Friday, May 07, 2010

SSA Top 1000 released

I've been thinking about this all day (another distraction from revision, what with the election and general busyness of life) and haven't yet formed any firm conclusions, so this post is going to be a splatter of thoughts and musings, with a few links to more concise conclusions.

If you don't have a grip on the naming world, then you may be unaware that May 7 is Name Day, or the day that the SSA Top 1000 names are released (aka, we get to see what names were 'hot' in the US last year).

What's really 'hot' are the so-called Twilight names - Isabella topped the girl's name charts - not just by accident, but by GAINING around 3500 births. For a name that dropped its number of births last year, that's fairly impressive. More than that, for the first time since 1949, there is a female name as the #1 name in the US.
Of course, the situation is very different from 1949, when the top names comprised almost 100 000 births, but as a name nerd, such changes make me rather excited.
Isabella of course existed before Twilight, and when the first book was published in 2005, the name was #6.

But what about the rest of the Twilight crew? This is where the Twilight effect is especially tangible - Cullen is the fastest male riser, going from #782 to 485, a surprising number but just a growth of 0.013%. Members of the Cullen family also rose - Emmett from #547 to 332, Jasper from #449 to 337, Alice from #327 to 258. Rosalie and Esme did not chart, and Edward rose just 11 places to #137, though this represented a % change of 0.013% again. Jacob's already at the top, and Bella rose 58 places.

It's generally been a good year for the 'Bella' names - all examples rose in the charts: Isabella (of course), Arabella, Annabella, Izabella and new entry Anabella.

Presidential children Sasha and Malia were among the fast risers, with Maliyah being the quickest riser of them all.

New entries (or reentries) that I've noticed include June, Bristol (the Palin effect or admiration for the West country port?), Kloe (on the back of Chloe), Analia (the telenovela effect), Leighton (Meester?), Milan, Calleigh, Adelynn, Taraji (P. Henson - Oscar nominated in '09), Eloise, Raelyn, Taya (Parker?), Leona (Lewis?), Kellan (Lutz?), Sylas, Jaxen, Dilan, Westin, Garrison, Juelz, Maddux, Cain, Hugh, Stone and Amos.

Oh and Mary fell out of the top 100.