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

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Popularity of the Baby Name Gillian


Posts that Mention the Name Gillian

Baby name story: Handa

Puffins on Handa Island (Scotland)

English ornithologist Reynold Bray was “an Arctic explorer of considerable achievement and much promise” who was lost at sea during a visit to northern Canada on September 14, 1938.

A month earlier, on August 10, a baby girl was born to Reynold’s widow Gillian back in England.

Notice was cabled to Bray at Churchill [in Manitoba] where he was waiting to embark upon what proved to be his last expedition. At his request the child was named Handa, after a bird island off the northwest coast of Scotland that he and Mrs. Bray had visited the previous May.

These days, Handa Island is a wildlife reserve.

The island’s Scottish Gaelic name, Eilean Shannda, is of mixed Gaelic/Norse etymology and means “island at the sandy river.”

What are your thoughts on the baby name Handa?

[Interesting fact: In 1964, Handa Bray inherited Shere Manor Estate in Surrey. She is currently the fifteenth (and first female) Lord of the Manor.]

Sources:

Image: Puffins by Donald Macauley under CC BY-SA 2.0.

Popular baby names in British Columbia, 2019

According to British Columbia’s Vital Statistics Agency, the most popular baby names in the province in 2019 were Olivia and Oliver.

Here are British Columbia’s top 10 girl names and top 10 boy names of 2019:

Girl Names

  1. Olivia, 263 baby girls
  2. Charlotte, 176
  3. Emma, 167
  4. Ava, 153
  5. Sophia, 149
  6. Amelia, 141
  7. Chloe, 137
  8. Mia, 136
  9. Isla, 128
  10. Evelyn and Ella, 122 each (tie)

Boy Names

  1. Oliver, 233 baby boys
  2. Liam, 217
  3. Lucas, 216
  4. Ethan, 207
  5. Noah, 200
  6. William, 191
  7. Benjamin, 181
  8. Theodore, 171
  9. Leo, 163
  10. Logan, 156

In 2018, the top two names were Olivia and Liam.

In the girls’ top 10, Mia, Evelyn and Ella replaced Emily and Abigail.

In the boys’ top 10, Theodore replaced James.

Finally, some of the names bestowed just five times each in British Columbia last year include…

  • Girl names: Anhad, Baani, Constance, Darya, Emberly, Gillian, Haisley, Ila, Jiayi, Kaelyn, Linden, Mina, Niya, Opal, Ravleen, Saanjh, Tayla, Veronika, Wendy, Zaynab
  • Boy names: Arie, Baker, Casper, Douglas, Elon, Garrett, Henri, Israel, Joaquin, Kye, Leonidas, Malek, Navraj, Orson, Reginald, Sajjan, Thatcher, Vladimir, Wilfred, Zoravar

Source: Baby’s Most Chosen Names in British Columbia, 2019

Baby Name Needed for the Sibling of Adele

Here’s an e-mail I got from a reader named Sara:

I’m expecting baby #2 in spring. Our daughter’s name is Adele. We’re not finding out the gender, so would like options for boys and girls names that go well with Adele. For girls, I’m liking Elise, Caroline, Winifred and Celia as examples. For boys, Foster, Joseph and Thomas come to mind. Welcome all suggestions! Thanks!

Winifred! I was excited to see that one.

Here are some other possibilities:

Boy names

Frederick
Henry
Hugh
Julian
Louis
Mark
Martin
Nathan
Oliver
Philip
Robert
Peter
Simon
Walter
William

Girl names

Beatrice
Camille
Claire
Corinne
Eugenie
Gillian
Iris
Johanna
Louise
Lucia
Marion
Naomi
Nicole
Rose
Thea

Which of the above do you like best with Adele? What other names would you suggest to Sara?

Baby Name Needed for the Sister of Copeland

A reader named Lisa is expecting her second daughter a couple of weeks and needs some name assistance. Her first daughter is Copeland Rhine. Lisa’s main predicament is this:

[H]ow do I find a strong unique vintage name for this second precious girlie that will not wilt next to a strong name like Copeland Rhine?

And here are some other questions and points Lisa brought up:

  • “Our goal is not to have their names competing for placement but complimenting each other.”
  • “We do not want to be boxed in on unisex or surname first names.”
  • “I have been gravitating towards Sojourner Bliss or Sojourner Mercy (Sophie for short) but that is all I have and my husband is not sold on it nor on a stronger masculine name.”
  • “My husband really loves Evangeline yet he is not wanting to use it because it is becoming so popular. We both love the idea of Evie as a nickname.”
  • “I really want to honor three people in my family but all three would not wish their name on anyone: Leona, Gertrude and Lorraine. Are there any derived names that I could use?” [Other family names she mentioned are Cornelia, Josephine, Ester, Rosemary, Carmelita, Trinia (Trijntje), Johannes, Sophia, Evelientje, Alice (called Ollie), Francis, Felicia and Blanche.]

The baby’s surname will be a 2-syllable name that starts with D and also includes a z-sound. It’s somewhat similar to De Souza.

So the challenge is to find “strong unique vintage” names that work with Copeland, but that won’t lock Lisa’s family into surnames or unisex names. And to try to get a family connection in there as well.

I think Evangeline is a great idea, actually. It’s strong, vintage, and neither a surname nor a unisex name. And both Lisa and her husband like the nickname Evie. Seems like the only thing holding them back is the popularity.

Yes, Evangeline has become slightly popular recently. It’s been back in the top 1,000 since 2006. But let’s put that into context. Over 2,000,000 baby girls were born last year, and only 735 of them were named Evangeline. That’s a very small percentage. (But if it’s really that bothersome, there’s always Evangelina, which is still well out of the top 1,000.)

I’m not a big fan of Sojourner. It’s strong, and unique, and not a surname…but it’s not feminine, and it’s not what I’d call vintage, even if Sojourner Truth was a well-known 19th-century woman. I’d worry about teasing, especially with a noun-middle like Bliss or Mercy. And I think naming a third child (of either gender) after Copeland and Sojourner would be tricky.

Sophie seems like it would be an awkward nickname for Sojourner. It’s so different from Sojourner that it strikes me as more of a cover-name than a nickname–as if Sojourner were just too strong or strange to work as an everyday name.

Leona, Gertrude and Lorraine…the most interesting way I could think of to combine them was to look for names that feature their first letters (L, G, L) such as Nigella, Allegra and Gillian.

Here are a few other name ideas that came to mind:

Acacia
Adelaide
Amandine
Anais
Anneliese
Antonia
Aquila
Artemis
Astrid
Augusta
Aurelia
Aurora
Damaris
Delphina
Demetria
Freya
Ginevra
Harriet
Honora
Imogen
Ione
Isadora
Leocadia
Lucasta
Lucretia
Melosa
Merit
Mehetabel
Minerva
Morgana
Muriel
Nelle
Penelope
Petra
Sophronia
Sunniva
Theodosia/Theda
Thora
Venetia
Vera

Some are related to the family names Lisa mentioned (e.g. Adelaide/Alice, Sophronia/Sophia).

Which of the above names do you like best for the sister of Copeland? What other names would you suggest to Lisa?

Baby Name Needed: Girl Name for Saylor’s Sister

A reader named Michelle has a son named Saylor Dorian. She’s expecting a baby girl in May and would like some name suggestions. She says:

We originally picked shiloh for a girl but we aren’t liking how popular it’s getting [due to a celebrity finding it first..grrr] we want a unique name that’s still ‘easy on the ears’ as in easy to get used to. I try to stay away from the too feminine popular vowel names like ava, bella, etc… though we like them we don’t want a trendy name like piper, stella, etc…

We are currently tossing around names like vega, remy…. though what i loved about shiloh was that O ending.. but we are open to whatever.

First let’s try to come up some more o-endings. How about:

Callisto
Calypso
Clio
Flo (Flora/Florence)
Jo (Josie/Josephine)
Juno
Leo (Leona)
Margot
Marlow
Meadow
Mo (Maureen)
Willow

And here are some other names that came to mind:

Audra
Briar
Darcy
Dylan
Emery
Fiona
Gillian
Greer
Heidi
Ione
Jaya
Lotus
Lyra
Mina
Morgan
Nadia
Naomi
Nova
Phoebe
Rory
Tess
Violet
Vita
Zillah

Which of the above do you like best for Saylor’s sister? What other girl names would you suggest to Michelle?