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Revealed: These are Germany’s most popular baby names in 2021

The Society for the German Language has just revealed Germany’s most popular baby names, as well as those that have fallen out of favour across the country.

Revealed: These are Germany's most popular baby names in 2021
Newborns at a hospital in Leipzig on April 20th. Photo: picture alliance/dpa/dpa-Zentralbild | Jan Woitas

Emilia and Noah have become the most popular first names for newborns in Germany, reported the Society for the German Language on Monday. For girls, Hanna(h) comes in at a close second, followed by Emma and Sophia/Sofia.

Leon and Paul are the next most popular choices for boys, and Mat(h)eo/Matt(h)eo is a surprise entry at number four, climbing nine places from 2020. The society said that “such a jump has rarely been seen in recent years”. 

The remaining names in the top ten come as less of a surprise, and there has not been too much of a reshuffle over the past year. 

The Society for the German language gathered data from more than 700 registry offices, where almost a million different names had been submitted. This means that almost ninety percent of all given names in Germany were recorded over the last year.

READ ALSO: These are Germany’s most popular baby names for 2020

A difference can still be seen between the most popular names given to children in areas that belonged to East and West Germany respectively.

The top names in the former East generally tended to be more traditional, with Hanna, Mia and Frida topping the list of girls’ names, and Mat(h)eo, Emil and Oskar proving popular for boys. 

There is more foreign influences in the west German top ten, with Emilia, Sophia and Emma coming out on top for girls, and Noah, Leon and Paul taking the top spots for boys. 

Language experts also noted a trend towards what they call ‘phonetic monotony’ in girls’ names, whereby names ending with -a and having similar vowel sounds, such as Lina, Mila and Ella, have come into fashion. 

The boys’ names by contrast seem to be much more dynamic and diverse, with Elias, Felix and Henri proving more popular than the simple names that have dominated the rankings in the past. Ben, which took the top spot in 2019, has continued to drop in popularity and now sits at fifth place. 

The report also found that just over a third of all children were given more than one name over the past year, meaning most parents have been opting not to give their children second or third names, which in the past have often been names of relatives.

READ ALSO: These are the unusual names parents in Germany are giving their newborns

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LIVING IN GERMANY

REVEALED: The most commonly asked questions about Germans and Germany

Ever wondered what the world is asking about Germany and the Germans? We looked at Google’s most searched results to find out – and help clear some of these queries up.

Oktoberfest
Hasan Salihamidzic, the sports director of FC Bayern, arrives with his wife at Oktoberfest in full traditional dress. Photo: picture alliance/dpa |

According to popular searches, Germany is the go-to place for good coffee and bread (although only if you like the hard kind) and the place to avoid if what you’re looking for is good food, good internet connection and low taxes. Of course, this is subjective; some people will travel long stretches to get a fresh, hot pretzel or a juicy Bratwurst, while others will take a hard pass.

When it comes to the question on the bad Internet – there is some truth to this. Germany is known for being behind other rich nations when it comes to connectivity. And from personal experience, the internet connection can seem a little medieval. The incoming German coalition government has, however, vowed to improve internet connectivity as part of their plans to modernise the country.

There are also frequent questions on learning the German language, and people pointing out that it is hard and complicated. This is probably due to the long compound words and its extensive grammar rules, however, as both English and German are Germanic languages with similar words in common, it’s not impossible to learn as an English-speaker.

Here’s a look at some of those questions…

Why is German called Deutsch? Whereas ‘German’ comes from the Latin, ‘Deutsch’ instead derives itself from the Indo-European root “þeudō”, meaning “people”. This slowly became “Deutsch” as we know it today. It can be a bit confusing to English-speakers, who are right to think it sounds a little more like “Dutch”, however the two languages do have the same roots which may explain it.

And why is Germany so boring? Again, probably a generalisation, especially given that Germany has a landmass of over 350,000 km² with areas ranging from high rise, industrial cities to traditional old town villages and even mountain ranges, so you’re sure to find a place that doesn’t bore you to tears.

Perhaps it is a question that comes from the stereotype that Germans are obsessed with being strict about rules, organised and analytical. Or that they have no sense of humour – all of these things being not the most exciting traits. 

Either way, from my experience I can confirm that, even though there is truth to German society enjoying order and rules, the vast majority of people are not boring, and I’m sure if you come to Germany you’ll meet many interesting, funny and exciting people. 

READ ALSO: 12 mistakes foreigners make when moving to Germany

When it comes to the German weather, most people assume a cold and cloudy climate, however this isn’t entirely true. While the autumn and winter, especially in the north, come with grey skies and sub-zero temperatures, Germany can have some beautiful summers, with temperatures frequently rising above 30C in some places.

Unsurprisingly, the power and wealth of the German nation is mentioned – Germany is the largest economy in Europe after all, with a GDP of 3.8 trillion dollars. This could be due to strong industry sectors in the country, including vehicle constructions (I was a little surprised to find no questions posed on German cars), chemical and electrical industry and engineering. There are also many strong economic cities in Germany, most notably Munich, Frankfurt am Main and Hamburg.

READ ALSO: Eight unique words and phrases that tell us something about Germany

Smart and tall?

Why are Germans so tall? They are indeed taller than many other nations, with the average German measuring a good 172.87cm (or 5 feet 8.06 inches), however this may be a question better posed to the Dutch, who make up the tallest people in the world.

Why are Germans so smart? While this is again a generalisation – as individuals have different levels of intelligence in all countries – this question may stem from Germany’s free higher education system or their seemingly efficient work ethic. Plus there does seem to be some scientific research behind this question, with a study done in 2006 finding that Germans had the highest IQ in Europe.

So, while many of the questions posed about Germany and Germans on Google stem from stereotypes, we can confirm that some aren’t entirely made up. If you’re looking to debunk some frequently asked questions about France and the French, check out this article by our sister site HERE.

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