According to New Zealand’s Department of Internal Affairs, the most popular baby names in the country last year were Charlotte and Oliver.
Here are New Zealand’s top 10 girl names and top 10 boy names of 2021:
Charlotte, 227 baby girls
Oliver, 308 baby boys
In the girls’ top 10, Isabella and Mila replaced Harper and Sophie.
In the boys’ top 10, Theodore and Luca replaced Thomas and Hunter.
Manaia comes in as the most evenly-split gender-neutral name, at a 50/50 split for boys and girls, with Quinn sitting just below the top of the list.
The top Maori baby names, according to the Te Taura Whiri Maori Language Commission, were…
Maori girl (kotiro) names
Mia, 164 baby girls
Amara, 44 (tie)
Kora, 44 (tie)
Maori boy (tama) names
Nikau, 93 baby boys
Mikaere, 41 (tie)
Manaia, 41 (tie)
Kairo, 27 (tie)
Kiwa, 27 (tie)
It should be noted, however, that not all of these “Maori” names are, in fact, Maori names. They were picked out of New Zealand’s national rankings because they “include vowels and consonants that appear in the Maori alphabet” — not because they correspond to actual Maori words. This is how non-Maori names like Aurora, Maria, Ari and Keanu end up in the Maori rankings.
(The Registrar-General of Births, Deaths and Marriages recently wrote about the difficulties involved in identifying Maori names, and revealed that he might stop releasing Maori rankings altogether after 2021.)
In 2020, the top two names overall in New Zealand were Isla and Oliver.
“142” boy names: Huntington, Konstantine, Naetochukwu, Iyanuoluwa, Marquavius
7 via 151
The following baby names add up to 151, which reduces to seven (1+5+1=7).
“151” girl names: Montserrath, Victorious
7 via 160
The boy name Arinzechukwu adds up to 160, which reduces to seven (1+6+0=7).
7 via 169
The boy name Somtochukwu adds up to 169, which reduces to seven (1+6+9=16; 1+6=7).
What Does “7” Mean?
First, we’ll look at the significance assigned to “7” by two different numerological sources. Second, and more importantly, ask yourself if “7” or any of the intermediate numbers above have any special significance to you.
“7” (the heptad) according to the Pythagoreans: …
“Since everything comes together and is distinguished by coincidence and in a critical manner at the place of the hebdomad [group of seven], they called it ‘critical time’ and ‘Chance,’ and custom has entrenched the habit of saying ‘critical time and Chance’ together.”
“Many things, both in the heavens of the universe and on the Earth – celestial bodies and creatures and plants – are in fact brought to completion by it. And that is why it is called ‘Chance,’ because it accompanies everything which happens, and ‘critical time,’ because it has gained the most critical position and nature.”
“It is also called ‘that which brings completion,’ for seven-month children are viable.”
“Everything is fond of sevens.”
“It is called ‘forager’ because its structure has been collected and gathered together in a manner resembling unity, since it is altogether indissoluble, except into something which has the same denominator as itself”
“7” according to Edgar Cayce:
“Seven is the spiritual number” (reading 261-15).
“As does seven signify the spiritual forces, as are seen in all the ritualistic orders of any nature” (reading 5751-1).
Does “7” — or do any of the other numbers above (e.g., 25, 43, 88, 151) — have any special significance to you?
Think about your own preferences and personal experiences: lucky numbers, birth dates, music, sports, and so on. Maybe you like how “88” reminds you of piano keys, for example.
Also think about associations you may have picked up from your culture, your religion, or society in general.
If you have any interesting insights about the number 7, or any of the other numbers above, please leave a comment!
Source: Theologumena Arithmeticae, attributed to Iamblichus (c.250-c.330).
As usual, the disclaimer: Some of the names below were already on the rise. Others may have been influenced by more than just the single pop culture person/event listed. I leave it up to you to judge the degree/nature of pop culture influence in each case.
I was surprised that Adonis and Wade jumped in usage as much as they did.
I was also surprised that Wrigley barely jumped at all in usage. Maybe “Wrigley” reminds too many people of gum?
Where the heck is Usain? Why is Usain not in the data yet? Sure, track and field is relatively unpopular in the United States. Still, I thought Rio might do it — with the help of that viral photo of Usain Bolt cheekily grinning at the competition in the middle of that 100 meter sprint.
Finally, as a former ’80s kid, I did have my fingers crossed for Voltron. Oh well…
How about you? Did any of these rises/falls surprise you?
It’s December 2 — the doubly momentous day on which Britney Spears celebrates her birthday and on which we start another round of the annual Pop Culture Baby Name Game.
Which baby names will see significant movement on the charts in 2016 thanks to popular culture (TV, movies, music, sports, politics, products, current events, video games, etc.)? Below are some possibilities. Leave a comment with the names you’d add — and don’t forget to mention the pop culture influence.
Hi’ilei, 5, means “child (lei) held in the arms (hi’i).”
Ilihia, 5, means “excited” or “awe-stricken.”
Kawena, 5, means “the (ka) glow (wena).”
Kealani, 5, means “heavenly (lani) whiteness (kea).”
Lea, 5, is the name of a Hawaiian goddess.
Mahealani, 5, means “sixteenth day of the lunar month; night of the full moon” (source).
Nai’a, 5, means “dolphin.”
Noelani, 5, means “heavenly (lani) mist (noe).”
The Honolulu Star-Advertiser said Malia (ranked 21st overall) was the most popular Hawaiian name for girls in 2013, but Malia is is just the Hawaiian form of the non-Hawaiian name Mary, so I didn’t include it. I didn’t include several other names (like Keoni, Hawaiian for “John”) for the same reason.
Popular Hawaiian Names for Boys
Kai, 38 baby boys, means “sea.” Kai was the 19th most popular boy name overall in Hawaii last year.
Kainoa, 21, means “the (ka) namesake (inoa).”
Kaimana, 20, means “power (mana) of the sea (kai).”
Koa, 16, means “warrior, brave” or is a reference to the koa tree.
Nainoa, 11, means “the (na) namesakes (inoa)” — na is the article used for plural nouns.
Makoa, 10, means “fearless.”
Nakoa, 10, means “”the (ne) brave ones/koa trees (koa).”
Kana’i, 9, means “the (ka) conqueror (na’i).”
Makana, 9, means “gift.”
Ka’eo, 8, means “full of knowledge.”
Kahiau, 8, means “generous.”
Kainalu, 8, means “billowy (nalu) sea (kai).”
Keanu, 8, means “the (ke) coolness (anu).”
Noa, 8, means “commoner/free man.”
Kaleo, 7, means “the (ka) sound/voice (leo).”
Kamaha’o, 6, means “wondrous.”
Kanoa, 6, means “the (ka) commoner/free man (noa).”
Kekoa, 6, means “the (ke) brave one/koa tree (koa).”
La’akea, 6, means “sacred (la’a) white/light (kea).”
Makai, 6, means “toward (ma) the sea (kai).”
Mana, 6, means “supernatural or divine power.”
Alaka’i, 5, means “leader.”
Kaiea, 5, means “rising (ea) sea/tide (kai).”
Ka’imipono, 5, means “the (ka) seeker of righteousness (‘imi pono).”
Kalani, 5, means “the (ka) heavenly one/royal one (lani).”
Kamakani, 5, means “the (ka) wind (makani).”
Koamalu, 5, means “brave (koa) peace (malu).”
While I was gathering all those definitions, I also found a bunch of other interesting Hawaiian names, such as…
‘Aukai, “seafarer” (‘au, “travel” + kai, “sea”). It’s like the Hawaiian version of Sailor.
Kapi’ioho, “curly hair.” It’s like the Hawaiian version of Crispin (Latin crispus, “curly”).
‘Opunui, “big-bellied” (‘opu, “belly” + nui, “big”). Big bellies were a status symbol in old Hawaii. According to one source, “the elite lived lavishly, were feasting constantly, and the highest chiefs were distinguished by their corpulence.”
Leiko is a hybrid Hawaiian-Japanese name: lei, “flowers/child” + ko, “child.”
Do you have a favorite Hawaiian name? Leave a comment and tell me about it!
Source: Bodley, John H. Cultural Anthropology: Tribes, States, and the Global System. Lanham, MD: AltaMira-Rowman & Littlefield, 2011.