I was thinking just before the new list came out that 2010 trends had a lot of surname, masculine names, including unisex and male names on girls, as well as names with history or those that just appeared to have history. I noticed that not a whole lots of parents really research a name's meaning and history. A lot just go with what sounds good. But thankfully there has been interest in some rare gems as well, such as Cordelia, Thalia and Juniper. When the extended list comes out (the one that shows names beyond the top 1000) I will be very excited to see it. One of the names I've been watching, Audriana, ranked for the first time in 2010 at #944 and rose to #773 in 2011. Aubriana did not rank.
As I go through the 2011 list I think I'll see a lot of rarities. #1000 happens to be Damaris, and some of the other gems I saw so far were Galilea, Gwyneth, Blair, Azaria, Lilia, Chana, Ingrid, Lina, Mara, Jemma, Paloma, Araceli, Pearl, Mina, Hadassah, Taraji, Myra, Mira, Giovanna, Tegan, Giada, Emmy, Pamela (I love this one for some reason), the Japanese beauties Akira and Kairi, Cambria, Jewel, Alannah, Matilda, Emelia, Beatrice, Greta, and Meadow. These have all either remained low on the charts, or have only listed for one or two years.
I was delighted to see Nova (#884) for the first time on the charts, and I wonder what inspired it to appear, as well as Juniper at #970. Same with Milana, appearing for the first time at #998, Amalia, appearing for the first time at #992, and Rivka at #976. Temperance, which I assume is at least in part due to the TV show Bones, also appeared for the first time last year at #941. Adelina, which appeared for the first time in 2010 at #910, rose to #885 in 2011. Lilith also appeared for the first time in 2010 at #993 and rose to #923 in 2011. I think Lilith in particular is a sign that namers are getting more bold. Milania, quite the rarity, ranked at #813, not ranking before, and Blake (for girls) beat it at #815. Aubrianna, which I don't exactly like, also appeared for the first time at #867, which was quite the jump for never being in the top 1000 before, but Avianna went even further at #831, not ranking before, and the more correct spelling Aviana went even higher at #762, not ranking before. However, I believe Renata, a traditional Italian name, gets the prize for rising to #757 without ranking before. I haven't checked all the names to see if there are any others that ranked higher than Renata without ranking in the years before. Bryn would have beat Renata, but it ranked in 2000.
I also saw Yesenia on the list at #881 thinking it was new, but it turns out it has decreased in popularity over the years. In 2000 it was #248. I was also shocked to find that Princess has ranked at least since 2000, ranking as high as #686 in 2003. Ick. Overall I was impressed by a lot of the names that appeared for the first or second time. But, as usual, there were disappointments - Destinee, Journee, Armani, Sawyer, Emersyn, Braelynn, etc. I also like the rankings of Wendy and Tabitha.