One of the most exciting life events is to have a baby! There is always a lot of curiosity around baby names and what parents should choose. As a name usually sticks to someone for life and becomes a central part of their identity, getting it right is often very well-considered and discussed between mum and dad. But it’s difficult to hang your hat on a name, so it’s worth finding out about their meanings or origins as this can influence a decision. We’ve taken a look at the most popular names of 2020 to see what parents chose.
It’s interesting to see that once again the number one name for both boys and girls hasn’t changed from the previous year and remains Oliver and Olivia. However, with most other positions it is all change, a few names have dropped out of each top 10 and others have risen.
We also noticed that 50% of the girl’s names also happen to be the names of characters in the popular Nintendo video game, Animal Crossing. This game has seen a sharp increase in usage since lockdowns began last year. Coincidence? Maybe not.
So, without further ado, we give you the Top 10 UK girl’s and boy’s names of 2020.
Number one for the second year running this name has remained the favourite girl’s name in the UK.
Interesting fact: this spelling was first used by Shakespeare in “Twelfth Night” but didn’t become a popular name until the last half of the 20th century.
Another non-mover from last year. Originally a variant of Amalia. Derived from the germanic name, “Amal” meaning work.
This climbed one place from last year’s list. This name is traditionally used by the Scottish in the form of “Islay” which is also the name of an island off the west coast of Scotland.
The name Ava has dropped one place from last year. It is believed to originate from the Latin “Avis” meaning bird.
This is another non mover in this list. Interesting fact: the word Mia in Italian and Spanish, means “mine”.
Last year’s number 7, the name Grace is often used in a biblical sense from the word “gratia” meaning “God’s favour”.
This name has climbed up an impressive 6 places this year. From the Norse “Freyja” meaning lady.
Last year’s number 6 position, the name is linked to its flower namesake, the lily, which is a symbol of purity.
Another new entry into the top 10 girls names. The name “Sophia” means wisdom in Greek.
We have started seeing a comeback of the traditional names such as Iris and Elsie and of course, Ivy. This name is ultimately derived from Old English.
Just like Olivia, Oliver was the number one boy’s name in 2019 as well. Interesting fact: the name Oliver, is a variant of Olivier.
This name was a common medieval name, however lost popularity after the 17th century, due to Oliver Cromwell. But the name became popular once again after Charles Dickens released his classic, “Oliver Twist”.
Last year’s number 4, this biblical name has climbed two places in 2020. We all know Noah as the builder of the ark, but did you know, the name actually means rest and repose?
This name also climbed two places this year, potentially inspired by the events surrounding George Floyd. The name is derived from the Greek name Georgos, meaning farmer or earth worker.
This is probably one of the biggest surprises of the list. The name climbed a staggering 10 places from 2019. The origin of the name is unknown however it is thought to be of either Roman or Celtic origins. This sudden increase could be partly due to the success of TV show, The Peaky Blinders.
Another big climber, last year’s number 10, Freddie, the shortened version of Frederick or Alfred has become vastly more popular this year. Derived from Old English and Old German for “elf” or “magical counsel or peaceful ruler”.
This name has climbed 2 places from 2019. Leo is derived from the Latin word for lion and was popular among early Christians due to St Leo the Great. Today it is likely to be popular due to the likes of actor, Leonardo Di Caprio.
Another name which has climbed the ranks this year to make it to the top 10. Theo, short for Theodore has climbed 5 ranks in 2020. Could this be partly due to the rising success in the UK of the musical, Hamilton?
Another newcomer to the top 10, Oscar is believed to be originated from the Gaelic words “Os” meaning deer and “Cara” meaning friend.
Last year, this name was number 3 and has now seen a sudden drop, barely hanging on to the top 10. The shortened version of Charles, will Charlie be a name we will see drop off this list in 2021?
Similarly to Charlie, Harry is another name that has become less popular, moving from last year’s number 2 to number 10. This name is a diminutive of Harold and Henry.