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100 Dreamy Boy Names That Start With D: With Meanings

Dream big with these dashing boy names that start with D.

Deciding on what to call your precious baby can be both enjoyable and stressful for new parents. Why not cast off your doubts and let us do the dirty work?

Your descendants deserve only the best, and names for boys that start with D usually score high on popularity charts. Here we’ve drafted a list of the world’s deadliest D names for boys that will dazzle and delight!

Consider designer options like Dimitri and Dash, or dare to be different with Damocles and Dirk. Discover everything from meanings and more on our list of boy names that start with D.

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100 Popular Male Names That Start with D

Here are 100 delightful boy names that start with D.


Dacre comes from an English surname based on a location in Cumbria or North Yorkshire, England. This slightly unusual pick has roots in the Welsh word “deigr,” and Old Breton “dacr,” meaning “tear” in the sense of a stream. It might appear to be a modern phenomenon to some, but Dacre has been recorded as far back as 1086!

  • Origin: English
  • Meaning: Trickling stream
  • Pronunciation: DAY-kuh, DAY-ker
  • Variations: Daker
  • Namesakes: Dacre Montgomery-Harvey, an Australian actor known for his role in Stranger Things. Dacre Stoker, a Canadian-American author, filmmaker, and great-grandnephew of Bram Stoker.
  • Popularity: Dacre doesn’t make the U.S. top 1,000 names.
Sophisticated, Sunny, Refreshing


Dag is popular in Sweden and Norway, though more so for the latter. Dag stems from “dagr,” an Old Norse word meaning “day.” In Norse mythology, this was also the name of the god who personified the day. Dag can be pronounced in several ways in different Scandinavian languages, giving you lots of choices in only three letters.

  • Origin: Scandinavian
  • Meaning: Day
  • Pronunciation: DAHG, DAG, DA-h, DAY
  • Variations: Dagr, Dagur
  • Namesakes: Dag Bjørndalen, a Norwegian biathlete. Dag Hammarskjöld, a Swedish economist and diplomat. Dag Hartelius, a Swedish diplomat.
  • Popularity: Dag is most popular in Norway, last ranked 88th in 1987.
Unusual, Cool, Casual


Often depicted with the body of a fish, Dagan, or Dagon, was an ancient Mesopotamian god associated with crop fertility. If you’ve always wished for a field of well-fed, healthy children, perhaps a moniker meaning “grain” is perfect for you. Parents interested in the peaceful pastoral lifestyle can try filling their storehouse with farm-related names like Dagan.

  • Origin: Hebrew, Akkadian
  • Meaning: Grain
  • Pronunciation: da-GAHN, DA-gan
  • Variations: Daganu, Dagon
  • Namesakes: Dagán, a 7th-century Irish bishop who was based in England. Dagan Yivzori, an Israeli basketball player.
  • Popularity: Dagan has about 4,827 bearers worldwide but doesn’t show up on U.S. charts.
Earthy, Strong, Unique


Daiki is a sturdy option, rooted in Japanese culture. Though it has different meanings based on the kanji (Chinese character) combinations and ways of reading them, some interpretations are more popular than others. Usually, Daiki combines the characters for “dai,” meaning “big” or “great,” and “ki,” meaning “brightness,” “valuable,” or “tree.”

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Big tree, big and bright
  • Pronunciation: DEYE-KEE
  • Namesakes: Daiki Suzuki, a Japanese-American fashion designer. Daiki Enokida, a Japanese professional baseball player. Daiki Arioka, a Japanese singer, actor, and model.
  • Popularity: Daiki is most prevalent in Japan, with about 3,396 international bearers.
Strong, Sunny, Earthy


Daisuke is one of the more common D names for boys in Japan. It’s composed of the Japanese characters “dai” meaning “big” or “great,” and “suke,” meaning “help” or “blessing.” If you’d prefer a different meaning, other kanji combinations are possible. Your baby is the biggest blessing in your life, so why not go with Daisuke?

  • Origin: Japan
  • Meaning: Great help, big blessing
  • Pronunciation: DEYE-SKEH, DEYE-soo-KEH
  • Namesakes: Daisuke Gōri, a Japanese actor, voice actor, and narrator. Daisuke “Dice” Murakami, a Japanese figure skater. Daisuke Matsuzaka, a Japanese professional baseball player.
  • Popularity: Daisuke has about 56,132 worldwide bearers, mostly in Japan.
Wholesome, Exotic, Sunny


Daktari originates in Kenya and is Swahili for “healer.” With less than 300 worldwide bearers, it’s a rare delight. There aren’t many namesakes besides Andrew Mboya, a comedian who uses the stage name Tom Daktari as a shout-out to his heritage. Daktari is a unique epithet that’s a perfect match for the healing smile of a sweet little baby.

  • Origin: African
  • Meaning: Physician, healer
  • Pronunciation: dak-TAH-ree
  • Popularity: Daktari is most popular in India, Kenya, and Tanzania but doesn’t make the top 1,000 names there.
Exotic, Wholesome, Unusual


Even if slightly dated, Dale is a fresh, breezy pick. It originates with the Old English “dæl” meaning “valley,” and was a topographic “D” surname describing someone living near a valley. Regardless of where you live, Dale is great for nature lovers who want to keep it classic. Rediscover the sunny-sounding Dale.

  • Origin: English
  • Meaning: Valley, dale
  • Pronunciation: DAYL, DAY-uul
  • Namesakes: Dale Whibley, a Canadian actor known for his role in Degrassi. Dale Brown, an American author, and pilot. Dale Winton, an English radio DJ and TV presenter.
  • Popularity: Dale is most popular in the U.S., where it last ranked 917th in 2009 and 996th in England in 2015.
Refreshing, Wholesome


Many know Dallas as a city in Texas. But before the lasso and saddle, Dallas was a Scottish and English habitational surname based on the town Dallas near Forres. It likely combines the Old Breton “dol” (meadow), and “gwas” meaning “dwelling” or “abode.” Others suggest roots in Old English “dæl” or Old Norse “dalr,” meaning “valley,” and “hus,” meaning “house.”

  • Origin: Celtic, English
  • Meaning: Meadow dwelling, valley house
  • Pronunciation: DA-lus
  • Namesakes: Dallas Adams, an English TV actor. Dallas Keuchel, an American professional baseball player. Dallas Soonias, a Canadian volleyball player.
  • Popularity: In the U.S., Dallas ranked 270th for boys in 2021.
Modern, Sunny, Refreshing


Dalton was an aristocratic English surname, likely originating with the Normans. It began as a place name meaning “valley town” from the Old English “dæl” meaning “valley,” and “tūn” meaning “town.” Dalton sounds quite posh and proper, so it might work best as a refined middle name. Whatever you decide, Dalton will likely maintain its classic status for years to come.

  • Origin: Old English
  • Meaning: Valley town, settlement in the valley
  • Pronunciation: DAHL-tun, DAWL-tun
  • Variations: Daltan
  • Namesakes: Dalton Gray, an American actor known for his role in American Horror Story. Dalton Rapattoni, an American singer. Dalton Trevisan, a Brazilian short story author.
  • Popularity: Dalton is most popular in the U.S., where it placed 518th in 2021. In the same year, it ranked 719th in England and Wales.
Sophisticated, Formal


Damian is an English version of Damianus, the Latinization of the Greek Damianos. The root word was the Greek “damazō,” meaning “I conquer,” “master,” “overcome,” or “tame.” Damian is popular in English, Spanish, and Scandinavian countries, so it’s no wonder why such a mighty moniker is widely loved. Let your baby boy conquer the world with Damian.

  • Origin: Greek
  • Meaning: One who conquers, one who tames
  • Pronunciation: DAY-mee-un, DA-mee-an
  • Variations: Damien, Damion, Demian
  • Namesakes: Damian “Jr. Gong” Marley, an award-winning Jamaican DJ, reggae artist, and rapper. Damian Lewis, an English actor and producer. Damian Wilson, an English singer-songwriter and musician.
  • Popularity: In 2022, Damian placed 82nd in Poland and 176th in the Netherlands. It last ranked 113th on U.S. charts in 2021.
Strong, Cool, Powerful
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Damocles comes from the Greek Damoklês, consisting of “dêmos” (common people, district, country) and “kléos” (rumor, good report, fame, glory). A Greek legend tells of Damocles, a pandering member of King Dionysius’ court who switched places with him for a day. But with a sword suspended over the throne by a hair, the true perilous nature of the position was revealed.

  • Origin: Greek
  • Meaning: Glory of the people, glory to the nation
  • Pronunciation: DAM-uh-kleez, DAM-oh-kless
  • Popularity: There are about 231 people called Damocles globally.
Powerful, Strong, Unusual


Damon is a well-liked offshoot of Damion, which comes from the Greek word “damazō,” meaning “I tame,” “conquer,” or “master.” Though Damon is primarily a given name, it has also been a popular surname — as in the case of celebrity namesake Matt Damon. It has a more grown-up feel, so expect it to carry well into adulthood.

  • Origin: Greek
  • Meaning: One who conquers, one who tames
  • Pronunciation: DAY-mn, DAY-mun
  • Variations: Damion
  • Namesakes: Damon Wayans Sr., an American actor, comedian, and producer. Damon Gupton, an American actor and orchestral conductor. Damon Beesley, an English writer and TV producer.
  • Popularity: In 2021, Damon placed 907th in England and Wales and 424th in the U.S.
Cool, Modern, Powerful


Dan gets full points for being simple and straightforward. It derives from the root word “din,” meaning “to judge,” and is also a short form of Daniel, meaning “God is my judge.” From Old Norse, Dan comes from the nickname Danr, which refers to a Dane. And just because it’s short doesn’t mean you can’t use the nickname, Danny.

  • Origin: Hebrew, Old Norse
  • Meaning: Judge, God is my judge, a Dane
  • Pronunciation: DAN, DAHN
  • Namesakes: Dan Bunz, an American gridiron football player. Dan Ben-Amotz, an Israeli radio broadcaster, writer, and playwright. Dan Mihai Bălan, a Moldovan songwriter, record producer, and artist.
  • Popularity: Dan ranked 97th in Israel in 2020 but fell off the U.S. charts after ranking 933rd in 2000.
Strong, Biblical, Casual


Dandelion is a floral choice for parents who aren’t afraid to be different. The bright yellow flower was an English corruption of the French phrase “dent de lion” meaning “lion’s tooth.” It referred to the jagged shape of the flower’s petals. In Andrzej Sapkowski’s The Witcher series, Dandelion (Jaskier in Polish) is the bard companion of the witcher Geralt.

  • Origin: French, English
  • Meaning: Lion’s tooth
  • Pronunciation: DAN-dih-leye-un, DAN-duh-leye-un
  • Namesakes: Dandelion Richards, daughter of musician Keith Richards and actress Anita Pallenberg.
  • Popularity: With about 87 bearers worldwide, Dandelion is most popular in the U.S. but doesn’t make the top 1,000 names.
Unique, Sunny, Sweet


Sometimes associated with a particularly large, friendly dog breed, Dane has an aristocratic air. It’s a variant of the English surname Dean and a derivative of the Old Norse nickname Danr, referring to someone from Denmark. Dane only became prominent in English-speaking territories during modern times, appearing on popularity charts from the mid-’40s and mid-’90s.

  • Origin: English, Old Norse
  • Meaning: Valley, a Dane (from Denmark)
  • Pronunciation: DAYN, DAY-nuh, DA-nehy
  • Variations: Dan
  • Namesakes: Dane Baptiste, a British stand-up comedian, and writer. Dane Boedigheimer, an American voice actor, writer, and animator. Dane Anderson, an Australian cricketer.
  • Popularity: Dane ranked 846th in 2021 on U.S. charts.
Unique, Strong


In Czech, Daněk means “fallow deer,” but in Slovak and Polish, Danek is a diminutive of the Hebrew Daniel, meaning “God is my judge.” It is also used as a pet form of any Slavic male names that use the element “dan.” This one is a bit uncommon in the West, allowing your son to stand out.

  • Origin: Czech, Polish, Hebrew
  • Meaning: Fallow deer, God is my judge
  • Pronunciation: DA-nek, DA-nyek
  • Variations: Daněk
  • Namesakes: Danek Mozdzenski, a Canadian sculptor. Danek Nowosielski, a Canadian fencer.
  • Popularity: About 1,574 global bearers are concentrated in Russia and Poland.
Unusual, Wholesome


A list of boy names that start with D wouldn’t be complete without a classic like Daniel. It derives from the Hebrew Daniyyel, combining the elements “din,” meaning “to judge,” and “El,” the Hebrew name for God. The biblical prophet Daniel showed strong conviction, courage, and dedication — upstanding qualities any parent would want for their own young Daniel.

  • Origin: Hebrew
  • Meaning: God is my judge
  • Pronunciation: DAN-yuul, DAN-yul
  • Variations: Daniyyel, Danilo, Taniel, Deniel
  • Namesakes: Daniel Craig, a British actor best known for the role of James Bond. Daniel Brown, an American author known for The Da Vinci Code novel. Daniel Dae Kim, a South Korean-American actor.
  • Popularity: Daniel is hugely popular worldwide and ranked 16th on the U.S. charts in 2021.
Biblical, Strong, Wholesome


Dante is an elegant diminutive of the Italian Durante. It was borne by the poet Dante Alighieri who wrote the Divine Comedy. Dante isn’t the most popular of all the boy names that start with D, but it’s still quite beloved. In 2021, it ranked high on charts in England and Wales, Chile, Sweden, Argentina, and of course, Italy!

  • Origin: Italian
  • Meaning: Enduring, steadfast
  • Pronunciation: DAN-tay, DAAN-tay, DAN-teh
  • Namesakes: Dante Bowe, an American Christian worship singer-songwriter. Dante da Maiano, a 13-century poet. Dante Cappelli, an Italian actor.
  • Popularity: In 2021, Dante placed 311th in the U.S. and ranked 265th in the Netherlands in 2022.
Sophisticated, Regal, Strong


Dara has a lot going on. In Irish, it’s an Anglicized form of the male Dáire, meaning “fruitful” or “fertile.” Dara also means “special” or “one of a kind” in Kazakh. In Hebrew and Persian culture, it means “wealthy” and “thorn thistle.” But Dara is also feminine. In Khmer, Thai, and Indonesian, it means “star,” “young woman,” and “virgin,” respectively.

  • Origin: Irish, Persian, Hebrew
  • Meaning: Fruitful, wealthy, thorn thistle
  • Pronunciation: DAH-RAH, DAR-AH
  • Namesakes: Dara Murphy, an Irish politician. Dara Khosrowshahi, an Iranian-American businessman and CEO of Uber. Dara Shikoh, an Indian prince and heir-apparent of Emperor Shah Jahan I.
  • Popularity: Dara doesn’t rank in the U.S. for boys, but in Ireland, it was last seen in 2019 at 86th for boys. In 2020, Dara ranked 962nd in England and Wales.
Exotic, Earthy, Unique


Darby could win a competition for the cutest male names that start with D. Old English for “deer park,” it comes from the surname Derby, referring to Derbyshire. Darby is composed of Old Norse “djúr” (deer) and “býr” (farm/settlement). First appearing on U.S. charts for boys, it became more popular in the ’90s for girls before fading away.

  • Origin: English
  • Meaning: Deer park
  • Pronunciation: DAH-bee, DAHR-bee
  • Namesakes: Darby Berkhout, a Canadian rower. Walter Darby Bannard, an American abstract painter and university art professor. Darby Jones, an American actor.
  • Popularity: Darby is most popular in the U.S., last ranking in 1974 for boys at 955th.
Sweet, Casual, Cute
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Literary classic Darcy was an English surname from the Norman French d’Arcy. It’s composed of the element “arc” and is possibly a derivative of the Gaulish “areka” (near a border) and the suffix “y.” This moniker usually denoted someone from the town of Arcy in La Manche. Darcy is also an Anglicization of the Irish surname Ó Dorchaidhe from the personal name Dorchaidhe (dark one).

  • Origin: English, French, Irish
  • Meaning: From Arcy, dark one
  • Pronunciation: DAHR-see, DAH-see
  • Variations: Darci, Darcey, Darcie, D’Arcy
  • Namesakes: Darcy Blake, a Welsh professional football player. Darcy Furber, a Canadian politician.
  • Popularity: Darcy last ranked in the U.S. for boys in 1970 at 898th.
Gothic, Sophisticated, Vintage


Darell is an Anglicized version of the Norman French d’Airelle, referring to someone from Airelle in France. Although there aren’t any towns in France called Airelle anymore, “airelle” is French for “huckleberry.” So whether you love history or nature, Darell might be exactly what you need.

  • Origin: English, French
  • Meaning: From Airelle
  • Pronunciation: DA-ruul
  • Variations: Darrell, Darrel, Darel, Darryl, Daryl
  • Namesakes: Darell Koons, an American painter. Darell Hammond, an American philanthropist and founder of a non-profit organization.
  • Popularity: Darell has about 6,903 bearers worldwide, peaking on U.S. charts in 1948 at 813th.
Casual, Vintage


Although some suggest that Dariel means “open” from the Hebrew word “dari,” these two aren’t directly related. Dariel might more accurately be a variant of the unisex Hebrew name Dariyah. This is composed of the elements “dar,” meaning “dweller” or “inhabitant,” and “Yah,” a shortened form of Yahweh (the Hebrew name for God). Dariel is also another version of Darell.

  • Origin: French, Hebrew
  • Meaning: From Airelle, God is my dwelling place
  • Pronunciation: Da-ree-el
  • Variations: Darrel, Dariyah
  • Namesakes: Dariel Fitzroy, pen name Dariel Fitzkee, an American magician and writer. Dariel Álvarez, a Cuban professional baseball player. Dariel Albo Miranda, a Cuban volleyball player.
  • Popularity: Dariel first showed up on U.S. charts in 2012, ranking 950th, and surged to 549th in 2021.
Modern, Wholesome, Sunny


Darien is an Anglicized form of the Latin Darius, ultimately from the Old Persian “Darayavahush.” This lengthy moniker was composed of the Persian words “darya” (wealthy) or (protector/upholder), “dāraya” (to hold/possess), and “vahu” (good). Darien might also mean “gift.” Occasionally used as a surname, this cool but practical option might be ideal for your gift of goodness.

  • Origin: English, Persian, Latin
  • Meaning: Wealthy, protector (of goodness), to possess (goodness)
  • Pronunciation: DA-ree-un, DAIR-ee-in
  • Variations: Darian
  • Namesakes: Darien Angadi, an English singer and actor. Dr Darien Graham-Smith, a British journalist, scholar, and theater actor. Darien Boswell, a New Zealand rower.
  • Popularity: Darien peaked in 1994 at 383rd in the U.S. and was last seen in 2014 at 983rd.
Wholesome, Cool


Dario is a lively Italian and Croatian version of the Persian-Latin Darius from Old Persian Dārayavahuš (Darayavahush). Dario is composed of the Persian elements “dāraya” (to hold/possess) or “darya” (wealthy) and “vahu” (good). Despite its niche origin, it has found an audience in English, Spanish, French, and even Scandinavian countries. Perhaps Nintendo’s Mario played a part in Dario’s reception.

  • Origin: Italian, Croatian, Persian
  • Meaning: To possess (goodness)
  • Pronunciation: DA-ree-oh, DAH-ree-oh
  • Variations: Darius
  • Namesakes: Dario de Judicibus, an Italian author and consultant. Dario Argento, an Italian film director, producer, screenwriter, actor, and critic.
  • Popularity: Dario peaked on U.S. charts in 1981 at 665th and hit 684th in 2021.
Sunny, Wholesome, Exotic


Darius is the English (from Latin) transliteration of the Persian Dariush, from Old Persian Dārayavahuš (Darayavahush). It’s composed of the words “dāraya” (to hold/possess) or “darya” (wealthy) or (protector/upholder), and “vash” (good). In a literal sense, it means “holding firm to the good.” Darius is such a snug fit.

  • Origin: English, Persian
  • Meaning: To possess/hold goodness
  • Pronunciation: DA-ree-us, DAIR-ree-us, DAH-ree-oosh
  • Variations: Dario, Dariush
  • Namesakes: Darius Kasparaitis, a Lithuanian-American professional ice hockey player. Darius Milhaud, a French composer, and conductor. Darius Rochebin, an Iranian-Swiss journalist.
  • Popularity: In 2021, Darius placed 636th on the U.S. charts and was 340th in England and Wales.
Regal, Wholesome, Biblical


The Croatian and Serbian Darko is uncommon in the West and is much more at home in Slavic countries. It makes sense, considering it comes from a Slavic root, “dar” (gift). It’s also been adopted in Ghana as a surname. For Westerners, the science fiction movie, Donnie Darko, helped bring this option out of the dark and into the light.

  • Origin: Slavic
  • Meaning: Gift
  • Pronunciation: DAAR-koh
  • Namesakes: Darko Jelčić, a Bosnian musician and drummer. Darko Rundek, a Croatian rock singer-songwriter, poet, and actor. Darko Mitrevski, a Macedonian film director.
  • Popularity: Darko is most prevalent in Croatia, with about 74,036 worldwide bearers.
Cool, Gothic, Sweet


Darren’s meaning is uncertain, but it might have come from a rare Irish surname made up of the Celtic elements “dar,” meaning “oak tree,” and “ren,” meaning “settlement” or “place.” Darren is a great down-to-earth alternative if you’re tired of David and Daniel.

  • Origin: English, Celtic
  • Meaning: From the oak tree settlement
  • Pronunciation: DA-ruun, DA-ren
  • Variations: Daren, Derren
  • Namesakes: Darren O’Shaughnessy, an Irish novelist known for his series The Saga of Darren Shan. Darren Bravo, a Trinidadian cricketer playing for the West Indies.
  • Popularity: Darren was once most popular in England and Wales, but last ranked 806th in 2017. It continued appearing on U.S. charts, ranking 804th in 2021.
Strong, Earthy, Casual


Darryl is a tad old-fashioned, but that simply gives it an air of maturity. The moniker comes from the Old English word “deorling,” meaning “beloved,” “darling,” or “dear.” Darryl is also used as a variation of Darrell, meaning “from Airelle.” Darryl makes the grade if you plan to pass your name down several generations or need a sophisticated-sounding middle name.

  • Origin: French, English
  • Meaning: From Airelle, darling
  • Pronunciation: DA-ril, DAIR-ruul
  • Variations: Daryl, Darryll, Derryl, Darrell, Darell, Darrel
  • Namesakes: Darryl Brown, a Trinidadian cricketer playing for the West Indies. Darryl Brown, a South African cricketer. Darryl George, an Australian baseball player.
  • Popularity: Darryl has appeared in the U.S. top 1,000 names since 1932 and ranked for a final time in 2012 at 947th.
Vintage, Sweet, Wholesome


Darwin comes from the Old English Deorwine, which incorporates the elements “deor,” meaning “dear,” and “wine,” meaning “friend.” Some suggest the first element means “deer,” making Darwin a “friend of deer.” This appears to be a misinterpretation of what was meant to be “dear” as in “darling.” Darwin is most famously associated with the English naturalist and biologist Charles Darwin.

  • Origin: English
  • Meaning: Dear friend
  • Pronunciation: DAH-win, DAAR-win
  • Variations: Derwin, Derwyn
  • Namesakes: Darwin Kyle, a WWII veteran U.S. Army soldier. Francis Darwin Solomon, an American actor. Darwin Teilhet, an American author, advertising executive, journalist, and screenwriter.
  • Popularity: Darwin exploded on U.S. charts from 1910 to the early ’70s, placing 904th in 2020.
Formal, Sophisticated, Sweet
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Dash is rising fast on the charts. It’s an English word meaning “to sprint,” and a shortened form of Dashiell. As an Anglicization of the Scottish surname de Chiel, it may be related to the Scottish slang “chiel” (young lad). That makes it quite fitting for a newborn boy. The Incredibles used this wordplay with their speedster Dashiell “Dash” Parr.

  • Origin: English, Scottish
  • Meaning: To sprint, a young lad
  • Pronunciation: DASH
  • Namesakes: Dash Shaw, an American comic book creator, and animator.
  • Popularity: Dash first appeared in the U.S. top 1,000 names in 2014 at 947th. It then peaked at 740th in 2017.
Cool, Casual, Cute


The unusual Dathan has a somewhat dark history. In the Bible, Dathan was one of Eliab’s sons. He supported the Levite Korah in his rebellion against Moses and Aaron. Though things didn’t end well for him, Dathan is still a beautiful name. It calls to mind the trickling sound and refreshing coolness of cascading waters. Dathan deserves a revitalization.

  • Origin: Hebrew
  • Meaning: Fountain
  • Pronunciation: DAY-thn, DAY-thun
  • Namesakes: Dathan Ritzenhein, an American running coach and retired long-distance runner. Dathan Auerbach, an American horror author. Dathan Thigpen, an American Gospel singer, and winner of BET’s Sunday Best.
  • Popularity: Dathan has about 1,097 international bearers.
Refreshing, Unique, Biblical


David is undeniably a timeless classic. It stems from the Hebrew root “dod,” which might mean “beloved.” Its association with the biblical King David has likely made it one of the most popular boy names with D in the world. Give your little monarch a moniker fit for a king with David.

  • Origin: Hebrew
  • Meaning: Beloved
  • Pronunciation: DAY-vid, DA-veed
  • Variations: Daveed
  • Namesakes: Sir David Attenborough, an English biologist, natural historian, broadcaster, and author. David Beckham, an English professional football player. David Bowie, an English singer-songwriter.
  • Popularity: David peaked on the U.S. charts in 1960 at first place and ranked 30th in 2021.
Biblical, Sweet, Wholesome


Davis is an English patronymic surname (from a father’s given name) that stems from the Hebrew David. Though David means “beloved,” Davis means “son of David,” making it perfect for Daddy’s little boy. But you don’t have to come from a line of kings to carry this moniker. Davis is a great fit for any beloved son.

  • Origin: English
  • Meaning: Son of David
  • Pronunciation: DAY-viss
  • Variations: Dāvids
  • Namesakes: Brig. Davis Bedford, a British physician. Davis Amuyunzu, a Kenyan football player. Philip Davis Guggenheim, an American writer, screen director, and producer.
  • Popularity: Davis came 59th in Latvia in 2020 and placed 557th on the U.S. charts in 2021.
Formal, Sweet


Likely popularized by Dawson’s Creek, Dawson is a variation of an English surname meaning “son of David.” It might have been influenced by the David variant, Dawid, or its diminutive, Daw. Others suggest it referenced someone living in or near a place called Dawes or Dawe. Dawe(s) is composed of Old English elements “da” (a wild animal) and “wes” (abode).

  • Origin: English
  • Meaning: Son of David
  • Pronunciation: DAW-sn, DAW-sen
  • Namesakes: Dawson Millward, a British stage and film actor. Dawson Dunbar, a Canadian actor. Dawson Dawson-Watson, a British Impressionist painter.
  • Popularity: Dawson experienced a popularity spike in the U.S. in 2015, then ranked 207th in 2021.
Sophisticated, Formal


Dax looks and sounds super cool. It’s a new kid on the block slaying on and off U.S. shores. In the Netherlands, it ranked 337th in 2022; in England and Wales, it ranked 907th in 2021. Dax might come from a town in France called Dax or derive from the Old English Dæcca, possibly meaning “decoy.”

  • Origin: English, French
  • Meaning: Leader
  • Pronunciation: DAKSS
  • Namesakes: Dax Pierson, an American musician. Dax Shepard, an American actor, comedian, filmmaker, and podcaster. Dax Griffin, an American actor known for his role in Ant-Man.
  • Popularity: Dax appeared on U.S. charts in 1970 at 864th and surged to 463rd place in 2021.
Cool, Unique, Powerful


Ddraig is Welsh for “dragon,” so it might be a little tricky for English-speakers. The flag of Wales proudly sports a heraldic symbol of The Red Dragon or Y Ddraig Goch. If there’s one way to be unique in style, it’s with a name like Ddraig. Dragon lovers and beyond should take a chance on Ddraig.

  • Origin: Welsh
  • Meaning: Dragon
  • Pronunciation: dhr-EYE-g
  • Variations: Draig
Cool, Unusual, Exotic


You really get a sense of piousness and authority with Deacon. Usually, it refers to a member of the Christian clergy. But Deacon stems from an English occupational surname and the Old English word “deacon” or “diakon.” This ultimately comes from the Greek word “diakonos,” meaning “servant,” “helper,” or “messenger.”

  • Origin: Greek, English
  • Meaning: Messenger, servant
  • Pronunciation: DEE-kun, DEE-ken
  • Variations: Deakin
  • Namesakes: Deacon Manu, a New Zealand-born Fijian rugby union football player. John Moore, known as Deacon John, an American musician, singer, and bandleader.
  • Popularity: Deacon was most popular in the U.S. in 2014 at 420th and placed 473rd in 2021.
Wholesome, Strong


Dean is perfectly suited for your future leader. It comes from the Old English word “denu” and Middle English “dene,” meaning “valley.” Ultimately, these are derived from the Latin “decanus” and Greek “dekanos,” meaning “chief of ten.” Dean is also an Anglicization of the Hebrew word for “law” or “justice.” Dean is one respectable pick!

  • Origin: English, Latin
  • Meaning: Valley, chief of ten
  • Pronunciation: DEEN
  • Variations: Deane, Deen, Dene
  • Namesakes: Dean Koontz, an American thriller author. Dean Heller, an American businessman, politician, and U.S. senator.
  • Popularity: Dean has shown up on U.S. charts since the 1900s and ranked 165th in 2021.
Strong, Powerful, Casual


Declan is an Anglicization of the Irish Deaglán and Old Irish Declán. Its meaning remains uncertain, but “man of prayer” or “full of goodness” have been suggested. Once most popular in Ireland, it has since become a vintage name there. In modern times, the laid-back Declan has claimed a permanent spot on English and U.S. charts.

  • Origin: English, Irish
  • Meaning: Man of prayer, full of goodness
  • Pronunciation: DEK-ln, DEK-lun
  • Variations: Deaglán, Declán
  • Namesakes: Declan McKenna, an English singer-songwriter. Declan Bennett, an English singer-songwriter, actor, and playwright. Declan Donnelly, a British TV presenter and producer, comedian, singer, and rapper.
  • Popularity: In 2021, Declan ranked 390th in England and Wales and 105th in the U.S.
Sweet, Wholesome, Modern
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Deidara isn’t one of the typical guy names that start with D. It’s not only exotic but highly rare. Based on the Japanese word “dei,” meaning “mud,” this was a fictional antagonist from the Japanese anime, Nautro. Fans of the show might consider Deidara ideal for a budding artist or a kid that just likes to play in the dirt.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Mud
  • Pronunciation: DEH-ee-da-ra, DAY-da-ra
  • Popularity: Deidara has about 104 international bearers concentrated in Russia and Japan.
Unusual, Modern, Earthy


Deion is an interesting spin on Dion. Having fallen off the charts, some might see it as old-fashioned, but like fashion cycles, Deion could easily find itself trending again. Though Deion is connected to the god Dionysus, it might also be based on the Greek word “dios.” That would make its meaning “of Zeus” or “of god.”

  • Origin: English, Greek
  • Meaning: Follower of Dionysus
  • Pronunciation: DEE-on, DEE-ahn
  • Variations: Dion, Deon
  • Namesakes: Deion Sanders Sr., an American gridiron football coach and former player.
  • Popularity: In the U.S., Deion peaked at 411th in 1995 and 1996 and last ranked 893rd in 2000.
Unique, Vintage, Cool


Dell has a real southern ring — something like Southern Bell or a farmer in the Dell. It was a surname that described someone living in a glen or small valley. Dell was also used as a diminutive of names ending or starting with “dell” or “del.” With only one syllable, your son’s introductions will be a breeze.

  • Origin: English
  • Meaning: Small valley, glen
  • Pronunciation: DEHL
  • Variations: Del
  • Namesakes: Dell Hymes, an American linguist, anthropologist, and folklorist. Dell Dailey, an American U.S. Army lieutenant general.
  • Popularity: Dell last ranked 877th for boys in 1967 on U.S. charts.
Sunny, Casual, Refreshing


Delroy doesn’t get much love on popularity charts, but it’s fairly widespread. It’s an Anglicized name of Old French origin meaning “of the king.” This origin story is similar to the Anglicized French Leroy from “le roi,” simply meaning “the king.” Your little crowning glory should have a kingly epithet like Delroy.

  • Origin: French, English
  • Meaning: Of the king
  • Pronunciation: DEHL-roy
  • Namesakes: Delroy Lindo, a London-born Jamaican actor based in America. Delroy Leslie, a Jamaican boxer. Delroy Cambridge, a Jamaican professional golfer.
  • Popularity: With about 13,637 worldwide bearers, Delroy is the most popular in Jamaica.
Unique, Regal, Vintage


Demas is fairly rare despite having a reputation to back it up. In the Bible, a fellow worker of the apostle Paul went by Demas. This moniker was probably a short form of Demetrius, meaning “follower of Demeter.” If you like Demetrius but worry it’s too long, try Demas instead.

  • Origin: Greek
  • Meaning: Of Demeter
  • Pronunciation: DEE-mus, deh-MASS
  • Popularity: Demas has about 7,199 bearers globally but is not popular in the U.S.
Regal, Unique, Earthy


Demetrius means “of (Belonging to) Demeter.” It was borne by several people mentioned in the Bible and continues to be somewhat popular. This Latinized form of the Greek Demetrios is sometimes used as a surname, though this is extremely rare. Demetrius is on the longer side of names for boys that start with D, making it an ideal middle name.

  • Origin: Greek
  • Meaning: Of Demeter
  • Pronunciation: duh-MEE-tree-us
  • Variations: Demetrios, Dimitrios
  • Namesakes: Demetrius Zvonimir, a Croatian king. Pope Demetrius I, a bishop and patriarch of Alexandria and a saint.
  • Popularity: In 2021, Demetrius placed 832nd in the U.S.
Cool, Regal, Sophisticated


Denji is an up-and-coming star from Japan. It was introduced to the West through the manga and anime Chainsaw Man, which features the wild and lovable protagonist Denji. It’s still quite rare on the world stage, but it has the potential to draw people in. If your baby has a magnetic personality, then Denji could be the right fit.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Electromagnetic
  • Pronunciation: DEHN-jee
  • Namesakes: Denji Kuroshima, a Japanese author.
  • Popularity: Denji is most popular in Japan, with about 3,631 worldwide bearers.
Unusual, Powerful, Exotic


Dennis’s decline in popularity seems to have started shortly after its peak in 1949, after the first Dennis the Menace comic was published in 1951. This English and German form of the French Denis or Denys, ultimately came from the Greco-Roman Dionysius. Despite its fall from glory, Dennis held out for many years, giving it an enduring quality.

  • Origin: English, French
  • Meaning: Of Dionysus
  • Pronunciation: DEH-niss
  • Variations: Denys, Denis
  • Namesakes: Dennis Quaid, an American actor. Dennis Franz Schlachta, known as Dennis Franz, an American actor. Dennis Chambers, an American drummer.
  • Popularity: In 2021, Dennis ranked 356th in England and Wales and placed 693rd in the U.S.
Casual, Cute, Sunny


Denver seems to have always been a place on a map — and not just in the U.S. It stems from an English surname based on a place name meaning “Dane ford.” Other suggested etymologies include a combination of the Old English words “dene” (valley) and “fær” (passage/crossing) or a French surname meaning “from Anvers.”

  • Origin: English, French
  • Meaning: Valley passage, from Anvers
  • Pronunciation: DEHN-vur
  • Namesakes: Denver Nicks, an American journalist, photographer, and writer. Denver Beanland, an Australian politician.
  • Popularity: In 2021, Denver ranked 738th in England and Wales and 505th on U.S. charts.
Refreshing, Modern, Unique


Denzel is derived from a surname that denoted someone from the manor of Denzell in Cornwall. Some suggest it could mean “fort of eagles.” Beyond the U.S. and England, Denzel has lasted on charts in the Netherlands, ranking 445th in 2020. It falls in that sweet spot between too trendy and too obscure.

  • Origin: Cornish, English
  • Meaning: From the high stronghold, from the high fortress
  • Pronunciation: DEHN-zehl, DEHN-zl
  • Variations: Denzil, Denzell
  • Namesakes: Denzel Washington, an American actor, and filmmaker. Denzel Whitaker, an American actor. Denzel Bentley Ntim-Mensah, an English professional boxer.
  • Popularity: Denzel last ranked in 2013 in the U.S. at 985th and in England and Wales at 921st in 2020.
Vintage, Sophisticated, Strong
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Derek is an English form of the Low German Diederic(k), itself a version of the Gothic Theodoric. Considered a manly option, Derek sounds a bit harsh, which might seem intimidating to some. But leaders and kings know that you must crack a few eggs to make an omelet, so it’s worth having a tough appearance.

  • Origin: English, German
  • Meaning: Ruler of the people
  • Pronunciation: DEH-rik, DEH-rk
  • Variations: Derrek, Derick, Derrick, Dereck, Deric
  • Namesakes: Derek Johnson, known professionally as Derek Acorah, a British spiritual medium and TV personality. Derek Benz, an American fantasy fiction author.
  • Popularity: While Derek fell off the charts in other major countries, it ranked 301st in 2021 on U.S. charts.
Powerful, Strong, Casual


Desi is usually a diminutive of the masculine Desiderio, an Italian and Spanish form of the Latin Desiderius. Desi is a short form of the feminine Desiree in English and French. Every child is like a long-awaited gift, so Desi, or its full form Desiderio, might be the best way to express that appreciation. Besides, Desi is just the cutest!

  • Origin: Italian, Spanish, French
  • Meaning: Desired, longed for
  • Pronunciation: DEH-see
  • Namesakes: Desiderio Arnaz, nicknamed Desi, a Cuban-born American actor, bandleader, and TV producer.
  • Popularity: Desi ranked once on U.S. charts in 1956 at 993rd and again in 1970 at 984th.
Unusual, Sweet, Exotic


Looking for a mature, no-nonsense vibe? Desmond sounds like someone you’d want doing your taxes. This Anglicized form of the Irish Deasmhumhain means “south Munster.” It garnered popularity on U.S. charts after falling off in England, Wales, New Zealand, and Ireland. Since the ’60s, Desmond has continued rising in the ranks. For a casual nickname, try Des (DEHZ).

  • Origin: Irish, English
  • Meaning: (From) South Munster
  • Pronunciation: DEHZ-mundt
  • Variations: Dezmund, Desmund
  • Namesakes: Desmond Harrington, an American actor. Desmond Carrington, a British broadcaster and actor. Desmond Dekker, a Jamaican singer-songwriter and musician.
  • Popularity: In 2021, Desmond placed 355th in the U.S. after hitting its peak in 1992 at 265th.
Sophisticated, Formal, Strong


Dev is primarily of Hindu Sanskrit origin and stems from “deva,” meaning “god.” It is also a diminutive of names starting with “dev” — typically Devin. From Old French, “devin” means “divine” and is ultimately from a Latin root. Dev could be an opportunity for your little angel to get in touch with his spiritual side.

  • Origin: Indian
  • Meaning: God
  • Pronunciation: DEHV
  • Variations: Deo
  • Namesakes: Dev Patel, a British actor known for starring in Slumdog Millionaire and The Green Knight. Dev Kumar, an Indian Dalit writer, and dramatist.
  • Popularity: Dev is most popular in India, ranking in the top 500 names, and in places like England and Wales, it last ranked 888th in 2017.
Cool, Cute, Wholesome


Devin is an Anglicization of the Irish surnames Ó Damháin (descendant of Damhán) and Ó Dubháin (descendant of Dubhán). Damhán, from Old Irish “damán allaid,” meant “little fierce stag” or “wild fawn.” Meanwhile, Dubhán meant “little dark one.” Devin might also come from the Irish word “dáimh,” meaning “poet/bard.” In French, Devin means “divine,” while in Hindi, it means “godlike.”

  • Origin: English, Irish, Latin, French
  • Meaning: Fawn, little dark one, divine
  • Pronunciation: DEH-vin
  • Namesakes: Devin DeHaven, an American TV director, and producer. Devin Lebsack, an American drummer. Devin Bowen, an American professional tennis player.
  • Popularity: Devin placed 389th on U.S. charts in 2021. In the Netherlands, it ranked 378th in 2022.
Sweet, Wholesome, Sunny


Dexter calls to mind either a homicidal forensic technician or Genndy Tartakovsky’s animated child genius. Something about this one just gives the impression of heightened intelligence. Perhaps it’s because Dexter is a Latin word meaning “right-handed” or “skilled.” Dexter was also a diminutive of an Old English occupational surname, meaning “one who dyes.” Speaking of nicknames, we’ve calculated one: Dex!

  • Origin: Latin, English
  • Meaning: Right-handed, skilled, one who dyes
  • Pronunciation: DEKS-tuh, DEKS-tur
  • Namesakes: Dexter Dalwood, a British artist. Dexter Allen, an American musician, singer-songwriter, and guitarist. Dexter Gore Jr., stage name Famous Dex, an American rapper, and singer.
  • Popularity: Dexter peaked on U.S. charts in 1968 at 262nd and ranked 533rd in 2021.
Cool, Sophisticated


The Hindu Sanskrit Dhumra denotes the grayish-purple color of smoke. In Hindu mythology, Dhumra was an attendant of a war deity in the court of Indra. Other bearers included a demon defeated by Lord Shiva and a naga who was tamed by Lord Shiva. In Vedic astrology, Dhumra is associated with Saturn and thus symbolizes discipline, responsibility, and industriousness.

  • Origin: Indian
  • Meaning: Smoky, misty, purple-gray
  • Pronunciation: DUM-ruh
  • Popularity: Dhumra is borne by about 77 people from India.
Earthy, Unusual, Exotic


Diab stems from the Arabic word “ḍi’b” or “ḏiʾb” meaning “wolf.” It most likely started out as a nickname for someone “free and brave like a wolf.” Eventually, it became a first and last name used by Muslims and Christians in the Middle East. The exotic Diab is fairly popular, with over 30,000 bearers worldwide.

  • Origin: Arabic
  • Meaning: Wolf
  • Pronunciation: DEYE-ab
  • Variations: Diyab, Dhiyab, Diaab, Diaf
  • Namesakes: Najeeb Diab, a Syrian nationalist, publisher, and founder of a major Arabic-language newspaper. Amr Diab, an Egyptian composer, singer, and actor.
  • Popularity: Diab is most prevalent in Syria and surrounding nations.
Exotic, Unusual, Powerful


As Diego was once Latinized as Didacus, some suspect it derives from the Greek word “didache” meaning “teaching.” But it’s more likely a short form of Santiago, composed of the Spanish word “santo” (saint), and Yago, an Old Spanish version of James. Diego sounds way more fun than James, so you don’t need an excuse to use it.

  • Origin: Spanish
  • Meaning: Supplanter, one seizing the heel
  • Pronunciation: DEE-eh-goh, dee-AY-goh, DEE-ehy-goh
  • Variations: Tiago, Diago
  • Namesakes: Diego Rivera, a prominent Mexican painter. Diego Luna, a Mexican actor, director, and producer known for his role in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. Diego Boneta, a Mexican actor, producer, and singer.
  • Popularity: In 2021, Diego ranked 84th in France, 11th in Italy, and 126th in the U.S.
Exotic, Sunny, Strong


Diesel is an unconventional D name for boys. It was originally a surname and a diminutive of the English Matthew from the Greek Matthias or the German Dietrich. The diesel engine and diesel fuel were named after the German inventor and mechanical engineer, Rudolf Diesel. Because of its association with cars and trucks, Diesel is Mad Max levels of badass manliness.

  • Origin: English, German
  • Meaning: Gift of Yahweh, ruler of the people
  • Pronunciation: DEE-zl, DEE-suul, DEE-zel
  • Variations: Diezel
  • Namesakes: Diesel La Torraca, an Australian-American actor, TV personality, model, and voice.
  • Popularity: Diesel has about 763 bearers worldwide.
Modern, Cool, Unique
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Dieter was once merely a shortened form of the German Dietrich before becoming a standalone given name. It stems from the Gothic Theodric, composed of Old Germanic elements “theod” (people) and “heri” (army). Hence, it can mean “people ruler” or “army of the people.” Many German options are cool, but Dieter is up there with the coolest.

  • Origin: German
  • Meaning: Ruler of the people
  • Pronunciation: DEE-ter, DEE-tur
  • Variations: Diether
  • Namesakes: Dieter Fox, a German-American roboticist and a university professor. Dieter Schnebel, a German composer, theologian, and musicologist. Dieter Brummer, an Australian actor.
  • Popularity: Dieter is most popular in Germany, where it last ranked 17th in 1957.
Powerful, Exotic, Cool


Digby is a surname derived from an English town. It’s a combination of the Old English words “dic,” meaning “dyke” or “ditch,” and the Old Norse “býr,” meaning “farm” or “settlement.” The first half of this moniker sounds like something lots of little boys like to do. Perhaps that’s why the dog in Animal Crossing: New Leaf is called Digby.

  • Origin: Old English, Old Norse
  • Meaning: Settlement by the ditch
  • Pronunciation: DIG-bee
  • Variations: Digsby
  • Namesakes: Digby Smith, a British military historian. Digby Denham, an English politician, businessman, and Premier of Queensland, Australia.
  • Popularity: Digby is most popular in England and Wales, ranking 907th in 2021.
Sunny, Sweet, Earthy


Diggory is quite British as, despite its rarity, author C. S. Lewis included a character called Professor Digory Kirke in The Chronicles of Narnia. Taken from a Middle English romance hero, Sir Degaré, Diggory is the Anglicized form. It means “lost one,” from the French égaré (lost/astray) and the Old French de(s)garré (deprived/dispossessed).

  • Origin: French, English
  • Meaning: Lost, astray
  • Pronunciation: DIG-uh-ree
  • Variations: Digory
  • Namesakes: Diggory Hadoke, a British author and regular contributor to American and British shooting magazines. Diggory Benjamin Scott, son of English dressage trainer and model, Norman Scott.
  • Popularity: With about 22 worldwide bearers, Diggory is most popular in England but also shows up in Scotland and South Africa.
Earthy, Cute, Unusual


Dimitri is the Church Slavic form of Dmitriy, a Russian variant of the Greek Demetrios, meaning “(follower) of Demeter.” With its refined air, Dimitri feels like a YA supernatural fantasy character. The Vampire Academy series features a dhampir (half-vampire, half-human) called Dimitri Belikov. Don’t pass up this cool Russian option if you can help it.

  • Origin: Russian
  • Meaning: Of Demeter
  • Pronunciation: duh-MEE-tree, D-mee-tree
  • Variations: Dmitri, Dmitry, Dmitriy, Demetri
  • Namesakes: Dimitri Zinovievich Tiomkin was a Russian-born American film composer and conductor.
  • Popularity: Dimitri placed 986th on U.S. charts in 2021. In France, it ranked 456th in 2020.
Regal, Sophisticated, Cool


Dion is a diminutive of the Greek Dionysios and other names beginning with the Greek element “dios,” meaning “god” or “of Zeus.” Though it’s traditionally masculine and there is already a feminine form, it has been used for girls in England and Wales. Your baby boy has the chance to stand out, as, despite its popularity, Dion isn’t overused yet.

  • Origin: English, Greek
  • Meaning: Of Dionysus, divine
  • Pronunciation: DEE-on, DEE-ahn
  • Variations: Deon
  • Namesakes: Dion DiMucci, an American singer and songwriter. Dion Bakker, a Dutch Youtuber, and artist. Dion Beukeboom, a Dutch professional racing cyclist.
  • Popularity: In 2021, Dion ranked 537th in England and Wales and placed 951st on U.S. charts in 2020. In 2022, Dion was 292nd in the Netherlands.
Regal, Cool, Sunny


Dionysius is a Latinization of the Greek Dionysios. It’s composed of the Greek words “dios,” meaning “god” or “of Zeus,” and Nysa, possibly from an archaic Greek word meaning “tree.” Nysa was also the name of the region where young Dionysos was raised. Beyond being an impressive given name, Dionysius has also been used as a surname in some rare cases.

  • Origin: Latin, Greek
  • Meaning: Zeus’ tree, god of Nysa
  • Pronunciation: DEYE-uh-nih-see-us, DEYE-uh-NEYE-see-us, DEE-oh-nee-see-us
  • Variations: Dionysios
  • Namesakes: Dionysius Sebwe, a Liberian football player and minister. Dionysius Rodotheatos, a Greek conductor and composer. Dionysius Koolen, a Dutch politician.
  • Popularity: Dionysius is borne by about 1,107 people worldwide.
Formal, Regal, Biblical


Diotrephes is so rare there’s a chance you could be the first to nab it. It’s a combination of the Greek “Dios,” meaning “of Zeus” or “god,” and “trepho,” meaning “to nourish” or “to feed.” Diotrephes was a biblical figure mentioned by the apostle John in his letter to Gaius.

  • Origin: Greek
  • Meaning: Nourished/fed by Zeus
  • Pronunciation: deye-O-truh-feez, deye-AH-truh-feez
  • Variations: Diotrefes, Diotrefis
  • Namesakes: Diotrephes, a man mentioned in the Third Epistle of John.
  • Popularity: Diotrephes does not appear on popularity charts.
Unusual, Biblical, Formal


Dirk is a Dutch and Low German diminutive of Diederik, which combined “þeud” meaning “people,” and “ric,” meaning “power/ruler.” After ranking 20th in 1973, Dirk fell off the German charts. Perhaps the 2016 TV adaptation of English writer Douglas Adams’ Dirk Gently books will renew interest. The protagonist, a self-proclaimed “holistic detective,” was born Svlad Cjelli but went by Dirk.

  • Origin: German, Dutch
  • Meaning: Ruler of the people
  • Pronunciation: DURK, DEHRK
  • Variations: Dierk, Durk
  • Namesakes: Dirk I, a count of West Frisia, later called the County of Holland. Dirk Wilutzky, an award-winning German filmmaker. Dirk Nannes, an Australian-Dutch cricket commentator, and former player.
  • Popularity: Dirk was most popular in the U.S. in 1954 at 341st but fell off in 1989. In the Netherlands, it placed 246th in 2022.
Casual, Exotic, Powerful


Dishon is a vibrant Hebrew nature name used by one or possibly two minor Bible figures. This epithet often gets confused with Deshawn, a modern combination of the prefix “de” and Shawn. If you like the look of Deshawn but prefer the background and pronunciation of Dishon, it could serve as an alternative.

  • Origin: Hebrew
  • Meaning: Antelope
  • Pronunciation: DEYE-shun, DEYE-shawn, DEE-shawn
  • Popularity: Dishon has about 5,675 bearers globally.
Unique, Biblical, Refreshing


Django might be from a Romani word meaning “I awake,” or it may be a form of the French Jean, ultimately from John. If the latter is true, then Django could mean “Jehovah has been gracious.” This intriguing pick was chosen for the main character of Django Unchained, an American revisionist Western movie.

  • Origin: Romani
  • Meaning: I awake
  • Pronunciation: JANG-goh
  • Variations: Jango, D’Jango
  • Namesakes: Django Lovett, a Canadian track and field athlete. Django Walker, an American singer-songwriter and band frontman. Django Bates, a British musician, composer, multi-instrumentalist, and bandleader.
  • Popularity: Django has about 5,871 bearers worldwide.
Unique, Cool
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Djimon is of Yoruban origin and is extremely rare worldwide. It gained mass recognition through the actor and model Djimon Hounsou. Calling your baby Djimon is a somewhat literal way to show appreciation for strong family ties. But they say blood is thicker than water, so we hope you aren’t squeamish.

  • Origin: West African
  • Meaning: Powerful blood, strong blood
  • Pronunciation: JEYE-mun
  • Namesakes: Djimon Hounsou, a Beninese-American actor, and model.
  • Popularity: Djimon is most popular in Benin, with about 1,941 bearers worldwide.
Exotic, Powerful, Strong


Short for a doctor, Doc is still mostly considered a nickname. This epithet is famously part of Bug Bunny’s signature catchphrase, “What’s up, Doc?” We think Doc is quite unique among boy names that start with D. It’s an old-fashioned, southern-style moniker with a wholesome feel. Doc is perfect for a baby who soothes your heart.

  • Origin: English
  • Meaning: Doctor
  • Pronunciation: DOK
  • Namesakes: John Holliday, known as Doc Holliday, an American gambler, gunfighter, and dentist.
  • Popularity: Doc has about 5,380 bearers worldwide and was most popular in the U.S. in 1900 at 587th. It fell off after ranking 940th in 1911.
Casual, Vintage, Cute


Dolph was a diminutive of German epithets that included the element “dolph,” such as Adolphus, Adolph, or Randolph. It eventually gained a little popularity as a name in its own right. Some in the West might throw you a line about dolphins here and there, but overall, Dolph is a respectable option.

  • Origin: German
  • Meaning: Noble
  • Pronunciation: DOLF
  • Variations: Dolf
  • Namesakes: Dolph Briscoe Jr., an American rancher, businessman, and state governor. Hans Lundgren, known as Dolph Lundgren, is a Swedish actor, filmmaker, and martial artist.
  • Popularity: Dolph is most popular in the U.S., with about 1,262 bearers worldwide.
Strong, Regal, Exotic


Dominic comes from the Latin Dominicus. It belonged to multiple saints and is predominantly used by those of the Catholic faith. One noteworthy saint was Dominic de Guzmán, a Castilian Catholic priest who founded the Dominican Order. Used in many territories around the world, Dominic is beloved by many.

  • Origin: Latin
  • Meaning: Of the Lord
  • Pronunciation: DOM-ih-nik, DAHM-ih-nik
  • Variations: Dominic, Dominik, Dominick
  • Namesakes: Dominic Monaghan, a British actor. Dominic Howard, an English musician, drummer, and band co-founder.
  • Popularity: In the U.S., Dominic placed 99th in 2021 after ranking 88th the previous year.
Wholesome, Cool


Simple and short, Don is a diminutive of the English Donald. It is rooted in the Scottish Gaelic Dòmhnall and means “ruler of the world.” Don also comes from the unrelated Irish word “donn,” meaning “brown” or “chief/noble.”

  • Origin: English, Irish
  • Meaning: Ruler of the world, chief, noble
  • Namesakes: Don Schipper, stage name Don Diablo, a Dutch DJ, digital artist, record producer, and musician. Don Bowman, an American singer-songwriter, comedian, and radio host.
  • Popularity: In 2022, Don ranked 444th in the Netherlands. It fell off the U.S. charts after ranking 872nd in 2001.
Casual, Powerful, Strong


Donald feels so old-school, but it’s still quite popular today. This moniker has a charming feel, from notable fictional bearers like Donald Duck to beloved actors like Donald Glover. Keep it contemporary with the nicknames Don and Donny.

  • Origin: English, Scottish Gaelic
  • Meaning: Ruler of the world
  • Pronunciation: DON-uld, DAH-nuld
  • Variations: Donal, Donaldo, Domhnall
  • Namesakes: Donald Trump, an American politician, businessman, and the 45th U.S. president. Donald Faison, an American actor, and comedian, known for his role in the comedy-drama Scrubs.
  • Popularity: Donald has fallen off most charts but ranked in the U.S. at 592nd in 2021.
Formal, Powerful, Vintage


Donato is somewhat dated, and disappeared from popularity charts in France, Spain, and the U.S. by the ’60s. In the West, Donato is mostly known as a nickname for Donatello. Maybe you grew up watching The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and want to gift your son a piece of your childhood. Fittingly, Donato derives from Latin Donatus, meaning “given.”

  • Origin: Latin, Italian, Spanish
  • Meaning: Given (by God)
  • Pronunciation: do-NA-toh, doh-NA-toh
  • Variations: Donatello
  • Namesakes: Donato di Niccolò di Betto Bardi, known as Donatello, an Italian Renaissance period sculptor. Donato Creti, an Italian Rococo period painter.
  • Popularity: Donato is most prevalent in Italy, where it ranked 178th in 2020.
Exotic, Wholesome, Sunny


Donovan rolls off the tongue nicely, sounding sophisticated but not snobbish. It stems from an Anglicization of the Irish surname Ó Donndubháin from the given name Donndubán. This was composed of the Old Irish word “donn” (brown), “dub” (dark), and a diminutive suffix. Your baby doesn’t have to have dark hair or features to enjoy a cool pick like Donovan.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Little dark-brown one
  • Pronunciation: DON-uh-vun, DUH-nuh-vun
  • Variations: Donavan, Donavon, Donovin
  • Namesakes: Donovan Leitch (the younger), an English-born American actor, singer, and model. Donovan Patton, an American actor and TV host. Donovan Livingston Blake, a Jamaican-American cricketer.
  • Popularity: Donovan ranked in France for the last time in 2015 at 479th. It placed 423rd in 2021 on U.S. charts.
Sweet, Earthy, Cool


Dorian is popular in the U.S., ranking 567th in 2021. This moniker comes from the ancient Greek pre-Spartan tribe — the Dorians — and might mean “(descendent) of Doris/Doros,” or “gift.” Every child is a precious gift deserving of a respectable title. Dorian has an air of elegance, possibly due to associations with Oscar Wilde’s The Picture of Dorian Gray.

  • Origin: Greek
  • Meaning: Gift, of Doros
  • Pronunciation: DOR-ee-un, DAW-ree-un
  • Namesakes: Dorian Haarhoff, a South African-Namibian writer and poet. Dorian FitzGerald, a Canadian artist. Dorian Gregory, an American actor and TV host.
  • Popularity: In 2022, Dorian ranked 371st in the Netherlands and 110th in Poland.
Sophisticated, Wholesome, Gothic


Doron is a Hebrew option that means “gift” or “present,” similar to the Greek word “doros” (gift/talent). There are other Hebrew picks with the same meaning, like Shai or Matan, but Doron is the rarest and the only one that starts with D. With about 13,351 bearers worldwide, it seems to be most popular in Israel.

  • Origin: Hebrew
  • Meaning: Gift
  • Pronunciation: DAWR-on
  • Namesakes: Doron Almog, born Doron Avrotzky, an Israeli soldier. Doron Gazit, an Israeli environmental artist, activist, and industrial designer. Doron Sheffer, an Israeli professional basketball player.
  • Popularity: Doron is most common in Israel but is somewhat rare worldwide.
Earthy, Strong, Sweet
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Add Doryu to your collection of boy names with D. It’s a rare Buddhist option with an epic meaning. In the Japanese manga Rave Master, there was a vampiric antagonist called Doryu. His moniker makes more sense when you consider he was a kind-hearted idealist in his youth. Doryu is perfect for a son endowed with the wisdom of a dragon.

  • Origin: Buddhist
  • Meaning: One who understands the way of the dragon
  • Pronunciation: DORR-yoo, DAWR-yoo
  • Popularity: Doryu has about 12 bearers worldwide, limited to Japan and Russia.
Unusual, Exotic, Strong


Douglas is an unexpectedly grim epithet, ideal for lovers of all things dark and spooky. It comes from a Scottish surname taken from a town and is composed of the Gaelic “dubh,” meaning “dark/black,” and “glais/glas” meaning “stream,” “river,” or “water.” Douglas doesn’t flow as easily as some other choices, but at least Doug is a snappy nickname.

  • Origin: Scottish
  • Meaning: Dark river, dark stream
  • Pronunciation: DUG-lus
  • Variations: Dougal
  • Namesakes: Douglas Booth, an English actor and musician. Douglas Anderson, an award-winning American writer and editor. Douglas Saunders, a Jamaican diplomat and politician.
  • Popularity: In 2021, Douglas ranked 739th in the U.S. and 227th in England and Wales.
Gothic, Formal, Earthy


Dov isn’t the English word for “dove.” This nature name is Hebrew for “bear.” You know you’ve struck gold when an epithet’s sound and meaning are sweet and cuddly. Winnie the Pooh better watch out — a new teddy bear is in town!

  • Origin: Hebrew
  • Meaning: Bear
  • Pronunciation: DOV, DAWV
  • Namesakes: Dov Charney, a Canadian entrepreneur, clothing manufacturer, and the founder of American Apparel. Dov Davidoff, an American comedian and actor.
  • Popularity: Dov occasionally nears the top 1,000 names in the U.S.
Cute, Sweet, Casual


Doyle is an Anglicized form of Ó Dubhghaill derived from the given name Dubhghall. It’s made up of the Gaelic elements “dubh,” meaning “black/dark,” and “gall,” meaning “stranger.” The most notable bearer is probably Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, the original author of the Sherlock Holmes short stories and novels.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Dark stranger
  • Pronunciation: DOYL, DAWYL
  • Variations: Doyl
  • Namesakes: Doyle Brunson, an American professional poker player. Doyle Bramhall, an American blues singer, guitarist, and drummer.
  • Popularity: Doyle last ranked on U.S. charts in 1981 at 968th.
Formal, Vintage, Gothic


Fantasy lovers should be keen on Drache. It was a surname that denoted someone from a household distinguished by the sign of the dragon. House Targaryen, anyone? Dragons might not be real, but the qualities of strength and leadership associated with this fire-breathing creature would be nice. Your baby Drache could become a strong leader in time.

  • Origin: German
  • Meaning: Dragon
  • Pronunciation: DRA-h, DRA-huh, DRASH
  • Variations: Drach
  • Namesakes: Eric Drache, an American professional poker player and former cardroom manager. Hiram Drache, an American historian and author.
Unusual, Powerful, Cool


Draco is one badass D name for boys that doesn’t get enough use. Draco Malfoy from J. K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series is the most notable fictional bearer. But it goes further back to Draco, an Athenian lawmaker of ancient Greece and the source of the term “draconian.” Draco certainly has an interesting lineup of namesakes.

  • Origin: Greek, Italian
  • Meaning: Dragon, serpent
  • Pronunciation: DRAY-koh
  • Variations: Drako
  • Namesakes: Draco Rosa, a Puerto Rican musician, singer-songwriter, and entrepreneur. Draco, or Drako, the first recorded legislator of Athens in ancient Greece.
  • Popularity: Though Draco is growing more popular, it doesn’t make the top 1,000 names in the U.S.
Cool, Regal, Strong


Dracul is slightly over the top, but we thought we should still mention it. This moniker was famously borne by Vlad Dracul, father of Vlad the Impaler. His son’s legacy lives on as the inspiration for tales of the vampire Dracula. Perhaps Dracul isn’t ready to step into the sun. Though it might fare better as a middle name.

  • Origin: Romanian
  • Meaning: Dragon, the devil
  • Pronunciation: DRAH-kool
  • Variations: Drakul
  • Namesakes: Vlad Dracul or Vlad the Dragon, a two-time ruler of Wallachia and father of Vlad the Impaler.
  • Popularity: Dracul is extremely rare worldwide, with bearers in Russia and Romania.
Formal, Gothic, Powerful


Drake is most notably borne by the rapper and singer Aubrey Drake Graham, professionally known only by his middle name. This cool moniker took off in the U.S. during the late 1980s and hasn’t seen any major popularity decreases since. Try out this sharp, manly option for your little man.

  • Origin: English, Old Norse
  • Meaning: Dragon, snake, male duck
  • Namesakes: Jared Drake Bell, known as Drake Bell, an American actor, and musician. Aubrey Drake Graham, known as Drake, a Canadian rapper, and actor. Drake Carr, an American artist.
  • Popularity: Drake peaked on the U.S. charts in 2010 at 196th place and ranked 568th in 2021.
Casual, Modern, Cool


Draven has an interesting history. It’s a combination of the popular prefix “D,” meaning “of,” and the word “raven.” It can also be traced to an Anglo-Saxon surname derived from the Old English “draefend” meaning “hunter.” In the 1995 movie, The Crow, actor Brandon Lee played the protagonist Eric Draven. This character has become synonymous with the moniker.

  • Origin: English
  • Meaning: Of the raven
  • Pronunciation: DRAY-vn
  • Popularity: Draven was most popular in the U.S. in 2005 at 637th, last ranking in 2018 at 953rd.
Modern, Unusual, Gothic


Dre is a shortened form of Andre, a diminutive Andrew. This was an Anglicisation of the Greek Andreas. Besides its macho meanings, Dre may also mean “warrior.” Alright, we admit, that’s pretty macho too.

  • Origin: English, Greek
  • Meaning: Manly, masculine
  • Pronunciation: DRAY
  • Namesakes: Dré Saris, a Dutch footballer. Andre Romell Young, stage name Dr. Dre, an American rapper and record producer.
  • Popularity: Dre has about 4,606 bearers worldwide.
Cool, Casual, Modern
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In Iceland, Dreki was recognized as a given name for the first time in 2005. It was once just a Norse word for “dragon,” and everyone loves dragons. You don’t have to look much further than Game of Thrones or, as a kid-friendly example, How to Train Your Dragon. Dreki is a rare and fairly modern option, so trendsetting parents, take note!

  • Origin: Old Norse
  • Meaning: Dragon
  • Pronunciation: DREH-kee
  • Popularity: Dreki has about seven bearers worldwide, making it extremely rare.
Unusual, Powerful


Drew has been popular for boys and girls, though more so for boys. In this context, it’s not the past tense of “draw.” Drew is a shortened form of Andrew, the English version of the Greek Andreas. Ultimately, this stems from the word “andreios,” meaning “manly” or “masculine.” Andrew is fine, but Drew is cooler.

  • Origin: English, Greek
  • Meaning: Manly, masculine
  • Pronunciation: DROO, DROOW
  • Variations: Dru
  • Namesakes: Drew Gooden, an American YouTuber and comedian. Drew Nixon, a Texas state senator.
  • Popularity: In 2021, Drew ranked 790th in England and Wales and placed 509th in the U.S.
Modern, Strong, Casual


Dudley is a vintage pick that would be great as a stately middle name. It comes from a surname taken from a location. The Old English given name Dudda was combined with the word “lēah,” meaning “woodland,” “meadow,” or “clearing.” If you’re tired of the look of Dudley, why not go for the fun spelling with Dudleigh?

  • Origin: English
  • Meaning: From Dudda’s meadow/clearing
  • Pronunciation: DUHD-lee
  • Variations: Dudleigh
  • Namesakes: Dudley Moore, an English actor, comedian, and musician. Dudley Pope, a British nautical fiction and history author. Dudley Sutton, an English radio, screen, and stage actor.
  • Popularity: Dudley appeared on U.S. charts for the last time in 1969, ranking 927th. It also disappeared in New Zealand after ranking 93rd in 1918.
Vintage, Earthy, Sweet


Duke is a noble title originating with the Middle English words “duk,” and “douc,” from the Old French “duc.” And the source of these is the Latin word “dux,” meaning “leader.” Your son might already have the air and qualities of a great leader, but calling him Duke will only add to his credibility.

  • Origin: English, Latin
  • Meaning: Leader
  • Pronunciation: DYEWK, DOOK
  • Variations: Dukes
  • Namesakes: Duke Kahanamoku, a Hawaiian competitive swimmer who popularized the ancient Hawaiian practice of surfing. Duke Stroud, an American actor.
  • Popularity: In 2021, Duke ranked 651st on U.S. charts but disappeared in England and Wales after placing 959th in 2014.
Regal, Strong, Unique


Dustin stems from an English surname taken from the Norman given name Tustin. Initially, this was a form of Turstin or Torstein, both seeing transferred use from the Old Norse Torsten. It was a combination of the Norse god Thor and the word “steinn” or “sten” meaning “stone.” Since Thor means “thunder,” Dustin could also be interpreted as “thunderstone.”

  • Origin: English, Old Norse
  • Meaning: Thor’s stone, thunderstone
  • Pronunciation: DUSS-tin
  • Variations: Torsten, Tustin, Turstin
  • Namesakes: Dustin Nguyen, born Nguyễn Xuân Trí, a Vietnamese-American actor and martial artist. Dustin Moskovitz, an American entrepreneur and a Facebook co-founder.
  • Popularity: In 2021, Dustin came 623rd in the U.S. top 1,000 names.
Cool, Powerful, Earthy


Dusty is such a charming epithet. Although it began life as a nickname for Dustin from the Old Norse Torsten, Dusty has come into its own. You can’t go wrong with its laid-back, southern vibe. Some people might poke fun at including “dust,” but the original Dustin isn’t far off. Don’t let naysayers keep you from the darling Dusty.

  • Origin: English, Old Norse
  • Meaning: Thor’s stone, thunderstone
  • Pronunciation: DUH-stee
  • Namesakes: Dusty Hughes, an English playwright, director, and screenwriter. Dusty Jonas, an American high jumper.
  • Popularity: Dusty peaked in the U.S. in 1981 at 316th and last ranked in 1997 at 819th.
Cute, Casual, Sweet


Dutch was originally a nickname for Americans of German descent. It comes from the German word “deutsch,” which — you guessed it — means “German.” Dutch is also occasionally recorded as a surname. You can still use diminutives like Dutchie or Dutchy despite starting as a nickname. And if you’re having twins, maybe they could be Double Dutch.

  • Origin: English, German
  • Meaning: From the Netherlands
  • Pronunciation: DUCH
  • Popularity: Dutch doesn’t appear on U.S. popularity charts, but there are about 2,742 bearers worldwide.
Unique, Cool, Casual


Dwayne comes from Duane, the Anglicized form of the Irish surname Dubhán. The spelling of Duane was likely altered due to the popularity and influence of Wayne. Dwayne is notably associated with Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, one of the highest-paid and highest-grossing actors in the world. Now those are some big shoes to fill!

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Dark, of Dubhán
  • Pronunciation: DWAYN, duh-WAYN
  • Variations: Duane, Dwain, Dwaine, Dwane
  • Namesakes: Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, an American actor and former professional wrestler. Dwayne Smith, a Barbadian international cricketer. Dwayne Carter Jr., stage name Lil Wayne, an American rapper.
  • Popularity: Dwayne last ranked in the U.S. at 917th in 2018.
Modern, Cool, Strong


Dwight stems from the Dutch surname DeWitt, meaning “the white one” or “the blond one,” denoting the bearer was fair-haired. It’s also an Anglicization of the feminine Diot, a diminutive of the Latin Dionysia. This was simply a female form of Dionysius, meaning “devotee of Dionysus.” A famous fictional bearer is the eccentric Dwight Schrute from The Office.

  • Origin: Dutch, English, Latin
  • Meaning: Blond, white, (follower) of Dionysus
  • Pronunciation: DWEYET
  • Namesakes: Dwight Yorke, a Tobagonian professional football coach, and former player. Dwight Gooden, an American professional baseball player.
  • Popularity: In 2004, Dwight ranked for the last time at 888th in the U.S.
Refreshing, Sunny, Vintage


Dylan is traditionally masculine and one of the most popular D names for boys worldwide. It’s an Anglicization of a Welsh name composed of the Welsh prefix “dy” (toward) and “llanw” (tide/flow). Put your son in a sailor’s hat and prepare him to set sail on the sea of life with the nautical Dylan.

  • Origin: Welsh
  • Meaning: Son of the sea, born from the ocean
  • Pronunciation: DIH-lun, DIH-lin, DUH-lan
  • Variations: Dillon, Dillan, Dylann
  • Namesakes: Dylan Thomas, a Welsh poet, and writer. Dylan Lee, an American professional baseball player. Dylan Lee Howe, an English bandleader, musician, and composer.
  • Popularity: Dylan ascended the U.S. charts in 1966, maintaining a steady ranking since the early ’90s. It ranked 44th in 2021.
Modern, Refreshing, Casual
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D Names for Boys FAQs

What Are Unique Boy Names That Start With D?

Dashiell is an Anglicization of a French surname with under 400 worldwide bearers ( source). It’s associated with author Samuel Dashiell Hammett, Cate Blanchett’s son, Dashiell Upton, and Sean Connery’s grandson, actor Dashiell Connery.

D’Artagnan is a French surname meaning “from Artagnan,” and doesn’t appear on U.S. charts. A real-life musketeer, Count D’Artagnan, was Alexandre Dumas’ inspiration for a protagonist in The Three Musketeers. Other unique D names for boys include Daxten, with an uncertain meaning, and Dandelion, which has about 87 bearers worldwide ( source). Meanwhile, Daxten has only one known bearer ( source).

What Is the Most Popular Boy Name That Starts with D?

The most popular boy name starting with D could be Daniel or David, depending on the region or era. Worldwide, David ranked as the 13th most common in the world ( source). Daniel comes in at 24th worldwide ( source).

In the U.S., Daniel experienced a surge in popularity from about the ’50s to the mid-2000s ( source). Meanwhile, David peaked on U.S. charts somewhere between the late ’30s and late ’80s ( source). Both ranked in the top 100 and top 10 in the U.S. at different times.

Overall, Daniel and David have considerable international appeal.

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About the Author

Leigha Mayers

Leigha-Ceres Mayers is a freelance editor and copywriter from Trinidad and Tobago. Previously a primary school assistant teacher, she went on to acquire a TESOL certification before transitioning to freelancing. Outside of researching baby names, Leigha works alongside her husband, producing and publishing romance sci-fi and fantasy books. As a mum of two, she uses what little spare time she has to create traditional and digital works of art. Her other hobbies include voracious reading, watching anime, and learning new languages.