What would your name be if you were born today?

Like short skirts and curly moustaches, names move in an out of fashion over time, meaning one era’s Emma is another decade’s Dorothy. Each year, statisticians tally up birth records and release the top 10 names for the year, but did you know the ranking goes much further? Even if your parents chose Persephone, your name will appear somewhere on the list and now you can compare your name’s popularity across the ages.

Time magazine has launched this fun tool on its website that allows you to type in your first name, year of birth and gender and discover what you’d be called all the way back to 1890.

We’ve been having great fun with this, here are some of the results. Be sure to pop over and have a play yourself!

If your name is Pauline and you were born in 2015 instead of 1950, you would be called Reese. Had you arrived in the 2000s, you’d be known as Tabitha; a decade earlier, we’d be saying, “Hi Karissa”!

Sue was the 100th most popular name in the 1950s. Today you would likely be called Kayla. but had you lived in the 1900s, you would have been known as Elva.

Ad. Article continues below.

Linda was the most popular name in 1950 and today’s equivalent is Emma. Throughout the decades, working backwards, the Number One names were: Emily, Jessica, Jennifer (for both the 80s and the 70s), then Mary reigned for 60 years apart from the brief rise of Linda.

Moving over to men, John was the third most popular name in the 1950, and throughout the ages it’s been fairly solid names that have ranked in this position: Matthew, James, Robert. In 2015, however, the third in line for the throne is Mason.

Bruce, today you would be called Carter, that being the 26th name on the list. In the 70s, you would have been named Jerry, and in 1910 bestowed with the name Elmer!

As fun as this tool is, we can’t help wonder how different our lives may have been if we were named Eddison, Ashka or Gerald… Find out about your name here.


Let us know – what would you have been called if your were born today? Would you be happy with that name?