Elizabeth: A Traditional Baby Name

Baby girl laying in bedsheets
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Elizabeth is a classic girls' name, one that has remained popular over the past century in all its various iterations. The name means "abundance" or "oath," and has deep roots in Hebrew culture. But it has crossed cultural lines, serving as a name for English queens and Hollywood movie stars.

Of course, I'm biased because my niece is named Elizabeth, but it's still a very popular baby girl name.Many parents choose Elizabeth for their baby girls for its versatility and its classic feel.

But the name has an interesting history and meaning as well.

One of the Most Popular Names of the Last Century

As of 2014, the name Elizabeth ranked No. 14 on the Top 50 Names by the Social Security Administration. Since 1880, the baby name Elizabeth has always appeared within the top 100 girl names. Elizabeth was the most popular baby name of 2008 and in fact, the name has been so popular that for 72 of those years, the name made it into the top 10 baby names. Because of her sustained popularity, when looking at the Top 100 Names of the Past Century, Elizabeth clinches the No. 3 spot.

There has been only one year since 1880 that Elizabeth slipped one place below the Top 25, and that was in 1945—when Betty was Number 11.

Famous Elizabeths in Hollywood, Buckingham Palace and the Bible

In the Old Testament, Elisheba was the wife of Aaron, the brother of Moses. In the New Testament, Elizabeth was the mother of John the Baptist and cousin of the Virgin Mary.

There were two English queens in the modern era with the name: Elizabeth, the wife of George VI, and Elizabeth II, the reigning monarch. Elizabeth II is mother of Prince Charles and Prince Andrew, and grandmother of Princes William and Harry.

Then there was movie star extraordinaire Elizabeth Taylor, who despite being known as "Liz" actually preferred to be called by her full first name.

While not the only actress named Elizabeth, Taylor was certainly the most memorable.The two-time Academy Award winner was married eight times, made 55 movies, appeared on soap operas and in television movies, and was a key advocate in AIDS research.

The Numerous Nicknames for Elizabeth

Elizabeth has many nicknames, each with its own unique flavor. Liz and Lizzie, Beth and Betty are probably the most common diminutives, but Libby, Bess, and Eliza are also varieties.

Possible Middle Names for Elizabeth

Elizabeth is one of those names that works with lots of different styles and sounds of middle names. It's best paired with another traditional-sounding name, like Elizabeth Anne, Elizabeth Marie, or Elizabeth Grace. But really, this versatile name can match well with almost any other.

Sibling Name Suggestions for Elizabeth

Picking out a sibling name that compliments the names of brothers and sisters can be challenging. But with a name like Elizabeth, the possibilities are many. Choosing a similarly traditional name is one option. Some suggestions include: Catherine, Emily, Margaret, and Victoria. Elizabeth's brother could be named Alexander, Christopher, Daniel, James, or William.

Celebrity Babies Named Elizabeth

Some celebrities have fancied the name Elizabeth for their children.

Here are just a few recent "Elizabeths" born to the Hollywood crowd.

  • Elizabeth Rose Cameron (2006) , daughter of James Cameron and Suzy Amis
  • Elizabeth Louise Astin (2002), daughter of Sean Astin
  • Elizabeth Hilfiger (1994), daughter of Tommy Hilfiger

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