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The Most Popular Names in the World

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Thinking of giving your baby a name from a specific cultural origin?  There are a few issues to consider.

As our society is becoming more and more culturally mixed and travel to the world’s most exotic places is no longer out of the ordinary, the globalization influence on baby name trends is hard to miss.  The top name popularity charts are becoming more and more culturally diverse.  Names such as Aliyah (Hebrew), Aidan (Irish), Guadalupe (Spanish), Amaya (Basque), and Maddox (Welsh) are rising in popularity.  Parents are tapping into their cultural roots to give their babies a more unique name that will give the child a strong cultural identification. 

Your Baby Loves to Travel!

International travel is starting to play a role in parent’s naming decisions.  With more people choosing to change their place of location and move to different countries, you may want to consider the pronunciation potential of your name choices.  The names may suit the place where you live now, but if your baby grows up and decides to live or work in a foreign country, will their name give them too much of a hassle?  Many immigrants to the US experience problems with their name pronunciation.   Consider giving your baby a name that is more international and will not give them problems later on in life. 

There are many internationally used names that are currently in the top ten charts throughout the world.  Here are some examples:

Popular Girl Names:

Emma – currently popular in Belgium, Sweden, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Ireland, Norway, Netherlands, and Scotland
Marie (including spelling variations) – currently popular in Brazil, Argentina, Germany, Spain, Belgium, Iceland, Estonia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Portugal, Slovenia, and the Philippines
Sarah – currently popular in Belgium, France, Iceland, Ireland, Norway, Spain, and Canada
Emily – currently popular in England, New Zealand, Canada, Scotland, Germany, and Norway
Anna – currently popular in Brazil, Argentina, Switzerland, Czech Republic, Portugal, Estonia, Germany, Hungary, Iceland, Netherlands, Poland, and Slovenia

Popular Boy Names:

Joshua – currently popular in Australia, New Zealand, and England
Benjamin – currently popular in Chile, Australia, and New Zealand
Michael – currently popular in Philippines, Ireland, and Malta
William – currently popular in Australia, England, and Sweden
Samuel – currently popular in Australia, New Zealand, England, and Canada
Thomas – currently popular in Australia, New Zealand, England, Netherlands, Poland, and Canada
Matthew (and variations) – currently popular in Brazil, Chile, Australia, New Zealand, Ireland, Scotland, Canada, Denmark, Finland,  Norway, Lithuania, and Malta

Use the Middle Name

You may have your mind already set on a specific name that is not too international.  Consider giving your baby a common middle name that they can use in situations where their first given name may be too complex to explain.  In China, where the language and general articulation vary greatly from Western society, it is common to give babies both a Chinese name and a Western name that may come in very handy later on in life.

Consider the Meaning

Another issue to consider is the meaning of a name in other cultures.  You may have found a name or even created one of your own that you are completely set on.  Consider that your child will grow up in a multi-cultural environment, beginning from kindergarten on through their professional careers.   Research the name you are thinking of giving your child to make sure that it does not have negative meanings in other cultures.  Of course not every language in the world needs to be considered, but the most widespread languages such as Spanish and French are worth looking into.  You can use our advanced search to look up the meaning of the name of your choice in other cultures.

Related readings:

Exotic Names from Around the World
Top 10 Popular Baby Names in New York State

More From SheKnows Explorer

Comments (20)Add Comment
a name i had made up
written by katt north, May 12, 2008
I made up the name, Evaletta, thinking as it's a beautiful name.

I had made it up.

My meaning for it is; bold, strong. One to take on anything.

What do you think?
my idea of most popular name
written by Elecia, May 13, 2008
i think matt, justin, jacob, james, andrew, scott and couple more are the most common for boys and

brittney, ashley, shelby, amy, kayla, courtny, cassandra, and a few more are the most common for girls

abraham is another world name muhammad is right
i agree with angela K
written by Elecia, May 13, 2008
stephie, ashely, amy, jennifer, and few more right, almost every named that. i like taking names i like that are common and changing them "james- jaymz" but i dont really like to many common names so i go for more really unique names pretty much as far from heard of as i can go
nicell? from above
written by Elecia, May 13, 2008
who cares if its a name or not, GO WITH IT! u like it use it i would, and i agree by the way
mrs ...comment to it above
written by Elecia, May 13, 2008
yea i agree, my names different Elecia, but they teachers say it as Alicia. and when theres is more then one in the class its only mixed up from how they say it wrong.. u say mine as E-lee-sha, so they always do A-lee-sha which is the other girls name so makes it all weird and confusing, different they just don't care to say it right.
confused
written by michelle field, September 10, 2008
please can anyone give me a unique name for my 3th baby. don't no the sex yet. my other kids are brad and jade.... thank you.
my kids.
written by elisabeth, September 13, 2008
well, i have three girls and two boys. five kids, its a handful. twins on the way. after that im done, haha. but my daughters are Blake Elisabeth, you never really stumble upon girls named Blake but she is eight and the leader. my other daughter is Matilda Rose. i cant say ive ever met a Matilda before. i just adore her name. my other daughter Emmaline Michelle, its sweet, and i've yet to ever meet another Emmaline. my sons are Landon Chace and Tristan James. those are pretty normal I imagine. idk the sex of my twins, if its two girls then they will be Harlow Kate and Presley Brooke. If its two boys Chance Austin and Heath Andrew. :)
felix...
written by Razel Santibanez, October 08, 2008
we're expecting to have a baby boy. my husband want it to name Restituto Felix a name from his 2 grandparents. restituto sounds awkward to me. please help me find another name suited to felix..
ANY SUGGESTIONS WELCOME
written by Andrea B., October 14, 2008
i have a 20 month old daughter, Hannah Grace, and am xpecting again in march, were not sure what were having yet but either sex names are welcome.
Thanks
Elisabeth Above
written by ava, November 02, 2008
Your kids have theee coolest names:D
Congrats on the twins!
Big familys are awesome!

i dont know who would want to name their baby a popular name. were all different. none the same. but you dont have to be really differnt. orginal names are comming back! especailly bible names. hebrew names are awesome:)
...
written by Erika, November 29, 2008
I love the names Justus, and Macai for a boy.
for all above.
written by K.Ricker, December 07, 2008
for "My Bundle Of Joy!!!!" , i love the name Sabella Crystal :) it is Beautiful. and everyone else with different names, Nicell, they are all great ! :) popular names don't go as far in life. what i mean is, when your baby grows up and gets into the real world, everybody will always say, "which one:S?" chances are, there is no meaning behind their name. its just a name you like the sound of. but for all who thought of unique names, there beautiful. i thought of a couple of my own, i would like to know if they are nice or not. Zashlin & Pyper. i have 5 names picked out though. Zashlin Lorraine, Leah Pyper, Chase Thomas John, Hayden Scott, Wesley Brian, Norah Lynn.

thank you :)
...
written by Cecilia, May 18, 2009
I love that name, Zashlin.
Raylee
written by Cate, September 23, 2009
"I have looked in every name book I can find and can't find the meaning for my daughters name. Raylee"
The meaning of Raylee from meaning -of-names.com
written by martina, September 13, 2010
In American, the name Raylee means- princess. The name Raylee orginated as an American name. The name Raylee is most often used as a girl name or female name.
...
written by CoreeSilvera, January 26, 2011
Just a spelling twist can make a name more original. How about Rhiley instead of Riley, Tylor instead of Tyler, Kaydin instead of Cayden?
girl name
written by claire brown, March 08, 2011
i have 3 sons
Rhys Andrew is 6
twins Joseph Thomas & Alexander James are 3yrs old
im expecting my 4th child which is a girl,
her middle names are Joyce Elizabeth but we cant find a traditional name to go with Rhys, Joseph & Alexander
claire brown
written by kayla, June 19, 2011
addalyann joyce elizabeth
jayden joyce elizabeth
alexis joyce elizabeth
my cousins name is neveah, heaven backwards, it would work well
neveah joyce elizabeth

i also have a cousin named mazalyn angel marie, i adore her name, isnt it just wonderful?
Elisabeth
written by kayla, June 19, 2011
I LOVE THE NAMES
i must say tho Harlow Kate, and Heath Andrew are my fav


its kind of ironic because there is a senior in my school named heath, and his last name is andrews.. haha.. i am 14, and always thinking what should i name my kids when im older, lol, well last year i helped my aunt name my cousin but about 2 weeks before she was born we decided to name her madalyn angel marie,but when my mom cme to get me from thier house she came in and we were talking about it and my aunt tol me to tell her what we decided on and i accidentally said mazalyn angel marie, and my aunt was like no madalyn angel marie but my uncle was like yeah, but i like mazalyn and my mom said yeah i kinda do do and then my aunt agreed and so did everyone else, so now i have a little cousin named mazalyn angel marie, i love nameing babies((: lol, i wish there was an occupation for that((:
...
written by Colleen, September 08, 2011
I've got a lot of time before I plan on having children, but I just wanted some feedback on some names. I plan on having four kids: two girls and two boys if I can swing it. I would name one girl Josephine and the other Abigail. The first boy I'd name Carlisle and the other Andrew. Tell me what you think.


Thank You!

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