How popular is the baby name Shale 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 Shale.

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Popularity of the Baby Name Shale


Posts that Mention the Name Shale

New Gemstone Baby Names

We’re very familiar with gemstone baby names names like Ruby, Opal and Jade. But you probably haven’t met anyone (yet?) who has one these names on their birth certificate…

  • Citrine: Citrine debuted in the SSA data in 2019. Citrine is an orange-y variety of quartz. It’s one of the birthstones for November.
  • Kyanite: Kyanite debuted in 2019 as well. Kyanite is typically blue, and its name is related to the color word “cyan.”
  • Lazuli: Lazuli, part of the rock name lapis lazuli (which translates to “stone of azure”), debuted in 2016.
  • Malachite: Malachite debuted in 2017. Malachite is a green-banded mineral. Its name refers to the leaves of the mallow plant.

These join the many gem-names — Amethyst, Angelite, Beryl, Celestine, Diamond, Emerald, Garnet, Jasper, Larimar, Obsidian, Olivine, Onyx, Sapphire, Topaz, Turquoise, etc. — that have previously appeared in the SSA data. (Not to mention the rock names Coal, Flint, Granite, Shale, and Slate.)

I’m sure Citrine and Kyanite won’t be the last of the names in this category to emerge in the data, though, because there are just so many other nicely-named minerals and rocks out there. Some examples…

  • Agate: a banded, colored quartz with a name that happens to look and sound similar to Agatha.
  • Alexandrite: a color-changing variety of chrysoberyl named after Alexander II of Russia. It’s one of the birthstones for June.
  • Ametrine: a type of quartz with zones of purple and yellow/orange; a mix of amethyst and citrine.
  • Carnelian: a red variety of quartz. Its name can be traced back to the Latin word conus, the name of a type of berry.
  • Peridot: a green gemstone with a name of unknown origin. It’s the birthstone for August.
  • Selenite: a type of gypsum. Its name comes from the ancient Greek word for “moon,” selene. (If you’ve ever watched metaphysical content on YouTube, you’ve probably seen a selenite wand before…)
  • Tourmaline: a gem that comes in a wide variety of colors. It’s one of the birthstones for October.

Which gem/mineral/rock name do you think we’ll spot next in the U.S. baby name data?

Baby Name Needed for Brother of Saylor and Clover

A couple of years ago, we helped reader Michelle brainstorm for a baby names for her second child, a baby girl named Clover. (Michelle already had a son named Saylor.)

I heard from Michelle not long ago, and she’s now expecting #3 (congrats!). The baby is a boy. So far, the favorite name is Caspian but…well, I’ll let Michelle explain:

we really like the name caspian. i like that it’s a literary character [like saylor’s middle name dorian] and even more so i like that it’s a ‘noun’ name so it matches saylor and clover. also being the name of a sea it matches saylor without being too matchy like the name anchor or navy or something.

so that’s the name that i keep going back to but i am having the hardest time with it being 3 syllables. i feel like it doesn’t flow that well- it feels long to me so i KNOW i would want to abbreviate it. and so then he would be cas, casp, or caspy or casper.. which i’m not crazy fond of any of these. plus then you lose the name… i don’t like naming a kid something knowing they will never really go by that name. so i’m looking for a name like caspian.. but looking for a 2 syllable name i guess! i prefer 2 but would use a 1 syllable name if we loved it.

other names we’ve looked at-

cannon- but i feel like it’s forgettable and sounds like a bunch of other names- caiden, cohen, etc.

shepherd- i do like this name. not sure how well it matches our kids but i think i like it?

sage- considering this as potential middle name tho it’s way more popular for a girl’s name now!

my husband suggested voyage today but i feel like that’s too out there/trying to be crazy. i’m open to virtue names but not many good boy ones. not a fan of loyal.

i’ve chewed on booker, shale, atlas and cedar but not feeling it…

a friend also suggested oxlee which is kinda cool but kinda a made up name which i’d rather have a real word.

basil is a family name and i like it but not enough i don’t think..

i’ve spent countless hours thinking and looking and considering… i want to find a name that isn’t in the top 1000 as well. for sure forget it if it’s in the top 500 [i do like the names kingston, river, maddox etc but do not like how trendy they are].. sorry i ramble. :)

so, should i just go with caspian and try to get used to saying 3 syllables all the time? do you have any other suggestions??

Some of my thoughts:

1. Caspian

If you know without a doubt that you’ll shorten it, and you don’t like (and won’t grow to like) any of the shortened versions, there’s no point in forcing it. Picking Caspian would be equivalent to picking a name you don’t like.

That said…when someone tells me he/she “keeps going back to” a particular baby name, I tend to see that as a sign.

Caspian may have 3 syllables, but it’s not that long–especially since the first syllable gets the most stress and the last gets the least. This makes it easy for the name to roll off the tongue.

We all know people with even longer names (e.g. Alexanders, Ariannas) who go by their full names. It’s not strange or outlandish or anything.

If you like Caspian that much, try testing it out. Call the baby Caspian for a week or two and challenge yourself not to shorten the name. Maybe it’ll be easier than you think. Much like picking up a new habit — you have to put in some effort at first, but once it sticks, you’re good.

2. A few more name ideas

All have 2 syllables and are not in the top 1,000 right now.

  • Ansel – Makes me think of nature/the outdoors, thanks to Ansel Adams.
  • Bering – From the sea and strait, both named for the explorer.
  • Canyon – More memorable than cannon, as it gives people a visual.
  • Crispin – Sounds a lot like Caspian.
  • Murray – From the name of Australia’s longest river.
  • Radley – From the character Arthur “Boo” Radley.
  • Rigel – From the star Rigel.

3. Your turn!

  • What are your thoughts on Caspian?
  • Which of the above names do you like best with Saylor and Clover?
  • What other names would you suggest to Michelle and her husband?