Every year about 1,000 new baby names are approved in Germany according to Gabriele Rodríguez, a member of the Namenberatungsstelle (Names Advisory Board) of the University of Leipzig in Saxony. She says immigration and parental creativity are the two driving forces behind this growing diversity.
The new names introduced by immigrant/refugee communities tend to be Arabic, Turkish, Kurdish and Persian. Rodríguez notes that over time some of these foreign names end up sounding rather ordinary. Jasmin, for example, is a Persian name so common in Germany that it’s now “perceived as a German name.”
The other new names are unusual selections submitted by native German parents. Some of these nontraditional names don’t make it through the vetting process — those that might cause a child embarrassment (like “Superman, Wikileaks, Woodruff”) are not approved — but many do end up on German birth certificates, including:
- Manjana (based on the Spanish word mañana, meaning “tomorrow”)
- Prinz-Gold (Prince Gold)
- Schnuckelpupine (schnukel means “sweetheart” or “darling” in German)
Source: Neue Namen braucht das Land