News release

Emma and Jacob Top Names for 2005

Emma and Jacob were the most popular choices for baby names in 2005, according to figures released today, Feb. 28, from Nova Scotia's Vital Statistics office.

This is not just a trend seen in Nova Scotia, Vital Statistics offices across Canada, the United States and in Europe also place these names in their top five spots for most popular baby names.

According to baby name websites, Emma is Latin for healer or universal. Jacob is Hebrew in origin, and means holder of the heel or supplanter.

In 2005, the top five girls' names were Emma (100), Madison (69), Olivia (65), Emily (63), and Hannah (60). The top five boys' names were Jacob (77), Ethan (68), Alexander (63), Logan (63), and Jack (62).

In 2004, the top five girls' names were Emma (138), Madison (86), Emily (81), Hannah (57), and Abigail (56). The top five boys' names were Ethan (95), Ryan (67), Liam (66), Alexander (64), and Noah (63).

Emma has been the top choice for baby girls' names and Madison was the second most popular choice for four years. Jacob was the top choice for boys' names in 2000 and 2001 but moved down the list of top 20 names over the past five years until now. Ethan was the most popular boys' baby name for the past three years and is now the second most popular name in Nova Scotia.

Other popular names are Nathan (up nine places to number 11), William (up six places to number 13), Nicholas (up five places to number eight) and Olivia (up four places to number three).

"Parents seem to be more adventurous when naming their children this year," said Liz Crowley Meagher, deputy registrar general of Vital Statistics at Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations. "Brianna, Sophie, Samantha, Brooke, Ava, Samuel, Noah and Jack didn't make it on last year's list, and boys' names moved up and down the list more frequently this year."

"It's interesting to see how parents are swayed by pop culture, literary and historic influences," she added. "Jack failed to appear on the list last year, but this year is the fifth most popular name for boys. This name may be popular because the main character from the popular TV show Lost is named Jack."

In all, there were 8,498 births in Nova Scotia in 2005, slightly fewer than the 8,667 births reported in 2004.

There were 4,417 boys and 4,081 girls born in 2005. In 2004 the girls outnumbered the boys by just 25.

FOR BROADCAST USE:

Emma and Jacob were the most popular baby names in Nova Scotia in 2005, according to figures from Nova Scotia's Vital Statistics office.

The other names to make the top five list for girls were Madison, Olivia, Emily and Hannah.

Ethan, Alexander, Logan and Jack rounded out the top five names for the boys.

There were eight thousand four hundred and ninety-eight births in Nova Scotia last year -- with the boys outnumbering the girls by 336.

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Media Contact:

Lenore Bromley
Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations 902-424-2733 E-mail:

NOTE: Following are the top 20 baby names for boys and girls born in Nova Scotia in 2005.

GIRLS Number of births Emma 100 Madison 69 Olivia 65 Emily 63 Hannah 60 Abigail 55 Sarah 47 Grace 46 Ava 43 Lauren 42 Chloe 38 Ella 37 Julia 27 Brooke 26 Hailey 26 Mackenzie 26 Samantha 26 Sophie 26 Brianna 25 Brooklyn 25

BOYS Number of births Jacob 77 Ethan 68 Alexander 63 Logan 63 Jack 62 Joshua 58 Connor 57 Nicholas 57 Noah 57 Matthew 56 Nathan 56 Ryan 54 William 54 Owen 51 Benjamin 49 Dylan 46 Evan 46 Liam 46 Cameron 42 Samuel 41