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

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Popularity of the Baby Name Peter


Posts that Mention the Name Peter

Triplets Named for Dodgers Pitchers

On October 6, 1963, the Los Angeles Dodgers won the fourth and final game of the 1963 World Series against the New York Yankees. They swept the series with the help of their pitchers — Sandy Koufax, Don Drysdale, Johnny Podres, and reliever Ron Perranoski — who collectively gave up only four runs in all four games combined.

The same day, Mr. and Mrs. Eddie A. Turner of Compton, California, welcomed triplets — two boys and one girl. Several days later, they announced that they’d named the babies after Dodgers pitchers:

  • Donald Scott – for Donald Scott “Don” Drysdale
  • Ronald Peter – for Ronald Peter “Ron” Perranoski
  • Sandy (the girl) – for Sanford “Sandy” Koufax

Sources:

Babies Named for Sailing Ships (P & Q)

The people below were born aboard — and named after! — ships with P-and Q-names…

  • Pacific Ocean:
    • Pacific Pearl Myrick, born in 1848
  • Palamcotta:
    • Emily Sarah Palamcotta Russell, born in 1890
  • Palestine:
    • Charles Owen Palestine Harte, born in 1873
  • Palgrave:
    • Edward Palgrave Thomas, born in 1886
  • Parthia:
    • Honora Parthia Moynahan, born in 1877
    • Parthia John George Wills, born in 1882
  • Pathan:
    • James Pathan Laurie, born in 1883
  • Peeress:
    • Elizabeth Peeress Brown, born in 1874
  • Penelope:
    • Penelope Ribeiro, born in 1857
  • Pennsylvania:
    • Pennsylvania Hall Gilman, born in 1869
  • Percy:
    • Percy George Cooper White, born in 1869
    • Thomas Percy Chenney, born in 1870
  • Pericles:
    • Alfred Pericles Maxfield, born in 1877
    • Ernest Pericles Waite, born in 1878
    • James Pericles Greig, born in 1878
    • Alfred Pericles Fletcher, born in 1883
    • Fanny Pericles Craven, born in 1883
    • Elizabeth Pericles Hutchins, born in 1883
    • Kate Pericles Jewell, born in 1883
  • Persia:
    • Henry Persia Mallet, born in 1854
  • Peruvian:
    • Maria Peruvia Hoxer, born in 1872
    • William Henry Peruvian Foster Davies, born in 1972
    • Peruviana Gudbjorg Krisgansson, born in 1891
  • Peter Denny:
    • Richard Pycroft Denny Gough, born in 1874
  • Peterborough:
    • Peterborough Daniel Brown, born in 1884
  • Pioneer:
    • John William Pioneer Wiles, born in 1858
  • Pleiades:
    • Emily Pleiades Hancock, born in 1872
    • Eveline Pleiades Norris, born in 1873
  • Pleione:
    • Effie Pleione Bunting, born in 1883
  • Pounder:
    • Henry Pounder Glory Levistone, born in 1818
  • Potosi:
    • Charlotte Potosi Botterill, born in 1884
    • Matle (?) Potosi Pogorelsky, born in 1891
  • Priam:
    • George Priam Hay, born in 1871
  • Propontis:
    • Wilhemina Propontis Conolly, born in 1854
  • Prussian:
    • Magdalen Prussian Jones, born in 1882
  • Ptolemy:
    • Ann Ptolemy Dancker, born in 1883
  • Quetta:
    • Clara Quetta Green, born in 1885
    • John Quetta Eales, born in 1886
    • May Quetta Hollett, born in 1886

Do you think any of the ship names above work particularly well as human names?

Source: FamilySearch.org

Name Quotes #98: Judith, Xochitl, Rajaonina

From an article about famous people reclaiming their names in The Guardian:

Earlier this year, the BBC presenter formerly known as Ben Bland changed his surname to Boulos to celebrate his maternal Sudanese-Egyptian heritage.

[…]

The Bland name had masked important aspects of his identity that he had downplayed as a child, not wanting to be seen as in any way “different”, including his Coptic faith, Boulos said. “Every name tells a story – and I want mine to give a more complete picture of who I am.”

Boulos’s grandparents, who came to Britain in the 1920s, had chosen the surname Bland because they feared using the Jewish-Germanic family name “Blumenthal”. “They decided on the blandest name possible — literally — to ensure their survival,” he wrote.

(Two more quotes on name-reclaiming were in last month’s quote post.)

Actress Camila Mendes [vid] talking about her name on The Late Late Show With James Corden in 2017:

So my name is Camila Mendes, and there’s a singer called Camila Cabello, and a singer called Shawn Mendes. And people seem to think my Twitter is a fan account for that relationship.

From the book I Speak of the City: Mexico City at the Turn of the Twentieth Century (2015) by Mauricio Tenorio-Trillo:

Babies were baptized with new and strange names, particularly in the 1920s, names taken from the titles of various socialist experiments (for instance, in Tabasco with Garrido Canaval, who established socialist baptisms), and as a result of the emergence of the radio and the indigenist turn of the city’s language. Masiosare became a boy’s name (derived from a stanza of the national anthem: “Mas si osare un extraño enemigo…”), but also Alcazelser (after the popularity of Alka-Seltzer), Xochitl, Tenoch, Cuauhtémoc, Tonatihu (the biblically named Lázaro Cárdenas named his son Cuauhtémoc).

From a Good Morning America article about ’90s sitcom Saved by the Bell:

The names of characters came from people [executive producer Peter] Engel knew growing up.

“I knew a guy named Screech Washington. He was a producer. I said I’m not going to hire him, but I’m going to steal your name,” he said. “Slater was a kid who was in my son’s kindergarten class, Zack was named after my dear, dear friend, John DeLorean. […] His son’s name was Zack. Lisa Turtle was a girl I knew and Mr. Belding, Richard Belding, had been my cranky editor when I worked at Universal.”

From the book Cecil B. DeMille’s Hollywood (2004) by Robert S. Birchard:

DeMille interviewed Gloria Stuart for the part of the high school girl [in This Day and Age], Gay Merrick, and said she was “extremely enthusiastic,” and he also considered Paramount contract player Grace Bradley, but ultimately he selected a former model who called herself Mari Colman. In April 1933 Colman won a Paramount screen test in a New York beauty competition, and DeMille was apparently delighted by the innocent image she projected.

In a comic sequence in David O. Selznick’s 1937 production of A Star Is Born, the studio’s latest discovery, Esther Blodgett, is given a new name more in keeping with her status as a movie starlet. As This Day and Age was getting ready to roll, Mari Colman was subjected to the same treatment as DeMille and Paramount tested long lists of potential screen names. Among the suggestions were Betty Barnes, Doris Bruce, Alice Harper, Grace Gardner, Chloris Deane, and Marie Blaire. Colman herself suggested Pamela Drake or Erin Drake. On May 15, Jack Cooper wrote DeMille that he had tried several names on seventeen people. Eleven voted for the name Doris Manning; the other six held out for Doris Drake. Somehow, the name ultimately bestowed upon her was Judith Allen. DeMille and Paramount had high hopes for Allen, and she was even seen around town in the company of Gary Cooper, one of the studio’s biggest stars.

From an academic paper by Denis Regnier called “Naming and name changing in postcolonial Madagascar” (2016):

Nowadays, most names borne by individuals in Madagascar are a particular mix of foreign names (mainly Christian, French, or British but sometimes Muslim) and Malagasy names. This is because the spread of the Christian faith in the nineteenth century resulted in people increasingly giving names from the Bible to their children. These biblical names were often modified to follow the phonological and morphological rules of the Malagasy language (e.g., John becomes Jaonina or Jaona), and often the honorific particle Ra-, the word andriana (lord), or both were added to them (e.g., Rajaonina and Randrianarijaona). While at the beginning of Christian evangelization most people still had, in traditional Malagasy fashion, only one name, progressively the most common structure of names became “binomial,” as Gueunier calls it (Gueunier 2012, 197). In this case, a Christian name (or other foreign name) is often juxtaposed to a Malagasy name, although sometimes both names are of Malagasy origin or, more rarely, both names are foreign.

And let’s end with a related quote about Madagascar’s very long names:

Names were reduced in length when French colonization began in 1896 — the shortest names today include Rakotoarisoa, Rakotonirina, Andrianjafy or Andrianirina, and tend to have around 12 characters minimum.

Popular and Unique Baby Names in Quebec, 2020

According to Retraite Québec, the most popular baby names in Quebec last year were (again) Olivia and Liam.

Here are the province’s top 10 girl names and top 10 boy names of 2020:

Girl Names

  1. Olivia, 543 baby girls
  2. Alice, 491 (2-way tie)
  3. Emma, 491 (2-way tie)
  4. Charlie, 488
  5. Charlotte, 449 (2-way tie)
  6. Lea, 449 (2-way tie)
  7. Florence, 447
  8. Livia, 437
  9. Romy, 338
  10. Clara, 335

Boy Names

  1. Liam, 661 baby boys
  2. William, 644
  3. Noah, 639
  4. Thomas, 594
  5. Leo, 572
  6. Nathan, 518
  7. Edouard, 489
  8. Logan, 478
  9. Jacob, 468
  10. Arthur, 461

In the girls’ top 10, Romy and Clara replaced Rosalie and Beatrice.

In the boys’ top 10, Jacob and Arthur replaced Felix, Raphael and Emile.

Below are some of the baby names that were bestowed just once in Quebec last year. (I tried to focus on First Nations names this time around.)

Unique Girl NamesUnique Boy Names
Ange Lumiere, Avanika, Balkissa, Cathy Jaguar, Croyance, Daphka, Ezralene, Framboise, Gaela Olga, Himalaya Fay, Iaely, Jolly-Anne, Julia Uapikun, Katsuak, Kim-Sparkle, Lailah-Waseskon, Lilwenn, Mappaluk, Mekuaushkuan, Meluvia, Nidehina, Nkulu Aimerence, Olizianne, Onyx Mbombo, Pastel, Pixel, Plamedie, Qullik, Richelieu Christina, Rissala, Sikuliaq, Sunrise, Taliittuq, Thanjana, Tuline, Uppialuk, Videluna, Widchelle, Winta, Xiyao, Youvica, Zoe-ZinaAbischai Sardonyx, Alexandre Wapan, Bluesun, Chanmonyrith, Charlie Qumanguaq, Dalzell, Edwight, Fritzlerson, Guntaz, Heavyd, Ittukallak, Ittuvik, Ivan Appalirak, Justgood, Karthigan, Kasudluak, Lebonheur, Lenny Bruce, Manhattan, Massabiel, Myriodson Andre, Naavalan, New-York, Oceannic Sunchase, Omri-Kyanite, Pacifique, Peter Angutik, Quppapik, Reiki, Ro’nikonhrowa nen, Soho, Surusiluk, Thomas Qautsaalik, Tikwaachin, Tuukak, Uyghur, Valmont, Waseskon, Wastuskun, Xandres, Ywaashtin, Zoubert

Some explanations/associations:

  • Aimerence means “love” in French.
  • Ange Lumiere means “angel of light”/”light angel” in French.
  • Angutik means “male” or “man” in Inuttut.
  • Croyance means “belief” in French.
  • Framboise means “raspberry” in French.
  • Heavyd…could it be a reference to rapper Heavy D? (Maybe just a variant of Heaven?)
  • Katsuak (or Katsuaq) means “biceps” in Inuit.
  • Kyanite is a type of mineral.
  • Lebonheur means “happiness” in French.
  • Lenny Bruce…is it a reference to comedian Lenny Bruce?
  • Mekuaushkuan means “the clouds are red at sunset” in Innu-aimun.
  • Plamedie is a contracted form of the French phrase plan merveilleux de Dieu, meaning “wonderful plan of God.”
  • Qullik (or Qulliq) means “oil lamp” in Inuit.
  • Qumanguaq is a mountain in Nunavut; the name means “the shrugging hill (no neck)” in Inuktitut.
  • Reiki is a type of energy healing that was developed in Japan.
  • Richelieu…is it a reference to Cardinal Richelieu?
  • Ro’nikonhrowa nen (or Ro’nikonhrowa:nen), which comes from a figure in Iroquois folklore, means “he who has ideas.”
  • Sardonyx is a type of banded gemstone.
  • Sikuliaq (pronounced see-KOO-lee-auk) means “young sea ice” in Inupiaq.
  • Soho, Manhattan, New-York — in this order, they form an address :)
  • Taliittuq may mean “no arm” in Inuit.
  • Tikwaachin means “autumn” in Cree.
  • Tuukak…I don’t know the definition, but a character named Tuukak appeared in a mid-2020 episode of the animated kids’ show Molly of Denali.
  • Uapikun means “flower” in Innu-aimun.
  • Uppialuk means “snowy owl” in Inuktitut.
  • Uyghur…the Uyghurs are a Turkic ethnic group in China.
  • Wapan means “dawn” in Cree.
  • Waseskon may mean “blue” or “sky blue” in Cree. (The very similar Cree word Waseskun has been defined as: “the time just after a storm, when the dark clouds begin to part, the blue sky appears, and the first rays of sunlight shine through.”)
  • Ywaashtin may mean “calm” in Cree.

(More of Quebec’s unique baby names can be found on my Patreon page!)

Sources:

Top First Letters of U.S. Baby Names, 2020

Wondering which first letters were the most popular in 2020?

For baby girls, the most-used first letter was A, followed by E and M. The least-used first letter was U. More than 272,000 baby girls got an A-name last year, whereas fewer than 700 got a U-name.

Top first letters of female baby names in the U.S. in 2020.

The three most-used girl names per letter last year were…

  • A: Ava, Amelia, Abigail
  • B: Brooklyn, Bella, Brielle
  • C: Charlotte, Camila, Chloe
  • D: Delilah, Daisy, Daniela
  • E: Emma, Evelyn, Ella
  • F: Faith, Freya, Finley
  • G: Gianna, Grace, Genesis
  • H: Harper, Hazel, Hannah
  • I: Isabella, Isla, Ivy
  • J: Josephine, Jade, Julia
  • K: Kinsley, Kennedy, Kaylee
  • L: Luna, Layla, Lily
  • M: Mia, Mila, Madison
  • N: Nora, Nova, Natalie
  • O: Olivia, Olive, Oakley
  • P: Penelope, Paisley, Piper
  • Q: Quinn, Queen, Quincy
  • R: Riley, Ruby, Rylee
  • S: Sophia, Sofia, Scarlett
  • T: Taylor, Teagan, Trinity
  • U: Unique, Uma, Una
  • V: Victoria, Violet, Valentina
  • W: Willow, Winter, Willa
  • X: Ximena, Xiomara, Xena
  • Y: Yaretzi, Yara, Yareli
  • Z: Zoey, Zoe, Zara

For baby boys, the most-used first letter was J, followed by A and L. The least-used first letter was, again, U. More than 205,000 baby boys got a J-name last year, whereas fewer than 2,500 got a U-name.

Top first letters of male baby names in the U.S. in 2020.

The three most-used boy names per letter last year were…

  • A: Alexander, Aiden, Asher
  • B: Benjamin, Brooks, Bennett
  • C: Carter, Charles, Christopher
  • D: Daniel, David, Dylan
  • E: Elijah, Ethan, Ezra
  • F: Finn, Felix, Francisco
  • G: Grayson, Gabriel, Greyson
  • H: Henry, Hudson, Hunter
  • I: Isaac, Isaiah, Ian
  • J: James, Jacob, Jackson
  • K: Kai, Kayden, Kingston
  • L: Liam, Lucas, Logan
  • M: Mason, Michael, Mateo
  • N: Noah, Nathan, Nolan
  • O: Oliver, Owen, Oscar
  • P: Parker, Patrick, Peter
  • Q: Quinn, Quentin, Quincy
  • R: Ryan, Roman, Robert
  • S: Sebastian, Samuel, Santiago
  • T: Theodore, Thomas, Tyler
  • U: Uriel, Uriah, Ulises
  • V: Vincent, Victor, Valentino
  • W: William, Wyatt, Wesley
  • X: Xavier, Xander, Xzavier
  • Y: Yusuf, Yosef, Yehuda
  • Z: Zachary, Zion, Zayden

Finally, here are the totals for girls and boys side-by-side on the same chart:

Top first letters of baby names in the U.S. in 2020.

Overall, the top first letter was A and the least popular first letter was (of course!) U.