanted to see a list of Scottish island names that have been used as baby names (pdf)? The NRS has got you covered! Their clever infographic mentions Arran, Coll, Eriskay (which reminds me of Easkey), Gigha, Harris, Iona, Islay (pronounced EYE‑lah), Jura, Kerrera, Lewis, Skye, Tiree, and Uist (pronounced YOU‑ist).

baby name, island name, scotland, islay, isla
Popularity of the name Islay in Scotland

Which island name do you like best for a human baby?

Sources: Olivia and Jack are Scotland’s top baby names, Top Scottish baby names for 2016 revealed

Top Dog Names in New York City, 2015

yorkshire terrier, dog names NYC
Gucci? Chanel?
According to the New York City Department of Health, Bella and Max were the most popular names for licensed dogs* in New York City in 2015.

Here are NYC’s top female dog names:

  1. Bella (…vs. 69th for baby girls in NY state, 2015)
  2. Lola (…267th)
  3. Lucy (…88th)
  4. Daisy (…271st)
  5. Coco
  6. Princess
  7. Molly (…128th)
  8. Chloe (…14th)
  9. Luna (…129th)
  10. Sophie (…77th)

And here are NYC’s top male dog names:

  1. Max (…vs. 85th for baby boys in NY state, 2015)
  2. Rocky
  3. Charlie (…236th)
  4. Buddy
  5. Lucky
  6. Teddy
  7. Toby (…760th)
  8. Jack (…23rd)
  9. Oliver (…32nd)
  10. Milo (…270th)

Uniquely popular names by breed include Snoopy for beagles, Tyson for boxers, Lulu for French bulldogs, Chico for chihuahuas, Frank for dachshunds, Dolly for poodles, Mugsy for pugs, Snow for Siberian huskies, and Chanel and Gucci for Yorkshire terriers.

On this map of unique dog names by neighborhood I see Baci (bah-chee, Italian for “kisses”), Boomer, Brutus, Frankie, Katie, Mochi, Ollie, Penelope, and Taz.

For less common NYC dog names, check out the dog names by frequency of occurrence page. Mousing over the bubbles I see 4 Tictacs, 3 Zombies, 2 Orbits, and 1 Chopstick.

Sources: Health Department Announces 2015’s Most Popular Dog Names, And the most popular dog name in New York is…

*The 84,000+ licensed dogs represent about 20% of all the dogs in NYC.