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

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Popularity of the Baby Name Zelda

Number of Babies Named Zelda

Born in the U.S. Since 1880

Posts that Mention the Name Zelda

Biggest Changes in Girl Name Popularity, 2015

Which girl names increased and decreased the most in popularity from 2014 to 2015?

Here are two ways to look at it. The SSA’s way looks at ranking differences and covers the top 1,000 girl names (roughly). My way looks at raw number differences and takes all girl names on the SSA’s list into account.

Biggest Increases

Raw Numbers (all girl names) Rankings (top 1,000 girl names)
  1. Alexa, +1,786 babies (4,243 to 6,029)
  2. Hazel, +1,373 babies (2,897 to 4,270)
  3. Mia, +1,336 babies (13,484 to 14,820)
  4. Charlotte, +1,238 babies (10,094 to 11,332)
  5. Scarlett, +1,106 babies (5,994 to 7,100)
  6. Amelia, +1,025 babies (8,770 to 9,795)
  7. Riley, +925 babies (4,782 to 5,707)
  8. Aurora, +882 babies (2,731 to 3,613)
  9. Adeline, +862 babies (1,529 to 2,391)
  10. Penelope, +843 babies (5,078 to 5,921)
  1. Alaia, +2,012 spots (2,676th to 664th)
  2. Meilani, +1,836 spots (2,786th to 950th)
  3. Aitana, +1,721 spots (2,638th to 917th)
  4. Aislinn, +1,385 spots (2,345th to 960th)
  5. Taya, +1,107 spots (2,089th to 982nd)
  6. Adaline, +1,029 spots (1,393rd to 364th)
  7. Briar, +597 spots (1,441st to 844th)
  8. Zelda, +512 spots (1,159th to 647th)
  9. Adley, +495 spots (1,322nd to 827th)
  10. Lennox, +416 spots (1,156th to 740th)

Hazel, Taya and Adeline were influenced by films: Hazel by The Fault in Our Stars (2014), Taya by American Sniper (2014), and Adaline by The Age of Adaline (2015).

Meilani and Aitana were boosted by celebrity babies. Meilani is the daughter of Jenni “JWoww” Farley, originally of “Jersey Shore” fame, and Aitana is the daughter of Mexican actors Alessandra Rosaldo and Eugenio Derbez. (Both babies were born in 2014.)

Adley was popularized by county singer Adley Stump.

Biggest Decreases

Raw Numbers (all girl names) Rankings (top 1,000 girl names)
  1. Isabella, -1,523 babies (17,027 to 15,504)
  2. Sophia, -1,236 babies (18,563 to 17,327)
  3. Annabelle, -1,093 babies (4,343 to 3,250)
  4. Emily, -895 babies (12,622 to 11,727)
  5. Alexis, -813 babies (4,208 to 3,395)
  6. Arianna, -757 babies (5,255 to 4,498)
  7. Ella, -673 babies (8,525 to 7,852)
  8. Aubree, -649 babies (4,266 to 3,617)
  9. Chloe, -623 babies (8,507 to 7,884)
  10. Natalie, -623 babies (7,089 to 6,466)
  1. Isis, -1,065 spots (705th to 1,770th)
  2. Annabell, -500 spots (935th to 1,435th)
  3. Anabel, -500 spots (908th to 1,408th)
  4. Cindy, -343 spots (712th to 1,055th)
  5. Anabella, -333 spots (531st to 864th)
  6. Aranza, -324 spots (607th to 931st)
  7. Anabelle, -272 spots (464th to 736th)
  8. Sherlyn, -250 spots (891st to 1,141st)
  9. Kiley, -235 spots (661st to 896th)
  10. Danika, -225 spots (785th to 1,010th)

Isis was brought down by the association with the Jihadist militant group, and nearly every single variant of Annabelle was negatively affected by the horror film Annabelle, released in late 2014.

In 2014, the big winners were Olivia and Aranza, and the big losers were Sophia and Miley.

Sources: Change in Popularity from 2014 to 2015, Emma and Noah Once Again Social Security’s Most Popular Baby Names for 2015

U.S. Baby Names 2015: Most Popular Baby Names, Top Debuts: Girl Names, Top Debuts: Boy Names, Biggest Changes in Popularity: Girl Names, Biggest Changes in Popularity: Boy Names, First Letter Popularity, Name Length Popularity


Most Popular U.S. Baby Names of 2015

According to the Social Security Administration, Emma and Noah were the most popular baby names in the United States in 2015.

Here’s the top 10:

Girl Names Boy Names
1. Emma, 20355 baby girls
2. Olivia, 19553
3. Sophia, 17327
4. Ava, 16286
5. Isabella, 15504
6. Mia, 14820
7. Abigail, 12311
8. Emily, 11727
9. Charlotte, 11332
10. Harper, 10241
1. Noah, 19511 baby boys
2. Liam, 18281
3. Mason, 16535
4. Jacob, 15816
5. William, 15809
6. Ethan, 14991
7. James, 14705
8. Alexander, 14460
9. Michael, 14321
10. Benjamin, 13608

Emma and Noah were also the #1 names in 2014.

Harper replaces Madison in the girls’ top 10; Benjamin replaces Daniel in the boys’ top 10.

Here’s the rest of the top 50:

Girl Names Boy Names
11. Madison, 10038
12. Amelia, 9795
13. Elizabeth, 9656
14. Sofia, 9650
15. Evelyn, 9313
16. Avery, 9298
17. Chloe, 7884
18. Ella, 7852
19. Grace, 7589
20. Victoria, 7575
21. Aubrey, 7357
22. Scarlett, 7100
23. Zoey, 6900
24. Addison, 6683
25. Lily, 6617
26. Lillian, 6571
27. Natalie, 6466
28. Hannah, 6372
29. Aria, 6371
30. Layla, 6289
31. Brooklyn, 6268
32. Alexa, 6029
33. Zoe, 5995
34. Penelope, 5921
35. Riley, 5707
36. Leah, 5585
37. Audrey, 5581
38. Savannah, 5413
39. Allison, 5329
40. Samantha, 5304
41. Nora, 5301
42. Skylar, 5258
43. Camila, 5257
44. Anna, 5094
45. Paisley, 5056
46. Ariana, 4933
47. Ellie, 4838
48. Aaliyah, 4836
49. Claire, 4805
50. Violet, 4779
11. Elijah, 13511
12. Daniel, 13408
13. Aiden, 13378
14. Logan, 12862
15. Matthew, 12648
16. Lucas, 12246
17. Jackson, 12182
18. David, 11691
19. Oliver, 11592
20. Jayden, 11475
21. Joseph, 11375
22. Gabriel, 10782
23. Samuel, 10733
24. Carter, 10727
25. Anthony, 10564
26. John, 10303
27. Dylan, 10232
28. Luke, 10219
29. Henry, 10112
30. Andrew, 10027
31. Isaac, 9878
32. Christopher, 9742
33. Joshua, 9720
34. Wyatt, 9597
35. Sebastian, 9569
36. Owen, 9549
37. Caleb, 8727
38. Nathan, 8530
39. Ryan, 8474
40. Jack, 8456
41. Hunter, 8284
42. Levi, 8236
43. Christian, 8127
44. Jaxon, 8015
45. Julian, 8003
46. Landon, 7896
47. Grayson, 7852
48. Jonathan, 7577
49. Isaiah, 7528
50. Charles, 7125

In the girls’ top 50, Alexa, Paisley, Ellie and Violet replace Arianna, Gabriella, Sadie and Sarah.

In the boys’ top 50, Grayson and Charles replace Eli and Aaron.

Impressive rises:

  • Alexa rose 31 places, from 63rd to 32nd
  • Violet rose 17 places, from 67th to 50th
  • Grayson rose 16 places, from 63rd to 47th
  • Oliver rose 13 places, from 32nd to 19th
  • Riley (girl name) rose 12 places, from 47th to 35th

Impressive drops:

  • Arianna dropped 16 places, from 40th to 56th
  • Gabriella dropped 11 places, from 43rd to 54th
  • Anna dropped 10 places, from 34th to 44th

There’s much more to come! Until then, I’ll quote liberally from the SSA’s press release:

Each year, the list reveals the effect of pop-culture on naming trends. This year’s winners for biggest jump in popularity in the Top 1,000 are Alaia and Riaan.

Alaia jumped 2,012 spots on the girls’ side to number 664, from number 2,676 in 2014. Perhaps this can be attributed to high fashion designer Azzedine Alaia, or maybe it is because of Alaia Baldwin, the model/daughter of actor Stephen Baldwin.

Riaan increased 1,360 spots for the boys, from number 2,286 in 2014 to number 926. Of Indian origin, it is also the name of the young son of a well-known Bollywood actor, Riteish Deshmukh.

The second fastest riser for girls was Meilani. If you have ever watched MTV’s “Jersey Shore,” and maybe even if you haven’t, you’ve heard of Jenni “JWoww” Farley. She gave birth to daughter Meilani in 2014. On a different American shore, out in Hawaii, is another well-known Meilani–Bethany Meilani Hamilton, the professional surfer whose story of surviving a shark attack was documented in the movie “Soul Surfer.”

For boys, it was Huxley (a brave new comeback for the late science fiction writer?).

Some other notable names in the top 10 biggest increase category, and some possible reasons for their newfound popularity:

  • Omari and Jabari for boys. Omari Hardwick is an actor, known for his roles in “Sparkle,” “The A-Team,” and BET Network’s “Being Mary Jane.” He currently stars in “Power,” a popular cable TV series. Jabari Parker is a professional basketball player for the Milwaukee Bucks. He was the second overall pick in the 2014 NBA draft out of Duke.
  • Adaline and Zelda for girls. “The Age of Adaline” is a 2015 fantasy film starring Blake Lively, Harrison Ford, Michiel Huisman, and Ellen Burstyn. As for Zelda, maybe the legend continues to grow?

I’ll also note that the name Isis dropped from 705th place (398 baby girls) in 2014 to 1770th place (117 baby girls) in 2015.

Source: Emma and Noah Once Again Social Security’s Most Popular Baby Names for 2015

U.S. Baby Names 2015: Most Popular Baby Names, Top Debuts: Girl Names, Top Debuts: Boy Names, Biggest Changes in Popularity: Girl Names, Biggest Changes in Popularity: Boy Names, First Letter Popularity, Name Length Popularity

Name Quotes for the Weekend #22

Madonna quote, on her name

From a 1991 Vanity Fair interview with Madonna Ciccone:

I sometimes think I was born to live up to my name. How could I be anything else but what I am having been named Madonna? I would either have ended up a nun or this.

(Madonna, who was named after her mother, went by the nickname Nonni as a child.)

From “Quick Tip: Naming Your Children” by Sharon Beesley:

So, here’s my advice I tell everyone: One of the best ways to avoid having your kid share a name with a classmate is to browse through these personalized towels/bedsheets/backpacks in the Pottery Barn Kids catalog. Despite how much you might love the name, if you see it in the catalog, your kid will have a higher risk of name repeat. Sadly, if I could go back to the PBKids catalogs in 2005, I would see Ella monogramed on every pillow. Same with my boys in 2007. Look! There’s some left over Owen baskets they are still using. Do you see your kids name in some of the items in the current catalog? Prepare yourselves.

From “Why I Gave My Daughter a Black Name – Despite the Perceived Consequences” by Dara Tafakari Mathis:

Racism doesn’t play by the rules. Black parents cannot win the respectable name game in America.

Black people are discriminated against primarily because we are Black; our names are just a scapegoat. For example, “Tyrone” has come to stand for a “stereotypical” Black man. But did you know that the name Tyrone is Irish in origin? A name doesn’t have to be “creative” or “ghetto” to be Black; it just has to be Black long enough. And as soon as we make something “Black,” the cycle of discrimination begins afresh.

From “An Open Letter to the Hipster Babies of Hipster Parents” by Nicole Leigh Shaw:

You’ll look cool sporting a binkie with a handlebar mustache though, because you’ll have a name to match your level of sardonic suckling. Yes, hipster babies, your names will be either gender neutral or plucked from an F. Scott Fitzgerald novel. Nothing goes better with your ‘stachifier than an alpaca-hair blankie and the name Myrtle or Gatsby. Have fun at the independent coffee house where you’ll meet up with Zelda and Jasper in your vintage pram that makes even Mary Poppins say, “Practically perfect in every way.”

If your folks take the gender-neutral name route, then on paper some of your names will prompt people to wonder, “Is that a boy or a girl?” It’s all fine and good to choose Jane or Bob, but today’s babies are sporting the sweetest little genderless names, like Harper and Riley. If you’re lucky, you’ll be born to real envelope pushers. Maybe you’ll be named Person or Human!

From “11 Colors You’ve Probably Never Heard Of” at Mental Floss:

2. COQUELICOT

Originally another word for poppy, coquelicot is the flower’s orange-tinted red color. (It also sounds like a celebrity baby name.)

(Here’s what coquelicot looks like.)

From an article about the nuns of St. John the Divine, the inspiration behind the BBC show Call the Midwife:

Between 80 and 100 babies were born each month in the eight-mile square district of Poplar. “If there’s one thing I’ll say about East End mums, it’s that they love their kids,” adds [Sister] Christine. “In the 100 years we were there, just one baby was abandoned on our doorstep. We cared for him before the police came. They named him John Divine.”

(Speaking of Call the Midwife…the convent in the show, Nonnatus House, is named for St. Raymond Nonnatus. His nickname Nonnatus, Latin for “not born,” refers to the fact that he was born by Caesarean section because his mother died while giving birth to him.)

From “Week 35: Never share your baby names” by Nicole Dubé of CTV News Winnipeg:

My husband and I have kept our boy and girl name choices on the DL because we want the special privilege of introducing our first joint venture (a.k.a. child) to the world with as much pomp and circumstance as we can muster. Plus, we love surprises.

Well the other day while chatting with friends about what people are calling their kids these days, our boy name came up and got slammed!

I couldn’t hide my horrified reaction, thinking “Great, back to the drawing board!”

But my husband surprised me by saying he liked hearing the negative reaction because it didn’t change his emotional connection to our choice.

Name crisis averted, but lesson learned: Keep mum on baby name talk!

From an article about the best names from the 2014 MLB Draft by Dakota Gardner of MLB.com’s Cut4:

If you name your child “Blaze,” he’s destined for one of only two career paths: baseball pitcher or American Gladiator.

(In case you’re wondering, Blaze is indeed an American Gladiator name.)

Baby Named Tali’Zorah for Video Game Character

A baby girl born in North Carolina in early January was named Tali’Zorah (full first name) after a character in the video game Mass Effect.

Tali’Zorah’s father, Adam, said the name was his wife’s idea:

“I was playing the first Mass Effect while she enjoyed it as a spectator, and she fell in love with the name ‘Tali’Zorah’ the instant we met the Quarian being hunted by Fist.

“She told me back then, ‘If we ever have a daughter, I’d love to name her Tali’Zorah,'” Adam said. “It just sounds so beautiful.”

Is he worried Tali’Zorah might be teased about her unusual name?

“Kids will pick on other kids, whether it’s for a name, their hair, or their clothes, so the best I can do is to teach her how to treat people with respect and how to handle those who refuse to do the same.”

Good answer.

What do you think of the name Tali’Zorah? (Her middle name is Rose, btw.)

Source: This Baby’s Name Comes From Mass Effect, and Grandma is Thrilled

Other video game baby names: Dovahkiin, Kain, Kairi, Raiden, Rinoa, Zelda. Not Turok, though.

Name This Couple’s Daughter – Amelia? Cthulhu?

Stephen McLaughlin and his wife have put up a website, NameMyDaughter.com, where you can suggest and/or vote for a name for their unborn baby girl, due on April 2.

The caveat, of course, is that the couple “will ultimately be making the final decision” regarding their daughter’s name. Meaning that the site is really no more than a great big suggestion engine that happens to be getting a lot of traffic right now, thanks to Reddit and some press coverage.

Well played, McLaughlin family. Well played.

But it’s an entertaining site nonetheless.

As you’d expect, the internet-suggested names are a mix of serious and silly. The day I created the this post, Amelia was the first name with the most votes. Now that I’m writing it up, the top choice is Cthulhu. Other first names with a lot of votes include Charlotte, Olivia, Camille, Sage, Megatron, Pond, Streetlamp and Stormageddon. Also, both Zelda and Not Zelda.

For middles I see Mae, Rose, Grace, Renee, All-Spark, Le-dash-a, Salad and Of-the-sea. (Of-the-sea is actually kinda awesome. I’ve voted for that one a few times.)

What first-middle pairing do you think the McLaughlins will end up choosing?

What would you choose if you could name this baby?

Source: What happens when you let the internet choose your baby’s name?

At Work, Do Sexy Names Help or Hinder?

Signs point to “hinder.”

While Deborah Linville was a grad student at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in 1984, she asked a group of students to “rate the perceived sexiness of 250 female names” on a scale from 1 to 7. Below are the biggest winners and losers. (Remember, this was the 1980s!)

Most Sexy Names Least Sexy Names
Christine (5.08)
Candace (4.92)
Cheryl (4.91)
Melanie (4.91)
Dawn (4.83)
Heather (4.83)
Jennifer (4.83)
Marilyn (4.83)
Michelle (4.83)
Susan (4.83)
Ethel (1.00)
Alma (1.08)
Zelda (1.16)
Florence (1.5)
Mildred (1.5)
Myrtle (1.5)
Silvana (1.5)
Edna (1.66)
Eurolinda (1.66)
Elvira (1.69)

Linville then had a different group of students to “rate the job applications of eight equally qualified women — submitted under particularly sexy and unsexy names.”

The result?

Linville found that a “sexy” name can hurt a woman’s chances of furthering her career. Conversely, an unsexy name may give her an advantage.

The study…found that men are more likely to hire women with names they perceive as non-sexy for managerial positions and give these women higher salaries. Women hiring other women are less influenced by the sound of the name.

Why might men be biased against sexy names in the workplace? “[P]erhaps because men particularly expect female managers to possess strengths, such as motivation and decisiveness, that they don’t associate with sexy-sounding names.”

Linville’s suggestion to women was to use initials rather than first names on their résumés. (Good suggestion, as this could also help job-seekers avoid other kinds of name discrimination.)

Sources:

10 Tech-Inspired Baby Names Like ‘Like’

facebook likeA few months ago, PCWorld published a list of 10 tech-inspired baby names better than Like.

I thought I’d compile a similar list, but go in the opposite direction. So below are ten real-life, headline-grabbing, tech-inspired names just like Like.

Starting, of course, with Like:

Like

An Israeli baby girl was named Like after the Facebook “Like Button” in 2011. (Go like baby Like, if you like.)

Facebook

A Egyptian baby girl was named Facebook after the social networking site Facebook in 2011.

Google

A Swedish baby boy was named Google after the search engine Google in 2005.

[I’ve never blogged about this one before, surprisingly. Oliver Google Kai was born on 12 September 2005 in Kalmar, Sweden, to Dr. Walid Elias Kai (who is Lebanese) and his wife Carol (who is Swedish). Google’s response: “We wish him long life and good health, and hope his schoolmates aren’t too hard on him.”]

@

A Chinese baby boy was possibly named @ after the “at” symbol found in e-mail addresses in 2007. (The name may or may not have been approved by the Chinese government.)

Vista

A Canadian baby girl was named Vista after the Windows Vista operating system in 2007.

2.0

An American baby boy was named Jon Blake Cusack 2.0 — 2.0 in place of a more traditional suffix, like II or Jr. — in 2004.

Annanova

A Dutch baby girl was named Annanova after virtual newscaster Ananova in 2000.

Trendy

An English baby boy was named Trendy in part after “Trending Topics” on Twitter in 2011.

Iuma

A handful of babies from various countries were named Iuma as part of the Internet Underground Music Archive (IUMA) baby naming contest in 2000.

Dovahkiin

An American baby boy was named Dovahkiin after a video game character just a few days ago. (Other video game baby names include Zelda and Rinoa)

For less-crazy tech-inspired names, try PCWorld’s list, or try my namestorms for internet lovers and/or computer lovers.

UPDATE, 1/2014: Here’s another tech-related name — an American baby girl has been named Tali’Zorah after a video game character.

UPDATE, 9/2015: And yet another tech-related name — Linux, which debuted on the national list just recently.