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Lily and Elizabeth stand test of time in name game

PUBLISHED: 10:48 29 April 2009 | UPDATED: 16:08 07 September 2010

Thomas, William, James and Lily have proven the most popular names of the last 100 years, appearing in the top ten lists of boys and girls baby names in 1910s and are still there nearly a century later*. Analysis of birth records by findmypast.com, th

Thomas, William, James and Lily have proven the most popular names of the last 100 years, appearing in the top ten lists of boys' and girls' baby names in 1910s and are still there nearly a century later*.

Analysis of birth records by findmypast.com, the leading UK family history website, reveals despite a recent resurgence in 'traditional' names only two girls names - Lily and Elizabeth - have stood the test of time and remain in the top 100. Meanwhile five of the most popular boys' names from the beginning of the century remain in the top 100 today.

However, celebrity-style baby names have become increasingly popular with Britons today. The most popular male and female celebrities that people have named their children after are Ashton and Jude and Keira and Scarlet**.

UK parents are also taking inspiration from some of the 'wackier' names celebrities have christened their own offspring, with five baby Mowglis (son of Ashlee Simpson) and 34 baby Prince Michaels (son of Michael Jackson) registered in Britain in the last couple of years.

The top celebrity baby names in Britain today are:

Boys

* Ashton

* Jude

* Frank

* Leonardo

* Romeo

* Guy

Girls

* Keira

* Scarlett

* Paris

* Rihanna

* Alexa

* Mischa

Records also show strong trends for certain names to change in popularity over time, suggesting the reputations of famous figures affect Brits' name choices. The amount of babies named Angelina more than doubled in 2001 as the film Tomb Raider was released, along with newborns named Rihanna increasing fivefold when her album 'A Girl Like Me' was released in 2006.

Fading stars?

However, some names have fallen out of favour as the name has become synonymous with the star. The number of Britneys and Jordans has decreased over the last few years as their famous namesakes' notoriety has increased, while football fans have shown where their loyalties lie as the number of baby Thierrys dropped from well over 100 in 2006 down to just 7 when Henry left Arsenal the following year.

However, unusual names are not just a recent trend. Parents 100 years ago were also naming their children with bizarre monikers, including one girl who was given a name for every letter of the alphabet*** in 1883. Another child was registered as 'Studley Bust' North in 1901.

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