Sophia tops baby name list for U.S. girls; Messiah and King rising for boys

Sophia is top girl's name; Messiah and King on rise for boys
Sophia is top girl’s name; Messiah and King on rise for boys.

Sophia tops the list of names for American baby girls for the second year in a row, while King and Messiah are becoming increasingly popular names for boys, the U.S. Social Security Administration said.

Jacob has become a standby for boys’ names, topping that category for the 14th straight year. Liam and Elizabeth broke into the Top 10 at No. 6 and No. 10 respectively, the SSA said.

But rising on the list are a couple of less traditional, but more attention-grabbing names. Messiah was the fourth fastest-growing name for boys, rising to 387th in 2012 from the 633th spot in 2011, according to the federal agency.

King became the seventh fastest-growing boy’s name, reaching the 256th most popular spot in 2012, compared with 389th the year before, the agency said.

“Bold names for boys are very hot right now,” said Laura Wattenberg, creator of the website BabyNameWizard.com.

“So for people who are appalled by the idea, most of us are not appalled by names like Emmanuel, which is very common today, and it wasn’t that long ago that the name Emmanuel was shocking to a lot of people,” she said.

That is partly because a passage in the Bible’s Book of Matthew links the ancient Israelite name to Jesus Christ, which Wattenberg said was seen in the past as too jarring an allusion for a baby name.

The name Major ranked as the fastest-growing boy’s name on the SSA list, jumping to 483rd most popular in 2012 from 988th in 2011.

“I have no doubt Major’s rising popularity as a boy’s name is in tribute to the brave members of the U.S. military, and maybe we’ll see more boys named General in the future,” Carolyn Colvin, acting commissioner of the SSA, said in a statement.

For girls, the fastest-growing name was Cataleya, Wattenberg said. It jumped to 479th in 2012 from 1,680 the previous year, she said, adding that could be attributed to actress Zoe Saldana playing an alluring assassin with that name in the 2011 film “Colombiana.”



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

After Eric Garner death, religious leaders meet to…

Interfaith leaders convened with city officials to discuss what the community can do to help dial down heightened tensions after Eric Garner's death.

Local

'Suspicious' Hamilton Heights fire caused by power strip:…

An extension cord overload caused the deadly fire in Hamilton Heights late Monday that killed a 15-year-old girl and injured at least 12 others.

National

At 91, Marvel creator Stan Lee continues to…

By Piya Sinha-RoyLOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Marvel Entertainment's chief emeritus Stan Lee may be in his ninth decade, but it hasn't stopped him from adding…

National

Islamic State says beheads U.S. journalist, holds another

Islamic State insurgents released a video purportedly showing the beheading of U.S. journalist James Foley, who had gone missing in Syria nearly two years ago.

Movies

Review: Sadly, Matthew Weiner's 'Are You Here' is…

"Mad Men" creator Matthew Weiner tries his hand at movies with "Are You Here," a misjudged Owen Wilson-Zach Galifianakis comedy that turns into a drama.

Movies

Review: 'Love is Strange' is not only a…

John Lithgow and Alfred Molina tie the knot in "Love is Strange," but the film winds up being more about living with people than an activist picture.

Movies

Frank Miller on writing 'Sin City'

Frank Miller's comics career is a long and storied one, with "Sin City" being one of his most individual creations. Here, in his own words,…

Movies

Interview: Jessica Alba is a stripper again in…

Jessica Alba has gotten used to vague phone calls from director Robert Rodriguez, the Austin-based auteur who has made a habit of putting Alba into…

NFL

2014 Fantasy Football: Rankings, list of top NFL…

2014 Fantasy Football: Rankings, list of top NFL defense (DEF)

NFL

2014 Fantasy Football: Rankings, list of top NFL…

2014 Fantasy Football: Rankings, list of top NFL quarterbacks (QB)

MLB

Shane Greene travels unlikely road to Yankees stardom

Shane Greene was throwing a bullpen session on a quiet field at Daytona Beach Community College one day when the ball started moving.

NFL

2014 Fantasy Football: Rankings, list of top NFL…

2014 Fantasy Football: Rankings, list of top NFL tight ends (TE)

Tech

Siren: A new dating app that puts women…

Online dating can be brutal, especially for single women. Noting that many women hate wading through inappropriate messages and photos, two tech entrepreneurs decided to…

Wellbeing

What eye symptoms need emergency attention?

Many people experience temporary eye-related problems such as pink eye (conjunctivitis) from a cold virus or a scratched cornea resulting from an object coming into…

Sex

Big weddings may lead to longterm happiness

Dreaming of a big wedding? A new study indicates that the longer your guest list, the happier you’ll be in the long run. A new…

Parenting

Fun family activity: Off-Broadway show for pre-teens

"The Love Note" is an off-Broadway musical your pre-teen won't roll his or her eyes at.