Most Popular First Names: Hannah is on the decline

Status: 05/08/2023 3:09 p.m

There is little movement in the most popular first names for children: Emilia and Noah remain at the top for the third year in a row, according to the evaluation of the Society for German Language. For this, a name that was popular until recently is slipping away.

Emilia and Noah were the most popular first names for children in Germany last year. Both names were in the top positions in 2022 and thus for the third year in a row, as reported by the German Language Society (GfdS) in its annual evaluation. Noah has even held the top position since 2019. Among the girls, Sophia and Sofia and Emma followed in the other two places, and among the boys, Matt(h)eo and Mat(h)eo and Leon.

Marie back in the top ten

What is striking about girls’ names is that Hanna or Hannah is on the decline. While the name held the top spot three years earlier and second place in 2021, it has now slipped to fifth place. Lina and Mila swapped places, Ella and Klara or Clara are still in eighth and ninth place in the ranking. Marie, however, made it back into the top ten, as did Henry in the boys.

In general, there is little movement in the lists of names. Among the boys, Finn and Paul are fourth and fifth. Elias and Emil moved up one spot in popularity, overtaking Luca, who is less frequently chosen for babies and now finds himself in eighth place. Louis or Luis is the ninth most popular boy name ahead of Henry.

Wide variety of names

For the names on the top ten list, it is by no means the case that every second child in the daycare center is called that way, explained GfdS Managing Director Andrea Ewels. Even the most common girl name, Emilia, accounts for just under 1.4 percent of all female names given. For boys, Noah is only slightly above a rate of 1.4 percent.

The registry offices reported almost 70,000 different names last year, after around 65,000 names in the previous year. “This variety of names reflects social diversity.” There are also differences depending on the federal state. In Berlin, for example, the name Mohammed is now the most common name for boys, while in Saarland and Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania it is Finn.

Short with bright vowels

According to the GfdS, many of the names meet current trends: They are short, have many bright vowels such as e and i and end in a. Most names also begin with E, M and L. This applies to 13 of the top 20 names.

The GfdS has been publishing its list since 1977. The information is based on data from more than 750 registry offices, which submitted almost a million individual names. More than 90 percent of all names assigned in the past year are thus recorded.

The top ten most popular girl names

1. Emilia
2. Sophia/Sofia
4. billion
5. Hannah/Hanna
6. Lina
7. Mila
8. Ella
9. Klara/Clara
10. Marie

The top ten most popular boy names

1. Noah
2. Mat(h)eo/Matt(h)eo
4. Finn
5. Paul
6. Elijah
7. Emile
8. Luca/Luka

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