What's in a name? Some experts believe that everything from social acceptance to financial success is determined, in part, by the names we're given at birth. And many of today's parents are rejecting popular baby names in favor of more unusual monikers. What will the future hold for newborns named after shoes (Reebok), cars (Camry), and office equipment (Xerox)? Read on as we reveal the 10 strangest baby names of all time.


The Name Game


Some are silly, others are shocking, and not surprisingly, a few belong to the children of rock stars and celebrities.

1. Unique. Every child is special, but do their names need to convey their individually so literally? If you're considering "Unique" for your newborn, also bear in mind that it might not be as distinctive as you think. According to the U.S. Social Security Administration, 938 newborns were named "Unique" in 2005.

2. Timberland. If naming your child after a pair of shoes seems strange, you'll be shocked to hear that "Timberland" is on the rise. While the Social Security Administration recorded it only five times in 2003, there now are hundreds of "Timberland" toddlers. What's more, in England, the names "Nike," "Adidas," and "Reebok" all appeared on birth certificates in 2006.

3. Camry. The Toyota Camry has been America's best-selling car for years, and now some parents are naming their kids after it. But believe it or not, U.S. Census data suggests that vehicle-inspired monikers aren't that unusual; there were 55 boys named "Chevy," 22 girls named "Infiniti," 11 children named "Bentley," and five girls named "Celica" in the year 2000.

4. Apple. When actress Gwenyth Paltrow and Coldplay frontman Chris Martin named their firstborn daughter "Apple," most critics were appalled. Even so, some experts believe that the couple may have started a trend. It remains to be seen how many newborns will be named after fruit by the end of this decade, but in the year 2000, there were actually seven American boys named "Del Monte."

5. Prince/Princess. As it turns out, "Prince" and "Princess" are America's 790th and 829th most popular names for boys and girls. And according to the Social Security Administration, they're not the only stately monikers parents love: "King" and "Messiah" are in the top 1,000, while the most outlandish example goes to Jermajesty Jackson (son of Jermaine).

6. God'iss. It may not be sweeping the nation yet, but when R&B singer Lil' Mo named her daughters "God'iss Love Stone" and "Heaven," it was sure to spark some divine inspiration among expectant parents. Other names along these lines include "Venus," "Jupiter," and "Moon Unit" (the last was famously created in the 1960s by Frank Zappa).

7. Chanel. This haute-couture brand is currently the 879th most popular baby name in the United States. And it's not the only fashion label today's style-conscious parents are relying on. According to Social Security records, there were a whopping 273 boys and 298 girls named "Armani" in the year 2000.

8. Londyn. This name, which currently ranks 841st for U.S. girls, combines two growing trends: place-inspired naming and intentional misspelling. Some increasingly popular location-names include Canada, Paris, Houston, and Dallas, while spellings for a common name like "Britney" might include Britany, Brittany, Brittni, or Britnie.

9. Canon. According to Social Security records, there were 49 babies named "Canon" (after the Japanese photocopier manufacturer) in 2000; even stranger, there was actually one kid named "Xerox." Other techie-themed celebrity names include "Audio Science," son of actress Shannyn Sossamon and Dallas Clayton, and Pilot Inspektor, son of actor Jason Lee and Beth Riesgraf.

10. Tu Morrow. Some parents, like TV star Rob Morrow and actress Debbon Ayre, might think it's cute to combine first and last names in this way, but chances are, their kids won't think it's so adorable when they grow up. According to Michael Sherrod and Matthew Rayback's book Bad Baby Names, some of the most regrettable combo-names in history include Fever Bender, Bread White, and Monday Monday.