One of the first big decisions parents will make when they have a child is what to name them. Many people put a lot of thought into baby names, and inspiration can come from anywhere. There’s family names, beloved movie characters, literary references and favorite destinations as well as admired personalities like an author, politician, athlete, actor or even a royal. One of the fastest-growing baby names seems to be inspired by someone who is the latter: Meghan Markle.
According to the United States Social Security Administration, the name Meghan saw a great increase in popularity from 2017 to 2018, going from 163 babies named Meghan to 411. This meant a jump of 701 spots up the list of most popular baby girls’ names from No. 1404 to No. 703.
Though she’s one of the most famous Meghans on Earth, the Duchess of Sussex actually goes by her middle name. She was born Rachel Meghan Markle in 1981, a time when this spelling variant of Megan was especially popular. The name Meghan peaked in 1985, four years after her birth, when 4,667 babies were given the name. First entering America’s list of the top 1,000 baby girls’ names in 1967, Meghan had fallen off the list after 2012 before re-entering it in 2018.
According to Nameberry, the name Megan is a Welsh diminutive of the Greek name Margaret, which means “pearl.” A more modern spelling of this common classic, Meghan is a great choice for someone looking for a trendier way to bring back an old-fashioned name.