Going out, Coming in!

SPN Whats in a NameTake, for example, Celestino, Pantaleón, Eufrasia, Práxedes, Apolinar, Abundio, Pancracio, Ciriaca, Bonifacio, Modesto and Heliodoro – there’s a few of them still kicking around and of course, there are the saints whose names are frozen in time.

Six years ago the Instituto Nacional de Estadística concluded that nobody was called Urraca anymore; a name of a bygone king, for example. Devastating, you will agree. This is despite here being a wicked Doña Urraca who inhabitated the pages of comics.

Other once popular first names in danger of extinction are Irundina (only 22 remain, all in their 80s). There’s also Exiquia that is holding out with 20 rearguard stalwarts, all in their early 80s too.

Who else? Parmenia (21 in the 80s ) and Vítores, Euquerio and Artesino, 20 each with an average age of 75.

The cool thing about the Nacional Statistics Institute is that it allows you to enter any name and it will tell you how many there are and the province in which they live. Don’t put in Maria otherwise you’ll crash the site – just joking. What’s important though is to use the correct name; not the diminutive, so if you do search for Paco, make sure you type in ‘Francisco.’

For example Antonio used to be king with 133,000 of the blighters born in the 50s. By the 60s it had dropped by a thousand until you come to the 21st Century and there have only been 40,000 christened with that name. As for José, they dropped in number by 14,500 in just one year.

On the lasses team, María de Carmen ruled supreme during 40 years, clocking up 647,000 but only 9% of that number were born starting 1980.

Nowadays, the top names are Hugo, Martín, Lucas, Lucía, Sofía and Martina – by the way, the first two are mine… Today Spain, tomorrow we take the world!

Unsurprsingly, the many new names are the  fruit of Venezuelan soap operas that have too many mesmerised or tv series like Game of Thrones (Daenery). That’s the girls, but you only have to look towards football heroes to see family names cropping up.

There are also actors and actresses who popularised the name Raquel here in the 60s and 70s, thanks to Rachel Welch, or Pamela thanks to Dallas. Need we explain why Kevin became popular?

So, click on this link and find out if your neighbour with that most obscure first name shares it with anybody else in Spain or your province – you can even consult the year or decade.

(News: Spain)

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