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The eight Scottish ‘comeback names’ that have had a resurgence in recent years

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Every name has its own story, and each one is beautiful in its own way.

Living in Scotland, you will have come across countless unique and memorable names. Some are far more common, though, and the National Records of Scotland has published data on the 100 most popular names every year going back to 1935.




Looking at the research, it is fascinating to see how trends have changed over the last century. One of the most interesting aspects of the data is the idea of “comeback names”, which fell out of the top 100 for whatever reason but reappeared years later.


The Daily Record has rounded up eight of these names that have only seen a resurgence in recent years, from Henry to Evelyn.

Whether you are looking for a name for your baby, or are just interested in Scottish heritage, you are sure to learn something reading about these names.

Here are eight Scottish names that have had a “comeback” in recent years after falling out of popularity.

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According to the National Records of Scotland, Annie only re-emerged in the top 100 most popular names in Scotland in 2022, after exiting all the way back in 1962. With both English and Hebrew roots, the name means ‘gift of god’s favor’ and ‘grace’. Iconic singer Annie Lennox (pictured) is among the most famous Scots with the name.

(Image: Franco Origlia/WireImage)

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Evelyn is another gorgeous gender-neutral name that fell out of the top 100 back in the 1960s, only recently making a comeback in 2019. It is believed to have mixed origins, with various meanings including ‘child’, ‘island in the water’, ‘little bird’, and ‘desired’. One of the most famous faces with the name is American singer Evelyn “Champagne” King (pictured), who had various hits in the 1980s such as ‘I’m in Love’, ‘Love Come Down’, and ‘Your Personal Touch’.

(Image: Raymond Boyd/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)

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As you might have guessed, the name Violet comes from the eponymous flower. Its origins lie in the latin word ‘viola’, which means ‘purple’. According to the National Records of Scotland, it fell out of the top 100 most popular names in Scotland all the way back in 1952, and only reappeared in 2016.

(Image: Vasyl Rohan / Getty Images)

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Arthur is a very classic and historic name, so it is perhaps not surprising that it fell out of fashion during the 20th century. The name dropped out of the top 100 in 1970 before returning in 2016 — almost 50 years later. While there are plenty of famous faces who bear the name, the legendary King Arthur is still undoubtedly who many people associate with it.

(Image: Transcendental Graphics/Getty Images)

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Unlike many of the names on this list, Elsie — which reappeared in the top 100 in 2015 after dropping out in 1946 — actually has Scottish roots. A Scots version of the more commonly seen Elizabeth, it means ‘pledged to God’. One of the more celebrated Elsies in history is Scottish surgeon, suffragist, and founder of the Scottish Women’s Hospitals Elsie Inglis (pictured).

(Image: Balfour, Lady Francis, CC BY 4.0 )

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According to the National Records of Scotland, Henry returned to the top 100 back in 2015 after falling out in 1975. The historic name has German origins and means ‘house ruler’. King Henry VIII is arguably the most well-known Henry in history.

(Image: duncan1890 / Getty Images)

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Looking at the data, Florence disappeared from the top 100 most popular baby names in Scotland in 1944, only reappearing in 2016. Latin in origin, the lovely girl’s name means ‘blossoming’, ‘flourishing’, and ‘prosperous’. Singer Florence Welch, of Florence + the Machine, is one of the most famous people with the name.

(Image: Paul Bruinooge/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images)

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Lastly, Flora has had one of the longest spells out of the top 100 baby names — dropping out in 1944 before re-emerging almost 80 years later in 2021. Also of latin origin, it is derived from the latin word ‘flos’ and means ‘flower’. Probably the most well-known Scottish historical figure with the name is Flora MacDonald, who is famous for helping Bonnie Prince Charlie evade government troops after the Battle of Culloden in April 1746.

(Image: Ashmolean Museum/Heritage Images/Getty Images)

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