The meaning of a name can often be the biggest influence for a parent deliberating over what name to give their newborn baby. There can be multiple meanings for any given name and while there are many parents who are genuinely not bothered with the meaning, history or connotations of a name, there are others who will write off their favourite name choice because of its meaning however. And a negative, dark or downright evil meaning or legend can scare a parent right off.
The usual names associated with beauty, nature and happiness are often in our top baby names. So going for something a little more obscure, a little more quirky and perhaps a little darker will mean that you will catch a name that isn't as popular and therefore unique. A daring name that has dwindled in the baby charts because of its translation can mean that your baby will stand out from the crowd with their incredible name.
We've gathered together a list of some of the darkest baby names we've come across. But also, names that we actually love! These names are stunning in their own right and if there was no evil or darkness in their meaning then there would more than likely be no question as to you popping it on to your list. But these particular names, have a darkness dwelling within them which you may or may not have heard before. Personally, the meaning of a name would not necessarily put me off, and the myths and legends associated with some of these names, simply make them more interesting!
Azazel has quite a charming ring to it with its lyrical tones and synonyms. The meaning of the name and it's history, if you aren't aware, might surprise you a little. Azazel literally means “scapegoat” in Hebrew. And according to the Old Testament it was the name of a sacrificial offering. To add more heat to the darkness of this name, there are further references to Azazel being a fallen angel.
I have heard of parents using this name but I'm unsure if they realise the connection it has with the dark world of demons and sacrifices. Nevertheless, I don't know about you, but it wouldn't put me off using the name. The name has a certain sound to it with its double Z and lyrical L ending. It is intriguing and beautiful and afterall, a person makes their name what they want it to be.
I think by this stage, we've all heard the name Lillith which is particularly impossible not to love. The overly feminine sound of this name makes it an incredibly beautiful choice for your baby girl if you're looking for something with a little more meat on it compared to Lily or Lillian. But Lillith has quite a discerning meaning and history that veers on the dark side. The name has deep associations with servitude, chaos, retaliation and downright evil. All of which, certainly gives the name a bit of punch and weight!
Lillith comes from the word lilitu which means "of the night". A somewhat perfect translation when you look at her history. Lillith was Adam's first wife who was thrown out of Eden and replaced by Eve simply because she would not submit to him. To add to the darkness of her incredible story, the offspring of Adam and Lillith were the evil spirits of the world.
Gabriel is a hidden gem in this list of names with a dark history and meaning. When we hear the name Gabriel, most of us think of the biblical meaning that is primarily associated with this name, "God is my strength." Surely this meaning can only be positive but when we look further into the world of Gabriel things can take a darker twist. Unknown to most of us, there was a hidden agenda with Gabriel.
Gabriel is an archangel who was known to be the messenger of God. He would deliver truths and future events to humans. He is the one who delivered the message to Mary that she was to have God's child. However when we look deeper into the motivations of Gabriel, we can see that he was a particularly manipulative and conniving angel. He delivered messages to humans but would not advise on how to interpret these messages and stepped away from the pitfalls humans would make on acting on these messages. In certain cases, Gabriel is also referred to as the Angel of Death who joined Azrael he taking souls who have died.
Pandora is a very daring name to give your baby girl but it's also quite a hard name to pass up because of its beauty. I love this name but it's deep and dark connections would make me avoid using it. There are plenty of parents who are either unaware of the history and meaning of this name or brave parents who are not worried about its connotations and simply adore the name so much that they have their own little Pandora.
For those of you who don't know, the name Pandora means "all the gifts" which is a truly beautiful meaning but when we elaborate on Pandora's mythology we find the story about her downfall. In Greek mythology Pandora was the first mortal woman. Zeus gave her a jar containing all of the trouble, ills and evils of the world that mankind now knows. Zeus deliberately told her not to open it. Of course, you can guess what happened next. Pandora, being an inquisitive, stubborn and independent female, opened the box and effectively unleashed hell on earth.
Aeron, which can be used for either a boy or a girl, has a familiar sound to it which encourages many to pop it on to their baby name list but many are probably unaware of its meaning. Some may come across the name meaning "berry" but the name Aeron, also comes from the ancient Celtic goddess of battle and slaughter. The god of war in other traditions also. Some have even gone as far as to say Aeron is associated with carnage.
Yikes, quite severe and strong but would that put you off giving this name to your baby boy or girl? Personally, I think that the name Aeron is far too aesthetically beautiful to cross off the list. Being more obscure and interesting than the usual Aaron, Aeron has a ring to it that is strong and beautiful and worthy to be given to your baby. Despite of, or rather in favour of its association with the god or goddess of war, Aeron is a strong and powerful name with a sophisticated and soft sound making it a great choice.
Alvah again can actually be used for a boy or a girl but is more commonly associated as a female name. This name is not technically a variation of Alva although it may appear that it is. Alva means "white," where in stark contrast Alvah means "evil" or "immoral". Quite a difference there. With such a strong name meaning, many parents may be blatantly put off using this spelling for a name which sounds remarkably similar to Alva.
But of course, the spelling of Alvah is beautifully unique and interesting and considering that the name is not included in many lists of popular baby names, you will certainly be choosing a unique and interesting name. This name brings quite a quandary for anyone interested in it but fearful of giving their baby a unique name that has such a dark and frankly terrifying name. My fear would be that if any of Alvah's classmates discovered the meaning the he or she would be hit with bullying and called names like Evil Alvah. To each their own, but the strength of this names meaning is a little off putting.
I think we've all heard about the dark nature of the name Seth but happily it doesn't seem to have put any of us off giving this name to our sons considering it's quite a popular baby name. In Hebrew, Seth means "anointed" or "placed" and is most commonly known as the third son of Adam and Eve. He was named as such because Eve believed he was appointed as a replacement after the fall of their sons Cain and Abel.
However, when we look at the mythology behind the name we discover that Seth, in ancient Egyptian and Greek mythology, was the god of desert, storms, disorder, violence and foreigners. He was depicted as an evil god, consuming and purporting to be responsible for various disasters of the world. Seth was a god to be feared and he indulged in this fear. He was unpredictable and strong making him more fearful and dominant. But all is not lost with Seth as there is a strong positivity to this name and the lore. Seth was thought to have supported and aided the dead by helping them reach heaven by using his ladder. Seth is often used in literature, film and TV as the name of a dark, mysterious or evil character. Whatever you make of the name Seth, bear in mind that it has always been a popular choice, so clearly the dark connotations this name holds, does not phase many people.
Adrienne is one of those beautiful and classic names that conjure up images of polite living in upstate New York. A lady of means, Adrienne is a powerful and strong choice for your baby girl. However did you know that this name has a literal meaning of "the dark one". You can take from that whatever you like and develop it to mean something that is appropriate for you. Personally, my mystic self would not allow me to use this name since I'd always wonder what lurks beneath the holder of this beautiful name. Perhaps I watch far too many horror films.
Adrienne can very well look beyond this dark meaning considering that the names numerology associates it with scholarly tasks, such as education, philosophy and stoicism. As an introvert, Adrienne often spends time correctly analysing her surroundings and situations. Which is not a bad thing.
Griffin was traditionally a surname but has filtered its way into first name status, originally as a nickname and now as a standalone name in its own right. Ordinarily the name was given to someone as a nickname for being fierce making it a strong yet not altogether popular choice just yet.
Griffin is more commonly associated with the legendary creature with the body, tail, and back legs of a lion with the head and wings of an eagle and finally an eagle's talons as its front feet. The griffin was thought to be an especially powerful and majestic creature to be revered and feared. Griffins are not necessarily evil but as protectors they will not let anything stand in the way of their duty. Griffin is not an overly common name but that could be more to do with the fact that it is usually a surname rather than a first name and nothing to do with the meaning or context.
Mara is an interesting name choice which is rarely heard these days as it is not overly popular. It is a beautifully feminine name with lovely ring to it and only one thing stopping it from being more popular, it's meaning. Mara is derived from the Hebrew marah which means "bitterness" or "sorrow". The name is first mentioned in the Bible by Naomi after her husband and sons all die. She said, "Call me not Naomi. Call me Mara", blatantly changing her name to fit and fill her mood of sadness and anger.
To add to these dark and somewhat negative meanings, Mara also means "nightmare" in Swedish and "Death" in Sanskrit. I'm not entirely sure how I feel about this name. Its a beautiful name in its own right but it has it fair share of darkness surrounding it. Would you choose it despite it holding quite a few negative meanings? Or could you get past the darkness and give your daughter a beautiful and unique name?
Raven is a name that can be used for a boy or a girl but not crossing it off your baby name list is daring. Raven has transgressed into a comic book name and it's popularity has dwindled over the years but could that be to do with its dark and unpopular meaning? While Raven is often associated with birds and nature, it is obviously closely connected with black and darkness which of course is not a bad thing and gives the name character and substance.
But many parents are more than likely unaware that the name Raven means "thievery". I wouldn't want my son or daughter to be tarnished with a name meaning that could take them down the wrong path. Is Raven on your list? Why did you keep it there and did it make your number one!
Thana, is a wolf in sheep's clothing considering it has a more commonly positive name meaning coming from the Muslim meaning "praise". However in Greek mythology, Thana means "death" making it a very bleak choice for your beautiful little girl. There is no hiding from the fact that this beautifully lyrical name has a very dark connotation. There is very little room for maneuver here so Thana will pretty much have to win you over with her Muslim name meaning or with her simple beauty and vitality.
Thana does not have to be so dark and dreary if you don't want it to and you can focus on the ideology of Thana meaning praise, making it a perfect choice. A name, after all, is what you make it and will reflect the personality of your child and not the other way around.
I actually love this name far too much to care about any of its name meanings or connotations. It glides off the tongue so easily and beautifully. The name sounds strong but romantic and sophisticated. How can it have a darkness about it? But it does and quite a good one too.
According to Jewish myth, Samael, is a fallen angel. In fact Samael is better known as the Grim Reaper and is the chief seducer, accuser, and destroyer. As the Prince of Darkness, Samael is also considered to be both kind and cruel. He is temptation personified. Would you be able to give your son a name that borders on being good and evil at the same time? Not many it would seem are happy to use this name since it doesn't even rank on the baby name charts yet. After all, it my not seem appropriate to name your little boy after an angel of death.
Mallory has a fantastic sound to it making it a gorgeous first choice for any Mum or Dad who are looking for an interesting and is a most unique choice. Mallory has dwindled in the charts lately and I do wonder if it has a lot to do with the name meaning.
Mallory comes from the French meaning "unfortunate" or " luckless". Ouch! There is something worrying about offering this name as a choice for your daughter. The worrier in me would think that the negative connotation of this name would follow my daughter around like a plague putting her in bad situations or meaning quite simply that she would fail at everything she tried. But is that fair to cross off a name that is beautiful and wonderfully romantic because of its meaning which may never come to the forefront? Would you be as suspicious as me and avoid it because you wouldn't want to raise an unlucky child?
Leviathan has oddly been rediscovered and amended in line with the uber cool and fun name Levi which has remained popular for years. Leviathan is a way for new parents to revel in the quirky name but improve on it. But this name has a dramatic and dark meaning despite it sounding positively unearthly and godly.
Leviathan, which makes a rather unusual biblical choice means "whale" or more appropriate for this list, it also means "twisted and coiled". In Biblical terms Leviathan was a monster that was overcome by the archangels on the day of judgement and God was prised for its defeat. While Levi is a great choice for your baby boy, perhaps avoid looking at the longer version of Leviathan unless you want your own little monster running around.