Latin America encompasses countries in the Western Hemisphere where Romance languages like Spanish, Portuguese, and French are spoken. Latin America is vast and consists of 20 countries and 14 territories that stretch from Mexico to Tierra del Feugo, the southernmost tip of South America. It also contains most of the Caribbean. In total, the estimated population of Latin America is a whopping 650 million people! That’s a lot of people, a lot of languages, and cultures. There’s so much baby name inspiration to be drawn from this rich area.
Baby names for boys are notoriously hard to settle on. We decided to take a look at Latin America for inspiration. Incredible names for boys are not hard to come by there. Here are 25 lovely Latin American baby names for boys that are muy especiales.
Manuel is a shortened, more appealing form of Emmanuel that a popular Spanish variation. The name has origins in Hebrew and means “God is with us.”
Santiago is the patron saint of Spain. The name comes from Latin and means “Saint James.” It is also the name of a beautiful city in Chile. Santiago is on the top of the charts for many Latin American countries. In Colombia, Santiago has been the most popular name for boys for almost a decade. In the US, it’s the 81st most popular name for boys. The Portuguese form of the name, Thiago is equally appealing.
Josué is the French, Spanish and Portuguese form of the English, Joshua. Josué is popular in many Latin American countries including Haiti. The name means “the Lord is my salvation.”
Alejandro is another popular name and in Mexico, it has been in the top 10 names for boys for years. Alejandro is the Spanish form of Alexander which comes from Greek and means “defending men.”
Davi is the Portuguese form of David and one of the most popular names for boys in Brazil. David is the English form the Hebrew name Dawid which means “beloved.”
Martín comes from Latin and is related to Mars, the god of war. Knowing this, it will come as no surprise that this name means “warlike.” Martín is extremely popular in Chile, Mexico, and Haiti.
19. Juan Carlos
Carlos is the Spanish form of Charles and it means “free man.” Juan is the same for John which means “strength of God.” There are a lot of attributes hidden in this handsome name which is probably why it’s popular in Latin America and in the top 5 for boys in Bolivia.
Emiliano Zapata was an influential figure who helped lead the Mexican Revolution. Emiliano is a gorgeous name that dates back to the 8th Century BC when an old Roman family adopted from the Latin word aemulus as their family name. It means “rival.”
The Catalan form of Raymond, Ramon is a beloved name across Latin America. In Paraguay, the name is one of the, if not the, most popular name for baby boys. Ramon has also been in the top 1000 names for boys in the US since the Social Security Administration has been keeping records. That means it’s been a hit for over 130 years.
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Matías is the Spanish form of Matthew and means “gift of God.” There are a variety of different spellings including, Mattias, Mathias, Matas. Another variation you’ve probably encountered is Matteo. All forms of this name are evidence of its exceeding popularity in Latin America. The one spelling, Matías is in the top 50 names in Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Mexico, and Uruguay.
Jerónimo would be a bold choice for your son! This incredible name is the Spanish form of a Greek name that means “sacred name.” Jerónimo is not widely used in Latin America, but it is especially beloved in Colombia where it ranked 7th in 2018.
One of the most popular names for boys in Mexico, Raúl is the Spanish form of Ralph (and sounds about 1,000,000 times better). Raúl means “wolf-counsel.”
Miguel is the Spanish and Portuguese form of Michael which comes from Hebrew and means “who is like God?” This name asks a whole question! Miguel is extremely popular across Latin America but enjoys broad popularity in Mexico where it was the 26th most popular name for boys in 2016. The name also made the top 200 names for boys in the US for the last two decades.
Diego is another popular Spanish name that comes from Hebrew and it means “supplanter.” Diego is most popular in Spain and Puerto Rico. In Brazil, the preferred forms of the name are Jaime and Tiago (or simply choosing the name Santiago).
Consistently in the top 10 for the last 5 years in Argentina, Felipe is one of the country’s most given names. Felipe comes from Greek and means “friend of horses.” In addition to Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Mexico, and Paraguay are all countries that favor this name.
While we’re on the subject of Argentina, Benjamín is the country’s most popular name for boys and has been since 2014. Benjamín comes from Hebrew and means “right hand of God.” The name also enjoys popularity in Uruguay and Chile.
In Peru, parents have an affinity for the name Gael. The origin of the name is unclear, but many think it is associated with Gaelic and that the name itself means “Gaelic.” In addition to Peru, Gael is popular in other Latin American countries like Argentina, Brazil, and Mexico.
Dylan is an extremely popular name around the world. This is especially true for Puerto Rico and Ecuador where the name has been in the top 5 for boys for the last 7 years. The name means “son of the sea.”
Pedro is the Spanish and Portuguese form of the Old Greek petros which means “stone.” The name is closely associated with St. Peter. In Latin America, Mexico loves the name Pedro the most.
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Rafael comes from Hebrew and means “God has healed.” Again, this name is most popular in Mexico, but it is also prevalent in Brazil and Chile.
Luis is the Spanish form of an Old High German name that means “famed warrior.” Luis is one of the most broadly popular names for boys in Latin America. Outside of it, the name is favored in the US, Spain, and Switzerland.
Ángel has roots in Greek and Latin and means “messenger of God.” It has been in use as a given name since the Middle Ages. Ángel ranks in the top 50 names for almost every single Spanish-speaking Latin American country.
Lourenço is technically the proper Portuguese form of Lawrence. Curiously, Brazil favors the Spanish and Italian version of the name, Lorenzo. The name has been in the top 50 for Brazilian parents since 2009. The name enjoys popularity in Europe as well. Lorenzo ranks very highly in Italy, Portugal, and France. The name has Latin roots and means “crowned with laurel.”
Arturo is the Spanish, Italian and Portuguese form of the Celtic name Arthur. The meaning of the name is disputed, but it most likely means “bear.” Arturo enjoys the most popularity in Mexico where it’s more popular than any other country on Earth.
Jesús is popular across Latin America but probably most so in Mexico. Jesús comes with two incredible nicknames: Chucho or Chuy. Jesús is the Spanish and Portuguese of the Hebrew name that means “God is salvation.”
Latin American baby names are phenomenal options and offer versatility and variety. These beautiful, romantic names are perfect for those who want to honor their heritage or just to celebrate the amazing cultures of Latin America.
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