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Greek Mythological Baby Names the Most Popular in the US and UK

Greek mythological baby names
Greek mythology is the most influential source of inspiration for baby names in the US and UK. Credit: Carole Raddato / Wikimedia Commons CC BY-SA 2.0

Greek mythological baby names are the most popular names inspired by mythologies from around the world in both the US and the UK.

The finding was made by Play Like Mum, an online toy retailer. The study compared a list of more than 2,000 names from several mythologies with data on baby-naming trends in the US and UK. The results showed that Greek names were the most popular.

The names were compared from several mythological traditions, including Greek, Roman, Celtic, Norse, Egyptian, Arthurian, and Irish.

Greek mythological baby names are trending in the US

According to the study by Play Like Mum when it comes to names inspired by mythology, parents are most likely to draw inspiration from ancient Greek legends. The study compared names with mythological roots to data on naming trends collected over the past ten years.

In the US, Greek mythology was the most influential overall, with 365,790 recorded incidences of names with Greek mythological roots. In fact, there were over 150,000 more Greek names than from any other mythos.

For boys, names like Atlas, Orion, Hector, and Titan were popular, whereas for girls, names such as Maia, Thalia, Calliope, and Selene were frequently chosen.

For girls, the most popular name in the US with mythical roots was Athena, after the ancient Greek goddess of wisdom, war, and handicraft. This was followed by Kali, a Hindu name, in second place, and Phoenix in third, another Greek name.

The fourth, seventh, eighth, ninth, and tenth most popular mythological names also had Greek roots. They were Maia, Thalia, Rhea, Calliope, and Selene, respectively.

For the boys, Tristan was the most popular name, with roots in Celtic and Arthurian legend. In second place was Griffin, a name with both Egyptian and Greek mythical connotations. Also in third place for the boys was Phoenix, which held the same position for the girls.

The ancient Greeks believed that the phoenix was an immortal bird with fiery red-gold feathers. According to some legends it would combust and be reborn from the ashes of its previous body.

Popular in the UK

Names inspired by Greek mythology were also immensely popular in the UK. As in the US, Greek mythology was the most influential source of inspiration for baby names.

Over ten years, 64,216 names were chosen in the UK with Greek mythological roots. The next most popular mythology was Celtic, with 37,744 names, followed closely by Arthurian lore with 36,618 names being derived from the tales of King Arthur, Camelot and the Round Table.

The most popular mythological name for girls in the UK was Maia, the mother of Hermes and a companion of Artemis in Greek mythology. This was followed by Athena in second place and Frejya – from Norse and Germanic mythology – in third.

For the boys, Tristan was the most popular name with mythical roots, inspired by Arthurian and Celtic legends. In second place was the Greek name Phoenix and in third was Hector, one of the most famous heroes of the Iliad.

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