The 20 Most Unique English Baby Girl Names Of The 20th Century

Are you expecting a little girl this year? It's fair to want an unusual name for her. Here are the 20 most unique English baby girl names for you to choose from.


Expecting a baby girl? Congratulations! Of course, you'll want to give her a moniker befitting the strong, achieving woman she'll become.

And, you want a name that means something. Going with the most popular names of the decade isn't for you.

Or to that baby girl you'll be meeting soon. Here are some of the most unique English baby girl names of the century to help inspire you.

Whatever you decide upon, she'll be grateful the decision meant so much to you.

And, chances are she'll strive to stay true to the intended meaning.


baby girl names



1. Azalea

From the Greek word azaleos, this is a lovely rhododendron-type plant which blooms gorgeous flowers ranging from pink to deep red. Sometimes fragrant and always lovely, azaleas are stunning annuals which bloom in fall and spring, just perfect for little blossoms who arrive in those seasons. Fresh and inspiring, this is the young lady you'll want to dress in flowery garb forever.

Though never a hugely popular name among English baby girl names, it has held its place on the unique list for decades. And, "lea" for short is just as lovely as the original.


2. Cassia

Though there's no history on how this became an enchanting girl's name, it seems to have come from a unique type of cinnamon which grows in South China.

Harvested from the bark of a very specific tree, this name of the spice exudes a natural uniqueness. But still, among English baby girl names, it has the wonderful sound of a future Disney princess.


3. Aurelia

Derived from the Latin family name of Aurelius, this feminine name means "golden". Among the most powerful of English baby girl names, it has been lovingly given to Julius Caesar's mother, two saints, and even an asteroid.

More recently, Bravo TV stars Nadine and Erik Courtney bestowed it upon their baby, born in 2014.


4. Athena

Just the mention of this name and you'll likely picture the powerful daughter of Zeus. And rightfully so, as this Greek mythological woman is also the goddess of math, wisdom, and courage.

In case there's any doubt of the power of this woman, Freud kept a statue of her on his desk. We can only imagine the hidden meaning of that. Tina Fey also recognized her by naming her little one, Penelope Athena.

If your little one is meant to be strong and wise, this is your pick among English baby girl names.


5. Corinna

This lovely sounding name comes from Greek origins and means "maiden". More literally, Corinna was a Greek poet from the 5th century.

Widely celebrated as one of the few female authors recognized in history, as many female writers had to use male pen names to gain readers.

Among the choices of English baby girl names, this subtle name rolls off the tongue.


6. Harlyn

Though this name has gained a bit of popularity in just the past few years, it remains unique, and frankly, stronger sounding than similar names such as Haley or Harley.

There is some debate on where the name originates, but most agree it has old English roots. Today, it is considered an original for either a boy or a girl.

A perfect choice if you are inclined to a unisex name from the list of English baby girl names.


7. Bianca

This is one of the few English baby girl names which sounds feminine, strong, and lyrical in its lovely pronunciation. Its Italian origin means "white", and the French version is the infamous first name, "Blanche".

It is also one of the few names well known all over the world, though not as widely in the U.S. It dates back to Shakespeare's "Othello", as well as Mick Jagger's first wife.

A beauty of a power name among English baby girl names.


8. Zelda

This name is originally a nickname for the given name "Griselda", and translates as "dark battle". It is also the feminine Yiddish version of "Selig" which means "blessed", or "happy".

Recently well known as the Princess in a Nintendo fantasy game, it still remains unique as a given name in the U.S. Marilyn Monroe used it as her pseudonym when traveling, and Robin Williams named his daughter Zelda.

And, of course, F. Scott's wife, Zelda, was beautiful, bewitching, and an infamous enigma.

Not only a great name, the distinctive "Z" sound will be easily heard on the playground when it's time to go home.


9. Cosette

Romantic and sweet, this French surname is pronounced "cozette". Famously known as the protagonist in "Les Miserable", it means "victorious".

Despite the infamy of the play and the movie, there were less than 100 children named for the character as of 2011.

If original and charming are what you are looking for in English baby girl names, this just might be the one.


10. Meilani

Both beautifully sounding and very original, this name has never cracked the top 1000 of English baby girl names.

Completely unrelated to the widely used "Melanie" for girls, it is Hawaiian for "heavenly beauty".

There are also roots in Chinese, as "Mei" means "beautiful". And, the perfect nickname for your little one, too!


11. Leonor

This is the Spanish version of the American name "Eleanore", and the meaning is "light". Also popular in Spanish and Portuguese speaking countries are Lenore and Leanora.

Considered a royal name in other countries, it is still very unique in the U.S. Current royals named Leonor are a Spanish Princess and Duchess of Gotland (Sweden).


12. Thea

Shortened from Dorothea, Theodora, or Althea, this Greek-derived name only got its humble beginning in the 19th Century. Its meaning is "goddess" or "godly" and certainly bestows strength within its short title.

Pronunciations include "Thay-a" and "Tay-a", and represents Theia of Greek mythology. She is known as artistic, serene, and sensitive.

Though the name has jumped in popularity, it is still a great original.


13. Sloan

A unisex name primarily in England, this lovely name comes to us from Irish roots. Also spelled "Sloane", it was translated from the Irish Gaelic term "sluagh" meaning "multitude of people", "warriors", or "fighters".

If you are expecting a red-headed baby girl, chances are good she'll grow well into this name! And, if you are a Ferris Bueller fan, it will also rank high for you among English baby girl names, too!


14. Rayna

This sweet sounding name has a variety of derivations, having a history in Hebrew, Scandinavia, and Slavic cultures. Also spelled Rana or Reina, the direct Hebrew translation is "song of the Lord".

Considered in the U.S. as a stand-out girl's name, it invokes both strength and romance. Most recently used for the main character in the TV show "Nashville", this one-of-a-kind name still only ranks in the top 600 English baby girl names.


15. Freyja

This Old Norse name means "lady", and is commonly changed to Freya. However, the original spelling is both lovely and historic. Both are pronounced Fra-ya, and are much more popular in Canada and more recently in the U.K. than the U.S.

Freyja is the Goddess of love, and she is known for crying tears of gold. Not surprisingly, Freyja's most popular country of namesakes is Iceland.


16. Nadia

Several versions of this Eastern European name include Nadja, Nadya, and Nadiya. No matter how it's spelled, it means "hope" and comes originally from Slavic and Ancient Greek languages.

It's Arabic counterpart, "Nadiyyah", means "tender", or "delicate". Widely used all over the world in art, television, and fiction, it still remains only in the top 1000 English baby girl names.


17. Anessia

This charming sounding name comes has both Greek and Russian roots and simply means "pure". Also spelled Anesia, there are indications it originally came from the Scandinavian name "Agnes".

Pronounced A-nee-see-ya, it has never ranked in the top 1000 English baby girl names. If your girl is going to be one in a million, this is the name for her.


18. Mika

Known as an original for both boys and girls, Mika has both a unique and varied past. With both Native American and Japanese roots, it's meaning can be anything from "new moon" to "a gift from God".

Also spelled "Meka", it's short stature holds great history and a melodic sound. Scandinavian history shows it may be short for "Michael" and very popular in that culture during this century.

However, it's very little used in the U.S., never making it to the top 2000 in English baby girl names.


19. Clarissa

Also spelled Clarisa, this inspired name is Latin by nature, though it is also the French version of "Claire". And, the more German derivation is "Clarice".

All the variations are just as lovely, but Clarissa is much more unique. Translations include "bright", "famous", and "most bright".

Perfect for a gifted little girl, this charming name has been bestowed upon great women in fiction, including "Mrs. Dalloway" by Virginia Woolf. Clarissa Estes is also an American poet.

Pair Clarissa with Meilani and you have got yourself a remarkable young woman!


20. Anja

Pronounced An-ya, it represents the Russian version of "Hannah". Simple and organic-sounding, it often means "grace".

However, it is also loosely understood to mean "cool girl". Another imported version is "Annika". Largely found in European cultures, various meanings also include "mother" (Hungarian), and "bringing goodness" (Hebrew).

This lilting name is also very unique in the U.S., and even the Americanized "Anya" is not yet in the top 500 English baby girl names.



Celebrity English Baby Girl Names "Rising on a Star"

As we know, American celebrities often come up with some oddly unique names for their children. Starting back in the 70's when Frank Zappa named his daughter "Moon Unit", to present day Kanye and Kim's "North".

It seems they are destined for greatness by name alone. So, we wanted to offer a short list of unique names we've noticed more than once lately, and are definitely worth a look:



Mike Myer's child and the latest child of Nicole Kidman and Keith Urban are both named Sunday.



Gwen Stefani, Jason Goldberg, and athlete Lindsay Davenport all named their sons Jagger. Ashlee Simpson chose the name for her daughter. On a separate note, Mick Jagger named his latest child, his eighth, Devereaux.



Though Megan Fox and Teresa Palmer named their sons Bohdi, Nicki Reed and Ian Somerhalder chose the name for their daughter. And, this name seems just right for either a boy or girl.



Sure, this was the most popular name in the early 1900's, but several celebrities have breathed some life into the classic. Amanda Peet, Jimmy Fallon, and Morena Baccarin have all named their baby girls Frances.



If it sounds like a name for a boy, it historically is. However, both Adam Brody and Johnny Knoxville adorned this cool sounding name to their daughters.



Yep, way off the list of English baby girl names, is James. Both Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds gave their daughters this first name. Here's hoping their daughters appreciate the thumbing their nose to the convention!



Get Inspired

Though surely not an extensive list, we hope our collection of names inspires the uniqueness you bring to parenting.

We know every child deserves the best, but parents also need original, common sense information to make sure that happens.

At Traveling Parent, we saw a need to offer genuine help finding everything a family needs. From doctors to playgrounds, we show parents where the good stuff is.

Feel free to comment or ask us a question here. We would love to hear your ideas, too!



Comments (1) -

  • I love the name Aurelia. It always reminds me of the movie Fool’s Gold. This is a great list. Now I just need to have a baby girl.

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