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Unique and Old Fashioned Baby Names

Old Fashioned Names for Babies

Choosing old fashioned baby names is a trend parents are following today in an effort to find a name that's unique and appealing for their new baby.

What Constitutes Old Fashioned?

Old fashioned names include names that were popular generations ago. Most of them haven't been in style for almost 100 years. Today's parents are turning to these old fashioned monikers as well as other unusual names in an effort to give their child a unique name that's beautiful and yet different from other children born within the same time frame.

Where to Find Old Fashioned Baby Names

You can find lists of old fashioned names generated by many of the popular online sites that provide tools to look up names along with their meanings and origins. Another place to look is in your family's past. Your own family tree may hold the very gem you're looking for in the name of a great-great grandparent. If you like this idea, but are unsure of your family tree, you can visit sites like to check your lineage or that of others.

Online Resources

The following online resources provide lists of old fashioned baby names:

Names Found in Literature

Another resource to find old fashioned names is literature. Consider the prolific writer Charles Dickens as one possibility. Here are a few samplings of names from his works:

Old Fashioned Boy Names

  • Abel - Great Expectations
  • Arthur - Great Expectations
  • Bentley - Great Expectations
  • Daniel - David Copperfield
  • Edward - 'David Copperfield
  • Frederick -- The Old Curiosity Shop
  • Isaac -- The Old Curiosity Shop
  • James - David Copperfield
  • Philip (known as Pip) - Great Expectations
  • Raymond - Great Expectations
  • Sampson -- The Old Curiosity Shop
  • Wilkins - David Copperfield

Old Fashioned Girl Names

  • Agnes - David Copperfield
  • Betsey - David Copperfield
  • Clara - Great Expectations and David Copperfield
  • Dora - David Copperfield
  • Estella - Great Expectations
  • Georgiana - Great Expectations
  • Jane - David Copperfield
  • Martha - David Copperfield
  • Molly - Great Expectations
  • Nell -- The Old Curiosity Shop
  • Rose -- Oliver Twist
  • Sarah - Great Expectations

Along with finding names within literature itself, you can also consider the names of authors from another era. Visit your library for a wealth of possibilities. For now, here are a few ideas to get you started:

  • Jane Austen
  • Geoffrey Chaucer
  • Anton Chekhov
  • Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe
  • Jamaica Kincaid
  • John Milton
  • Ezra Pound
  • Rainer Maria Rilke
  • Gertrude Stein
  • Henry David Thoreau

Biblical Names

Biblical names are both old fashioned and trendy. One thing to remember when choosing a name from the bible is that you want people to be able to pronounce it. Old fashioned bible names include:

Biblical Girl Names

  • Adah
  • Amana
  • Charity
  • Dinah
  • Eden
  • Hope
  • Galatia
  • Keturah
  • Noa
  • Rinnah
  • Sapphira
  • Shiloh
  • Tabitha
  • Zarah
  • Zemira

Biblical Boy Names

  • Adriel
  • Alexander
  • Asa
  • Daniel
  • Eli
  • Eran
  • Gabriel
  • Gideon
  • Jacob
  • Jesse
  • Josiah
  • Levi
  • Luke
  • Malachai
  • Silas
  • Taddeus

The trend toward using old fashioned names is reflective of parents trying to set their children apart. Some people think it might reflect a desire to return to more traditional values. Whatever your reason for searching for an old fashioned name for your baby, you have plenty to choose from. However, if you want your baby's name to really be different, take note of the old fashioned names that have become trendy and avoid them.

Here are some of the trendier popular names more commonly used today that are also considered old fashioned. If you want a name different from other children, you may not want to pick one of these.

Trendy Names for Girls

  • Abigail
  • Alexandra
  • Anna
  • Ava
  • Chloe
  • Elizabeth
  • Ella
  • Emma (Number one girl name 2008)
  • Emily
  • Grace
  • Hannah
  • Isabella/Isabel
  • Julia
  • Madison
  • Mia
  • Olivia
  • Sarah
  • Sophia

Trendy Names for Boys

  • Albert
  • Anthony
  • Christopher
  • Clark
  • Clement
  • Clifford
  • David
  • Daniel
  • Ethan
  • Edwin
  • Felix
  • Jacob (Number 1 boy name in 2008)
  • James
  • John
  • Joseph
  • Joshuah
  • Matthew
  • Oliver
  • Michael
  • Richard
  • Robert
  • Sherman
  • Silas
  • Thaddeus
  • William
Unique and Old Fashioned Baby Names