Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Numerical Baby Names From One to Ten

There was once a time back in Ancient Rome when it was common to have several children. So many that parents sometimes numbered them via their names. If you couldn't imagine naming your children one, two, three, four, five... you're not alone.

Fortunately, there are Latin options that sound much cooler than that if you happen to find the idea of numbering your offspring to be appealing. There are also some updated modernized versions of these old Latin names that are faring better than their ancient counterparts.

Many ancient names are being used again today with a renewed sense of style such as all the -us names like Atticus, Maximus, Cyrus, Augustus, etc. But does this interest extend to these numerical names? Do they stand any chance for revival?  Let's take a look at some of the possible choices per number.

One (1): 

Prima
  • Gender: Female
  • Last year used: 2004
  • # of births in that year: 6
  • Most recorded usage: 14 births in 1975
Primo 
  • Gender: Male
  • Last year used: 2013
  • # of births in that year: 11
  • Most recorded usage: 31 births in 1921
Primus
  • Gender: Male
  • Last year used: 2009
  • # of births in that year: 5
  • Most recorded usage: 10 births in 1920
Uno
  • Gender: Male
  • Last year used: 1923
  • # of births in that year: 5
  • Most recorded usage: 15 births in both 1918 & 1919
Una
  • Gender: Female
  • Last year used: 2013
  • # of births in that year: 39
  • Most recorded usage: 217 births in 1921 

Primo is probably the most usable of the Prim- names with it's ancient roots and stylish -o ending, but it still lacks a bit of modern flair which prevents it from gaining any real traction with parents. These will always be rare. Uno is nonexistent as a name today. Una is the most used out of all of them and would actually be rather stylish for a girl today.
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Two (2):

Secunda
  • Gender: Female
  • Last year used: 1977
  • # of births in that year: 5
  • Most recorded usage: 5 births in 1964 & 1977. Total. Ever.
Segundo
  • Gender: Male
  • Last year used: 2012
  • # of births in that year: 5
  • Most recorded usage: 12 births in 2002
Secundus
  • Gender: Male
  • Last year used: Never in US
  • # of births in that year: None
  • Most recorded usage: None

One may be the loneliest number, but hardly anyone seems to value the number two when it comes to names.  Segundo for a boy has done the best out of all of these but its numbers are minuscule. These may not be inclined for any kind of popularity but they're interesting to at least acknowledge.
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Three (3):

Tertia
  • Gender: Female
  • Last year used: 1985
  • # of births in that year: 5
  • Most recorded usage: 5 births in 1971 & 1985. Total. Ever.
Tertius
  • Gender: Male
  • Last year used: 1987
  • # of births in that year: 6
  • Most recorded usage: 6 births in 1987. Total. Ever.
Tres
  • Gender: Male
  • Last year used: 2013
  • # of births in that year: 8
  • Most recorded usage: 17 births in 1993 & 1998

These Latin Tert- names aren't faring very well in the US.  Tertia has potential if pronounced ter-shuh, similar to Portia. Tertius might just be too much tert, even if pronounced ter-shuss. The French Trois hasn't been used at all but the Spanish word for three, Tres, has had some usage for a boy which is as good as it gets for these number names!
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Four (4):

Quarta
  • Gender: Female
  • Last year used: Never in US
  • # of births in that year: None
  • Most recorded usage: None
Quartus
  • Gender: Male
  • Last year used: Never in US
  • # of births in that year: None
  • Most recorded usage: None

The US has zero love for the number four. Nobody has ever used these names. However, it would take 5 uses in a single year in order for it to be recorded, so it is possible that there's a couple out there that we don't know about. Similarly, there's no love for Quartia, Quartina, Quartessa or Quartella.  Nothing for Quatro or Quatre either.  Poor number four!
-

Five (5):

Quinta
  • Gender: Female
  • Last year used: 1997
  • # of births in that year: 5
  • Most recorded usage: 15 births in 1977
  • Gender: Male
  • Last year used: 1995
  • # of births in that year: 5
  • Most recorded usage: 8 births in 1977
Quintina
  • Gender: Female
  • Last year used: 2004
  • # of births in that year: 5
  • Most recorded usage: 54 births in 1976
Quintus
  • Gender: Male
  • Last year used: 2013
  • # of births in that year: 19
  • Most recorded usage: 30 births in 2012
Quintin
  • Gender: Male
  • Last year used: 2013
  • # of births in that year: 248
  • Most recorded usage: 405 births in 1997
Quinton
  • Gender: Male
  • Last year used: 2013
  • # of births in that year: 479
  • Most recorded usage: 871 births in 1996

The more modernized names Quintin and Quinton are commonly used today and are the most popular number names that we've looked at so far.  Quintus has real potential to gain a popularity boost along with the other -us names that are rising.  The female options don't quite strike the right chord for today's tastes, though.
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Six (6):

Sexta
  • Gender: Female
  • Last year used: None
  • # of births in that year: None
  • Most recorded usage: Never used in the US
Sextus
  • Gender: Male
  • Last year used: None
  • # of births in that year: None
  • Most recorded usage: Never used in the US
Sexton
  • Gender: Male
  • Last year used: 1975
  • # of births in that year: 5
  • Most recorded usage: 6 births in both 1917 & 1920

It's no surprise that people aren't readily putting the word "sex" into their children's names. I'd be more worried if these names were popular.  These can stay right where they are: in obscurity.
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Seven (7):

Septima 
  • Gender: Female
  • Last year used: None
  • # of births in that year: None
  • Most recorded usage: Never used in the US
Septimus
  • Gender: Male
  • Last year used: None
  • # of births in that year: None
  • Most recorded usage: Never used in the US
September
  • Gender: Female
  • Last year used: 2013
  • # of births in that year: 31
  • Most recorded usage: 51 births in 1980
Seven:
  • Gender: Female
  • Last year used: 2013
  • # of births in that year: 42
  • Most recorded usage: 50 births in 2012
  • Gender: Male
  • Last year used: 2013
  • Births in that year: 75
  • Most recorded usage: 112 births in 2008

Septima and Septimus feel like they should have some usage and that they could actually fit in with other revived ancient names. September is more of a month name than a number name these days. The calendar shifted around and pushed the month down to the ninth spot, but September still comes from the Latin word for seven. September has had regular usage since 1955 and has the potential for more. Lastly, some parents have even decided to straight up use the number "Seven" as a name without any need to Romanize it.
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Eight (8):

Octavia
  • Gender: Female
  • Last year used: 2013
  • # of births in that year: 73
  • Most recorded usage: 446 births in 1987
Octavio
  • Gender: Male
  • Last year used: 2013
  • # of births in that year: 175
  • Most recorded usage: 437 births in 2003
Octavius
  • Gender: Male
  • Last year used: 2013
  • # of births in that year: 51
  • Most recorded usage: 126 births in 1991
Octavian
  • Gender: Male
  • Last year used: 2013
  • # of births in that year: 43
  • Most recorded usage: 58 births in 2007
October
  • Gender: Female
  • Last year used: 2013
  • # of births in that year: 44
  • Most recorded usage: 63 births in 2010

Octavio currently has the most usage of these Oct- names, but Octavia has been most consistently used over the years. Octavius should fit right in with other ancient -us boy names but it isn't currently hitting the spot. Octavian would be a cool alternative to other modern boy names ending with -n. October is another month name. It was originally set as the 8th month but with changes to the calender, it was bumped down to the 10th spot today. It is solely used for girls but it would also suit a boy well, especially with the nickname Toby.
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Nine (9):

Nona
  • Gender: Female
  • Last year used: 2013
  • Births in that year: 23
  • Most recorded usage: 359 births in 1950
Nonius
  • Gender: Male
  • Last year used: None
  • # of births in that year: None
  • Most recorded usage: Never used in the US
November
  • Gender: Female
  • Last year used: 2013
  • Births in that year: 43
  • Most recorded usage: 43 births in 2013

Nona has had an impressive run. It isn't ranking today, but it ranked in the 300-500s for decades up until the mid 1950s. It has potential to comeback again with either the ancient crowd or as a vintage name. Nonius hasn't been used but that isn't too surprising. November, even though it is more in the Month Name Camp, has had some decent usage. It was originally the ninth month even though it is currently the 11th. It comes from the Latin novem meaning "nine".
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Ten (10):

Decima
  • Gender: Female
  • Last year used: 2013
  • Births in that year: 5
  • Most recorded usage: 9 births in 1914
Decimus
  • Gender: Male
  • Last year used: 2012
  • Births in that year: 8
  • Most recorded usage: 8 births in both 2006 & 2012
December 
  • Gender: Female
  • Last year used: 2013
  • Births in that year: 33
  • Most recorded usage: 46 births in 2012

These names deserve much more usage than they're getting. Both Decima and Decimus are cool and attractive and should be revived along with other ancient names for modern babies. Like the other month names, December was originally the 10th month even though it is now our 12th.  


Which of these "Numerical Names" do you like best? Are there any that I missed that could be included? Vote for your favorite on the polls below!




Whether you'd ever use it or not, which female name is most attractive?

Prima
Una
Secunda
Tertia
Quarta
Quinta
Quintina
Sexta
Septima
September
Seven
Octavia
October
Nona
November
Decima
December
Thanks for voting!!

Whether you'd ever use it or not, which male name is most attractive?

Primo
Primus
Uno
Segundo
Secundus
Tertius
Tres
Quartus
Quintus
Quintin
Quinton
Sextus
Sexton
Septimus
Seven
Octavio
Octavius
Octavian
Nonius
Decimus
Thanks for voting!!
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