THE BLOG
12/17/2010 07:51 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

British Baby Names: Hot New Trends

This was one of those delicious mornings when I allowed myself to dip into the recent British baby names in the London Telegraph birth announcements. As usual, they didn't disappoint (can you tell that my speech has suddenly acquired a British cadence?) and I managed to pick up on some actual trends.

The first is that, now that Americans have started following the British lead and using two middle names, the Brits have to do us one better by using three. Four first names total, ala Charlie Gaspar Geoffrey Langton: that's one major new trend.

But in another way, British parents have started imitating Americans by starting to use surnames and word names as middle names: besides Langton, there's a Macmillan, a Melrose, and a Tiger here.

Several names seem to be getting very fashionable in the U.K. that are still rarely used in the U.S.: Martha, Nancy, India, Alice, and Agatha for girls; Edmund, Otto, Hector, Ralph, and Benedict for boys. I guess we know why they use Benedict and we don't. But can someone British please explain to me your fondness for Alfie and Archie?

There also seems to be a trend toward having several charmingly-named children of one sex, followed by a charmingly-named child of the other sex, creating a family out of a storybook. I mean, when I read about little Hector, George, Inigo, and Alfred welcoming sister Poppy, or imagined Lettice, Beatrice, and Agatha gathered around the cradle of baby brother Atticus, I nearly abandoned this blog to rush off and write a series of adventure tales starring these lovely siblings.

Here, the baby naming news from England:

Girls

  • Agatha Annie
  • Amelia Scarlett India (sister to Orlando, Felix, and Willoughby)
  • Calypso Angelica (sister for India)
  • Cleo Elizabeth (sister for Toby)
  • Eliza India Peta
  • Helisent Sophie Isis
  • Hermione Cecily Mabel
  • Jemima Daisy Ophelia
  • Kitty Violet Larissa (sister to Noah, Jago, and Cassius)
  • Minna Julia Rose
  • Nancy Grace Elizabeth (sister for Martha)
  • Oriana Tiger
  • Poppy Elizabeth (sister for Hector, George, Inigo, and Alfred)
  • Tabitha Daisy Kate
  • Theodora Grace Primrose

Boys

  • Alexander Rafael Thomas Collett (Xander)
  • Arlo Patrick Antony
  • Atticus Oliver Ernest (brother for Lettice, Beatrice, and Agatha)
  • Benedict Ralph Oliver
  • Buster Thomas James
  • Charlie Gaspar Geoffrey Langton (brother for Jorge)
  • Deano Oriano
  • Digby Rollo
  • Edmund Tillan Carmac
  • Ferdinand Archibald Speir
  • Geordie Malcolm Andrew
  • Hamish Francis Eagar (brother for Hugh and Xander)
  • Laurence Cornelius Melrose
  • Ludovic John (brother for Otto, Max, George, and Toby)
  • Maximilian Xavier (brother to Marta Rose)
  • Monty Dyson Apollo (brother for Mitzy)
  • Peregrine Guy Richard Jago
  • Ralph Jerome (brother for Clementine and Cecilia)
  • Rocco Edward Baird (brother for Felix and Oscar)
  • Wilbur James Macmillan
  • Zebedee Ebenezer Jay (brother for Badger (child? dog? actual badger?), Clementine, and Florence)

Twins

  • Beatrice Rose and Rory Benedict
  • Henry Capability and Edmund Thomas
  • Thomasina May and Tristan John Horatio