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

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Popularity of the Baby Name Theophilus

Number of Babies Named Theophilus

Born in the U.S. Since 1880

Posts that Mention the Name Theophilus

Names from Central Burying Ground in Boston

Boston’s Central Burying Ground was established in 1756, so it’s newer than the other Boston cemeteries I’ve blogged about (King’s Chapel, Granary, and Copp’s Hill). Nevertheless, it still contains some pretty interesting names:

  • A: Aderline, Alford, Alona, Alpheus, Alsendorf, Annjulett, Antice, Anstice, Arodi, Artemis, Asadel
  • B: Barstow, Barzillia, Belcher, Benaset
  • C: Calista, Christeena, Clarena, Clarentine, Cumming
  • D: Dolley
  • E: Ede, Elbridge, Elhanah, Eliakim, Emely
  • F: Fletcher, Freelove
  • G: Giles, Gilman, Gustavus
  • H: Hannahretta, Hawkes, Hepzibah, Hermione, Hezekiah, Hitty
  • I: Ichabod, Ignatius, Iphigenia
  • J: Jaazaniah, Jennet
  • K: Keziah
  • L: Lendall, Llewlwyn, Loms, Lot, Lyman
  • M: Manasseh, Mansfred, Marayanna, Marston, Mayday, Mehitable, Micajah, Milla, Mindwell, Minerva
  • N: Nabby, Nahum
  • O: Orvilla
  • P: Pamelia, Percival, Phebee, Philander, Pliny
  • R: Rodolth, Rosalinda, Rosamund, Ruhamah
  • S: Sally, Salome, Seiba, Shubael, Shubel, Sibley, Silence, Silvanus, Sophronia, Sukey, Sylvanus
  • T: Tamer, Ternon, Theophilus, Tristam, Tryphena
  • V: Vivia
  • W: Waverly, Wentworth, Worham, Winthrop
  • Z: Zabiah, Zebiah, Zeal, Zephaniah, Zilpah

I bet Vivia would appeal to modern parents looking for an alternative to Olivia and/or Vivian.

Which of the above do you like best? How about least?

Source: Gravestone Inscriptions and Records of Tomb Burials in the Central Burying Ground (1917) by Ogden Codman

More Names from Boston Burials – Ziba, Buttolph, Fear

Granary, Boston
Granary Burying Ground, Boston
Last month I posted about interesting names that can be found at King’s Chapel Burying Ground, one of the two cemeteries on Boston’s Freedom Trail.

Today let’s check out interesting names that can be found at the other cemetery on the Trail, Granary Burying Ground (est. 1660).

Here’s what I spotted (using a book of inscriptions):

  • A: Azor, Appoline, Adelbart, Adino, Adna, Affia, Albion, Alfrena, Alithere (female), Alletta, Angalesa, Anjennette, Areton, Aroline, Atsey, Avid
  • B: Barachiah, Bethulia, Buttolph
  • C: Cassander, Clarenia, Collford, Cornwall, Crispus (Crispus Attucks), Cushing
  • D: Danforth, Dering, Duty (male)
  • E: Egatha, Electa, Eudoxa, Euphaime, Eustis
  • F: Fessenden, Fitzwilliam, Fear, Fidealia
  • G: Gad, Geradine, Grisell
  • J: Jacquith, Jenevie, Jennet, Jocastia
  • K: Knight
  • L: Laban, Lately, Lisley, Llewellyn, Lodusky (female), Loungo
  • M: Mahala, Malvina, Maranda, Melatiah (female), Metcalf, Moody
  • N: Nahum
  • O: Olimpia, Olander, Onesiphorus, Orinda, Ozias
  • P: Patterick, Peace (male), Pearly, Peletiah, Pepperell, Peregrin, Person, Philobeth (male), Phineas, Pilgrim, Plummer, Prosillo (female)
  • R: Rasilla, Reconcile, Roxana (“from Roxbury”)
  • S: Samartha, Seath, Seferanna, Sophronia, Stoddard, Stanhope, Sylvender
  • T: Tamer, Theophilus, Thusia, Trueman
  • W: Waitstill, Welthea, Wilhelmina, Winthrop
  • Z: Zera, Ziba (male)

All of the above were listed just once. Notable names that appeared more than once in the book include Almira/Elmira, Bathsheba, Dewitt, Doritha, Elbridge, Epes (relatives of Epes Sargent), Gamaliel, Gershom, Gillam, Increase, Jotham, Keziah, Louisiana, Mehitable/Mehetable, Nabby, Pamelia/Permelia, Persis, Rozamond/Rozamund, Silence, Sylvanus and Tamzen.

Source: Gravestone inscriptions and records of tomb burials in the Granary Burying Ground, Boston, Mass. (1918) by Ogden Codman

The Baby Name Theonita

Theonita Cox and the baby name TheonitaThe name Theonita has appeared on the SSA’s baby name list only once:

  • 1958: unlisted
  • 1957: 17 baby girls named Theonita [debut]
  • 1956: unlisted

That’s pretty high for a one-hit wonder. What’s the explanation?

Looks like it’s debutante Theonita Cox, who graced the cover of Jet magazine in February of 1957. Beside her photo is the headline: “THEONITA COX: Pretty Chicago teen-ager was among 20 in society debut.”

A later issue of Jet reveals that Theonita’s father’s name was Theophilus.

Theonita Cox boosting the popularity of the baby name Theonita came nearly two decades after a more high-profile debutante, Brenda Frazier, did the same for the name Brenda.

Source: Major, Gerri. “Society World.” Jet 1 Feb. 1962: 39.
Image: Jet cover, 7 Feb. 1957

Oddball English Names, 17th and 18th Centuries

One of the sources I used for yesterday’s post on Ono Titchiner was a book full of 17th and 18th century marriage records from Surrey.

In the introduction, the author listed some of the more notable names to be found in the book:

There are some curious and uncommon Christian names from Biblical and Classical sources; amongst those of females, Achsa, Adeliza, Aphara, Anastasia, Aquila, Avarillar, Bathana, Bedia, Bethia, Cassandra, Caroline-Shepherdess, Celeste, Clementia, Damaris, Dionisia, Dufiner, Dulcibella, Eleanor, Emmaritta, Emlin, Euphemia, Grachauna, Gratitude, Hephzibah, Israel, Jacobinea, Jaminia, Juliana, Kimbra, Melior, Milbrough, Pamelia, Parthenia, Paterniller, Pleasant-Furs, Protesia, Silvestria, Sina, Statira, Tamar, Tempearance, Theodosia, Tryphena, “Virgin” [Price]; and amongst males those of Ananias, Bivel, Calverley, Chrusophilus, Demetrius, Deodatus, Derik, Emmet, Eusebius, Ezekiel, Fretwill, Gershom, Haman, Haseldine [Crab-tree], Jonah, Lazarus, Nazareth, “Offspring” [Brown], Ono, Prew, Purchas, Redhead [Eagle], Rulove, Sills [Gibbons], Theophilus, Truth, Uphill, Ward, Wintz, Zacheus, Zenas, Zeuler.

It’s interesting to note that a few of the above (like Juliana and Jonah) are now commonplace.

And I could imagine a few others (Tamar? Lazarus?) becoming trendy in the near future.

Which of these names do you like best?

Source: Bax, Alfred Ridley. Allegations for Marriage Licences Issued by the Commissary Court of Surrey Between 1673-1770. Norwich: Goose & Son, 1907.

Eusebia, Cyrian, Albina, Garin – Possible Royal Baby Names?

Prince William and Kate MiddletonIn early December, we learned that Prince William and Catherine “Kate” Middleton were expecting.

Many other name bloggers have since posted great lists of potential royal baby names (like this one, and this one).

Because others have already covered the topic, and because I’m not incredibly interested in the royal family, I was on the fence about bothering with a similar post.

And then, rather fortuitously, I received a fun press release revealing some of the more unusual names in William’s and Kate’s respective family trees. So I’ll go ahead and post that (plus a couple of polls!) instead:


Unusual first names in the royal couple’s family trees uncovered as pregnancy is announced –

If Prince William and Kate Middleton decide to take baby-name inspiration from their forebears, the royal baby could be born a ‘Grissel’, ‘Boniface’ or even ‘Lancelot’.

New research from, Canada’s leading family history website, reveals that while ‘Elizabeth’ and ‘John’ are the most common boys and girls names in both family trees, there are several more unusual choices the young royals could opt for.

The royal family tree contains the most unusual names – with Boniface, Cyrian, Marmaduke, Slyvanus and Lancelot all featuring in the male line, while Eusebia, Honor, Thomasin, Ursula and Hyacinth appear for the females.

And while many of Kate’s female ancestors have more recognizable names, her ancestors weren’t without some interesting monikers as well. Among the boys are Garin, Lewen, Theophilus, Uriah and Elie, together with girls called Permelia, Albina, Edezer, Grissel and Jemima.

To discover unusual names in your family’s past, visit and sign up for a 14-day free trial.

Let’s play a game. Let’s say William and Kate are required (by decree of the Queen!) to use one of the unusual names above. And let’s also say the couple want to hear your opinion on the matter. (Again, highly plausible!) Which two royal baby names — one boy name, one girl name — would you recommend to them?

Which male royal baby name would you pick?

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Which female royal baby name would you pick?

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Image: Will & Kate on the balcony by Magnus D