Where did the baby name Raef come from in 1966?

The character Raef del Grado from the movie "You're a Big Boy Now" (1966).
Raef from “You’re a Big Boy Now

Up until the 1990s, the name Raef was just a one-time blip in the U.S. baby name data:

  • 1968: unlisted
  • 1967: unlisted
  • 1966: 5 baby boys named Raef [debut]
  • 1965: unlisted
  • 1964: unlisted

Where did it come from in the mid-1960s?

The source seems to be the early Francis Ford Coppola movie You’re a Big Boy Now, a coming-of-age comedy set in Manhattan that came out in late 1966. It featured a character named Raef del Grado (played by Tony Bill) who worked with the main character, Bernard, at the New York Public library and offered him advice on his love life.

Decades later, in 2002, usage of the name peaked thanks to professional basketball player Raef LaFrentz, who was playing for the Denver Nuggets at the time:

  • 2004: 17 baby boys named Raef
  • 2003: 25 baby boys named Raef
  • 2002: 38 baby boys named Raef
    • 5 born in Colorado
  • 2001: 10 baby boys named Raef
  • 1999: 6 baby boys named Raef

What are your thoughts on the baby name Raef?

Sources: You’re a Big Boy Now – Wikipedia, Raef LaFrentz – Wikipedia

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