When I was pregnant with my first daughter eight years ago, I knew what her name would be: Emma. Short, sweet, and feminine, it was a name I had adored since childhood. Then I peeked at the Social Security Administration's top baby names for the previous year. It turned out it had been the second most popular name for quite some time! While I loved the name, I wanted something just a bit more unusual. I imagine many other parents are falling in love with Sophia and getting the same rude awakening: It holds the highest rank for baby girl names in the United States.
So what to do if you had your heart set on Sophia but its No. 1 status ruined your fun? Take a closer look at the name and figure out what made you fall in love with it in the first place. We've broken similar names up into a few categories to help you find a moniker as special as your girl is sure to be.
So much about Sophia appeals to the ear. It proves feminine names don't have to be floral or frilly: Sophia Petrillo didn't mess around. We think Sylvia — nickname Sylvie, just like Sophie! — is the dark horse contender here. While it sounds dated, keep in mind Sophia was an old lady name until a decade ago.
Sophia's Greek roots make for a unique presentation. If the ph is what pleases your eye, you'll adore these gorgeous Greek names fit for a goddess.
Find more Greek names here.
Perhaps the meaning of Sophia appeals to you? It means "wisdom," which is sadly uncommon among baby girl monikers. Thankfully we found a few strong contenders suitable for your intelligent baby girl.
If none of these names gives you enough of a tingle to oust Sophia from the top of your list, don't be discouraged. Call your girl Sophia. It sits atop the charts for a reason! Be comforted by the fact that, even if you add in all the Sophies and Sofias, your girl's name won't come close to the popularity of a 1970s Jennifer or early 20th century Mary.
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