Names to Give Your Children {for Americans}

I’m kind of obsessed with names.

Way before I ever got pregnant with Adlai, I owned a book of baby names that I mostly used to look up the meanings of names of people I met.  When we got pregnant, I started dog-earing pages with names I thought we maybe should call our child.  (The truth is, Adlai was Simon’s idea and didn’t even come out of my book.  Although I did look it up when he mentioned it.  It means “God is just”, or “My witness,” or “My Ornament.”)

I’m fond of unique names.  When I taught seventh grade the year after I graduated from college, I had 6 Kaylas in my classes, which I kept straight by referring to all of them by their full names.  I don’t want to do that to my kids’ teachers.  I’m always on the lookout for names that are meaningful, roll off the tongue easily, sound good with Dwight, and aren’t in the Top 10 most popular names for the last 5 years.

The great thing about living in England is that all the cool, popular American names are pretty uncommon here – and vice versa.  I’ve been really interested to get to know some of Adlai’s playmates here who have names that I’d consider really unique in America, and I thought I’d share some of them with you Americans, in case any of you are looking.

And don’t worry, Britons.  I’ll give you the run-down of American names next.  You know I wouldn’t leave you out.

These aren’t necessarily the most popular names for 2012, but they’re names of kids we know.

Boys We Know in Britain

Charlie

Hugo

Jago (pronounced jay-go)

Kasper

Eros

Beau

Archie

Harvey

Reuben

Girls We Know in Britain

Kezia (I kind of love this name.)

Emma

Elodie (pronounced like Melody, without the M.)

Amelia

Tilly

Poppy

Jemima

Fleur

Freya

What do you think, Brits?  Did I leave any out?

Author: Faith

Faith Dwight is a photographer and a writer. She is a Southern American girl living just north of London with her British husband, Simon and their two halfling sons.

12 thoughts

  1. my daughter is named Amelia! I’ve heard that her name is popular, it’s even high on the most popular list. but we still have yet to meet another Amelia! 🙂

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