How popular is the baby name Kobe 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 Kobe.

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Popularity of the Baby Name Kobe


Posts that Mention the Name Kobe

Name quotes #111: Dinah, Lindy, Coby

double quotation mark

Here’s the latest batch of name-related quotes…

From an article about a Maryland National Guard medic named after the late Colin Powell (1937-2021):

For Spc. Collinpowell Ebai, […] Gen. Colin Powell’s passing is both a time to mourn and a reminder of a regimented and hopeful childhood that made him the Soldier and man he is today.

“My first name is a combination of the first and last name of my grandfather’s most-admired leader of all time,” said Ebai, who was born in Kumba, Cameroon, a month before Powell retired as a four-star general. “In fact, my uncles still call me, ‘the general.’”

From Cloris Leachman‘s autobiography Cloris (2009), a scene set in early 1966, soon after the birth of her daughter Dinah:

Sometime the following week — I think it was five days later — we gave a dinner party, and Dinah Shore was among the guests. She wanted to see the new baby, so we brought her to the crib, and she oohed and aahed about how beautiful she was.

“What’s her name?” she asked as she leaned over the baby.

“Dinah,” I said. Then I thought, Oh, oh.

Dinah Shore turned to us, emotion visible on her face. “You named her after me?” There was a tremble in her voice.

The truth was, we hadn’t thought of Dinah Shore or anybody else while we cruised around for a name. Some very fast footwork was called for.

“Yes,” I said, my eyes mirroring the emotion in hers. “George and I thought you were the perfect role model for our baby.”

I mean, what could I do? She was having something close to a religious experience. I couldn’t slap my forehead and say, “Can you believe it? We never once thought of you when we picked the name.”

From the lighthearted obituary of Lindy Gene Rollins (1928-2022) in the Amarillo Globe-News:

He had a lifelong obsession with airplanes which should not be a surprise since he was named after Charles Lindbergh (Lucky Lindy) the first U.S. pilot credited with making a solo, nonstop transatlantic flight. Lindy went on to take flying lessons after he retired as a diesel mechanic. Thankfully, he was not granted his pilot’s license due to his age and the medications he was on. No one in the family would have been brave enough to ride in an airplane he was piloting anyway!

From the book Game Over: How Nintendo Conquered the World (1999) by David Sheff, an account of the Nintendo of America staff — working out of a warehouse in Washington state — preparing the video game Donkey Kong (1981) for the U.S. market:

They were trying to decide what to call the rotund, red-capped carpenter, when there was a knock on the door.

[Minoru] Arakawa answered it. Standing there was the owner of the warehouse. In front of everyone, he blasted Arakawa because the rent was late. Flustered, Arakawa promised that the money was forthcoming, and the man left.

The landlord’s name was Mario Segali [sic]. “Mario,” they decided. “Super Mario!”

(The landlord’s surname was actually spelled Segale. And, if you’re remembering the video game character as a plumber instead of a carpenter, you’re right — his occupation was changed for later games.)

From a late 2021 article about college football by Associated Press journalist Stephen Hawkins:

Cincinnati cornerback Coby Bryant […] changed his number for the College Football Playoff semifinal at the Cotton Bowl against No. 1 Alabama on Friday.

Yes, Bryant is named after the late NBA great, even with the different spelling of the first name.

For the playoff game, Bryant switched from the No. 7 he had worn throughout his Cincinnati career to No. 8, one of the two numbers the basketball Hall of Fame player wore while winning five NBA titles over his 20 seasons with the Los Angeles Lakers.

“My parents loved Kobe Bryant and my brother does too,” the Bearcats cornerback said. “So I was named for Kobe Bryant. It’s just spelled differently”

From the book The Bonjour Effect (2016) by Canadian authors (and couple) Julie Barlow and Jean-Benoit Nadeau:

But curiously, the French still stick to the classics when it comes to naming children. […] And one rarely sees names with really unorthodox spellings. The French just assume having a weird name will limit you in life. Our twin daughters, who are adopted, had as their original Haitian names something along the lines of Mandarine and Mandoline. Before the girls arrived, many of our North American friends were worried that changing their names would damage their identities by depriving them of a link to their Haitian origins. Our French friends uniformly congratulated us for changing the names and helping our daughters avoid (what they assumed would be) humiliation all their their lives. Personne ne pourrait vivre avec ce nom, they said. No one can get through life with names like those.

For more quotes about names, check out the name quotes category.

Boy names on the decline in the U.S. in 2021

Which boy names decreased in usage the most from 2020 to 2021?

Here’s a table of the fastest-falling boy names of 2021. On the left are the top 25 decreases in terms of absolute numbers of babies, and on the right are the top 25 decreases in terms of relative numbers of babies.

RankBoy nameAbsolute fallBoy nameRelative fall
1Mason-1,035Aldair-70%
2Alexander-880Vinson-64%
3Jacob-860Rishik-64%
4Michael-742Sylar-62%
5Ethan-717Kassian-62%
6Matthew-685Babyboy-62%
7Connor-650Adrain-61%
8Ryan-613Kiari-61%
9Hunter-595Princeston-60%
10William-525Graycen-58%
11Joshua-509Teagen-58%
12Emmanuel-491Mister-58%
13Jaxson-489Josyah-58%
14Christian-487Jaysean-57%
15Colton-477Janoah-57%
16Andrew-466Waseem-57%
17Brayden-452Shloime-57%
18Jaxon-440Siddhant-56%
19Karter-434Abdurahman-56%
20Carson-430Jabriel-56%
21Elijah-428Aran-56%
22Benjamin-418Januel-55%
23Daniel-411Dian-55%
24Kobe-399Trysten-55%
25Carter-389Greysin-55%

Kobe was 2020’s largest absolute increase by a good margin. (The second name on that list, Theodore, broke into the top 10 in 2021.)

Here are the boy names that saw the steepest dives out of the data (i.e., to below 5 instances of usage) in 2021:

  • given to 26 babies in 2020: Burhanuddin
  • given to 20 babies in 2020: Bader
  • given to 18 babies in 2020: Hyatt, Reylan
  • given to 17 babies in 2020: Abdelrahman
  • given to 16 babies in 2020: Kymeir

Do you have thoughts/insights about any of the above names?

Pop culture baby name game results, 2020

Which of the names in the 2020 pop culture baby name game saw higher usage last year?

The following names increased in usage from 2019 to 2020. They’re ordered by relative size of increase.

NameActionIncrease’19 to ’20 usageSugg. by
Dalettdebuted2,250%, at least? to 94 baby girlsalex
Ehlaniincreased2,100%5 to 110 baby girlsalex
Alessiincreased418%11 to 57 baby girlsLeah
Gianninaincreased400%5 to 25 baby girlsalex
Breonnaincreased211%9 to 28 baby girls
Kobeincreased199%502 to 1,500 baby boys
Aalamre-emerged175%, at least? to 11 baby boys
Raddixdebuted150%, at least? to 10 baby boys
Azulaincreased142%26 to 63 baby girls
Avaniincreased133%101 to 235 baby girlsalex
Giannaincreased129%3,412 to 7,826 baby girls
Ahmaudincreased100%12 to 24 baby boys
Catoriincreased85%13 to 24 baby girlsalex
Doveincreased70%30 to 51 baby girlsKM & Leah
Rueincreased68%41 to 69 baby girls
Zaiaincreased60%35 to 56 baby girlsalex
Mykaincreased57%53 to 83 baby girlsalex
Kataraincreased54%41 to 63 baby girls
Chadwickincreased50%20 to 30
Rellre-emerged50%, at least? to 6 baby girlsLeah
Zukoincreased47%15 to 22 baby boys
Bryantincreased46%271 to 395 baby boys
Tenilleincreased40%5 to 7 baby girlsEmily A
Nayaincreased39%256 to 356 baby girlsalex
Kamalaincreased38%13 to 18 baby girls
Onyxincreased38%321 to 442 baby boys
Steelincreased31%35 to 46 baby boysalex
Joseyincreased31%16 to 21 baby boysalex
Duaincreased29%72 to 93 baby girls
Radleyincreased28%53 to 68 baby boysalex
Charliincreased24%594 to 735 baby girls
Lyraincreased24%431 to 534 baby girls
Kamiyahincreased23%333 to 409 baby girls
Sovereignincreased23%13 to 16 baby girlsalex
Shaiincreased22%98 to 120 baby boysLeah
Yaraincreased21%362 to 439 baby girls
Dorotheaincreased21%47 to 57 baby girlsRandi & KM
Bettyincreased20%161 to 194 baby girlsRandi
Riverincreased17%2,361 to 2,771 baby boys
Estyincreased16%58 to 67 baby girls
Sakaiincreased14%21 to 24 baby boysalex
Creedincreased12%257 to 288 baby boysalex & Leah
Lovellaincreased11%18 to 20 baby girls
Huxleyincreased10%469 to 518 baby boysalex
Daisyincreased9%1,729 to 1,877 baby girls
Isaiasincreased8%580 to 625 baby boys
Adonisincreased8%1,539 to 1,663 baby boysalex
Amalaincreased5%20 to 21 baby girls
Ivyincreased3%3,675 to 3,794 baby girlsRandi
Zealandincreased3%30 to 31 baby boysalex
Milanincreased3%
13%
662 to 683 baby boys
397 to 449 baby girls
alex
Marjorieincreased2%203 to 208 baby girlsRandi
Augustincreased1%2,376 to 2,403 baby boysEmily A

The following names did not increase in usage from 2019 to 2020. These names saw equal usage, less usage, or weren’t in the data at all.

Ammika, Anaia, Casme, Corona, Crozier, Desz, Divinity, Doja, Domhnall, Estee, George, Gervonta, Giveon, Greta, Hamilton, Ice, Jack, James, Kaori, King, Kraken, Larriah, Laura, Lenin, Liberty, Lynika, McGivney, Nakova, Neowise, Raditz, Rayshard, Robinette, Rona, Rumble, Ruth, Saphir, Slash, Tacoda, Tchalla, Theodosia, Tianwen, Wednesday, Wenliang, Willa, Willow, Win, Zaya

And here are the late bloomers — names that were part of the 2019 game, but didn’t rise/debut until 2020.

  • Donna increased by 20%.
  • Nipsey debuted with 7 baby boys.
  • Luce returned to the data with 7 baby girls.
  • Maleficent returned to the data with 5 baby girls.
  • Miren returned to the data with 5 baby girls.

Finally, regarding our theories about how Covid might have affected 2020’s names…I didn’t notice anything definitive. For instance, both Gheba and Skizzo mentioned “prestige” names (e.g., King, Legend, Major, Messiah and Royal). What I found was that some went up, some went down. Same with the modern virtue names (e.g., Courage, Honor, Brave, Bravery, Freedom).

What are your thoughts on these results? Which name surprised you the most?

[Disclaimer: Some of the names above were already moving in the direction indicated. Others were influenced by more than a single pop culture person/event. In all cases, I leave it up to you to judge the degree/nature of pop culture influence.]

Popular boy names in the United States, 2020

USA

We just looked at last year’s girl names, so now it’s time for the boy names!

Here are the most popular boy names overall:

  1. Liam, 19,659 baby boys
  2. Noah, 18,252
  3. Oliver, 14,147
  4. Elijah, 13,034
  5. William, 12,541
  6. James, 12,250
  7. Benjamin, 12,136
  8. Lucas, 11,281
  9. Henry, 10,705
  10. Alexander, 10,151

Henry and Alexander replaced Mason (now ranked 11th) and Ethan (13th).

The boy names that saw the largest increases in usage in terms of absolute numbers of babies were…

  1. Kobe, increased by 998 babies
  2. Theodore, 685
  3. Luka, 618
  4. Asher, 592
  5. Enzo, 490
  6. Adriel, 471
  7. Archer, 451
  8. Kylo, 424
  9. River, 410
  10. Beau, 398

Kobe was influenced by the untimely death of basketball great Kobe Bryant (whose daughter, Gianna, had an equally strong influence on girl names.)

Theodore and Luka were also among the fastest risers of 2019.

The boy names that saw the largest increases in usage in terms of relative numbers of babies were…

  1. Omere, increased by 460%
  2. Ripp, 342%
  3. Hardin, 300%
  4. Vardaan, 280%
  5. Rip, 260%
  6. Alekai, 260%
  7. Sharvil, 255%
  8. Evian, 253%
  9. Neizan, 243%
  10. Barkon, 240%

Omere could be from Omere Harris, son of YouTubers (and former Love & Hip Hop-ers) Mendeecees Harris and Yandy Smith.

Ripp was a debut name just one year earlier. Speaking of debuts…

Here are the boy names that debuted most impressively in the 2020 data:

  1. Aarnik, debuted with 14 baby boys
  2. Itzan, 14
  3. Azhir, 13
  4. Carin, 13
  5. Jahkor, 13
  6. Krown, 13
  7. Amavi, 12 (a double-debut with 30 girls as well)
  8. Deluka, 12
  9. Ezrin, 12
  10. Hardyn, 12

Some explanations…

  • Itzan is probably from Spanish actor Itzan Escamilla, who stars in the Netflix series Élite.
  • Carin could be from Mexican singer Carin Leon (whose real name is Oscar; “Carin” is a shortening of his nickname, Oscarin.)
  • Jahkor was the name of a character in the Netflix movie All Day and a Night (2020).

The boy names that saw the largest decreases in usage in terms of absolute numbers of babies were…

  1. Ethan, decreased by 1,801 babies
  2. Jacob, -1,525
  3. Logan, -1,434
  4. Mason, -1,407
  5. Matthew, -1,170
  6. Lucas, -1,164
  7. Carter, -1,141
  8. Jaxon, -1,132
  9. Isaac, -1,121
  10. Alexander, -1,113

The boy name that saw the largest decrease in usage in terms of relative numbers of babies was Daer (-80%), and the boy name that saw the steepest drop off the list was Montae (from 20 babies in 2019 to fewer than 5 in 2020).

If you can explain any of these rises (or drops), please leave a comment!

[Latest update: 5/11/2021]

Popular girl names in the United States, 2020

USA

The 2020 batch of U.S. baby names was released by the SSA this morning!

I’ve been toying with the data for a few hours and, in this post and the next, I’ll give you some of the highlights.

Here are the most popular girl names overall:

  1. Olivia, 17,535 baby girls
  2. Emma, 15,581
  3. Ava, 13,084
  4. Charlotte, 13,003
  5. Sophia, 12,976
  6. Amelia, 12,704
  7. Isabella, 12,066
  8. Mia, 11,157
  9. Evelyn, 9,445
  10. Harper, 8,778

These ten names were also in the 2019 top ten.

The girl names that saw the largest increases in usage in terms of absolute numbers of babies were…

  1. Gianna, increased by 4,414 babies
  2. Alaia, 654
  3. Nova, 635
  4. Isla, 500
  5. Haisley, 451
  6. Oaklynn, 406
  7. Kehlani, 387
  8. Ariella, 374
  9. Maeve, 337
  10. Natalia, 332

Gianna was influenced by the tragic death of Gianna Bryant, daughter of Kobe Bryant.

The girl names that saw the largest increases in usage in terms of relative numbers of babies were…

  1. Ehlani, increased by 2,100%
  2. Anayra, 483%
  3. Nihan, 482%
  4. Xiamara, 460%
  5. Kiora, 440%
  6. Yahri, 420%
  7. Alessi, 418%
  8. Eryss, 400%
  9. Gianina, 400%
  10. Giannina, 400%

Some explanations…

  • Ehlani is the daughter of social media influencer Elsy Guevara. (Commenter alex called this one months ago. Here’s Ehlani’s “name reveal” video, from May 2020.)
  • Anayra could be from Anayra Sharma, the baby of Indian comedian/celebrity Kapil Sharma (who has 32 million Instagram followers and 18 million twitter followers).
  • Alessi is the the daughter of Siesta Key cast member Alex Kompothecras.
  • Eryss is the daughter of Love & Hip Hop: Atlanta cast member Erica Dixon.
  • Giannina was a contestant on the reality TV show Love is Blind.

Here are the girl names that debuted most impressively in the 2020 data:

  1. Dalett, debuted with 94 baby girls
  2. Cennet, 84
  3. Ulanni, 44
  4. Souline, 36
  5. Amavi, 30 (this one double-debuted, actually, with 12 boys as well)
  6. Ayzal, 30
  7. Brixleigh, 19
  8. Kazleigh, 19
  9. Yoatzi, 19
  10. Morwenna, 16

Some explanations…

  • Dalett is the third child (born in May, 2020) of Larrymania stars Larry and Kenia Hernandez. (Their older daughters are Daleyza and Dalary.)
  • Cennet is the main character of the Telemundo show Cennet, which looks to be a remake of a Turkish show (Cennet’in Gözyaslari) from a few years earlier. The name means “heaven” in Turkish.
  • Yoatzi is probably from YouTuber Yoatzi Castro.
  • Morwenna might be from the most recent adaptation of Poldark. (Supporting evidence: the name Demelza returned to the data a few years ago.)

The girl names that saw the largest decreases in usage in terms of absolute numbers of babies were…

  1. Harper, decreased by 1,686 babies
  2. Emma, -1,574
  3. Ava, -1,390
  4. Emily, -1,373
  5. Abigail, -1,317
  6. Mia, -1,295
  7. Isabella, -1,278
  8. Victoria, -1,103
  9. Aria, -994
  10. Olivia, -973

The girl name that saw the largest decrease in usage in terms of relative numbers of babies was Diala (-81%), and the girl name that saw the steepest drop off the list was Yarishna (from 28 babies in 2019 to fewer than 5 in 2020).

If you can explain any of the rises (or drops), please leave a comment!

[Latest update: 5/11/2021]