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Tarzan, Banksy, Frenchie, and Pasty: The full list of Scottish baby names used in 2023 revealed

The full list of Scottish baby names is now out, highlighting the many names chosen for 2023 babies. We've unpacked the latest baby naming trends and most popular names in Scotland.
Baby names data has been published for 2023 Supplied by DCT Design Team
Baby names data has been published for 2023 Supplied by DCT Design Team

Anything Banksy puts his name to turns to gold, so are these parents setting up their child for success?

The famous street artist authorised his first exhibit in 14 years in Glasgow in 2023. Did one Scottish family get so inspired by the exhibit that they used it as name inspiration?

The National Records of Scotland released the latest baby name data this morning and we’ve been trawling through the lists looking for the most interesting trends.

Banksy’s Girl with Balloon on display at The Art of Banksy exhibition in London.

Other brand new boy names to enter the Scottish list for the first time alongside Banksy are Tarzan, Ox, Lynx, Howl and Hermes. Whereas for girls some names used for the first time were California, Frenchie, October, and Pasty.

You can view the full list for 2023 boys names here. Use the search box to look up any names you are particularly interested in.

You can see the girls list for 2023 below.

At the top of the charts this year were the names Luca and Isla. With Luca knocking Noah off the top spot from last year.

You can see how the most popular baby boy names have changed in Scotland since the start of the baby name records started in 1974 in the chart below.

And you can see how the trends at the top of the girls name list has changed below.

Pop culture continues to inspire

Scottish parents have been inspired by film and television in 2023.

One of the biggest science-fiction films of the past few years was Dune- starring Timothee Chalamet and Zendaya.

Both extremely popular actors, Timothee and Zendaya have clearly inspired Scottish families, as in 2023, there were two Timothees and two Zendayas.

The first film was released in 2021, with the second coming out this year.

Timothee Chalamet as Paul Atreides and Zendaya as Chani in Dune. Picture credit: Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc./Niko Tavernise.

Paul has been a classic name used in Scotland since records began, but has been falling down the ranks since the 90s.

Despite the film, it’s not bolstered the use of Paul any, as this year only 13 babies were given the moniker.

Chani, which is not a popular name, has been used three times since 1982, and was used for one baby girl last year – which may have been inspired by the film.

One of the older baby Chani’s was born in 1985- the year after David Lynch’s adaption was released so her parents may also have been inspired by Dune.

Some parents may have been inspired by the award-winning films Barbie and Oppenheimer. Photo by Jakub Porzycki/NurPhoto/Shutterstock

The Barbenheimer frenzy had an impact on Scottish baby names, but not by a surge in Kens or Barbies. There hasn’t been a baby Barbie since 1979.

However, the time in the spotlight for Cillian Murphy and Margot Robbie has seen the two names reach a record high in Scotland.

Margot has been gradually rising since 2014, but with 42 babies given the moniker last year there was a significant jump since 2022.

Cillian reached the top 100 boy names for the first time in Scotland last year with 53 babies.

When you’re naming a baby you probably don’t automatically think to name a child after a tv show focused on murder.

But that’s what some parents in Scotland may have been inspired by last year.

The name Mabel, while having been used since 1974 when records began, hasn’t been a very popular name in Scotland throughout the years.

But it’s been gaining traction since the 2010s and reached 47 names in 2023.

Selena Gomez, who plays Mabel Mora in Only Murders in the Building. Image: Shutterstock

This may be due to the American tv series Only Murders in the Building, where one of the main characters Mabel Mora is played by Selena Gomez.

It first came to Hulu in August 2021, and has recently been confirmed to be returning for a fourth season.

One of the other main characters Oliver has a name that has been popular in Scotland for years, with 250 babies given the name in 2023.

Making up the true-crime trio is Charles-Haden, who hasn’t yet inspired any parents to give their child this name.

Game of Thrones names still on trend

Despite the final season of the show airing in 2019 to a fairly critical reception, parents in Scotland are still turning to the series for inspiration.

More baby boys this year shared their names with characters from the popular fantasy series than baby girls, but references to the show have remained popular despite the length of time since it last aired.

The most popular name is Arya, with 30 baby girls named this in 2023.

Her sister Sansa shared a name with one baby, while Khaleesi, a title given to Daenerys Tararyen, was also given to a baby girl last year.

Ramsay inspired eight babies in Scotland- which shares a name with Ramsay Bolton, although it’s unlikely many people had the controversial character in mind while naming their little one.

Other Game of Thrones names that popped up last year included Bran, Theon, Oberon, Jon, Jaime, Tywin, Joray and Shae.

The name Khaleesi returned to the Scottish lists this year after falling out of fashion last year for the first time since the show aired.

Names on the way out

As well as looking at what’s trending, we also look at names that we’ve said goodbye to for the first time this year.

The names Dale, Graeme and Kelly have all been given to 100 babies or more in a single year but have completely fallen out of fashion in 2023.

NRS statistician Phillipa Haxton said: “National Records of Scotland is pleased to welcome all of Scotland’s bundles of joy in 2023.

“There are more names in use today than there were in previous generations.

“The number of different names for boys reached a new all-time high in 2023, as did the number of unique names given to only one child in the year.

“The same pattern was observed for girls’ names, and the variety of names given to girls is still greater than for boys.”

See the rest of our Scottish baby name coverage here.

Or if you are interested in the trends in your area, check out our local authority analysis below.