The baby naming database, Nameberry, is the definitive place to learn more about popular baby names, their meanings, and their origins. We cite them all the time because they consistently release the best baby name data. Further, because of its popularity, the website can predict popular baby names by looking at search history and can also tell us a lot about the current naming trends. According to the company’s founder, Pam Redmond, there’s been a cultural “vibe shift,” and it’s changing how new parents name their children.
“As in the 1920s and 60s, there’s a wish to leave everything from the ‘before’ times behind,” explains Redmond. “In the 20s, it came after the flu epidemic, World War I, and the Russian and Irish revolutions. In the 60s, it followed World War II and the conservative 1950s. At both junctures, feminism was a force. Social mores loosened a lot.”
“There’s a sea change upon us,” she says, as parents prioritize individualism more than ever before. Maximalist baby names that feel overindulgent and over-the-top are on the horizon. See the names that Nameberry believes will become contenders for years to come.
Amadeus is a baby name for boys of Latin origin, meaning “lover of God.” Unsurprisingly, this name has never been popular in the US, but that is likely to change. Both Mia Farrow and Boris Becker have used the name for their sons.
In Greek mythology, Ambrosia is food to the gods that brings them immortality. The Greek root of the word means “immortal.” Could this name for girls be the new Aurora? It’s possible!
Andromeda is a lot of name. It is of Greek origin and means “informing like a man.” In myth, the name belonged to a character who became a star. That’s why the constellation of the same name exists.
Casimir is a boy’s name of Polish and Slavic origin, meaning “destroyer of peace” or “declarer of peace.” Casimir was last popular in the US before the 1940s. It could be time for a comeback.
Cassiopeia is Andromeda’s mother and is also turned into a star in Greek myth. The meaning of this name is disputed, but it could be related to the cassia tree or berry.
Cleopatra is a name associated with ancient Egypt and has never made the leap as a baby name in modern times. Cleopatra is a name of Greek origin and means “father’s glory.”
Not just a name for a Harry Potter baddy, Draco’s fortunes could very well change in the coming years. Draco is a name found in Greek and Latin naming traditions and means “dragon.”
Esmeray is a gorgeous name for girls of Turkish origin that is properly pronounced ESS-mer-eye. It has the delightfully romantic meaning of “dark moon.”
Euphemia was last popular as a baby name in the US in 1903! The name is of Greek origin and means “fair speech.” If you love the nickname Effie, this would be a great vehicle to get you there.
Evadne was a new one for us that Nameberry believes has great potential. The baby name for girls is pronounced eh-VAD-nee. Its Greek root means “pleasant one.”
Iolanthe is a French name for girls from Greek that means “violet flower.” You will want to pronounce this one yo-lan-thuh. If you love violet flowers but feel the name Violet is too plain, you know what to do.
Jiraiya is a name for boys of Japanese origin, meaning “young thunder.” The name landed in the US top 1000 most popular baby names for the first time in 2021. Pronounce this baby name with emphasis on the second syllable, like jih-RY-ah.
Lazarus is a Latinate form of a Hebrew name, meaning “God is my helper.” Most will recall the story from the bible in which Jesus raised a character with the same name from the dead. Despite being well-known, the name has never been popular in the US. That’s set to change.
Lysander is a baby name for boys of Greek origin with the great meaning “liberator.” Lysander has historical connections as it was the name of an esteemed Spartan naval commander. It’s got potential!
Morpheus is a baby name for boys of Greek origin that names the god of sleep and dreams. Thus, the meaning of this name is “shape” or “form.” Although the name is well-worn in pop culture and literature, it has yet to land on many birth certificates in the US.
Prepare to have to correct pronunciation often with a name like Myfanwy. Myfanwy is a name of Welsh origin, which are notoriously tricky for Americans to pronounce. This name for girls is said muh-VAHN-wee. A treasured choice in Wales, this name has the sweet meaning of “my lovely little one.”
The Shakespearean character Oberon in A Midsummer Night’s Dream is King of the Fairies. We like the Oberon spelling, but some prefer Auberon. Either way, the name is of Germanic origin and means “noble.”
Octavius is a name of Latin origin that means “eighth.” The name had blips of popularity in the late 1980s and early 1990s but has gone largely unused in the US. We are big fans of this name and think it would be perfect for a boy born on the 8th or in August.
Ottoline is a French and English diminutive form of Ottilie, a German name that means “prosperous in battle.” Sienna Miller chose it as the middle name of her daughter Marlowe. Unique celebrity baby names tend to catch on.
Persephone has been quietly on the rise in recent years. It first landed in the top 1000 for girls in 2019. The name is associated with the Greek myth that finds the character with the same name as the Queen of the Underworld. Thus, the name is taken to mean “bringer of death.” That’s not stopping new parents from choosing this baby name.
Perseus is a storied Greek name that means “destroyer.” According to the myth, he was a great hero and destroyer of beasts. He is even credited with slaying the gorgon Medusa. With names like Atticus and Orion taking flight, this one could follow their trajectory.
Valerian is a name of Latin origin that means “strength.” The name belonged to a Roman Emperor. We think this baby name for boys has tons of potential.
Venus, the name of the Roman goddess of love, has seen its ups and downs in the US. It last made the top 1000 in 1982. Venus Williams made this baby name seem like a real possibility again. It means “desire.”
Wednesday will enjoy some popular years thanks in no small part to the smash hit Netflix series of the same name. Wednesday is of English origin and belonged to a pagan god in the form of Woden. Wednesday translates to “Woden’s Day.”
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We started with Amadeus, and we will end with Wolfgang for a fun little Mozart twist. Wolfgang is a name for boys of German origin, meaning “traveling wolf.” The name has fallen out of fashion in its country of origin, but Nameberry thinks it will have its day in the US in the coming years.
There you go! What did you think of these big, bold, maximalist baby names? Would you use one for your baby? To learn even more about baby name trends in 2023, keep reading. We’ve got plenty more trends to share with you. Discover them below.
Trend 1: Go Big or Go Home Names
The adage “less is more” is apparently dead when it comes to baby name trends for 2023. Parents are ignoring more traditional options with modest reputations and instead going all out with maximalist names that read as showy or storied. Extravagant baby names from mythology and literature are also part of this growing trend.
Maximalist Names for Girls
Maximalist Names for Boys
Trend 2: Nostalgic Names Making a Comeback
Nameberry believes that the 1980s are coming back. They see a trend of era-evoking names resulting in what they call “the Stranger Things effect.” Nostalgia for the 80s has become fashionable with many trends from the decade returning to favor. Baby names will likely follow suit.
Nostalgia Names for Girls
Nostalgia Names for Boys
Trend 3: Glistening Golden Names
Bright names that convey a sense of optimism will be a trend to watch in 2023. Names that have a golden, sparkling sound or meaning all apply. This also includes sun gods and goddesses from various mythologies.
Sparkling Names for Girls
Sparkling Names for Boys
Trend 4: A New Wave of Cowboy Names
The next generation of cowboy names is going to form one of 2023’s hottest trends for boys. Parents are gravitating to names with a rugged appeal. Propelled by a back-to-basics mentality for some, these appellations also highlight individualism.
Trend 5: Unique Cross-Cultural Names
Names that travel from other countries that remain unique but still feel accessible will be on the rise. Again, with individualism as a reigning theme for 2023, parents are looking for funky, fresh, and offbeat appellations for their children that most American parents aren’t entirely familiar with.
Cross-Cultural Names for Girls
Cross-Cultural Names for Boys
Trend 6: Names with the X Factor
Names with Z’s and X’s have been some of the hottest names in recent years. New parents are loving the edge that these letters bring to a name. X has overtaken Z as the most popular of the two and names with X’s at their start, end, or center will all be extremely popular in 2023.
Names with X for Girls
Names with X for Boys
Trend 7: Descriptor Names
Our next trend is descriptor or adjective names that act as modern-day virtue names. Next year, parents will be taking just about any fashionable words and putting them on birth certificates. These names are aspirational and a sign of optimism about a brighter future in most cases.
Descriptor Names for Girls
Descriptor Names for Boys
Trend 8: Old Man Names for Girls
Parents will be reclaiming clunky grandpa names for their daughters in 2023. The spirit of the year as far as names go is upending expectations. This means the use of established names in new and novel ways. Often nickname-y and causal, these old man names are taking on new life.
Grandpa-Inspired Names for Girls
Trend 9: Names in Blue and Green
Nature names have been one of the biggest trends of the last ten years with more and more parents choosing them each year. Color names with a nod to the natural world are big business right now and blue-green baby names that evoke imagery associated with calmness are going to be bigger than ever before.
Blue and Green Names for Girls
Blue and Green Names for Boys
Trend 10: Compound, Invented Names
Parents are really trying to find the most singular names for their children and one of the very best ways to do that is to invent brand-new names. Typically, this is done by combining elements from two established names into an amalgamation that no one else can claim.
Compound, Invented Names for Girls
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Compound, Invented Names for Boys
There you go! Now you know what baby name trends of 2023 to look out for. New parents are changing the baby name landscape for the better by seeking out unique names that really stand out.
- 1 Amadeus
- 2 Ambrosia
- 3 Andromeda
- 4 Casimir
- 5 Cassiopeia
- 6 Cleopatra
- 7 Draco
- 8 Esmeray
- 9 Euphemia
- 10 Evadne
- 11 Iolanthe
- 12 Jiraiya
- 13 Lazarus
- 14 Lysander
- 15 Morpheus
- 16 Myfanwy
- 17 Oberon
- 18 Octavius
- 19 Ottoline
- 20 Persephone
- 21 Perseus
- 22 Valerian
- 23 Venus
- 24 Wednesday
- 25 Wolfgang
- 26 Trend 1: Go Big or Go Home Names
- 27 Maximalist Names for Girls
- 28 Maximalist Names for Boys
- 29 Trend 2: Nostalgic Names Making a Comeback
- 30 Nostalgia Names for Girls
- 31 Nostalgia Names for Boys
- 32 Trend 3: Glistening Golden Names
- 33 Sparkling Names for Girls
- 34 Sparkling Names for Boys
- 35 Trend 4: A New Wave of Cowboy Names
- 36 Cowboy Names
- 37 Trend 5: Unique Cross-Cultural Names
- 38 Cross-Cultural Names for Girls
- 39 Cross-Cultural Names for Boys
- 40 Trend 6: Names with the X Factor
- 41 Names with X for Girls
- 42 Names with X for Boys
- 43 Trend 7: Descriptor Names
- 44 Descriptor Names for Girls
- 45 Descriptor Names for Boys
- 46 Trend 8: Old Man Names for Girls
- 47 Grandpa-Inspired Names for Girls
- 48 Trend 9: Names in Blue and Green
- 49 Blue and Green Names for Girls
- 50 Blue and Green Names for Boys
- 51 Trend 10: Compound, Invented Names
- 52 Compound, Invented Names for Girls
- 53 Compound, Invented Names for Boys
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Baby Name Generator
No baby name sounding good? Want a quick way to generate unique baby name ideas? Try our baby name generator below!
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