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Tags: top | baby | names | 2012

Top Baby Names 2012: Sophia, Jacob No. 1; King, Messiah Rising

By    |   Friday, 10 May 2013 01:40 PM EDT

The top baby names of 2012 were released Thursday, with Sophia taking the No. 1 spot for American baby girls for the second year in a row, and Jacob leading the list of most poplar baby boy names, Reuters reported.

Jacob has become a standby for boys' names, topping that category in 2012 for the 14th straight year, according to the U.S. Social Security Administration. Liam and Elizabeth broke into the Top 10 at No. 6 and No. 10 respectively, the SSA said in a statement, according to Reuters.

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But rising on the list are a couple of less traditional, but more attention-grabbing names. Messiah was the fourth fastest-growing name for boys, rising to 387th in 2012 from the 633th spot in 2011, according to the federal agency.

King became the seventh fastest-growing boy's name, reaching the 256th most popular spot in 2012, compared with 389th the year before, the agency said.

"Bold names for boys are very hot right now," said Laura Wattenberg, creator of the website BabyNameWizard.com.

"So for people who are appalled by the idea, most of us are not appalled by names like Emmanuel, which is very common today, and it wasn't that long ago that the name Emmanuel was shocking to a lot of people," she said.

That is partly because a passage in the Bible's Book of Matthew links the ancient Israelite name to Jesus Christ, which Wattenberg said was seen in the past as too jarring an allusion for a baby name.

The name Major ranked as the fastest-growing boy's name on the SSA list, jumping to 483rd most popular in 2012 from 988th in 2011.

"I have no doubt Major's rising popularity as a boy's name is in tribute to the brave members of the U.S. military, and maybe we'll see more boys named General in the future," Carolyn Colvin, acting commissioner of the SSA, said in a statement.

The fastest-growing female name was Cataleya, Wattenberg said. It jumped to 479th in 2012 from 1,680 the previous year, she said, adding that could be attributed to actress Zoe Saldana's assassin character in the 2011 film "Colombiana."

Top baby names 2012 for girls

1. Sophia
2. Emma
3. Isabella
4. Olivia
5. Ava
6. Emily
7. Abigail
8. Mia
9. Madison
10. Elizabeth

Top baby names 2012 for boys

1. Jacob
2. Mason
3. Ethan
4. Noah
5. William
6. Liam
7. Jayden
8. Michael
9. Alexander
10. Aiden

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The top baby names of 2012 were unveiled Thursday by the U.S. Social Security Administration, and included Sophia, Michael, and Mia.
Friday, 10 May 2013 01:40 PM
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