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Baby Names: Emma – Babble


By Babble |

Baby Names:


Meaning: Healer of the universe

Origin: German

Alternate spellings: Ema, Emmy, Emme

Emma, be glad your name has evolved from its forerunners, Emintrude and Irmgard. Oh, we think both names are classic, but we don’t remember anyone asking Irmgard to the prom.

Emma’s a Germanic name that roughly means “healer of the universe.” That’s a lot for your baby daughter to live up to, parents, but we’re sure she’ll be a professional at cheering you up on gloomy days. The name had a heyday in the early 1900s, dropped way down for decades, then started a quick ascent in the late seventies. When Ross and Rachel gave the name to their daughter in a 2002 episode of Friends, the name jumped from #13 (2001) to #4 (2002), and it took the #1 spot from sister Emily in 2008. Twilight-fueled Isabella knocked poor Emma down after just one year, but Emma’s still a hot pick among parents.

By The Numbers

U.S. Rank by Year

2000: 17

2004: 2

2008: 1

Rank of Similar Names in 2008

Amelia 68

Emelia 960

Emilia 401

About Babble



Launched in December 2006, Babble has a National Magazine Award nomination for Best Overall Website (opposite and a Folio magazine award for Best Online Magazine (beating out everyone but Time magazine named it one of the Top 50 websites of 2010. Babble was acquired by The Walt Disney Company in November, 2011.

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4 thoughts on “Baby Names: Emma – Babble

  1. says:

    Awful and so ugly. Almost as bad as Erin.

  2. says:

    Completely played out. I blame Friends for this name’s resurgence.

  3. Emmalda. says:

    Emmalda is an Australian girls name. It’s meaning is “Helmet of protection”.

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