Shakespearean Baby Names
Did you know that Shakespeare invented the name Miranda for his play "The Tempest?" Or that the first recorded usage of the name Olivia is in "Twelfth Night"?
Possessing one of the greatest literary minds of all time, Shakespeare found inspiration for his characters' names in a wide variety of sources, including the Bible, the Classics, Greek and Roman mythology, history, literature, and more. As a result, the works of William Shakespeare are a rich and varied treasure trove of potential baby names.
For prospective parents, or anyone looking for names, this list of Shakespearean baby names is just a sampling of the possible names that can be found in his plays.
Shakespeare lived from 1564 to 1616, during the Elizabethan era. The names in his plays are far more varied, and more exotic, than the Elizabethan names of his friends and neighbors in Stratford and London.. In Elizabethan England, approximately 75 - 85% of newborn babies were named after a parent or godparent. According to one study, seventy percent of all women were named either Elizabeth, Joan, Margaret, Anne, Alice, Agnes, Mary, Jane or Katherine. More than one out of every four men were named John, and 70% of all men were named either John, Thomas, William, Richard, or Robert.
Fortunately for us, Shakespeare roamed far and wide to find names for his characters. Today, his plays are an amazing resource of beautiful, poetic, strange, and exotic names. For any prospective parent, or anyone seeking inspiration for a name, nothing can be more fun or rewarding than digging through a list of Shakespearean baby names.