Would you name your child for a ‘Game of Thrones’ character?

Somebody finally took some time to dig through last year’s Social Security Baby Names chart (2012 was released in May of 2013) and they noticed that three “Game of Thrones” names were rising in popularity.

Arya rose 298 spots from 711 in 2011 to 413 in 2012. Arya is the youngest daughter of Ned Stark and has been kicking major butt the last two seasons.

Another name that is showing up on the list is Khaleesi. A far more unusual name, it is the name of the Mother of the Dragons on the show. She is building an army of freed slaves to take over the throne. Her unusual birth name also is now showing up.

From EW.com:

“According to data from the Social Security Administration, in 2012, there were 146 female babies born named Khaleesi — the title given to Emilia Clarke’s character in Game of Thrones after she marries a Dothraki leader in season 1. This trumps some more common female names such as Brandy (130) and Alex (128). Khaleesi’s given name, Daenerys, wasn’t quite as popular but still garnered 21 namesakes.

With the recent news that Game of Thrones was renewed for two more years, hopefully we’ll get some even more bizarre names like Ygritte and Bran in the years to come.”

From the Social Security press release

“Now back to the list.  Many pop-culture naming trends appear in a popular feature of Social Security’s baby names website–the “change in popularity” page.  This year’s winners for biggest jump in popularity in the Top 500 are Major and Arya.                                                  .

“The fastest riser on the girls’ list may have been influenced by the popular cable TV series “Game of Thrones.”  Arya is the daughter of a leader of one of the Seven Kingdoms.  She also is an expert sword fighter, so doubt her influence on the popular names list at your own risk.

“For the boys, parents may associate Major with the military title.  Acting Commissioner Colvin added “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.”  You also might trace Major’s increase in popularity to a cable TV show.  “Home by Novogratz” is a popular home design show featuring Major Novogratz, the youngest son of designers Robert and Cortney.”

Games of Thrones has only grown in popularity since 2012 so it will be interesting to see which names show up on the 2013 list and how many people are actually naming their kids after these characters. The list should be out in May.

Here is the list of most popular regular names of 2012.

  1. Jacob
  2. Mason
  3. Ethan
  4. Noah
  5. William
  6. Liam
  7. Jayden
  8. Michael
  9. Alexander
  10. Aiden
  1. Sophia
  2. Emma
  3. Isabella
  4. Olivia
  5. Ava
  6. Emily
  7. Abigail
  8. Mia
  9. Madison
  10. Elizabeth

Here is a list of other character names from “The Game of Thrones:

From the Game of Thrones Wiki site:


Peter Dinklage Tyrion Lannister
Nikolaj Coster-Waldau Jaime Lannister
Lena Headey Cersei Lannister
Emilia Clarke Daenerys Targaryen
Kit Harington Jon Snow
Aidan Gillen Petyr Baelish
Charles Dance Tywin Lannister
Liam Cunningham Davos Seaworth
Stephen Dillane Stannis Baratheon
Natalie Dormer Margaery Tyrell
Carice van Houten Melisandre
Isaac Hempstead-Wright Bran Stark
Jack Gleeson Joffrey Baratheon
Sophie Turner Sansa Stark
Maisie Williams Arya Stark
Alfie Allen Theon Greyjoy
John Bradley Samwell Tarly
Joe Dempsie Gendry
Rose Leslie Ygritte
Kristofer Hivju Tormund Giantsbane
Rory McCann Sandor Clegane
Conleth Hill Varys
Gwendoline Christie Brienne of Tarth
Jerome Flynn Bronn
Sibel Kekilli Shae
Michael McElhatton Roose Bolton
Iwan Rheon Ramsay Snow
Iain Glen Jorah Mormont
Michelle Fairley Catelyn Stark
Richard Madden Robb Stark
Oona Chaplin Talisa Stark
James Cosmo Jeor Mormont
Sean Bean Eddard Stark
Mark Addy Robert Baratheon
Harry Lloyd Viserys Targaryen
Jason Momoa Khal Drogo

So what do you think: Will these names continue to rise in popularity? Will others be added? Will they seem stupid in five years or 10 years? Is there another comparable naming trend?

16 comments Add your comment


April 11th, 2014
6:56 am

Only accidentally, if the name were also a family member’s name. We tend to choose from deceased family members, several generations back.

As a teacher, it is hard to name a kid. That is because so many names are associated with out of control kids. For example, I would never call a kid by his initials for this reason. Wonder if other teachers besides me and my daughter have noticed this?


April 11th, 2014
7:23 am

I know nothing about The Game of Thrones.

YES catlady on being hard to name your own kids. We went through several options before I settled on names that I could call out forever and not have an afterthought. I hope my two did not tarnish their name with a teacher…haha!

I have heard so many names and many that appear to be concoctions or obviously spelled wrong. Someone told me , a few years ago, about child named Vagina. REALLY! Pretty sure that is spelled correctly.


April 11th, 2014
7:39 am

As catlady stated, only by accident. We went through a ton of names before picking the one for our daughter. We didn’t want it to be be too common because then there will be 100 kids at her school with that name. In 2 week summer camp she went to one year there were so many Camerons that they had to use first name and last initials and in some cases made up nicknames because the kids had the same initials. We didn’t want too exotic because I have a weird name and it sucks a lot of the time. Even after all that, once we picked her name, we realized there was character from a major show with the same name..we were lucky because although it was popular, there still are not a lot of kids with her name. We named her after a character in a book that I was reading. I know a lot of kids named after book characters.


April 11th, 2014
8:43 am

What these people may not realize is “Khaleesi” is the title given to the character named Daenerys Targaryen after she marries Khal Drogo. It could roughly translate as “Queen”. So people who chose that name obviously never read the books or watched the show since it’s not a real given name. There are some great first names on the show, which I might consider for a pet but probably not for a child.

Uh, same topic...

April 11th, 2014
9:45 am

…different movie…


April 11th, 2014
10:06 am

@A: Details! It’s not her birth name, but it is what she goes by.

The worst name is the one of that idiot that’s on the “throne” now. Joffrey. That character is a d-bag in every way. If you name your kid after a TV character; it’s your own fault for them sticking you in a crappy old-age home one day.


April 11th, 2014
12:14 pm

Only vapid, shallow, insecure idiots allow a TV show to play any role whatsoever in something so personal.


April 11th, 2014
12:57 pm

@df: Well stated!

Blue Fish in a Red Lake

April 11th, 2014
1:24 pm

The “I know nothing” comment made me snicker, that is almost a catchphrase for one of the characters in the books. In my close family, we have a Jon and a Shae (who, for the record, are not named for the respective characters in the books). As far as the rest of the names go, “Bran” is short for Brandon, which is a fairly common name. The names Jaime, Robb, Petyr and Margaery seem fairly innocuous alternate takes on common names. The remainder range from unusual to exotic, but I’ve known some people with names at least as unusual.

Anytime a show really catches on in the public mind, there seems to be a spike in names associated with it. I wonder how many Joseph/Joey and Rachels there are out there courtesy of “Friends,” for instance.

Would I? Not on purpose. I do like some of the more exotic names, but as a person holding a fairly unusual name, I know firsthand that it can lead to teasing by peers.


April 11th, 2014
1:47 pm

When my daughter was several months old I was told that first and middle names were the same as a soap opera character, just in reverse. I never watched the show so I had no idea. There was also a character on a popular night time show with her name, I also didn’t watch the show and therefore had no idea.


April 11th, 2014
2:07 pm

If it had occurred it would have been accidental with zero prior knowledge of such. But, as per the last blog topic and my response, we have our three and no longer have the “name game” over which to worry.


April 11th, 2014
3:36 pm

Nor would I name my child after any character in a Dr. Seuss book. Well, maybe with the exception of Sam and possibly Fish.


April 12th, 2014
9:36 am

I like traditional, classic names, and would shy away from using a name from a popular TV show or movie.

A girl I know recently had a baby, and the baby’s name (first and last) rhymes perfectly with the name of a singer who was popular in the early 2000s…it’s only off by 2 letters, in fact. As soon as I saw the baby’s name announced on Facebook, I made the connection. I’m sure most of the child’s peers will not know who that singer is, but most people from my generation will recognize it.

I really liked the name “William” for the baby we had this past year, but we wanted to use ‘Clinton’ (a family name on my husband’s side) as the middle name. I’m not a huge fan of Bill Clinton, and didn’t want our child to endure a lifetime of “Slick Willy” jokes or people asking, “Were you named after the president?” so we opted for another first name.

Uh, FLNavyWife...

April 12th, 2014
10:13 am

…great decision!


April 13th, 2014
2:50 pm

Not if I could help it. My husband and I picked out a boy’s name from family members who are deceased and we wanted to remember (currently there aren’t any children in the works). As for a girl’s name, that is a bit harder and there aren’t any names picked out. But there won’t be any naming after celebrities, TV shows or movies.


April 15th, 2014
9:44 am

Nope. Although, we’ve discovered that a new upcoming show has my daughter’s full name, much to her bemusement.