First Name of the Year 2019: Greta

Greta is not the most common, but the most interesting first name of the year 2019.

Things can happen very quickly: Earlier Greta was just an inconspicuous retro name, now this first name is a political statement. Since Greta Thunberg has been so incredibly successful in shaking up humanity, her first name has become a symbol. I still don’t understand where the persuasive power of the Swedish climate activist comes from, how she got that aura and why so many people worship her religiously as a climate goddess. But that doesn’t matter that I don’t understand it – what’s crucial is that Greta Thunberg has triggered a big jolt in society and inspired a lot of people to think about and discuss climate change. Which is good!

Effect on language

Influential people are numerous, but rarely does their first names have such an effect on language: we experience the Greta phenomenon; our children belong to the Greta generation; projects must pass the Greta test. Make the World Greta again! Any questions why I chose Greta as first name of the year?

Greta at the top of the first name hit list?

What does it do with the first name? Is Greta going to attack the top of the first name charts? Some expectant parents definitly worship Klima-Greta so much that they call their daughter Greta because of her. Some expectant parents definitly hate the Very Happy Young Girl (as Donald Trump called her) so much that they refrain from naming their daughter Greta because of her, even if that was her favorite girl’s name before. Some expectant parents definitly are looking for an alternative to their previous favourite name Greta, because they are afraid that the name – whether positive or negative – is too much associated with the famous name model.

Surprising insight

Rarely have I been so eager to see a certain name placed in the hit list of the most popular first names. The final evaluation for 2019 is not yet available, but a surprising discovery when looking at the current status of the most common first names in Germany: Greta stagnates! As in previous years, Greta has been ranked about 30th among the most common girls names. However, this is only true for Greta as a first name; among the middle names Greta rises in the rankings. Is this due to the fact that parents make a political statement with the (often mute) middle name rather than with the first name?

About the first name of the year

I, Knud Bielefeld, have chosen the “first name of the year” all by myself, completely undemocratically and subjectively. There are no objective criteria. I was looking for a name that was somehow remarkable and special for this year. The previous first names of the year: Horst, Vaiana, Elphi, Samu, Neymar and Kathalea