Wednesday, October 23, 2013

A neat graphic about the popularity of baby names

I thought this was a neat animated GIF which shows the popularity of female names by year & state:

Update:  You know what... I forgot to give credit to The Atlantic for providing the research / image.  Sorry for the oversight.


  1. My mother's name is Emma. For years, I never knew anyone else with that name. Then, all of a sudden, it was very popular. Interesting how these things cycle. I think they did a study of this in Freakonomics that tried to examine how and why. Did you read it?

    1. Yes - Freakonomics is obsessed with names. If I remember correctly, they have a pattern where the elite / Nouveau riche name their children with the leading edge names, and it trickles down to the masses a few years later as those babies become better known. Examples where names like your mother's, Emma, or older names that are trending back again like Sophie derivatives (my 8 year old's name).

  2. Interesting. My daughters' names were selected by me in part because of my Irish heritage. My wife and I had a difficult time deciding on a name for our son. Religious names were considered. In the end, he was names after my former boss and after a former unofficial mentor.

  3. Could be coincidence, but Emma starts getting popular at the time that Ross/Rachel gave that name to their daughter (2002/2003). Isabella starts getting popular around 2008/2009, when the Twilight fever hit with that name as the main character.

    I wonder if there was a popular movie/TV show/singer in the 70s that lead to so many Jennifers.


Blog Archive