Paris, je t’aime… And if it is the same with you, expectant moms and dads, this little article is a trip you’ll want to go on.
Over the last years, these have been some of the most popular baby boy names in Paris. They are the perfect choice for the parent who wants something that sounds a little familiar and yet also noticeably different, and in a sort of sophisticated way, one that might make you say, “Ooh la la!”
Turning to this posh place in Europe for your naming inspiration means turning to tradition, yes, but also to the avant garde.
Think “French,” and you may think of famous artists, couture clothes, and lovers lingering under a full moon.
And so what a nice idea, no matter what your own family’s heritage, to honor some of these beautiful and romantic notions — this place that has come to represent so very much a lovely and picturesque ideal, be it the dazzling display of the capital at night or the casual chicness of the countryside.
From the “City of Love,” the “City of Light,” the “Fashion Capital,” straight to your growing family tree, here are the 25 most stylish baby boy names, straight from France.
Sure, there’s Jules Vern, that famous French writer, whose 19th-century works became known all around the world, but have you yet met a Jules in your own life?
I honestly haven’t, but it has a lovely ring to it, in my book.
According to BabyNameWizard.com, it is related to the Latin name Julius, which came from a Roman family name of yore. That name is considered to be derived from “Iulus,” which describes the first, essentially, little peach fuzz on the chin! Since a person just sprouting a soft little beard would be young, “youth” is associated with this classic name.
This nice name for a boy has roots in Late Latin, according to BabyNameWizard.com/. It probably came from Lucius, which comes from the root word lux (and that, my parental friends, means “light”).
And so for your shining star of a son, the bright new, innocent face you will be adding to the wide world, how about a name that fits just right?
Lucas is certainly not completely rare in countries other than France, including the U.S., but it does have sort of an old and sophisticated sound to it, am I right?
From its old origins to its popularity in the “Hexagone,” there’s a lot to love about “Lucas.”
Did reading this one make you gasp with delight? (Sorry, can’t help it.)
Users of BabyNameWizard.com sort of loved it, too, finding that it sounded not only “smart” and “sexy” but also “friendly,” “creative,” “strong,” “young,” and “sophisticated.”
And while it may be nice to know that many in the crowd may such positive or flattering associations with your own son’s moniker, it’s what you think of it that really counts, and so let’s explore.
It certainly sounds quite French, doesn’t it? It means “treasure,” according to baby names site SheKnows.com. It is the French form of “Jasper,” says https://www.behindthename.com/name/gaspard.
Sure, you could always shorten it to the nickname “Max,” which is super cute, but think of the stylish sophistication that “Maxime” brings to the party.
Maximulian is another variation, says the baby names site BabyNameWizard.com, with Maxime, of course, being the oh-so-French form of the manly name.
I love short names for kids, and I like the deliberate edges of this one, the easy to say “Ma” at the start and that cutting “X” in the center (or the end, if you end up using the shorter nickname).
If you’re loving this idea of French names, why not take it to the extreme, or should we say the max…
Here’s a masculine name, to be sure, and one with plenty of tradition behind it, as well.
Although it is quite popular in France, it comes from the Roman name Augustinus, which came from — you guessed it — Augustus.
An original source of the name’s popularity was the Christian saint (the theologian and author) Saint Augustine of Hippo, according to BehindTheName.com.
But you needn’t look that far back to understand the name’s appeal.
As we say goodbye to August, and farewell to summer, and you look toward the birth of your own future son, how about considering this strong and unique moniker?
I personally really like this name, which I once associated with Oscar the Grouch from Sesame Street but now think sounds like quite a nice way to revive an older name, still quite popular over in the old country, apparently.
The meaning of Oscar has to do with the name of a French place, one which means “golden city,” according to the baby names site BabyNameWizard.com.
They say that it’s a “Norman baronial” name, although also that others speculate that it was invented by a novelist, Fanny Burney, who called a hero in 1778’s Evelina “Oscar.”
It sounds like the name of a little gentleman to me.
Sure, there’s Leo, perhaps short for Leonard or Leonardo, but then, there’s Leon…
I think this one is sure to tickle someone’s French-loving fancy, a lionhearted name for a brave little chap ready to take on the world.
The name for a boy does indeed mean “lion,” as is included at BabyNameWizard.com. They also describe it, of course, as a “proud name,” and note, too, that although it’s quite popular elsewhere in the world, it’s basically just waiting for its big comeback in America.
For the bold, the brave, the proud, and the regal — and those who like a little (or actually kind of a lot) of French flavor — consider a name fit for the king of the jungle.
I’ve met men who go by “Martin” from various countries, and I’ve always found the name quite pleasing and distinguished.
You might even describe it as “refined.” But those are just my own opinions and associations.
The Latin name “Martinus,” coming from “Mars,” led to this handsome name; so says BabyNameWizard.com. Mars is, of course, the Roman god of war.
The name’s history also involves a saint of the 4th century, though, who was said to have divided his cloak in two in order to give half of it to a beggar.
So you can add “generous” or perhaps “caring” to your associations, now, with this name that is quite popular in France.
Oh, my, this one even has Old French origins, according to BabyNameWizard.com.
I like its shortness and simplicity, personally.
The Old French name Hue is said to have come from the Old High German… Hugo. And that came from the word “hugu,” which is said to mean “heart, mind, spirit.”
And so, perhaps, for a well-rounded guy (with a very stylish French name), it is just about right.
Commenters on the same site as above tell anecdotes about their associations with the name, and words such as “charming,” “cheerful,” and “happy” are prominently included, as well as (bonus points!) “unique”!
This name or variations of it may be used for both boys and girls (and how hip is that in a world with ever-deepening understandings of gender as a diverse spectrum?).
On BabyNameWizard.com, it is said to mean “defender” or “protector” of mankind. How valiant! How noble. How brave!
It is also said to be a nickname for Alexander (which is said to be Russian and Greek).
I can’t personally really understand how that nickname thing makes much sense, but I like both names just fine, and although I can’t help but think of famous comedian Sacha Baron Cohen, I think surely the U.S. is ready for many more varied associations.
In case you were wondering, it’s not like “NO,” but rather like “noh-EH,” as is written out for explanation of the pronunciation on BabyNameWizard.com.
And if you thought that maybe this name was related to “Noah,” well then you guessed right.
In Hebrew, nōach means “rest, comfort,” according to the same baby names website as is included above. Isn’t that a nice meaning to think about when considering your future little boy, snug and comfy in your own lovin’ arms!
Users on that same site who have voiced their opinions about the moniker liked it, tending to vote that yes, indeed, “Noah” was adjectives such as smart, strong, sophisticated, and even “sexy.”
“Clemens” in Latin means “kind, gentle,” and I think that’s fitting after considering the way this name rolls gently right off of the speaker’s tongue: “KLEHM-ent” is the pronunciation, as is spelled out on the baby names site BabyNameWizard.com.
There’s the lady from that old song about the miner’s daughter in the U.S., Clementine, but while you might sing or say that with a Southern twang, “Clement” is smooth, sensual… French.
Prime ministers, kings, and models have all had this posh name that is popular in France.
Should I delete this blurb just in case I might want to use it for someone in my own family in the future…?
Nah, I’m feeling generous.
This name has Arabic origins, according to TheMeaningOfTheName.com, and it’s fancied as a first name in France lately, to be sure. (To give you a bit of an idea, it was ranked at number 41 in a list of the 100 most popular names for baby boys in Paris, France, for the year 2015 at the baby names website BabyNameWizard.com.)
I think it sounds quite nice, personally, and like that it would still sound quite exotic and sophisticated if used here in the ole U.S. of A.
And guess what: I saved one of the best parts for last. The name means “triumph.” Great success!
Basile (pronounced “BA-ZEEL”) is, yes, indeed, the French form of Basil (just check BehindTheName.com).
I love the stuff, personally, if we’re talking about the herb. I’ve been eating so much lately that the little potted plants I have can’t keep up with the demand.
But my recent culinary inclinations aside, this name comes, like so many nice European names, from a saint of yore. Names such as Vasil or Vaso are the related forms in some other cultures.
I like that this French form has a syllable that sounds like the word “zeal” right there within it, meaning having a lot of enthusiasm and energy (summarized from the Google.com definition).
Here’s a creative one, I really do think.
Although it has Greek origins, as is included at BabyNamespedia.com it is mainly used in France. Cosmo might be what you’ve heard as far as the English, German, or Italian version of the masculine name.
You would say this version, the French Côme, simply as “COM,” according to BehindTheName.com.
Greek “Kosmas” came from the Greek “kosmos,” and that means “order, decency,” according to the same site as above.
Whether you find yourself looking skyward in search of order, meaning, and answers as you anticipate welcoming a new baby or you just like the way the French form of the name sounds, I’m thinking this one might be a hit.
This name is used in both German and French (so describes BehindTheName.com), among other cultures, to be sure, as I’ve witnessed myself.
It’s no ordinary “Matt” or “Mathew” — oh, no. It has that special something… that European flare.
It sounds somehow more historic and special, no?
Matthias is the main related name for Mathis, and that might be a fun consideration, too. But of course, it’s all connected to “Matthew,” from the New Testament, as so many names go back to somehow.
Whether you hope to honor such biblical origins and associations or entirely avoid them, you might really like the way “Mathis” sounds, especially if you’re looking for something that sounds very French.
Oh, man. I feel like I meet a “Nolan” every third family that I encounter these days, so a word of caution there, I suppose, if you are searching for something that sounds not only sort of European but also unique.
It has sort of a fun story behind it, though, as is told at BehindTheName.com. It comes, actually, from a Scottish surname, that site says.
For more modern ties, look, apparently, to a quite famous baseball player born in 1947 named Nolan Ryan. (If one parent wants something that sounds en vogue and French and another loves sports, well then we may have just found the perfect name for you and your family!)
This might be one of the very most French names included here, and there certainly is a lot to love about it.
It is the French form of Lucianus, says BehindTheName.com. (And a side note here is that the female form of this winner of a French name would be Lucienne.)
It is not currently in the 1,000 most popular names for little dudes in the United States, says the same site as above, so if you are looking for something a bit unique (which is very chic, indeed, these days), it might be something to seriously consider.
An ancient Greek satirist and writer is a namesake of this, well, name, and a 4th-century saint had it, too.
Felix is a cool name, and it is from a Roman word that means “lucky, successful,” according to BehindTheName.com. A bunch of saints and early popes had this name, what with the favorable meanings behind it and everything.
Famous composer Mendelssohn (of the 1800s) had this as a first name, too, so that might sound quite, ahem, classy (I know, sorry, can’t help it…) as well.
Sure, sure, a cartoon cat had this name, too, but I don’t think anyone’s really thought about that guy much lately. And even if they have, he was pretty cool, too!
For something fun, favorable, and oh-so-French, how ’bout “Felix”?
It sounds kind of like “Gavin” (super star-power associations), right?
But it also sounds très chic and very French.
The related Gavino, used in Italian, is related to, possibly, an ancient place and certainly the name of a saint of the 3rd century, according to the baby names site BehindTheName.com.
As a mother to two little ones, myself, I can’t help but think of the characters included as Sophie the Giraffe’s friends in a book my fam likes to read over and over again (Sophie the Giraffe being that rubber teething toy so posh because it is old-school and, again, French.)
Hebrew? Yeah. Arabic? Uh-huh. Persian? You betcha. But also, a popular name for baby boys in France, as is include at BabyNameWizard.com, where it is in fact ranked at number 74 out of 100 in a list of the most popular names for little boys in Paris, France (in a list from a few years ago but not that long, in 2015).
“Amir” means “commander, prince,” as is included at BehindTheName.com. It was actually originally a title. Will it be the right choice for your own little prince, perhaps?
Now here is a name that is not only popular in France but also sounds very, very French. I’m personally loving it.
Go back to medieval times in that same country, and you’ll find it used, as well. The baby names site BehindTheName.com includes Medieval French and modern French for the name’s usage.
It is the French form of Marcel, also a very nice name, from Marcellus, a Roman family name.
There is surely all sorts of history to be found if it interests you for this very old and very manly name.
Guess what? It’s got the same origins as “Elijah,” which probably isn’t a huge surprise if you think about it for just a split second. (It’s included that it’s a cognate of that biblical name at BehindTheName.com.)
But “Elias” is used in many European countries, and has been quite popular in places like, oh, say, Paris.
Elijah was a popular character in Medieval fairytales, so there’s something sort of fun to note, too.
While that name regained popularity here because of the Puritans, I’m guessing something more along the lines of “Elias” might start to skyrocket pretty soon these days.
Yep, “Valentin” does indeed have connections to “Valentine,” as is included at BehindTheName.com. All the more romantic, right?
Roman Valentinus is “strong, vigorous, healthy,” says the same site, and a Saint with a connected name was celebrated on the same day as a Roman fertility festival. (Valentine’s Day… Love… You see where we’re going with this.)
For your little charmer, with a name that’s posh because it sounds so European it hurts, Valentin might be an exciting choice with old-school flare.
If you are able to shake your Ninja Turtles associations (and really, isn’t it about time anyway?), I think you might really have a winner of a classic European-sounding name here, folks, and it is also one that is popular in none other than France.
I admit, as I have with others in this list, that I quite like it myself, actually, so may be a little biased in including it here. But then not really, because it was the third-most popular name in Paris, according to BabyNameWizard.com (in 2015).