What Were The Most Popular Baby Names Of The 1980s?
Names, names, names! I suppose really a name says more about your parents than it does about you.
Some parents bless us with names that we love, while others don’t! A name is a very important part of us. It labels us.
There’s the middle names too, who doesn’t know someone with a cringe of a middle name? Or even a rather hysterical middle name?
Ever wondered what the 1980’s most popular baby names were? And how they compare to today’s baby names? Better? Worse? Average?
A lot of new born babies names are really eccentric in more recent times, especially with the celebrities.
Apple, North, Birdie, Coco, Cricket, Dream, Bronx, Maple…to name but a few.
Whether you love eccentric names, or you prefer more traditional names.. The reason behind a name is always interesting.
Were you named after a relative? Were you named after a film star? Did your parents just have to compromise your name?
There are thousands upon thousands of names to choose from, or it could be a completely made up, a unique, original name just for you.
So really the list of possible names is endless!
You might have a rare name, a name from the trend of the time, a biblical name, a Shakespearean name, a name from your origins, a family name..
Everybody’s name has meaning, and everybody’s name is a name which means something to their parents.
The names babies are being called in 2018 have changed alot since the 1980’s.
Looking back at popular 80’s names for boys and girls our parents really did have great tastes! I really like every name on the list! Every one!
Let’s take a trip down that nostalgic memory lane back in time to 1984, to see what the twenty five most popular boys and girls names were. See if you can guess them first!
Then we’ll see what the top baby names of 2018 are!
Ok, let’s start with the boys…
1984 Names as compared to the equivalent in popularity now in 2018…
In 1984, the 25th most popular name was Alexander.
Originating in Greece, the name Alexander means to “ward of” or protect, so Alexander is something of a protector and defender. In 2018 the 25th most popular name is Isaac.
In 24th place in 1984 was Anthony, which is actually an English name meaning “Highly Praiseworthy”.
Now in 2018, the 24th most popular name is Mason.
The 23rd most popular boy’s name in 1984 was Peter, which comes from the Aramaic for “stone”, this has been replaced by the 23rd most popular name in 2018 which is Arthur.
In 22nd place in 1984 was the boy’s name, Nicholas. Another entry derived from Greek, this one means “Victory of the people”. In 2018 the 22nd most popular name is Ethan.
Simon was the 21st most popular name in 1984 and can be traced back to either the Greek for “Snub-nosed” or the Hebrew for “hear” or “listen” – which do you prefer to be thought of if you’re a Simon? 21st in 2018 is Lucas.
Stephen. Originating in Greece, the name Stephen means “crown” or, being more specific, “That which surrounds” and was the 20th most popular name in 1984, compared to in 2018 which is Max.
Craig was the 19th most popular name in 1984, and comes from an old Scottish Gaelic nickname meaning “rock”, whereas the 19th most popular boy’s name in 2018 is William.
1984’s 18th most popular boy’s name was Jonathan, which is Hebrew for “Jehovah has given” or “Jehova’s gift. In 2018, the 18th most popular boy’s name is Henry.
It’s unclear why Steven as the 17th most popular boy’s name was classed separately to Stephen, but it means the same thing, whilst 17th most popular name in 2018 is Joshua.
Benjamin, or “Son of my right hand” in Hebrew was the 16th most popular boy’s name in 1984, whereas in 2018 it’s another strong Biblical name, James.
Originally a surname, Lee was a word for a meadow or clearing and then found itself the 15th most popular boy’s name in 1984, whilst in 2018 the 15th most popular is Thomas.
Very similar to Jonathan, John means “Jehovah has been gracious” in Hebrew and was the 14th most popular boy’s name in 1984, whilst Theo is 14th most popular in 2018.
Robert is the first entry on this list deriving from German and means “Famed”, “Bright” or “Shining”, and Robert was the 13th most popular boy’s name in 1984, but in 2018 it’s Archie.
Adam can be derived from the Hebrew words for “the Earth”, “The Ground” or “made from Clay” and so is thought to represent the beginning of the human species, as in Adam and Eve. Logan is the 12th most popular boy’s name in 2018 and is derived from the X-Men comics mainly!
Thomas can be derived through many different languages including English, French and German but is thought to be derived from the Aramaic for “twin” and is a Biblical name. Leo is the 11th most popular boy’s name in 2018.
Mark comes from the Latin name Martkos and means “Consecrated to the God Mars”, though it could also mean “God of War” which is kind of cool! Oscar was number 10 in 2018 and isn’t quite so cool.
From the Roman family name, Paulus, Paul was number 9 in the list in 1984 and means “small” or “humble”. Number 9 in 2018 is Freddie.
Meaning “Strong in rule” in Germanic, Richard made number 8 in the list in 1984, whilst in 2018 the name Alfie sits in number 8 spot. What will it be in 2018?
Andrew simply means “manly” in Scottish and is obviously a good, manly name as a result. Andrew was the 7th most popular name for boys in 1984, whereas in 2018 it’s Jacob.
Matthew means “Gift from God” in Hebrew and tends to be very apt if you happen to know any Matthews. Matthew was the 6th most popular boys name in 1984, whilst Charlie makes the same number in 2018.
Top five time! Here goes….
Michael means “He who is like God” so is a very Biblical name and is another that is derived from Hebrew. Michael was 5th most popular boys name in 1984, and in 2018 it’s another very Biblical name, Noah.
“God is my Judge” in Hebrew was “Daniyyel” and over the centuries became Daniel which was number 4 on the list in 1984, whilst in 2018 it’s George that makes 4th spot.
David is yet another very Biblical name, meaning “Beloved” and made number 3 in the list in 1984 boy’s names, but following a drop in trend Jack has slipped down to third in 2018 after being number one for several years.
James has been derived over the years from the same source as the name “Jacob” and seems to mean something along the lines of “supplanter”, though it is more widely used as Jacob was the father of 12 sons in the Bible and is a good, strong, Biblical name. Making 2nd spot in 2018 is Harry.
And the number One most popular boys name…
Meaning “The carrier of Christ” in Greek, Christopher was the most popular boy’s name in 1984, whereas in 2018 the most popular boy’s name is now Oliver.
Here come the girls…
Coming from the Ancient Greek for “My God is an Oath”, Elizabeth was the 25th most popular girl’s name in 1984, whereas in 2018 it is Willow.
Lucy comes from the same background as Lucifer and means “Light” but don’t worry this was more from before Lucifer became a fallen angel! Lucy was 24th most popular as a girl’s name in 1984, whilst in 2018 it is Isabelle.
Joanne comes from the same source as John and means “God is Gracious” in Latin. Joanne was the 23rd most popular name for girls in 1984, whilst in 2018 it is Ruby.
The name Charlotte was the 22nd most popular girl’s name in 1984 and comes from the French for “Free man” or “petite”. In number 22 for 2018 is Harper.
Helen comes from the Greek for “Shining Light” and was the 21st most popular on the list in 1984, whilst in 2018’s 21st spot we see Ivy.
Hannah comes from the Hebrew word Channah, meaning “favour” or “grace” and was 20th most popular for girl’s names in 1984. In 20th spot in 2018 is Sienna.
Hayley is an English name and means “Hay Field” so there doesn’t seem to be such a long history for this name, but it didn’t stop it breaking in to the top 20 at number 19 on the list in 1984. 2018 saw Alice take the equivalent spot on the list.
Another girl’s name deriving from the same place as a boy’s name, Michelle like Michael comes from the Hebrew for “he who is like God” (or in this case “She”) and hit number 18 in the list for 1984, whereas in 2018 Freya was the 18th on the list.
Meaning “Famous Warrior” in French, Louise was 17th on the list in 1984, whereas in 2018 Sophie was 17th most popular for the girls.
Meaning “Christmas Day” in Latin, Natalie made number 16 on the list in 1984, whereas in 2018 number 16 on the list saw Daisy claim the spot.
Kelly is the first name we have seen that derives from Irish and comes from the surname Ceallaigh which means “Descendant of Ceallach” and was 15th on the list in 1984, whilst 2018’s 15th spot was claimed by Jessica.
Coming from the same origins as Elizabeth, so “Oath from God” in Hebrew, Lisa was 14th on the list in 1984, whilst in 2018 it is Charlotte that claims 14th spot.
Evolving in to its own name, Katie was originally just a shortened name of the longer Katherine, but has rapidly evolved in to its own name and made 13th spot in 1984. 13th spot in 2018 has gone to Evie.
Nicola comes from the Latin for “Victory” and was 12th on the list back in 1984. 12th spot in 2018 has gone to Ella.
It’s not known for certain, but Jennifer is thought to mean “Th Fair One” and is derived from the old Cornish name of Guinevere. Making 11th spot in 1984, it has been replaced in 2018 by Poppy.
“Dearly Loved” or “Beloved” is what Amy is derived from in French and was the first entry in the top 10 in 1984’s girl’s names. Grace was 10th spot in 2018 for the girls.
Not necessarily the coolest meaning, Rachel means “Ewe” or “Female Sheep” in Hebrew and was 9th on the list in 1984, whereas Isabella is 9th in 2018.
Samantha means “God Heard” in Hebrew and was the 8th most popular name for girls in 1984. Sophia was the 8th most popular name for girls in 2018.
Victoria is a name that is more obvious in its origins, coming from the Latin word for “Victory” and was 7th spot on the list in 1984. Mia is 7th on the list in 2018.
Meaning “Bright” or “Clear”, Claire was the 6th on the list in 1984 and is derived from Latin. 6th on the list for 2018 sees Lily make the entry.
Top five time, wahoo!
Coming from the Hebrew word for “Join”, “Trap” or “Snare”, Rebecca was the 5th most popular name on the list for girls in 1984, whereas 2018’s 5th entry is Ava.
Deriving from the Germanic word for “Whole” or “Universal”, Emma was the 4th most popular name in 1984, i 2018 it’s a very similar name still, with Emily 4th on the list.
Gemma is our first name derived from Italian rather than Latin on the list and means “Gem Stone”. Gemma was 3rd on the list in 1984, whereas 3rd in 2018 is Isla.
Laura comes from the Latin for Laurel and was the 2nd most popular girl’s name in 1984, whereas 2018 sees Amelia take the number 2 spot.
And the number One most popular girls name…
Meaning “Princess”, the most popular girls’ name in 1984 was Sarah, whereas in 2018 Olivia takes the top spot and has been popular for the past few years.
Well what a list! For children of the 1980’s, this list is like a run through of the school register. Some names have travelled through every generation, whilst others have fallen along the way side.
So was your name on the list? Whatever your name, find out the meaning of it! Why is it your name? It really is fascinating to find out. Unfortunately we’re getting names like ‘North’ and ‘Apple,’ nowadays. What ever will it be next?