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

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Popularity of the Baby Name Mila

Number of Babies Named Mila

Born in the U.S. Since 1880

Posts that Mention the Name Mila

Popular Baby Names in Belgium, 2017

According to data from Statistics Belgium, the country’s most popular baby names in 2017 were Emma and Liam.

Here are Belgium’s top 10 girl names and top 10 boy names of 2017:

Girl Names
1. Emma, 634 baby girls
2. Olivia, 613
3. Louise, 595
4. Mila, 522
5. Alice, 423
6. Elise, 386
7. Lina, 375
8. Juliette, 364 (tie)
9. Sofia, 364 (tie)
10. Lucie, 350

Boy Names
1. Liam, 570 baby boys
2. Adam, 559
3. Arthur, 546
4. Noah, 545
5. Louis, 536
6. Lucas, 497
7. Jules, 462
8. Gabriel, 427
9. Victor, 422
10. Mohamed, 392

The #1 names within each of Belgium’s three regions were:

  • Brussels: Lina and Adam
  • Flanders: Louise and Liam
  • Wallonia: Emma and Gabriel

I forgot to post Belgium’s 2016 rankings, but in 2015 the top names overall were Emma and Louis.

Source: Prénoms filles et garçons

How to Name Fictional Characters

three tips on choosing a character name

How-to articles on naming fictional characters are a dime a dozen. But most are a litany of tips — some important, others not so much. So I thought I’d try boiling the best of the advice down to a single sentence. Here’s what I came up with:

“Each character’s name should fit the setting, fit the character, and be distinct within the story.”

The sentence contains three different objectives, so let’s look out each one separately:

Fit the setting

The name should be appropriate for the time and place in which the story occurs. A romance set in 18th-century England could be between an Elizabeth and a Frederick, but not a Nevaeh and a Jayden. Similarly, the protagonist of a 24th-century space opera could be named something standard/plain (John) or futuristic (Loxxan), but probably not something very old (Holmketill), or even slightly old (Clarence).

Fit the character

The name should suit the character, primarily in terms of permanent descriptors (e.g., gender, age, ethnicity), but also, perhaps, in terms of personality traits (e.g., bubbly, gracious, haughty).

Stereotyping in general is bad, but when it comes to character names, it’s very useful: You want the name to give the correct impression of the character right away. A woman from India should be named Padma, not Margaret. A man from Germany should be called Armin, not Oakley.

You could also take it a step further and choose a name that reflects the character’s personality in a subtle way. A friendly woman could be an Amy, while a complex woman could be Demetria. Do this mainly with sounds and associations, which will be picked up instantly by the reader.

Be distinct within the story

The name should not look or sound similar to any of the other names in the story, or else the reader could get confused. Pay special attention to first letters and to repeated sounds. If the protagonists are sisters, name them Mila and Harriet, not Katie and Kelly. Likewise, if the main characters are brothers, use the names Brian and Luke, not Aidan and Adam.

…What are your thoughts on this topic?

Popular Baby Names in Switzerland, 2017

According to data from the Swiss Federal Statistical Office (FSO), the most popular baby names in Switzerland in 2017 were Emma and Noah.

Here are the country’s top 10 girl names and top 10 boy names of 2017:

Girl Names
1. Emma, 478 baby girls
2. Mia, 420
3. Sofia, 352
4. Lina, 311
5. Lena, 308
6. Lea, 306
7. Lara, 301
8. Emilia, 300
9. Nina, 287
10. Anna, 286

Boy Names
1. Noah, 490 baby boys
2. Liam, 434
3. Luca, 360
4. Leon, 347
5. Gabriel, 328
6. David, 314
7. Elias, 302
8. Samuel, 294
9. Matteo, 276
10. Ben, 273

In the girls’ top 10, Lina, Lea, and Nina replace Elena, Laura, and Mila.

In the boys’ top 10, Matteo and Ben replace Louis and Julian.

Here are the top baby names per gender within each of Switzerland’s main language groups:

  • German speakers (63% of the population)
    • Top 3 girl names: Mia, Emma, Emilia
    • Top 3 boy names: Noah, Leon, Luca
  • French speakers (23%)
    • Top 3 girl names: Emma, Lea, Chloe
    • Top 3 boy names: Gabriel, Liam, Noah
  • Italian speakers (8%)
    • Top 3 girl names: Sofia, Emma, Giulia
    • Top 3 boy names: Leonardo, Noah, Gabriel
  • Romansh speakers (less than 1%)
    • Top girl name: Angelina/Arina/Lina (3-way tie)
    • Top boy name: Gian/Laurin/Lio (3-way tie)

In 2016, the top names in the country overall were Mia and Noah.

Sources: Here are the most popular baby names in Switzerland, Vornamen der Neugeborenen

Popular Baby Names in Germany 2017

According to the Gesellschaft für deutsche Sprache (Association for German Language), the most popular baby names in Germany in 2017 were Emma and Ben.

Here are the country’s top 10 girl names and boy names of 2017:

Girl Names
1. Emma
2. Sophia/Sofia
3. Hanna/Hannah
4. Emilia
5. Mia
6. Anna
7. Lina
8. Mila
9. Klara/Clara
10. Marie

Boy Names
1. Ben
2. Paul
3. Noah/Noa
4. Leon
5. Jonas
6. Felix
7. Elias
8. Louis/Luis
9. Luke/Lucas
10. Maximilian

In the girls’ top ten, Klara/Clara and Lina replace Lea/Leah and Lena.

In the boys’ top ten, Felix replaces Finn.

According to name researcher Knud Bielefeld, fast-rising names in Germany include boy names Theo, Matteo and Henry and girl names Leni, Ella and Juna.

In 2016, the top baby names in Germany were Sophia/Sofia and Jonas.

Sources: Ausführliche Auswertung: Vornamen 2017, Ben and Emma most popular baby names in 2017

Biggest Changes, Baby Girl Names, 2017

Which girl names increased the most in popularity from 2016 to 2017? And which ones decreased the most?

There are a few different ways to answer this question. The SSA, for instance, likes to look at ranking differences within the top 1,000. And I like to augment their list by looking at raw number differences across all the data.

So let’s look at increases first…

Girl Names: Biggest Increases, 2016 to 2017

Rankings

1. Ensley, +1,461 spots
2. Oaklynn, +1,072
3. Dream, +840
4. Oaklyn, +749
5. Melania, +720
6. Emberly, +616
7. Octavia, +435
8. Paisleigh, +364
9. Yara, +352
10. Kehlani, +347

Melania was influenced by the First Lady. Dream was influenced by the latest Kardashian baby.

Raw Numbers

1. Luna, +1,657 babies
2. Mila, +1,123
3. Amelia, +1,047
4. Bella, +957
5. Nova, +748
6. Camila, +704
7. Elena, +685
8. Kinsley, +669
9. Everly, +616
10. Aurora, +590

Camila might have been influenced by Camila Cabello (“Havana ooh na-na…”).

Other names that saw raw number increases in the 300+ range included Raelynn, Willow, Amara, Isla, Samara, and Leilani.

And now let’s check out decreases…

Girl Names: Biggest Decreases, 2016 to 2017

Rankings

1. Julianne, -263 spots
2. Wendy, -243
3. Milania, -241
4. Montserrat, -225
5. Nathaly, -225
6. Jayden, -204
7. Jessa, -201
8. Tenley, -198
9. Aryana, -184
10. Ciara, -183

Looks like Melania stole a lot of attention away from Milania in 2017.

Raw Numbers

1. Sophia, -1,281 babies
2. Emily, -1,211
3. Abigail, -1,196
4. Madison, -1,167
5. Sofia, -1,027
6. Mia, -978
7. Alexa, -883
8. Riley, -788
9. Brooklyn, -774
10. Lily, -769

Alexa was no doubt adversely affected by the prevalence of Amazon’s virtual assistant, Alexa.

Other names that saw raw number drops in the (negative) 300+ range included Kylie, Natalie, Taylor, Morgan, Piper, Trinity, and Harper.

Do you have any explanations for the name movement above? If so, please comment!

Sources: Change in Popularity, SSA, Emma and Liam Top Social Security’s Most Popular Baby Names for 2017