Anglophiles rejoice: The definitive list of the best British baby names is in! And did you know that the UK is teeming with beautiful British names for boys and girls that you may have never heard of?

According to inside sources (do the author’s friends across the pond count as inside sources?!), the tendency in Great Britain is to go one or two ways when naming a child: straight-up classics inspired by centuries of nobility and tradition...or way off the beaten path. 

Of course, these are the English we’re talking about, so their version off the beaten path isn’t going to be quite as “out there” as we Americans tend to get. But color names, obscure flowers, and surprising pop-culture inspired picks tend to rise to the top of baby name lists, along with standards, like Charles, George, Catherine, or Elizabeth. Naming kids after the Royals is also prevalent there as it is here (just a quick Google will provide you a solid list!).  

If you’re searching for the perfect British baby name for your little one, you might just find it here. We can’t promise that your little one will be born with that covetable accent (though after a few episodes of Peppa Pig, your child might be on his way to picking one up!). Here are some of our favorite British names for babies...

British Boy Names

Alastair: The beloved traditional British boy name actually has Scottish roots as a version of Alexander.  

Archie: This derivative of Archibald means “truly brave” and has shot up in popularity since the Duke and Duchess of Sussex imparted the British name on their first-born son. 

Arthur: Many British parents favor older names like this one which have stood the test of time. Once the king at the head of the Knights of the Round Table, it has a storied past and gives off noble vibes. 

Bainbridge: Rare and stately, the British place name unsurprisingly means “bridge over the River Bain.” 

Barnaby: A British boy name meaning “the son of consolation,” it’s an ancient name from the Apostles that’s been seen more and more in recent years in the UK. 

Dover: If you’re looking for a rare name for your little chap, Dover is a British city name to consider.

Duncan: The Scottish name meaning “dark warrior” is not too rare nor too overused; if you’re imparting it on an American child he might just be the only one in the neighborhood to grow up with this cool moniker.  

Felix: This British name means “happy” and “fortunate,” making this fancy, jaunty-sounding name a hope-filled choice for Baby Boy.  

Harvey: This is one of those trendier British names picking up speed with modern parents in the UK. It means “battle worthy” and has French origins.  

Henry: A classic that will seemingly never go out of style! Even in the United States, this noble English name meaning “estate ruler” was in the top 20 in 2018.

Inigo: Parents seeking a unique British baby name might be charmed by this gem from the Spanish that’s popular with English parents right now. It means “fiery”—and sounds like it, too. 

Jasper: While popular in the UK, this British name still stands out state-side. It has Persian origins meaning “bringer of treasure.” 

Laird: The Scottish land-owner’s name is a slick pick for those who like one-syllable baby names, and is growing in popularity with British parents.  

Noah: While the biblical name has been in the Top 5 in the US for years (and currently in the #1 spot!), it’s steadily risen in popularity in Great Britain ever since the 1800’s, rounding out their top 10 currently. The name has Hebrew roots, and means “rest” or “comfort.”

Oliver: It’s a popular baby name among British and American parents, meaning “olive tree.” Give him the nickname “Ollie” for extra British flair.  

Piers: The name with Greek origins meaning “rock” is a trendy pick with UK parents and a softer answer to Pierce, which is also a posh British boy name. 

Sebastian: This name has Greek and Latin roots and has been popular on both sides of the pond for years. Your little boy would be in the best British company if you nicknamed him Seb.

Theo: The shortened version of Theodore is an oft-given name for British baby boys; Teddy is another option. Theodore means “gift of God.”

Wilfred: A very sweet and refined alternative to William, this cutie means “desires peace,” and is a popular pick among British parents.

British Girl Names 

Agnes: It’s an old-fashioned name that never really went out of style in England. Agnes has Greek origins, means “pure” or “virginal,” and would be an adorable—if unconventional—pick for an American baby girl. 

Beatrix: This beautiful British baby girl name means “she who brings happiness; blessed,” and it’s rare enough in the states that your little girl would be likely to be the only one in your town with this classic British name.

Briony: It’s in the British Top 100 but is rarely heard here, making it a gorgeous choice for your daughter. The name means “to sprout,” making it a perfect choice for outdoorsy parents, as well.  

Caro: The diminutive of Caroline or Carol, it’s an antique British nickname that stands alone as a short but chic selection for your little princess. (See more short baby names!)

Cressida: This fun British name for girls is Greek for “gold,” and is beloved by UK parents. Plus, Cressida appears in Shakespeare, giving it extra cred on our list of British baby names. It’s pronounced phonetically so it won’t cause confusion, and yet it's a rare name by US standards. 

Florence: It’s barely in our Top 1,000, but the Brits have fun with this pretty girls’ name from the Latin, meaning “flourishing, prosperous.” Singer-songwriter Florence Welsh of Florence and the Machine has given the unique name a bit of an edge since bursting on the scene with her girl-power vibe. 

Freya: The Norse name meaning “noble woman” has been popular in the UK for years and is slowly becoming a favorite here. 

Gemma: It might stand out more in the States, but your “precious stone” would be in good company in England with this pretty baby name that is a favorite there.  

Henrietta: In the tradition of antique names for British babies, this classic is not going anywhere, any time soon. It’s the feminized take on Henry, meaning “estate ruler.”

Isla: The trendy British name in this spelling and other variants (such as Ayla) is picking up speed in the US as well. Isla means “island” and it has a fun, whimsical sound.  

Jessamine: The English version of the Persian name Jasmine, it has a floral feel we love.

Jocelyn: The ancient French name has a lovely British feel to it and rests higher on their lists than ours. Call her Jossie to secure English cool-girl status. 

Lucy: From the Latin meaning “light,” this English baby name has been popular for over 150 years, and it offers up so many charming associations from literature and history to the silver screen.

Maisie: It’s a super sweet diminutive of Margaret meaning “pearl,” and British mums love it (we do, too!). 

Nicola: This Italian version of Nicole (and the feminine of Nicholas) is especially popular in the UK. The name means “people of victory” and this variation has a charming, exotic sound.

Philippa: Or Pippa, as she’ll likely be called, is a gorgeous English name with a royal feel. The female version of Phillip means “lover of horses;” Kate Middleton’s sister by this name made it popular the world over in recent years, but the equine name has deep British roots dating back to the 14th Century.  

Poppy: British parents have loved flower names forever; this spirited one denotes a bright red bloom that stands for extravagance (or deep sleep) in the Victorian language of flowers. Other nature names loved by the English include Willow, Primrose, and Jasmine. 

Rhonwen: It strikes the perfect note somewhere between recognizable and totally one-of-a-kind. The Welsh name meaning “slender” or “fair” is beloved in the UK but far less popular here than similar-sounding picks like Bronwen or Gwendolen. 

Scarlette: Color names are big in Britain, and this shade of red gets high marks. Similar choices that are popular across the pond include Ruby and Violet.  

Tamsin: It’s a British name constructed by shortening Thomasina (another popular pick among English parents), and it sounds cute enough to catch on here as well. The meaning is “twin,” so this would be an extra apt choice for the girl in a set of boy-girl twins, or any daughter who takes after her mother.

Tilly: A diminutive of Mathilda, the German girls’ name meaning “battle-mighty” is a stand-alone choice British parents have been loving in recent years. 

Zara: This sweet British girls’ name sounds a bit more special than the ubiquitous Sara but it’s just as easy to pronounce and spell. In English, it means “princess,” but the multicultural name has other meanings from Hebrew and Arabic, including “blooming flower” and “God remembers.” 

Gender-Neutral British Names

Alcott: A gender-neutral English baby name with the charming meaning “dweller at the old cottage,” we adore this unique yet familiar pick with its storybook quality.

Bristol: The British port city of Bristol makes for a breezy and solid baby name to consider for your little boy or girl.

Ellis: This gender-neutral Welsh baby name is a favorite in Britain in recent years. It means “benevolent” and is one of those flexible names that pairs well with most surnames and middles. 

Finlay: It’s the preferred British spelling of a Scottish/Irish name meaning “fair-haired hero” and we love it for both boys and girls.  

Kenzie: For boys, this one is currently in the Top 1,000 in the UK, whereas American parents tend to prefer the longer version—Mackenzie—for girls. Either is acceptable for a boy or a girl, and both options feel both fresh and storied.  

Lennon: After John, or just because you love it, this precious British gender-neutral baby name rounds out our list. It means “lover” in Irish and lends to easy nicknames and a gender-neutral feel of, well, love! (See more music-inspired names!)

Final Thoughts on British Baby Names

No matter if your baby’s name derives from actual royalty...or simply rock royalty, there are so many British names to inspire you. But if these British baby names didn’t strike your fancy, take a look at our other favorite baby names:

Though picking the perfect a baby name is a big part of planning for your little one’s arrival, so is planning a baby shower and creating a baby registry. And, as you’re looking ahead to the big day, don’t forget to register for the ultimate baby gift: SNOO Smart Sleeper!

About Jenny Studenroth Gerson

Jenny Studenroth Gerson is an Atlanta-based lifestyle journalist and novelist (Let Me Let You Go, 2020). Her work can be seen in publications including HuffPost, Cosmo, and WSJ, among many others. Jenny has researched thousands of baby names, combed through hundreds of nursery designs, and curated dozens of baby shower guides, making her absolutely the mom—and writer—you want to talk to when planning for Baby. When not meeting deadlines, she is chasing toddlers or chugging coffee—or both! Find her on Instagram @ourlifeinrosegold for mom hacks and more.

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