October 12, 2019
Pity the poor chap named Nigel. Like Clive, this quintessentially British name has fallen out of favor of late. In 1963, over 5,000 boys born in the U.K. were named Nigel. In 2016, that number dropped to zero.
All of which explains why British pub-owner Nigel Smith (whose last name, at least, hasn’t gotten any less popular) recently hosted a “Nigel Night” in Worcester, attended by 434 Nigels, who were celebrating and bemoaning the decreasing popularity of their name.
I share Nigels’ pain. According to the Social Security Administration’s on-line baby name registry, the popularity of the boy’s name “Claude” peaked in 1901, when fully .295% of boys were given that name, making it the 58th most popular name. By the time I was born in 1959, Claude had fallen to 270th. In 1993, the name Claude accounted for .007% of all male births, and was ranked 897th.
It has not been among the top 1,000 most popular names ever since.
According to Wikipedia, the name Claude is derived from “claudicatio” meaning “limping” or “stuttering”.
I don’t think this name is making a comeback any time soon.