Where did the baby name Jareth come from in 1986?

The character Jareth from the movie "Labyrinth" (1986).
Jareth from “Labyrinth

The curious name Jareth first popped up in the U.S. baby name data in 1986:

  • 1988: 51 baby boys named Jareth
  • 1987: 50 baby boys named Jareth
  • 1986: 10 baby boys named Jareth [debut]
  • 1985: unlisted
  • 1984: unlisted

What put it there?

Jim Henson’s goblin-filled musical fantasy film Labyrinth (1986).

The movie’s main character was a teenage girl named Sarah (played by Jennifer Connelly). While babysitting her cranky baby brother Toby, she “teasingly wishe[d] the goblins would take him away.” The problem? Her wish came true.

Jareth the Goblin King (played by David Bowie) explained to Sarah that the baby was now in his castle, which was at the center of a massive, otherworldly labyrinth. She could have her brother back…but only if she could find her way to the castle.

“You have 13 hours in which to solve the labyrinth before your baby brother becomes one of us forever.”

I don’t know which of the Labyrinth‘s creators (Jim Henson? Brian Froud? Terry Jones?) came up with the name Jareth, or how it was coined. Perhaps it was based on the Welsh name Gareth, or on the Biblical name Jared. (Or both?)

What are your thoughts on the name Jareth?

Source: Labyrinth movie review & film summary (1986) | Roger Ebert

7 thoughts on “Where did the baby name Jareth come from in 1986?

  1. If I had been born a boy, I would have been named Jareth! My mom loves that movie. I would like to have a Labyrinth themed wedding some day. I want our first dance to be to “As the World Falls Down.” :)

  2. I also love that film and I would be blessed to have a baby boy in the future, I would give him the name “Jareth”.

  3. Add 1 for 1993

    Shout out to all my fellow Jareths who wind up here for the same reason I did.

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