New Names Showdown 2016 Girls FinalIt’s finally here! The New Names Showdown 2016 Girls Final!

We started out with eight names, all new or returned to the US Top 1000 in this year’s data. Our goal: to choose the name most likely to rise going forward.

It’s a tricky business, because most names inch their way up the rankings. Picks like Paisley, Everly, and Aria are the exception.

But Appellation Mountain readers boast some serious name prediction mojo.

And so, we started out with eight names: Zelda, Frankie, Lyra, Alaia, Ophelia, Briar, Arden, and Kensington.

Any of those names could leap 100+ places when we see the new numbers in May 2017.

But the names that you’ve chosen to compete in the final? In the Girls’ SemiFinals round:

  • Lyra sailed past Ophelia, a tidy 57% to 43%. Lyra has a lot to offer: ties to a heroic fictional character, similarities to popular names like Lila and Aria, and a sense that the name is fresh and completely new. But Ophelia seemed formidable. A Shakespearean name, just like former favorite Jessica and current darling Olivia. It fits with our affection for girls’ names ending in -ia and -lia, and it’s not new – instead, Ophelia is a vintage revival. But this year, we’re placing our best on Lyra as the name more likely to gain in the year ahead.
  • In our second SemiFinals match, Arden bested Zelda, 61% to 39%. The second name tied to Shakespeare in the contest, Arden brings to mind the Bard’s part-real, part-fantasy forest from As You Like It. Arden fits with tailored names for girls. It could serve as an alternative to picks like the soaring Harper and increasingly popular Rowan and Lennon. But Zelda made for a worthy opponent. A jazz age name thanks to Zelda Fitzgerald, there’s a hint of literary appeal to the name. With a history of use and an unexpected sound, Zelda could appeal to the same parents who have embraced choices like Thea and Margot.

But we bid adieu to Ophelia and Zelda for now! The new names showdown 2016 girls final belongs to Lyra and Arden.

Time to get out those crystal balls and vote:



Which name claimed your vote? Do you think some of these names will gain substantially when the new data is released in 2017?

This poll will remain open until Thursday, August 11th. Check back on Friday, August 19th for the announcement of the winners!

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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