When you think of Germany, which names come to mind? For most of us, the names for boys that we normally associate with the country are ones such as Hans, Klaus, Lukas, or other such stereotypes. Despite that, those aren’t the names that are most popular anymore.
Typically Germanic names are no longer the most common names found in the country’s capital city. Since last year, a new name has cemented its spot at number 1. In 2018, Mohammad was the most popular boys’ name in Berlin.
A New Survey
The Association for German Language has announced the top names across the country. In 6 of its 16 states, the name Mohammad ranked in the top 10. These states include Hamburg, North Rhine-Westphalia, Saarland, and Hesse. However, the name was vastly more popular in Berlin where it gained the number 1 spot.
However, those results are for first names alone. When middle names were also included, Mohammad ranked at number 24 on the list. Although that’s a big jump from 1st place, it’s still quite an achievement. This is especially true considering that the association recorded more than 65,000 different baby names.
How This Happened
In previous years, the name Mohammad was the 6th most popular boys’ first name in Berlin. The Association for German Language’s managing director Andrea Ewels had said at that time that it could easily jump to number 1 by the year 2021 or 2022.
Despite that, the name rose in popularity far quicker than she had anticipated.
In her opinion, this sudden change is thanks to the rise of immigration in Germany. Since Angela Merkel welcomed immigrants into the country back in 2015, over 1 million Middle Eastern and North African migrants have entered the country. These people come from regions of the world where the name Mohammad is vastly popular.
Other Names On the List
Although Mohammad was the most popular name in Berlin, Ben is at the top of the list for boys’ names for the entire country. Paul, Leon, Noah, and Louis closely followed as the top 5. Those names were then followed by Jonas, Elias, Henri, Felix, and Lukas which made up the top 10.
For girls, Emma ranked at number 1 with Hanna being the second most popular. The rest of the girls’ names which made it to the top 10 were Mia, Sofia, Emilia, Lina, Mila, Ella, Klara, and Anna.
Furthermore, the names which were most popular were quite different depending on the region. For example, people in the north and east of Germany were more likely to give their children more traditional names. These include Karl, Anton, Oskar, Jakob, and Theo for boys and Ida, Mathilda, Greta, and Frieda for girls.
The rise of immigration is changing a lot of things about our world. It’s changing how we view individual states and countries and opening doors across the world. Now, each country is becoming far more diverse. Even the number one name for boys in Berlin is no longer traditionally German.