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Loredana (lor-eh-dah-nah) is a sweet Italian girl's name meaning "laurel grove." Have you ever seen a laurel grove? They're pretty.

This literary baby name may have been invented by Italian novelist Luciano Zuccioli for "L'Amore de Loredana" (1908) as a spin on the Italian surname Loredan, though a few Laur- and Lor- names already existed, so it would be similar to "inventing" Mirabeau or Gwendolena. Others say George Sand invented it for her 1833 novel "Mattea." Similar in sound is the Madonna di Loreto's title, Loretana, "woods of the laurel." And because of Madonna di Loreto the name Loredana is considered a saint name. Her name day is December 10th.

There are a few pop culture references from Romania and Italy - multiple several actresses and pop stars, and a noblewoman named Loredana Marcello, the Dogaressa (Italian duchess) of Venice born in 1572, who was a writer and botanist, and she was regarded a scholar, which was exceptional for the time.

Loredana has been used in the U.S. since at least 1959, starting with only 5 births per year and rising to no more than 12. The last recorded year of use was 2001, making it a very rare name. Besides Italy, the name is also used in Romania.


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Witchy Baby Girl Names!

Circe Invidiosa by John William Waterhouse
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Norway's Top 10 Baby Names

Taken from Statistics Norway. I have no clue how/why there are multiple spellings, but I'm assuming they group spellings for each name and then rank them, unlike the U.S. that goes by individual spelling.

2015 Stats
1. Emma
2. Nora/Norah
3. Sara/Sahra/Sarah
4. Sophie/Sofie
5. Olivia
6. Sophia/Sofia
7. Emilie
8. Ella
9. Lea/Leah
10. Maja/Maia/Maya

1. William
2. Mathias/Matias
3. Oliver
4. Jakob/Jacob
5. Lukas/Lucas
6. Filip/Fillip, Philip/Phillip
7. Liam
8. Axel/Aksel
9. Emil
10. Oskar/Oscar


1. Emma
2. Nora/Norah
3. Sara/Sarah/Sahra
4. Sofie/Sophie
5. Linnea/Linea
6. Thea/Tea
7. Maya/Maia/Maja
8. Emilie
9. Ingrid/Ingri
10. Julie

1. Emil
2. Lucas/Lukas
3. Mathias/Matias
4. William
5. Magnus
6. Filip/Fillip/Philip/Phillip
7. Oliver
8. Markus/Marcus
9. Noa/Noah
10. Tobias


Here's one of my personal favorites, although I'm surprised I still like it after seeing Forrest Gump so often (thanks, Dad). In fact, the name peaked in popularity for the second time the year the movie was released, jumping to number #217 in 1994. Now he's on the move yet again, rising to 132 boys given the name in 2015 from a low dip to 47 in 2006. To be clear, Forest is the word spelling and Forrest the name spelling, and Forrest remains a much more popular choice with 387 boys given the name in 2015, ranking at #659. Forrest also had a dip in 2006 with only 147 births, disappearing from the charts between 2003 and 2013, and it also peaked in 1994 with 1,343 boys born, rising to #217. Historically both spelling options have been very popular.

Forest doesn't have an obvious nickname, but it's one of those names you enjoy saying without having to shorten it. Forest is Old French, meaning "woods." A famous namesake is St. John Forest of the 16th century…