While some names are popular, it does not follow that they have the best meanings! Below is a list of well-known baby names that have some downright weird meanings. Although it may be tempting to name the new arrival one of the names on the following list, there are suggestions in each entry for a better alternative.
It is to be sure that parents want the best for their child, so start off on the right foot with a name that does not mean something contrary to what is desired. Read this article to find out what those names on the list of potential names really mean!
Emily is a classic name, with writers from the 1900s such as Emily Dickinson or Emily Bronte bearing the name. However, according to thenamemeaning.com, Emily is “taken from the root word aemulus” which means “rival” or being in competition with someone.
For the spirit of cooperation and comradery, you might not want to pick this name for your sweet baby girl. Instead, you may want to go with the more unusual name Harmony, meaning to be in agreement. This also has a musical overtone to it, which may encourage your little one to pursue the arts in some form!
Cameron can be either a boy or girl’s name, as in Cameron Mitchell, the famous director, or Cameron Diaz, the popular actress. The name, however, has a weird, if not somewhat funny, meaning: “crooked nose,” according to closeronline.co.uk. Crooked noses can have many different causes, most commonly some sort of injury or just being born that way.
We know every part of your baby is absolutely perfect to you, so why give them a name that means imperfect in some way? Try instead the name Payten for a girl or Payton for a boy, which momjunction.com says means “one who is multi-talented and perfect individual.”
Leah is a biblical name that has different meanings in two languages, neither of them pleasant. Closeronline.co.uk states that Leah means “tired or weary” in Hebrew. In addition, behindthename.com reveals it might also come from littu, in Akkadian, which bizarrely means “cow.”
Either way, your precious little one deserves a name to fit her lovely disposition better. How about the name Felicity, which means happiness, or Hilary, which means cheerful! Both are sure to be more upbeat names for your bundle of joy! Besides, there are two ways to pronounce Leah (LEE-ah or LAY-uh,) which is bound to be a source of annoyance as your cutie grows up.
Another biblical name is Jacob, who was the founder of the 12 tribes of Israel, which sounds like it would be good. Upon further investigation though, closeronline.co.uk states Jacob “actually means ‘supplanter’ - which is someone who takes the rightful place of someone else.”
That has a negative connotation as if your cutie pie doesn’t belong. Perhaps a stronger name is Vincent, which means conquering. It’s a subtle difference, but Vincent’s meaning has a more positive spin than Jacob. Besides, if you weren’t on Team Jacob for the movie Twilight, you definitely don’t want to name your baby after that werewolf!
Molly seems like a sweet name for a girl, but in reality, it weirdly means “bitter.” Bitter has several meanings, including “having a sharp, pungent taste or smell” and “angry, hurt, or resentful because of one's bad experiences or a sense of unjust treatment” according to Lexico.com.
Your dear one may indeed make some interesting smells, but we know she is anything but harsh or disgruntled. We suggest the names Anika, which means sweetness of face, or Pamela, which means all honey. These actually amiable names are sure to give her the clean slate she deserves while having a slightly more unique flair!
The name Caleb is another popular one (in the USA Top 100 for three decades according to nameberry.com) potentially meaning dog. While puppies are indeed quite cute, “dog” has a certain connotation when it comes to men, and we are sure you’d rather avoid that with your baby boy.
Why not go with something similar but more appealing and choose the name Conrad, coming from the fairy tale The Goose Girl, which means “handsome lad?” This is definitely a sweeter name for your little guy as well as meaning something you can be proud of!
Rebecca is a classic name, with variations such as Rebekkah, which means “to bind, tie or snare” according to closeronline.co.uk. By definition, to snare is to “to lure or tempt someone into harm or error” as defined by Lexico.com.
We know that’s not what you intend for your dear babe to do, so may we suggest something a bit more loving, like Charity or Faith, two of the three abstract virtues! Your wee one is sure to exude more of what you are hoping for her to do with a name like one of these ethical sounding monikers.
Similar to the name Christian, Tristan is a popular alternative, ranked #123 in 2018 according to nameberry.com. However, this name with a Welsh origin means noise or sorrowful, two meanings we are sure you want to avoid associating with your cherubic baby boy.
Although babies can definitely be noisy, why encourage this with the name you give him? Additionally, we bet your new member of the family brings you endless joy, so give him a name that shows him that! Perhaps try Isaac which means “happiness and joy” as momjunction.com tells us. This is a more accurate reflection of what your baby means to you!
Typically, Olivia is thought to mean an olive branch from the Latin. However, in the German version of Oliver (which is the masculine version of the name), it really means “elf army” says mom.com.
This is quite an unusual meaning for a name and not one that we recommend for your small and (hopefully) quiet bundle. In Greek, Irene means peace, a much more suitable name for one who wants a serene baby! Irene was the daughter of Zeus in ancient Greek mythology, the goddess of peace. As your baby grows, she is sure to appreciate having such a noble name.
Lastly, our favorite popular name with a weird meaning is Kennedy which means deformed head according to closeronline.co.uk. The Irish name Kennedy can be a gender-neutral name. While having a misshapen head is not usually serious, you should keep an eye out for your baby developing a flat spot on their head so they do not develop further health problems.
Allow us to suggest the name Robin or Robyn that has a meaning as “bright and shining” as your baby boy or girl! As a bonus, he or she might like being named after a beautiful bird as well!