herald

Sunday 25 August 2019

Name of Thrones - TV show inspires parents

Emilia Clarke as Daenerys ‘Khaleesi’ Targaryen in the show
Emilia Clarke as Daenerys ‘Khaleesi’ Targaryen in the show

Meet babies Khaleesi, Arya and Yara - it seems Game Of Thrones is having an effect on how we name our little ones.

The show, which was largely filmed in the North, has been the defining TV series of the past few years - and it appears that some parents have chosen to name their children after the main characters.

Since the show first aired in 2011, there have been nine babies called Khaleesi, 21 called Yara and 82 babies named Arya born in Ireland, according to a Herald analysis of Central Statistics Office (CSO) figures.

Queen

The name Khaleesi has its origins in the George RR Martin books A Song Of Ice And Fire, which were later adapted into Game Of Thrones.

It is a Dothraki title referring to the wife of the khal - or "queen".

Yara, "the 'true heir of the Iron Islands", has also proved popular for babies. The name also has Brazilian and Arabic origins.

Heroic Arya - the feisty youngest Stark sister - is by far the most popular, with 82 taking this name. The name is common for both boys and girls in Iran and India.

For boys there are no apparent trends when it comes to naming babies after the characters. However, there were four baby Jons in 2012 - as distinct from John, Jonathan or Jonas - which could be a nod to Jon Snow.

However, unlike in the UK or US, there are no recordings of baby Daenerys, Sansa, Brienne, Tyrion or Theon here. The CSO only records instances of three or more of the same name.

Kit - perhaps inspired by Kit Harington, who plays Jon Snow - was a new entry last year with eight babies.

The three main female stars of the series - Maisie Williams, Emilia Clarke and Sophie Turner - may also claim credit for 582, 792 and 3,607 respective baby names within the last eight years.

In the last two years there is one name growing in popularity, with 14 so far taking the name - it appears Wynter is coming.

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