Friday, July 26, 2013

Ode to George

Now that we know the Prince of Cambridge's name, I have had several people ask me if I think George will skyrocket in popularity. My short answer is, "Since it is currently on the decrease, I think it may rise a bit, but not make a huge jump." I'm never quite confident in my predictions though, so we'll see.

Let's take a look at the history of George in the United States. When records began in 1880, George was ranked #5, with 4.3294% of boys born given the name. It was ranked #4 or #5 from 1880 until 1912, and then it was still in the Top 10 until 1937. Since then, it has very slowly decreased in popularity until finally dropping out of the Top 100 in 1993. Currently, it's still in the Top 200, but is at its lowest rank ever at #166.

George stuck around when other "old" names didn't. In fact, if you look at the Top 100 from 1880, George stayed in the Top 100 longer than 82 of the other names. Ten of those 82 names returned to the Top 100 after absences (Henry, Jesse, Benjamin, Jacob, Isaac, Oliver, Alexander, Jack, Stephen and Alex), but George lasted longer than their initial run. Only John, William, James, Charles, Joseph, Thomas, Robert, Edward, Samuel, David, Richard, Andrew, Daniel, Peter, Michael, Paul and Patrick lasted/are lasting longer than George. That is tremendous company and the reason why George is considered a classic and steady name.

A lot of people refer to the British kings, the Presidents Bush, Gershwin, Clooney, and/or several other notables as pluses or minuses in using the name George. I think that George is strong in its own right and doesn't need any reference to any celebrity or politician to make it useful. With so many credentials, it's hard to pin down just one from which to judge. Therefore, future parents should consider the name unabashedly. Because of its classic nature, boys/men with the name George make it their own from almost the immediate moment you meet them.

How do you feel about George? Do you think the new prince will inspire more Georges in 2013?


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