Sibling sets that seem to always go together

I seem to be really impressing many people in my life with my ability to predict younger sibling names, but really, all the successes (the MANY of them!) are all the same pairings for names that are locally very popular.

I think I've posted before about my ability to predict that Finn's younger sibling is always, always named Kai - I've met another example where this is true recently.

But even more obvious is that where there is a Henry, there is an Eleanor.

I know a lot of little Henrys and one of them was due to become a big brother to a little sister. My mom and I had a conversation about the happy impending arrival in which I said, "I bet you so much they'll name her Eleanor!" and my mom said, "No, they won't, remember that the mom has a negative association in that she never liked the Eleanor you all grew up with!" and I said something jokey like, "Well, they'll just have to use a variant then, won't they!"

And lo, baby Norah was welcomed into the world. My mom and I were delighted and also very amused.

So my question is, are there any pairings that you encounter over and over again? Laura hits the idea of sibsets pretty squarely on the head in BNW, but sometimes sibsets are a very pockety local phenomenon, so I'm curious to hear what others have to report.


February 27, 2014 4:03 AM

Finn's brother is only Kai if he's a birth certificate Finn, though. Finnigan and Finnian and Phinnaeus are very different!

February 27, 2014 7:45 PM

I know multiple sets of siblings born in the '90s with an Evan and a Katherine/Kathryn, etc. Many times the Katherine goes by a nickname.

March 21, 2014 12:08 PM

I guess my parents were ahead of their time! We were born in the early '80s. 

February 28, 2014 10:47 AM

Max and Leo are almost always paired on this site (they do go well together, though!). 

I know several Ella & Jack sibsets - though not surprising since they were the top names here for what seemed forever. And Tom always seems to go with Will or Charlotte. 

I'm sure we know more... This will have me thinking all night!

March 2, 2014 4:29 AM

Max and Leo is a really obvious pairing. Perhaps less so if it's a Maxwell or a Maximilian, but Just Max? Totally has to have Just Leo as a sibling.

Jacks are harder to untangle for me because they subdivide Johns, Jacks, Jacksons and Jaxons, all of which are pretty substantially different. I don't actually know any birth certificate Jacks at all, come to think of it.

February 28, 2014 12:24 PM

In my parents' generation there were many pairs of sisters named Leah and Rachel (or Lena and Rose). In my son's generation (now mid 30s), the sister pairs were named Rebecca and Rachel, Leah apparently out of fashion.

March 5, 2014 12:48 AM

I am also in your son's generation, and yes, in my perception Leah was tremendously more uncommon than Rachel or Rebecca. I don't actually think I know any Rachel and Rebecca sibsets, though plenty of Rachels and Rebeccas -- I think parents were perhaps loath to repeat the starting initial.

March 8, 2014 5:13 PM

This is funny because I knew 2 Rachel & Leah sibsets (and one Rachel & Leah BFF set) growing up.  I also knew 1 Rachel and Rebecca set (twins), but no Rebecca & Leah sets.  

1 of the Rachel & Leah sets were friends with my youngest sister, so a few years younger than your son.  The other Rachel & Leah sisters & the BFF pair were my age (early 40s).  The twins were a couple years behind me in school.

May 6, 2014 2:59 PM

Including my husbands friends, I know 4, yes 4! Rebecca and Rachel sets. I also know 3 Joshua and Rachel sets. Currently, I know 2 Emma and Owen sets.

May 6, 2014 9:50 PM

My cousin's children, now in their thirties, are Joshua, Daniel, and Rachel, a very predictable set for that time.

March 2, 2016 9:49 PM

I know a Daniel and Rachel sibset born in the 80s.

Also a Leah and Rachel, same generation. Both are Jewish families.

February 28, 2014 12:34 PM

So very many Henry & Eleanor many...


March 2, 2014 5:00 PM

If Henry has a sister who isn't named Eleanor, his sister's name is Alice. 

March 5, 2014 12:46 AM

This is a very good algorithm! The Eleanor/Henry sibset I know is going to add another child, and my money would be on Alice if it weren't already the name of a good friend. As a result, I think I might predict a Matilda if they have a girl.

July 18, 2014 1:41 PM

I know a Henry who is the oldest of 8, and not one of his 4 sisters is named any variant of Eleanor. The youngest is named Alice, though.

He also has a brother named George, which I've always thought of as similar to Henry. (Probably because each has been the name of so many British kings)

By jmay
February 28, 2014 12:37 PM

I know two sets of sisters named Ava & Mia, and one set named Ava & Mina all under about 10 years old. Weirder though is knowing two Madison's, both about 5 who have baby brothers born within a month of each other, both named Brady. I only know their families peripherally, and I'm pretty sure they don't know each other...I wish I knew them both better so I could introduce them :-)

March 5, 2014 1:10 AM

I know, right? I think if I met another family who used even ONE of my kids' names, I'd immediately want to be their friends!

Though I think the random chances of having both a Madison and a Brady (using their respective birth years) is 17006/3.9 million * 2849/3.9 million =3.1*10^-6, whereas my kids names are more in the 6/4 million=1.5*10^-6 range, independently, so I suppose that it would still be a more remarkable surprise to find just one of my kids names reused rather than a Madison and a Brady. (And of course names travel in pockets so it's not really random.)

By jmay
March 14, 2014 1:21 PM

That math is so far over my head its like watching an airplane go by... I know it's going someplace cool, but I can't follow it :-) 



March 14, 2014 6:18 PM

That's becuase I totally left the negative number off the scientific notation!! I can't believe it! The numbers are 10^-6, because they are very small, like 0.0000015 versus 0.0000033.

Bottom line, it's more weird to find another Jo1yon than it is to find a sibset with both a Brady and a Madison. :)

February 28, 2014 1:44 PM

I know a bunch of families with some combination of Jack, Max, Ben, and Sam.

February 28, 2014 6:40 PM

I was going to mention the Jack/Sam/Nick pairing. It's not surprising, really, but does seem eery after a while. I know two sets of sisters named Caroline and Lucy. 

March 2, 2014 10:37 AM

I know a couple Caroline/Lucy pairs as well. I also know three families with a Lily/Lucy sibset. I always thought those two were super close for sisters but apparently it didn't bother those three sets of parents.

March 5, 2014 12:44 AM

Caroline and Lucy are very different kinds of names to me (Lucy is more of a vintage charm light and breezy nicknamey name, and Caroline is more of a timeless classic), so I'm surprised that they're paired together so often. This is super interesting to me.

And I just met a Lily and Lucy sibset recently, too - and their brother had a surnamey name starting with an L also. They are very similar names in style to me, but due to the similarity in sound having a Lucy and a Lily would trip me up tremendously.

February 28, 2014 8:55 PM

I know at least three sets of sisters called Emily and Charlotte, and five sisters with Ava and Mia. In my mother's generation, she knew nearly a dozen sister called Rachel/Rachael and Sara/Sarah. I also knows a few sets of brothers called James and Logan, and quite a few brother/sister sets called James and Elizabeth, as well as Jack and Maddison/Madison/etc.

March 2, 2014 6:20 PM

My husband was a brother/sister set of James and Elizabeth.

March 7, 2014 12:08 AM

I know two sets of twins named Oliver and Finn.


March 7, 2014 1:23 AM

That is fascinating to me. Finn on the birth certificate, not something longer? Huh, there goes my theory!

February 29, 2016 6:04 PM

My 3 year old grandson goes by Finn occasionally.  His name is Finley.  I have met men named just Finn though.

March 8, 2014 5:19 PM

Logan & Dalton always seem to go together.  

And Henry, Charlie and Sam always seem to go together.  If I know a boy with one of those names, I'd bet money his younger brother will be called one of the other two.

I also know quite a few Alex(ander) and Nicholoas (Nick) pairs.


March 8, 2014 6:01 PM

Logan and Dalton is fascinating -- never a pairing I've seen or would have guessed.

Henry seems the odd one out in the Charlie and Sam pairing -- I'd be more inclined to guess something like George for a Henry-sibling. I guess it depends how contrarian Henry is in your area, though!

I find Alexander a tough name to pair, since it's both an affable new classic (in Alex) and also a Greek Classic with a conquering edge to it! For sisters you've got Cassandra and Phoebe and Chlore, but there's not much in the boy vein. I agree that it's often Nicholas/Nick, but I find that to be a very different name myself.

March 8, 2014 7:33 PM

Why would you find Nicholas and Alexander to be so very different?  Nicholas and Alexander were names that alternated in the Romanov dynasty.  I can hardly think of names that are more similar in feeling.

March 9, 2014 12:55 AM

I think it's chiefly that St. Nikolaus is the main overriding dominant association for Nicolas for me, probably coupled with a couple of individual outlier Alexes and Nickys growing up. I agree that on paper they are a very good match!

March 9, 2014 11:46 AM

There were NO ALexes and Nickys when I was growing up. LOL

December 2, 2015 9:05 PM

This thread is so old... But does anyone else remember Nicky and Alex from Full House? 

Also: I know sibsets named Parker and Peyton, Preston and Peyton, as well as Parker, Peyton, and Piper. The Parkers and Peytons are all boys.

March 2, 2016 9:52 PM

Full house! Yes! I also know a Nicky and Alex who are now in their late teens/early 20s.

August 7, 2014 8:39 PM

I completely agree

March 9, 2014 1:30 AM

The Logan/Dalton pairs I know are all a bit older, pre-teen to young teens I guess.  But both names are really popular here for that age group, so I guess it's not too surprising to find them paired up frequently.

Henry is moderatly contrarian in my area.  I suspect it's about as out there as most people are willing to go.  I would love to see a Henry & George!  I have a George and based on comments we've received it is very contrarian here. Still too far out there for the Henry families I guess.  


March 9, 2014 3:43 AM

I do get the feeling that George is a good step behind Henry -- i mean that time-wise, like George is currently as contrarian as Henry used to be (here it has been very widely embraced).

I'm curious how England's Royal Baby will change that perception here, if at all. I think it's the very likely middle name choice if our last child turns out to be a boy and I really love the name, and I'd love to see it ressurected from a rather big fall.

One Eleanor/Henry sibset I know has several different coexisting pets named George. :)

March 9, 2014 6:32 PM

Yeah, I'm also curious to see how the royal George affects the name.  So far, nobody has commented about it to me like I expected.  My oldest is William and I specifically ruled out Charles & Harry when we were expecting the 2nd. Guess the joke is on me.  :)

Pets named George could be a sign of things to come. Once people get used to hearing it more, it should start gaining some more momentum.

July 18, 2014 1:46 PM

I know a Henry and two Sams, and even though each of them has at least three brothers, none of them fit that trend at all.

March 8, 2014 10:13 PM

My dad and his brother are Stephen and David, so those always went together for me ... now there are brothers in my boys' school ages 8 and 6 that are Stephen and David, which I find both jarring (because of their age) and perfect (because of my dad and uncle).

March 14, 2014 1:28 AM

My dad and his brother are also Stephen and David. 

March 10, 2014 10:34 PM

Lillian (all called Lily) & Logan. 

My daughter's friend's 2 children, my co-worker's 2 children, my friend's 2 grandchildren, and a family at church (with their siblings Landon & Lauren!).

March 11, 2014 1:10 AM

Ha, I know a Landon/Lily/Lucy sibset!

March 2, 2016 9:52 PM

I know a Landen and Lauren who used to date.

March 19, 2014 10:58 PM

Jack & Katherine - i know a few of these including a Jackson & Kathryn

Wyatt & Walker

Charlotte & Audrey




March 19, 2014 11:00 PM

oh! and I forgot Jackson/Tyler/Cooper

March 3, 2016 2:42 PM

Yes! I know a set of Jackson and Cooper as well as a set of Jackson and Tyler.

July 27, 2014 12:29 AM

Coming late to the party, but I just have to know, what names would you pair with Gabriel (a boy, to be clear)? Throw me a couple of boy names, and a couple girl names please, just for kicks:)

August 5, 2014 11:52 AM

Michael Isabel(la) Tobias John jedediah Bethany hope that helps