Last week the U.S. Social Security Administration released a statement revealing America’s most popular baby names for 2012. There were two names that had significant rises in popularity: Major and Arya. I’ll be looking at the name Major later this week, but I was really fascinated by the increase in popularity of the name Arya. It was completely foreign to me.
Thankfully the SSA helpfully explained, “The fastest riser on the girls’ list may have been influenced by the popular cable TV series “Game of Thrones.” Arya is the daughter of a leader of one of the Seven Kingdoms. She also is an expert sword fighter, so doubt her influence on the popular names list at your own risk.”
(I know. I know. But I just haven’t been able to get into Game of Thrones.)
Pop culture has always influenced baby names. We get inspired by what we read or see and then the name of a favorite character ends up as the name of our bundle of joy. The trends of these names is sometimes instantly obvious. Such is the case with the name Arya. Other times it takes a year or so for the trend to take off.
This collection of baby name trends focuses on the spikes in name trends and then locates what the pop culture influence might have been.
16 Baby Name Trends Influenced by Pop Culture
Resources: Social Security Popular Baby Names