The Hottest Baby Names in Scotland

Mar 14th 2017

Just in from Scotland's National Records: the top baby names of 2016. Jack continues as Scotland's #1 name for boys, while Olivia supplants Emily as the #1 for girls. The full Scottish top 20:

1 Jack Olivia
2 James Emily
3 Oliver Sophie
4 Lewis Isla
5 Noah Ava
6 Logan Amelia
7 Harry Jessica
8 Alexander              Ella
9 Leo Lucy
10 Charlie Charlotte
11 Jacob Grace
12 Lucas Aria
13 Harris Ellie
14 Finlay Lily
15= Alfie Freya
15= Ethan Sophia
17 Mason Evie
18 Daniel Chloe
19 Aaron Emma
20 Max Millie

Comparing to last year with the Baby Name Wizard hotness formula, the fastest-rising boys' names in the top 100 are:

1. Arlo
2. Carter
3. Arthur
4. Conor
5. Luca

That group is diverse in origin, but remarkably consistent in sound. All five names are two syllables long, and the letters r, l and hard c reign supreme. That theme continues throughout the rising list. None of the to-20 fastest rising boys' names are over two syllables, and "mini" styles like playful O names (Leo, Theo) are especially strong.

For girls, the top risers are a genuinely varied bunch:

1. Lillie
2. Aria
3. Florence
4. Alexandra
5. Zara

That would be one old-time sweet nickname; one contemporary raindrop name; one formal late-Victorian throwback; one long regal classic; and one contemporary British favorite. At first glance, anything goes. Looking deeper on the list, though, the overall feeling of the rising girls is antique and multisyllabic, stately but delicate. Other top-20 risers include Emilia, Charlotte, Elizabeth, Imogen, Olivia, Violet and Isabella.

If you're looking for pure Scottish names that are rising in their homeland but haven't yet caught on in the U.S., try:

Hamish (M): A form of James, anglicized from Seumas

Struan (M): A place name and surname, from the Gaelic for "stream"

Mirren (F): A form of Muirenn or Marian



March 14, 2017 5:44 PM

Hamish is a name created by people with no clue about Gaelic grammar. Seumas starts with an 'sh' sound, not an 'h'; it's the vocative case version -- the one that's often rendered "O, [Name]" in translations -- that starts with an 'h' sound. You don't name babies in the vocative case. Names should be bestowed in the nominative case, pretty much by definition.

I wonder whether Hamish is rising in Scotland because the actual Gaelic form of James sounds too much like "shame us"?

March 14, 2017 9:54 PM

Occasionally names are in an oblique case. Offhand I can think of Phyllida, which is an oblique case of Phyllis.

March 15, 2017 6:49 AM

Ha! HNG, I was just coming to see if you were here bashing Hamish. :) 

I'm sure you're right and that it's an offense to Gaelic grammar... it's one I heard used occasionally in Scotland though (and on the appealing Scottish TV show Hamish MacBeth) and as such have a bit of a soft spot for. 

March 17, 2017 11:15 AM

This is a nice name collection of boys names.