People are always looking for ways to stand out from the crowd. So, when it comes to naming their babies, many parents take the opportunity to show off just how unique they are. As a result, folks have been choosing names that just get stranger and stranger, each year—from weird spellings of traditional names, such as Kaetlynne and Mykel, to names that are actually just words like North and Female (pronounced fe-MAL-ee).
New data from the U.S. Social Security Administration shows that American parents made up 1,100 new names in 2017. According to a report from Quartz, the most popular new name was Camreigh, a spelling variation of the name Camry, which was given to 91 babies last year. Yep, people are naming their kids after cars—and a fairly boring car, at that (I'm allowed to say that because I drove a '92 Toyota Camry around for 5 years). The name, itself, isn't that unusual (113 babies were named Camry in 1997) but the addition of -eigh put this in the new name category.
But there were many new names that did have us scratching our heads. For example, 17 babies were given the name Noctis, which sounds like an evil Harry Potter spell. A quick Google search revealed that Noctis is a character from the popular "Final Fantasy" video game franchise, but the names still has a foreboding feel, in our opinion.
While some of the new names were a bit ridiculous, (there were 11 babies named Cersei? Do those parents even watch Game of Thrones? Do they know what kind of character Cersei is? Here's a hint: not a nice one), it's nice to see that some were just non-English names finally finding footing in the States. One example is Tewodros, a name that stems from an ancient Ethiopian emperor and is actually just a Hebrew variation of Theodore. Another is the common Nigerian name, Iretomiwa, which means "blessing has come to me."
While we totally get the need to have a unique name for your child, parents should remember that they aren't naming a baby, they're naming a person who will eventually be an adult who must be able to function in modern society. Just a thought.
Check out the full list of new names on Quartz's site.