Can this name shed his grandpa image and be worn by boys today?

Thanks to Whitney for suggesting Stanley as Baby Name of the Day.

Stanley started out as a surname, and an aristocratic one, too – the family has held the title Earl of Derby since the fifteenth century.

About Abby Sandel

Whether you're naming a baby, or just all about names, you've come to the right place! Appellation Mountain is a haven for lovers of obscure gems and enduring classics alike.

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What do you think?


  1. Missed Stanley somehow! Stan is cool, no doubt, but Stanley still leaves me a teeny bit cold. Only because my crazy Uncle was a Stanley (well, Stanislaus, anglicised) and His horrible, abusive father was a Stanley. So it’s not a name we’d ever consider. But goodness I love Stan! I’ve been thinking Constantin, nn Stan might work but that’s neither here nor there. Stanimal is awesome and Stan-wee super precious! How awesome. I’d love to meet a horde of little Stanleys! (It kills my OH, He’s a *huge* Stan Lee fan…) 😀

  2. I have a Staney Edward who is 18 mos old and I can’t imagine him as anything else! We love calling him his nickname “Stanimal” and I love reactions people express from hearing an “old” sounding name on such a fircracker of a young boy. There is nothing sweeter than hearing him try to say his own name right now too – “Stan-wee”. I love it!

  3. Stanley is a guilty pleasure of mine and I would adore meeting a little boy named Stanley.

    Stanley fits in that desirable category of familiar, but uncommon names. I think this is one of those names that the next generation will ADORE. Besides Flat Stanley, Stanley from Thomas and Friends and the cartoon Stanley that was on the Disney channel a few years ago.

  4. The very first thing I think of when I hear Stanley is the character Stan Uris from Stephen King’s It. Reading that book made me like the name.

  5. I just wanted to thank everyone so much for their comments, and thank Abby especially for doing this NOTD for me! As some of you may or may not know, my husband Constantine and I are expecting our first child — a boy — and I desperately want to name our baby after my hubby without bringing another junior into the world. Stanley is one way I thought would be a short, sweet, subtle way to honor him. We’re also considering names like Stanton, Conrad and Deacon.

    We have received an overwhelmingly negative opinion about the name from our family and friends, and to be honest, online forums scare me. It has been inexpressibly valuable for us to read all of your comments, as well as the history of Stanley. Everyone, thank you so much. We’ll keep you updated!

    1. Congratulations ! That’s wonderful news ! I wish you & your husband all of the best!
      I KNOW what mean about online forums – some of the comments made their are YOWZA! Anyway, congratulations again 🙂

      1. Thank you so much, UrbanAngel! Your well-wishes mean the world to us 🙂 I really wish online forums weren’t always so… well, downright scary. A couple of years ago, I was a somewhat active member of a website called Baby Name Genie… let’s just say it didn’t last long! Anyway, forgive my rambles; thank you again and I hope you and yours have a great weekend 🙂

    2. Whitney, you’re welcome. And I’m excited for you and Constantine. I love your junior-but-not-a-junior name search!

      I know someone who (reluctantly) named her son Martin after a loved one. It’s amazing how well the name wears, even though it seemed like an offbeat choice at the time – he was born around 2000.

      1. Thank you again, Abby. I assure you will be amongst the first to know when our little boy is here!

        I love the name Martin! It’s odd to think that only a few years ago, that seemed like a peculiar choice. It’s one of my favorite names and we recently bestowed it upon a new cat 🙂

    3. Congratulations! When it has such a great positive connotation for you, Stanley will work tremendously on a little boy! (Same goes for your other picks, which are great!) I’m sure you’ve already considered them, but I thought I’d mention Conner and Tanner, which both popped into my mind reading your alternate names (I personally prefer your existing list to those two).

      All the best for your growing family! Congrats again!

      1. Thank you so much, JNE! I actually had thought of Connor, but almost immediately had to discount it because of a close friend’s Konnor. Tanner is an option I hadn’t thought about, I like it as well! We might just wind up throwing it into the mix, too, though my heart is still yearning for Stanley 🙂 Thank you again!!!

    4. Aww, congratulations. Stanley would be a great way to name your son after your husband. 🙂

      1. Thank you so much!!! We both appreciate the well-wishes beyond words can say. You all are the best!

    5. Congratulations about the upcoming birth! Thankfully my own, negative experience with Stanley has worn off enough by now for me to see past the person who inspired my former dread to the name’s own charm. I think using Stanley is a lovely way to honour your husband!

      1. Thank you so much! I’m sorry for the negative past experience and, I must say, I totally admire you for getting past it. I am extremely sensitive to hearing a certain name because of someone who wore it who really hurt my husband in the past. Unfortunately, I’m still so sensitive to it that I can barely hear it without tensing up and cringing, and sometimes when the hormones are right, outright crying. It’s something I’ve been working on for years now and I hope that someday I’ll get past it.

        Goodness, talk about a ramble! I’ll stop now. Thank you again 🙂