Popular Baby Names in South Africa, 2017

According to Statistics South Africa, the most popular baby name in the country in 2017 was Enzokuhle — for both boys and girls!

Here are South Africa’s top 10 girl names and top 10 boy names of 2017:

Girl Names
1. Enzokuhle (meaning “to do good” in Zulu), 2,587 baby girls
2. Melokuhle (“stand up for what’s right,” Zulu), 2,456
3. Amahle (“pretty,” Zulu), 2,260
4. Lethabo (“luck,” Sesotho, Sepedi & Setswana), 2,243
5. Amogelang, 2,089
6. Omphile, 2,078
7. Lesedi, 2,059
8. Rethabile, 2,045
9. Luthando, 1,919
10. Thandolwethu, 1,784

Boy Names
1. Enzokuhle, 2,832 baby boys
2. Lethabo, 2,824
3. Melokuhle, 2,487
4. Lubanzi, 2,293
5. Amogelang, 2,164
6. Siyabonga, 2,147
7. Bandile, 1,976
8. Junior, 1,969
9. Bokamoso, 1,877
10. Mpho, 1,818

Interestingly, three names — Enzokuhle, Melokuhle and Amogelang — ranked in the top five for both genders.

In terms of middle names, the top choices were…

  • Girls: Precious (5,355), Princess (3,925), Angel (3,351)
  • Boys: Junior (9,196), Blessing (4,694), Gift (3,735)

In 2016, the top baby names names were reportedly Precious and Junior, but…I’m under the impression that SA rankings from before 2017 accounted for overall usage, not first-name usage specifically.

Sources: What’s in a name? | Statistics South Africa, It’s official: Here are SA’s most popular baby names, P0305 – Recorded live births, 2017

Popular and Unusual Baby Names in Moscow, 2017

According to the Moscow Civil Registry Office, the most popular baby names in the city in 2017 were Sofiya and Aleksandr.

Here are Moscow’s top 10 girl names and top 10 boy names of 2017:

Girl Names
1. Sofiya, 3,780 baby girls
2. Mariya, 2,709
3. Anna, 2,595
4. Alisa (Alice), 2,200
5. Viktoriya, 2,124
6. Anastasiya, 2,082
7. Polina, 1,962
8. Aleksandra, 1,817
9. Yelizaveta (Elizabeth), 1,806
10. Yekaterina (Catherine), 1,676

Boy Names
1. Aleksandr, 3,201 baby boys
2. Mikhail, 2,677
3. Artem, 2,621
4. Maksim, 2,568
5. Daniil, 2,405
6. Ivan, 2,289
7. Dmitriy, 1,968
8. Kirill, 1,478
9. Matvey, 1,459
10. Andrey (Andrew), 1,453

The top names, Sofiya and Aleksandr, were the same back in 2014.

Last year’s uncommon baby names included…

  • Girl names: Agrafena, Dorofeya, Galina, Inna, Isidora, Iskra, Ladislava, Larisa, Lyudmila, Vassa, Zinaida, Zlatozara
  • Boy names: Anatoliy, Forvard (Forward), Franklin, Gennadiy, Kharlampiy, Ladomir, Nord, Orpheus, Patrikey, Valentin, Valeriy, Velesvet, Vitaliy

And here’s something cool: If you want to see month-by-month baby name data for Moscow, it’s available at Moscow’s Open Data website.

Source: Moscow registry offices named the most unusual children’s names of 2017

Popular Baby Names in South Africa, 2016

According to Statistics South Africa, the most popular baby names in the country in 2016 were Precious and Junior.

Here are South Africa’s top 10 girl names and top 10 boy names of 2016:

Girl Names
1. Precious
2. Princess
3. Amahle
4. Luthando
5. Thandolwethu
6. Blessing
7. Angel
8. Siphesihle
9. Melokuhle
10. Amogelang

Boy Names
1. Junior
2. Blessing
3. Gift
4. Bandile
5. Prince
6. Melokuhle
7. Siyabonga
8. Lethabo
9. Amogelang
10. Lubanzi

In the girls’ top 10, Luthando, Siphesihle, and Amogelang replace Minenhle, Faith, and Lesedi.

In the boys’ top 10, Amogelang and Lubanzi replace Benele and Samkelo.

In 2015, the top two names were the same.

Sources: What’s in a name? SA’s most popular baby names revealed, Recorded live births, 2016 – Stats SA

Popular Baby Names in South Africa, 2015

According to data released last October by Statistics South Africa, the most popular baby names in the country in 2015 were Precious and Junior.

Here are South Africa’s top 10 girl names and top 10 boy names of 2015:

Girl Names
1. Precious, 6,598 baby girls
2. Princess, 4,762
3. Angel, 4,684
4. Amahle, 3,998
5. Minenhle, 3,347
6. Thandolwethu, 3,204
7. Melokuhle, 2,997
8. Blessing, 2,919
9. Faith, 2,906
10. Lesedi, 2,851

Boy Names
1. Junior, 10,743 baby boys
2. Blessing, 5,819
3. Gift, 4,898
4. Bandile, 4,078
5. Prince, 3,721
6. Siyabonga, 3,713
7. Melokuhle, 3,513
8. Lethabo, 3,280
9. Banele, 2,864
10. Samkelo, 2,748

The new #1 girl name, Precious, is also new to the top 10. (It replaces former #1 Iminathi, which dropped out of the top 10.) The top boy name is still the placeholder name Junior.

Most of the names above are brand new to the rankings, which is a bit suspicious. But I’m inclined to think that these 2015 rankings are more trustworthy than the 2014 rankings, as the raw numbers are much higher this time around.

At least five of the names above are from the isiZulu language. Here’s what they mean:

  • Amahle means “the beautiful ones”
  • Bandile means “they have extended in number”
  • Minenhle means “good/lovely day”
  • Siyabonga means “we are grateful”
  • Thandolwethu means “our love”

Sources: Most popular baby names in South Africa revealed, Top 10 most popular baby names for boys and girls in South Africa, Naming in Zulu – African Studies Center (Penn)

Popular Baby Names in Israel, 2015

According to data released earlier this week by Israel’s Central Bureau for Statistics (CBS), the top three most popular baby names in the country overall in 2015 were:

  1. Mohammed
  2. Yosef (used for male babies — both Muslim and Jewish)
  3. Ariel (used for Jewish babies — both male and female)

The top baby names for Jewish babies specifically were Noa and Noam:

Girl Names (Jewish)
1. Noa
2. Tamar
3. Maya
4. Avigayil/Avigail/Abigail
5. Talya/Talia
6. Adele
7. Shira
8. Ayala/Ayela
9. Yael
10. Sarah/Sara

Boy Names (Jewish)
1. Noam
2. David
3. Ori/Uri
4. Ariel
5. Eitan
6. Yosef
7. Itai/Itay
8. Yonatan
9. Daniel
10. Moshe

The CBS also reported that the boy names Dror, Yagel/Yigal, and Alroi/Elroi/Elroy each saw a sharp rise in usage in 2015.

The top baby names for Muslim babies specifically were Maryam and Mohammad:

Girl Names (Muslim)
1. Maryam/Miryam/Mariam
2. Sha’im
3. Jana/Janah
4. Lin
5. Lian/Layan
6. Alin/Aline
7. Sa’ara

Boy Names (Muslim)
1. Mohammad
2. Ahmed
3. Yosef
4. Omar
5. Adam
6. Jud/Jod
7. Abed
8. Ali
9. Amir
10. Ibrahim

The 2012 rankings for Israel are pretty similar.

Sources: Mohammad & Noa 2015’s most common names for newborns, Most popular Jewish names: Noam for a boy and Noa for a girl, What were the most popular names for boys and girls in 2015?