How popular is the baby name Sephiroth 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 Sephiroth.

The graph will take a few seconds to load, thanks for your patience. (Don't worry, it shouldn't take nine months.) If it's taking too long, try reloading the page.


Popularity of the Baby Name Sephiroth


Posts that Mention the Name Sephiroth

The Arrival of Aeris (and Aerith)

The baby name Aeris debuted in the U.S. baby name data in 1998.

The curious name Aeris first appeared in the U.S. baby name data in 1998:

  • 2001: 26 baby girls named Aeris
  • 2000: 26 baby girls named Aeris
  • 1999: 22 baby girls named Aeris
  • 1998: 23 baby girls named Aeris [debut]
  • 1997: unlisted

Where did it come from?

The role-playing video game Final Fantasy VII, which was released in early 1997 for PlayStation and later for other platforms.

The game was set on a nameless planet whose future was up for grabs. The antagonist, Sephiroth, was out to destroy the planet, whereas the protagonist, Cloud Strife, sought to save the planet from destruction.

Aeris was one of Cloud’s friends. (In fact, he had a bit of a crush on her.) She was the last surviving member of one of the planet’s oldest races, the Cetra, and thereby had access to planet-protecting magical powers.

final fantasy, aeris death scene
Cloud holding Aeris’s body (Sephiroth in background)

In a now-infamous plot twist, Aeris was unexpectedly killed by Sephiroth. (Aeris was kneeling and praying, eyes closed, when Sephiroth descended from the sky and ran her through from behind with a sword — all right in front of Cloud.)

And here’s another twist: the character’s English name was never supposed to be “Aeris” — even if it does sound like the word “heiress,” which is fitting, given her racial status.

FFVII was created in Japan, and the character’s Japanese name is Earisu. The official English transliteration of her name is Aerith, based on the English words “air” and “earth.” But, somehow, Aeris is what ended up in the game.

The transliteration was corrected in later Final Fantasy games and in the Kingdom Hearts series (which combined FF characters with Disney characters). In fact, the first Kingdom Hearts game was released in 2002, and official spelling Aerith debuted in the U.S. baby name data the very next year:

  • 2007: 11 baby girls named Aerith
  • 2006: 10 baby girls named Aerith
  • 2005: unlisted
  • 2004: unlisted
  • 2003: 5 baby girls named Aerith [debut]
  • 2002: unlisted

What are your thoughts on the baby names Aeris and Aerith? I’d especially love to hear the opinions of any gamers out there!

Sources: Final Fantasy VII – Wikipedia, The Real Reason Aeris’s Death Made You Cry

Baby Names from Classic Arcade Games?

baby names, arcade games

Potential baby names may be hiding in the titles of classic arcade games of the ’80s and early ’90s. No, I’m not talking Q*Bert or Pac-Man. But how about Azurian, Zaviga, or Cadash?

Below are a bunch of possibilities, most not even as daring as Dovahkiin, Tali’Zorah, or Sephiroth. Three of them — Kage, Raiden, and Truxton — have already popped up in the SSA data. (And if you’re in the mood to play, click through to check out playable versions of the games hosted by the Internet Archive!)

  • Amidar (1981)
    • “Amidar” is based on Amidakuji (the name of a Japanese game) which is based on Amida (the name of a figure in East Asian Buddhism).
  • Bosconian (1981)
  • Zarzon (1981)
  • Azurian, from Azurian Attack (1982)
  • Zaxxon (1982)
  • Zektor (1982)
  • Cavelon (1983)
  • Ixion (1983)
  • Regulus (1983)
  • Xevious, from Super Xevious (1983)
  • Zaviga (1984)
  • Kage (“kah-gay”), from Legend of Kage (1985)
  • Rygar (1986)
  • Gryzor (1987)
  • Sauro (1987)
  • Ordyne (1988)
  • Syvalion (1988)
  • Truxton (1988)
  • Xenon (1988)
  • Cadash (1989)
  • Dyger (1989)
  • Sagaia (1989)
  • Tonma, from Legend of Hero Tonma (1989)
    • “Tonma” is translated to “Tommy” within the game, interestingly.
  • Xyonix (1989)
  • Aurail (1990)
  • Raiden (1990)
    • “Raiden” was used again a couple of years later in the original Mortal Kombat.
  • Trigon (1990)
  • Solvalou (1991), one of several Xevious sequels
  • Vimana (1991)
    • “Vimana” is a Sanskrit word that refers to a flying palace or chariot in Hindu mythology.

I half-expect to see Zaxxon on the charts soon, now that Jaxon and Jaxxon are trendy and variants like Maxxon and Daxxon have emerged.

Name Quotes #44 – Jacksie, Memphis, Wyllis

Welcome to this month’s quote post!

From the book C.S. Lewis: An Examined Life by Bruce L. Edwards:

“[I]t was on one of these early holiday trips that Clive refused to be called by any other name than Jacksie, which was shortened to Jacks and then to Jack. He was either three or four years old when this name change occurred, as it was possibly in the summer of 1902 or 1903. […] Lewis’s stepson, Douglas Gresham, claimed that the reason he called himself Jacksie was due to his fondness for a small dog named Jacksie that had been killed.”

From “How To Cope With Your Video Game Inspired Name” by Sephiroth Hernandez, whose first name was inspired by the Final Fantasy VII villain:

You need to understand why your parents gave you that name. It’s because they lack common sense. It probably came from playing video games all the time.

[…]

Deep inside, you possess the ability to make more of your name than you think you could. You are cursed of course, but you are blessed with an understanding that few people have. Your name doesn’t define you. You define you. Just love yourself and love others. That’s all I can say.

(Sephiroth has been on the SSA’s list since 2004.)

Some baby naming advice from Steve Almond’s Heavy Meddle advice column:

Your instincts are spot on here: you’re the one who’s carrying the baby and will birth him. You and your husband will raise the baby. It is presumptuous for anybody who isn’t doing that honest labor to assume naming — or vetoing — rights, or really to do anything beyond offering suggestions.

From an interview with Dita Von Teese (born Heather Sweet) in Vogue:

I was just Dita for many years. I had seen a movie with an actress named Dita Parlo, and I thought, God, that’s such a cool name. I wanted to be known with just a simple first name–Cher, Madonna. Then when I first posed for Playboy, in 1993 or 1994, they told me I had to pick a last name. So I opened up the phone book at the bikini club [I worked in at the time]. I was with a friend and I was like, “Let’s look under a Von something.” It sounds really exotic and glamorous. So I found the name Von Treese and I called Playboy and said, “I’m going to be Dita Von Treese.” I remember so well going to the newsstand and picking up the magazine, and it said Dita Von Teese. I called them and they said, “Oh, we’ll fix it. We’ll fix it.” The next month, same thing: Dita Von Teese. I left it because I didn’t really care. I didn’t know I was going to go on to trademark it all over the world!

From a post about a man named San Francisco by blogger Andy Osterdahl:

Before anyone accuses me of making up a name to post here, I can assure you that Mr. Francisco was an actual person, and while he shares his name with the famed California city, isn’t believed to have had any connection with that area (despite the latter portion of his life being spent in the neighboring city of San Diego.)

From an article about the unusual names by Memphis Barker (found via Appellation Mountain):

That’s one thing about having an unusual name, your solidarity lies with the Apples and Philomenas. You can point and laugh with all the Johns and Garys, but the laugh is a little anxious. More of a squeak. It could all go wrong so quickly.

And finally, a bit about Wyllis Cooper (born Willis Cooper), creator of the late ’40s radio show Quiet, Please!:

It’s curios [sic] that when he left Hollywood, he also legally changed the spelling of his name from “Willis” to “Wyllis”. Radio Mirror magazine appears to be the first to mention it in 1940, saying “a numerologist advised him to change it” then Time magazine made a similar mention in 1941, but elaborated further that it was due to “his wife’s numerological inclinations”. Then in 1942 ‘Capital Times’ newspaper in Madison WI seemed to merge the two previous reports as: “a numerologist told his wife it should be spelled Wyllis and he’s done so ever since.”

[…]

Upon utilizing several present day numerology calculators found online, the results conclude that both spellings have virtually identical meanings in every respect.

Have you spotted any good name-related quotes/articles/blog posts lately? Let me know!