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

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Popularity of the Baby Name Maureen

Number of Babies Named Maureen

Born in the U.S. Since 1880

Posts that Mention the Name Maureen

The Trio in Rio – Leila, Liina, Lily

Next Sunday in Rio de Janeiro, 30-year-old identical (and alliterative) triplets Leila, Liina, and Lily Luik of Estonia are expected to run the women’s marathon. This will make the “Trio in Rio,” as they call themselves, the first set of triplets to compete in an Olympics.

In comparison, about 200 sets of twins have competed in the Olympics over the years. Here are some of the Olympic twins with similarly alliterative names:

  • Åke & Arne (Sweden) [not technically alliterative; see JJ’s comment]
  • Catarina & Christina (Sweden)
  • Darius & Donatas (Lithuania)
  • Darrin & Dan (USA)
  • Dennis & Duane (USA)
  • Dionísio & Domingos (Portugal)
  • Jean-Jacques & Jean-Marc (France)
  • Jodie & Julie (Canada)
  • Jules & Julian (Belgium)
  • Katalin & Krisztina (Hungary)
  • Katrine & Kristine (Norway)
  • Lívia & Lucia (Slovakia)
  • Madeline & Margaret (Puerto Rico)
  • Marianne & Mildred (Netherlands)
  • Sandy & Sonia (Zimbabwe)
  • Malcolm “Mal” & Melville “Mel” (Jamaica)
  • Mark & Michael (Canada)
  • Maureen & Melanie (Netherlands)
  • McJoe & McWilliams (Puerto Rico)
  • Mikuláš & Miloslav (Slovakia)
  • Pascal & Patrick (France)
  • Paula & Peta (Bermuda)
  • Paulo Miguel & Pedro Miguel (Portugal)
  • Pavol & Peter (Slovakia)
  • Randolph & Robert (USA)
  • Rhoda & Rhona (Canada)
  • Ricardo & Rodrigo (Chile)
  • Sharon & Shirley (Canada)
  • Stanley & Sydney (Great Britain)
  • Tami & Toni (USA)
  • Terry & Tom (USA)
  • Valeriy & Volodymyr (Ukraine)
  • Valj & Vita (Ukraine)
  • Veronika & Viktoriya (Belarus)
  • Vida & Vidette (South Africa)
  • Zlatko & Zoran (Yugoslavia)

You can see a full list of Olympic twins in the OlympStats post Twins at the Olympics.

Have you been tuning in to the Olympics? If so, have you spotted any interesting names so far?


First C-Section Quads Get Rhyming Names, Mostly

A set of quadruplets was delivered via Caesarean section for the first time ever on November 1, 1944. The quads — 3 girls and 1 boy — were born to Kathleen and Joseph Cirmnello of Philadelphia. TIME magazine noted several weeks later that the quadruple C-section was “a feat unique in medical history.”

The foursome had been known as A, B, C and D. However, Cirminello named the boy Michael on Saturday and the mother picked Kathleen for girl B’s name. The other two Monday were named Maureen and Eileen.

Kathleen, Maureen, Eileen, and…Michael. Do you think Michael ever felt left out because his name didn’t rhyme with his sisters’ names?

(Another rhyming sibset: Don Ameche’s Rhyming Children.)

Sources:

  • “Medicine: Quadruple Caesarean.” TIME Nov. 13, 1944.
  • “Cirminello Quads Named; Father Goes Back to Work.” Miami News Nov. 6, 1944: 2-A.

Popular Baby Names in Northern Ireland, 2014

According to data from the Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency (NISRA), the most popular baby names in Northern Ireland in 2014 were Emily and Jack.

Here are NI’s top 10 girl names and top 10 boy names of 2014:

Girl Names Boy Names
1. Emily, 261 baby girls
2. Grace, 189
3. Sophie, 180
4. Amelia, 175
5. Ella, 172
6. Olivia, 152
7. Anna, 150
8. Lucy, 149
9. Sophia, 148
10. Eva, 146
1. Jack, 285 baby boys
2. James, 276
3. Daniel, 236
4. Charlie, 224
5. Harry, 193
6. Noah, 190
7. Oliver, 155
8. Ethan, 153
9. Jacob, 148
10. Thomas, 147

Olivia and Eva replace Aoife and Jessica in the girls’ top 10.

Thomas replaces Matthew in the boys’ top 10.

Two names that made big jumps into the top 100 were Kian (171st to 78th) and Aria (218th to 89th).

Finally, here are some of the unusual names that were given to only 1 or 2 babies in Northern Ireland last year:

Girl Names Boy Names
Aoifrie, Cobhlaith, Cuisle, Deirbhile, Enfys, Ermioni, Ezraelle, Flossie-Bo, Ionagh, Ionela, Labhaoise, Loveday, Maoiliosa, Maureen-Nevaeh, Narbflaith, Rimgaile, Saorfhlaith, Saylor-Doll, Tsz, Vogue, Zinifer Aodh, Benji-Beau, Caoilte, Cavani, Connlaoth, Davog, Dualta, Epaphroditus, Feidhlim, Goldberg, Grantas, Jecstonio, Jeef, Kal-El, Laochra, Laoghaire, Mjtba, Peanut, Seachlann, Stanex, Theo-Thaddeus, Tucgan

Earlier rankings for Northern Ireland: 2013, 2012, 2007, 2006.

Sources: NISRA – Demography, Most popular NI baby names for 2014 are Jack and Emily

Maureen and Mavourneen – Too Close for Twin Names?

Maureen O’Connor, former San Diego mayor (1986-1992), was charged with money laundering in federal court earlier this month.

I don’t know much about the situation, but I was intrigued to learn that Maureen had 12 siblings, including a twin sister with a very similar name — Mavourneen.

(The other siblings are Patrick, Michael, Dennis, Sharon, Dianne, Colleen, Sheila, Timothy, Karen, Thomas and Shawn.)

The names Maureen and Mavourneen [pronounced muh-VOOR-neen] are both Irish, but they have different etymologies:

Maureen is an anglicized form of Máirín, which is a pet form of Máire, which — like the English name Mary — is based on the French name Marie, which comes from the Latin name Maria. In Ancient Rome, Maria was originally a feminine form of Marius, but it was later popularized as a version of the Hebrew name Miriam. The meaning of Miriam is unknown, though hypothesized definitions abound: “beloved,” “rebellious,” “strong sea,” “bitter sea,” “drop of the sea,” etc.

Mavourneen is an anglicized form of the Irish phrase mo mhúirnín, meaning “my darling.” It began as a term of endearment, but morphed into a given name probably when the song “Kathleen Mavourneen” (1837) became popular in the mid-1800s. (A number of the 19th-century Mavourneens I’ve tracked down were named “Kathleen Mavourneen.” Many of the 20th century Mavourneens too, actually.)

In terms of popularity, Maureen was one of the top 100 baby names in the U.S. from 1947 until 1954. Mavourneen, on the other hand, has never cracked the U.S. top 1,000.

And now the main question: What do you think of the names Maureen and Mavourneen for twins? Cute? Too close? Somewhere in between?

[Related poll: How Similar Should Twin Names Be?]

The Baby Named for PIXY 103

One of the local radio stations on Cape Cod (where I grew up) is a classic rock station called PIXY 103.

Back then, one of PIXY’s annual publicity stunts involved baby names. To the parents of the first baby born on the Cape every year, the station would offer a cash prize…but only if the parents agreed to name their baby Pixy first. If Pixy was used as the first name, the parents got $1,000. If it was a middle, they got $500.

For years I wondered if any of those “first babies” were ever named Pixy.

Last night, I finally looked it up. (Why? Because Appellation Mountain’s Pixie post gave me a nudge.)

Turns out the answer is yes, at least one baby was named Pixy for the radio station. On the first day of 1998, the Cape Cod Times reported:

Over the years, only one family agreed to use PIXY as a middle name and then donated the money to charity, said station owner Maureen Makkay.

I’m not sure if the publicity stunt goes on to this day. If it does, perhaps there’s more than one PIXY namesake out there. (Somehow I doubt it.)

If someone offered you $1,000 to name your baby Pixy, would you do it? (Would gender be a deciding factor?)

Source: Friss, Gwenn. “It’s a girl! Shaylyn first in 1998.” Cape Cod Times 1 Jan. 1998.

Baby Name Needed – Girl Name for Saylor’s Sister

A reader named Michelle has a son named Saylor Dorian. She’s expecting a baby girl in May and would like some name suggestions. She says:

We originally picked shiloh for a girl but we aren’t liking how popular it’s getting [due to a celebrity finding it first..grrr] we want a unique name that’s still ‘easy on the ears’ as in easy to get used to. I try to stay away from the too feminine popular vowel names like ava, bella, etc… though we like them we don’t want a trendy name like piper, stella, etc…

We are currently tossing around names like vega, remy…. though what i loved about shiloh was that O ending.. but we are open to whatever.

First let’s try to come up some more o-endings. How about:

Callisto
Calypso
Clio
Flo (Flora/Florence)
Jo (Josie/Josephine)
Juno
Leo (Leona)
Margot
Marlow
Meadow
Mo (Maureen)
Willow

And here are some other names that came to mind:

Audra
Briar
Darcy
Dylan
Emery
Fiona
Gillian
Greer
Heidi
Ione
Jaya
Lotus
Lyra
Mina
Morgan
Nadia
Naomi
Nova
Phoebe
Rory
Tess
Violet
Vita
Zillah

Which of the above do you like best for Saylor’s sister? What other girl names would you suggest to Michelle?

Girl Names for Parents Who Don’t Like Girl Names

Some parents see names like Angelina, Isabella, and Olivia and think, “I’m not going to bother weeding through these dainty little sissy-names on the off chance I find a good one. Forget it. I’m gonna flip ahead to the boy names.”

What these parents might not realize, though, is that there are plenty of strong, non-frilly girl names out there. Here are three types I’ve come up with:

Girl Names with Boyish Nicknames
A boy name wrapped in a girl name — the best of both worlds. Most of the full names below are based on boy names, so they simply shorten to the same pet forms.

Alex – Alexandra
Andy – Andrea, Miranda
Bernie – Bernadette
Cal – Calista, Calla
Clem – Clementine
Dan – Danielle
Ernie – Ernestine
Frank – Frances
Gerry – Geraldine
Gus – Augusta
Jack – Jacqueline
Jo – Josephine, Johanna
Max – Maxine
Mo – Monique, Maureen
Nick – Nicole, Monica, Veronica
Rick – Erica
Rob – Roberta
Sal – Salome, Sarah
Tony – Antonia
Will – Wilhelmina

Girl Names with Lots of Consonants
Girl names with at least as many consonants as vowels tend to sound much more serious than vowel-laden girl names. Especially if they end with a consonant (or a consonant-sound).

Adele*
Agnes
Alice
Ardith
Astrid
Blanche
Bridget
Brooke
Carmen
Claire*
Edith
Eleanor*
Elizabeth
Enid
Esther
Gertrude
Gretchen
Harriet
Helen
Hester
Imogene*
Ingrid
Jane
Janet
Jill
Joan
Judith
Katherine
Laurel
Mabel
Margaret
Marion
Maude*
Megan
Meredith
Nadine
Rachel
Ruth
Sibyl
Tamar

*Technically, these names have more vowels than consonants. But it doesn’t sound like they do, and that’s the important part.

Girl Names with Unusual Letters/Sounds
Unusual things command your attention. They may seem odd, but, because they stand out, they also tend to seem bold.

Beatrix
Beulah
Eugenia
Eunice
Gwyneth
Hazel
Izora
Maeve
Tirzah
Tallulah
Ursula
Violet
Winifred
Winona
Yolanda
Zelda
Zenobia
Zillah

What other types of girl names would you add to this list?