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Washington D.C.’s Top Baby Names, Revealed

Map of the East Coast of the USA with focus on New York and Washington D.C.

Washington D.C.’s Top Baby Names, Revealed

Deciding on a baby name is a unique part of the preparing for a baby process. The popularity of names has a lot to do with the events of the past year and the popular cultural moments that shaped it. It's often connected to the family or community in which a baby is born. For instance, Washington D.C.’s top baby names for 2023 may have some classic names alongside ones that are specifically popular in the D.C. area compared to other parts of the United States.

For instance, barring names that were popular all over the U.S. in 2023, one can expect some differences in the most popular baby names between, say, Washington State, and Washington in the District of Columbia. So, stick around as we do a deep dive into the East Coast side of things. According to data from the Social Security Administration, in 2022, popular names across the board included “Henry,” “Charlotte,” “Theodore,” and “Eleanor” (via Axios). Some of those names stayed at the top of Washington D.C.'s most popular baby names, but there are also quite a few others.

In this post, we’ll cover the origin and meaning behind Washington D.C.’s top baby names for 2023. Understanding the history of a name is a big part of deciding if it’s a good fit for your newest family member. Check out this list of names that topped the list of popular names in 2023, alongside ones specific to Washington D.C. (via Nameberry). Let’s get into these top baby names.

1. Maeve

“Maeve” comes from the traditional Irish name “Medb.” This name means “intoxicating,” and also “she who rules,” in the context of Irish mythology. The story goes that Queen Maeve was a goddess and great warrior. It is associated with the Celtic root word “medu.” This translates to “mead,” a kind of alcoholic drink (via Very Well Family).

2. Silas

Silas” comes from Greek and Latin words for “forest.” It is connected to Sylvanus, the Roman forest God. In Latin, “Silvanus,” means “of the forest.” Traditionally it was a name given to people who lived in the woods. It also means “prayed for,” derived from the Hebrew name “Saul.” It shows up in the New Testament with Saint Silas (via Nameberry).

3. Alice

Ever heard of Alice In Wonderland? This classic name has roots in German, Dutch, and French languages. “Alice” comes from the French name “Aalais,” which evolved from “Adelais,” from the Germanic name “Adahaidis”. It translates to “noble,” and “kindly.” These are powerful and positive attributes to wish upon a new baby, no wonder it's among Washington D.C.'s top baby names for 2023.

Alice - popular girls name from colorful letters on white background. Alice common female name.
Alice is a classic name that comes from French, German, and Dutch variations on the name.

©Maksimo Foux/Shutterstock.com

4. Felix

Felix” has connections to Spanish, French, Portuguese, German, Latin, and Jewish languages. In Latin, the name translates to “happy,” and “fortunate.” According to Family Education, it was originally used as a surname but started to be used as a first, given name during the rule of the ancient Roman Sulla. It was believed to impart luck and happiness upon the bearer. It also has ties to the Bible.

5. Eleanor

The name “Eleanor” has roots in Greek and French, and comes from the name “Alienor.” It translates to “light-hearted,” and “shining.” Common variations for this lovely name include “Nora,” “Elianore,” “Lenore,” “Heleanora,” and “Enora.”

6. Theodore

Theodore,” has roots in the Greek language, and translates to “divine gift.” Its unique parts “Theos,” and “Doron,” mean “God,” and “gift.” When you hear the name you may think of historical like Theodore Roosevelt, and Boston Red Sox player Theodore Samuel Williams.

7. Josephine

Josephine” has roots in Hebrew and French, meaning “God increases.” This roughly translates to putting faith in God's will and what is planned in this life. The male version of the name “Joseph,” is from the name “Yosef” in Hebrew. Other variations include “Giuseppina,” “Joséphine,” “Josefina,” and “Josie.”

8. Soren

Next up we have “Soren,” which is a Danish name meaning “stern.” In Latin, it is derived from the word “Severus” which can also translate to “severe.” Its traditional Scandinavian spellings would include “Sören” and “Søren,” which slightly changes the pronunciation from “Sorr-en” to “Sur-en.” In the United States, the first pronunciation is much more common.

9. Eloise

The name “Eloise,” comes from French, German, and English languages. It means “healthy,” and “intelligent.” From the German name “Helewedis,” the parts of the word “heil,” meaning “healthy,” and “wid” meaning “wide.” Variations on the name “Eloise,” include “Louise,” “Louisa,” “Lois,” or “Lou.”

10. Oliver/Olivia

Oliver” and its feminized variation “Olivia,” have roots in Norse, French, and Latin languages. The old Norse name “Álefir” means “descendent,” while the French name “Olivier,” and the Latin term “oliva,” are connected to the olive tree. In turn, the olive tree is a symbol of peacefulness, unity, and beauty.

Portrait of infant baby boy weared funny hat. Kid lying on bed and playing with teething toy
Washington D.C.'s top baby names for 2023 include “Theodore,” “Oliver,” and “Jude.”

©Oksana Kuzmina/Shutterstock.com

11. Isla

Isla” has roots in Scottish, and Spanish names and meanings. The Scottish name “Islay” means “Queen of Hebrides,” from “an old folktale about an Island. There are two rivers in Scotland with the name “Isla.” It also means “island” in Spanish.

12. Jude

Have you ever listened to the song “Hey Jude,” by the Beatles? This name comes from the Hebrew word for “praised.” Variations include “Judy,” and “Judith,” or “Judas.” Saint Jude Thaddeus is one of the 12 apostles in the Bible. He is the patron saint of hope and impossible causes.

13. Ophelia

Another iconic name, “Ophelia,” gained popularity from Shakespeare's Hamlet. “Ophelia” is Greek in origin, meaning “benefit,” or “aid.” Other spellings include “Ofelia” which is how it appeared in the Jacopo Sannazaro poem “Arcadia” published in 1504.

14. Caspian

Yet another literary great among Washington D.C.'s top baby names of 2023, enter “Caspian.” Featured in C.S. Lewis's “The Chronicles of Narnia,” Prince Caspian, is a character who embodies bravery, heart, and intelligence. “Caspian” is Greek and Latin in origin. The term “Caspius,” or “Kaspios,” meaning “white.” This is the name of the “White Sea,” also known as the “Caspian Sea,” the largest inland body of water on planet Earth (via Brittanica).

15. Aurelia

Aurelia,” comes from Latin meaning “golden one.” It is the feminized version of “Aurelius,” which comes from the Latin “aureus,” which translates to “golden.” It was a common name in Rome, and still seems to be today, especially if it's among Washington D.C.'s top baby names of 2023.

16. Atticus

Atticus,” has roots in Greek and Latin. The Greek word “Attikos,” describes citizens of Attica, a region in Greece that now encompasses its capital city, Athens. Individuals with the name “Atticus” are connected to traits of wisdom and curiosity. This may be due to Athen's history of philosophers and academics (via Name Of The Year).

17. Daphne

The name “Daphne,” is a fragrant, delicate flower that blooms in the springtime. The name is Greek in origin, and means a “laurel,” or “bay tree.” “Daphne,” the nymph, was the daughter of the river God, Peneus. The story goes that she was transformed into a laurel tree after the God Apollo would not leave her alone.

Purple flowers of daphne bholua. Daphne bholua, the Nepalese paper plant, is a species of flowering shrub in the genus Daphne of the family Thymelaeaceae.
Daphne flowers have a sweet smell in the springtime and come in many colors. It is a lovely name.


18. Sebastian

Sebastian” has roots in Latin, translating to “venerable,” and “revered.” It was a name used to describe the citizens of the town of Sebaste. That region is now a part of Turkey. There is also a Biblical tie in the form of Saint Sebastian, a Christian Saint. Saint Sebastian is a patron to athletes and martyrs. French variations of the name include “Sébastienne,” and the shortened version “Bastion.”

19. Evangeline

Evangeline” comes from the Greek meaning “messenger of good news,” and the Latin term “evangeliu,” which means “gospel.” It is a hopeful name. Nicknames include “Eva,” or “Angel.”

20. Ethan

Ethan” comes from the Hebrew name “Eitan,” and also comes from the Old Testament of the Bible. It means “strong,” and “solid.” The name “Ethan” conjures up traits of wisdom and strength. It is a lovely name to impart upon a child.

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