When it comes to baby names, a three-syllable name sounds like a main event — a "statement name," if you will. (I just made that up, but doesn't it sound good?) So what are some
unique baby names with three syllables? Two-syllable names seem most versatile, and one-syllable names are great with long last names, but a three-syllable name says a lot about your kid right off the bat, I think.
One of the hardest things about choosing the perfect name for your baby is making sure that whatever you pick for their first name sounds right with their surname. For example, rhyming is generally not a result most parents want to achieve (unless you want to guarantee a career in comedy). Most important, perhaps, is that the two names flow together. Syllable count can play a huge role in making that happen: Last names with one or two syllables, for example, sound great with three-syllable first names.
Another cool thing about three-syllable names is that most of them can
easily be turned into nicknames, so it's really like you're giving your little one two monikers for the price of one. (As someone with a three-syllable name myself, I can say that I've always liked having the option of switching back and forth from my "real" name to my nickname(s) depending on the occasion or type of correspondence. It's good to have options in life, right?)
Here are some particularly appealing three-syllable name choices that aren't all over the place just yet... but they probably will be soon enough.
An ancient name with Old Testament roots,
Gideon has recently started climbing in popularity, as Nameberry reported, but it's still rare enough to be considered unique. It's also cool enough for the likes of Neil Patrick Harris and David Burtka to choose it for their son, though that likely has nothing to do with the name's meaning — "hewer; or having a stump for a hand." 2 Eliza
On the one hand, Eliza is totally classic (and no doubt an increasingly popular choice with parents who are really into
Hamilton). On the other hand, it's still fairly uncommon to run into an Eliza on the playground. Meaning "god is my oath," Eliza is a shortened form of Elizabeth. 3 Barnaby
A name that has a certain retro thing going for it (Gen X moms might remember the '70s TV series
Barnaby Jones), even Barnaby's meaning almost sounds like it could be a band name. Of English origin, Barnaby means "son of consolation." If that’s not one of the most metal names you’ve ever heard, I don’t know what is. 4 Francesca From an Italian origin, Francesca means "Frenchman," so this name works for both Francophiles and lovers of Italian culture alike. Plus, there are so many cute nickname options (Frankie, Cesca, Franc, etc). And you can also spell it the unique way Franchesca Ramsey does, who's a popular comedian and blogger. 5 Ellery
unisex name of English origin meaning "island with elder trees," Ellery seems like the kind of name that could set some serious trends, and I love that it can be for a boy or a girl. (Apparently Laura Dern and Ben Harper thought it was pretty unique, too since they chose it for their son who is now a runway model.) 7 Atticus
Always a good choice for literary types (think Atticus Finch from
To Kill a Mockingbird), but Atticus is also a Roman name meaning "from Attica." Per Oh Baby! Names, “for Harper Lee, it was mainly his wisdom and humanity that inspired the name of her great literary hero, Atticus Finch." Cute nicknames I’ve heard recently with this name include Atti, Ty, and At. 8 Romeo
Of course this one has been around for awhile (ahem, Shakespeare), but it's safe to say the name is ready for a resurgence since Alec and Hilaria Baldwin recently bestowed the romantic moniker on their fourth baby.
From the Italian, it means "pilgrim to Rome, Roman." (Oh, and the Beckham family likes it, too.) 10 Spartacus LOUISE BEAUMONT/Moment/Getty Images
Powerful and sort of punk rock in a weird way,
Spartacus was the name of an ancient Roman slave who led a revolt and became a renowned gladiator, according to Nameberry. Pick this name now, before some producer inevitably remakes the old movie and it gets incredibly popular all over again. (Bonus if you say it like in That Thing You Do!) 11 Mateo
The meaning of this one pretty much expresses how every parent feels about their new addition: A Spanish name,
Mateo means "gift of god." And if you grew up watching All My Children with your mom back in the ‘90s, you’ll probably remember the character Mateo marrying Haley. Fun fact: the actors were Mark Conseulos and Kelly Ripa, and they're married in real life. 12 Vivienne
Yet another vivacious French name,
Vivienne comes from the Latin word vivus, meaning "alive." And the name goes well with the last name "Jolie," as Angelina can attest. (Another beautiful three syllable name for girls? Zahara! Another one of Jolie’s children’s names. Zahara means “ to shine.”) I mean, if you're gonna take ideas from anyone, it might as well be Angelina Jolie. 13 Lillian
In keeping with the "flower name" trend, Lillian is "
derived from the older name Lilion, which is thought to be from the Latin lilium (lily)," Baby Center explained. It also feels very high tea-appropriate, so this is a great choice if you're hoping your little princess will grow up to be just that (Prince George and Prince Louis will be eligible bachelors someday, after all). 14 Darius
While parents of a certain age might associate this name with Darius Rucker of Hootie & the Blowfish (which may or may not be a good thing),
Darius was around way before that guy. Of Greek/Persian origin, it means "kingly or possess well." Just be prepared for your kid saying they “ Only Wanna Be With You,” for a long time. 15 Harriett
Of French and English origin,
Harriett means "estate ruler" (which sounds like a sweet gig). Plus, historical and pop culture references abound: Harriet Tubman, the American abolitionist and political activist who was the “conductor” of the Underground Railroad, the protagonist of Harriet the Spy, and author Harriet Beecher Stowe to name a few. 16 Alastair
A Gaelic form of Alexander, meaning
"defender of mankind," Alastair feels very gothic and mysterious (probably in part because of the Alastair Crowley connection). If you’re not familiar, Alastair Crowley was an English occultist, poet, novelist — and some would argue cult leader — back in the late 1800s through the mid 1900s, according to nationaltrust.org. 17 Imogen
An Irish name meaning "maiden, innocent,"
Imogen has been getting more popular over the past several years, according to Baby Center. Famous Imogens include singer Imogen Heap, whose song “Let Go" you may have heard in the Garden State soundtrack, and the daughter of Cymbeline in the Shakespeare play Cymbeline. 18 Rafferty Another Irish name, this one is for boys and means "floodtide, abundance, prosperity." Rafferty is what Jude Law and his ex Sadie Frost chose for their son, and it has an undeniably cool nickname: Raff. I would also bet your kid will be the only one in the entire school to have this unique name if that’s something you’re going for. 19 Apollo
Not only is Apollo the Greek God of light, healing, prophecy, music, and poetry, according to mythology, but it also means “
to destroy.” Kind of a polar opposite bag of meanings there, but the name does sound pretty cool and I feel like they’d be a really popular kid at school. If not, they can just destroy people. 20 Delilah
“Hey there, Delilah, what’s it like in New York City…” If you remember the mid-2000s, there is no doubt you have heard of that song by Plain White Ts. Ironically, Delilah means
amorous, delight, languishing, and temptress. I mean, she definitely did something powerful to the lead singer, am I right? The nicknames are super cute too — Lilah, Dee.