At one point, it seemed like classic names like Lilith, Vivian, Joan, and Harry (Thanks Royal Family!) were coming back in style. Parents were giving their kids throwback names in a cute but sweet nod to their grandparents or great grandparents. However, there are some classic names from decades ago that are on their way out, like actually extinct.
Laura Wattenberg, creator of Namerology, told TODAY Parents, that a perfect example of this is the name Carole. A name that was once one of the defining names of the 1930’s and 40s has completely fallen off the radar in 2022.
According to Wattenberg, a name is considered statistically “gone” when it is given to fewer than five boys or girls in a year.
“One-syllable nicknames like Jim and Dave used to be really popular given names,” Wattenberg said. “But that whole style is falling rapidly out of fashion.”
She did note that while names like Bob and Bill are on their way out, the longer versions of those names — Robert and William — still have legs to stand on. In fact, William is still a top 10 name, and Liam, which is a short form of William, is the No. 1 name of 2021.
Wattenberg noted that politicians used to shorten their names to more “friendly and approachable” nicknames.
“You had an election between Bill Clinton and Bob Dole, not William and Robert,” she said. “Ted Cruz was born Rafael, Michael Dukakis was always Michael until he started running for president and then he became Mike.”
Once classic names of the 1960s, like Jill or Brad, are ready to go extinct as well.
“Names of the 1960s are sort of on this accelerated decline,” Wattenberg said. “So we’re about to see nobody named Shelley or Jill or even Brad.”
“Brad isn’t even in the top 3000 names for boys,” she added.
So, is your name off the list completely?
Extinct girls’ names:
Extinct boys’ names:
If you didn’t catch your name on the endangered name list, maybe it’s on it’s way out under the “endangered” names list.
Endangered girls’ names:
Endangered boys’ names:
Maybe it’s time to turn it around and give these names to future babies. Trends always come back around, don’t they? Not too long ago, “old lady” names like Ruby, Hazel, and Violet were rare and now they make up entire kindergarten classes.
If you’d rather keep things fresh and trendy, though, here’s the list of top baby names for 2021.