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YEAH BABEIGH

First there was Raleigh. Then Kimberleigh. Now 218 American names end in “-eigh”

Dylan Curry, 11 months old, carries a U.S. flag in his mouth as he waits for his U.S. Army soldier father to return from Iraq before a ceremony at Fort Carson in Colorado Springs, Colorado February 12, 2009. About 280 soldiers from the 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division returned following their 15-month deployment to Iraq.
Reuters/Rick Wilking
Maneigh more "eigh."
  • Nikhil Sonnad
By Nikhil Sonnad

Reporter

Published This article is more than 2 years old.

There was a time when Ashley was a fine name on its own. Then the simple letters “ey” fell out of fashion, replaced by a gang of four: e, i, g, h.

In 1965, “Ashleigh” appeared on the scene. Riley became Ryleigh. Charlie became Charleigh. Marley met Marleigh. And so on. Over time, the number of babies with names ending in “eigh” has skyrocketed in the United States.

So has the number of spelling variations with “eigh”: In 1950, there were just five names that ended in “eigh.” Last year, there were 218, including Keyleigh, Payzleigh, Brookleigh, Paizleigh, Presleigh, Berkleigh, Carleigh, you get the picture.

Have a look at this chart.

The earliest “eigh” names are Raleigh and Leigh, which already have the hard “e” sound of the likes of “Ashleigh.” Both of them exist in the earliest period for which the Social Security Administration has data, the late 19th century. In the 1950s, Leigh really started to catch on. Other “eigh” names followed.

“Lesleigh” appears in 1950. “Kimberleigh” in 1956. “Keleigh” in 1960. In 1965, the popularity of Leigh would give way to “Ashleigh,” who would go on to be the queen of the “eighs,” until her reign was ended by “Kayleigh” and now “Ryleigh.”

“Camreigh,” meanwhile, was the biggest new name of all of last year.

Most of the “eigh” names have come and gone, as the chart of Leigh and Ashleigh shows. But with so many out there, the spelling might be here to stay. I’m sure you’re curious, so here is the full list of 218 “eigh” names from 2017, sorted by the number of babeighs who got them. (Note that, for privacy reasons, the data only includes names that were given to five or more babies.)

NameBirths
Ryleigh1865
Everleigh803
Kayleigh782
Charleigh667
Kyleigh524
Paisleigh322
Harleigh308
Marleigh296
Hadleigh293
Bryleigh257
Raleigh235
Brynleigh231
Bayleigh193
Brayleigh193
Kinsleigh188
Rayleigh187
Oakleigh182
Karleigh181
Carleigh177
Kinleigh175
Annaleigh173
Kaleigh173
Kynleigh162
Adaleigh135
Raeleigh135
Kenleigh132
Haleigh128
Adleigh124
Emmaleigh121
Caleigh112
Hayleigh105
Novaleigh102
Rosaleigh101
Presleigh100
Aubreigh98
Calleigh94
Finleigh92
Camreigh91
Kenzleigh89
Baileigh86
Avaleigh82
Brinleigh82
Rileigh82
Kensleigh79
Ashleigh74
Analeigh71
Kaileigh71
Ansleigh65
Cayleigh64
Zayleigh62
Joleigh60
Leigh59
Baleigh57
Blakeleigh56
Kynsleigh55
Jayleigh53
Maeleigh52
Nataleigh52
Emberleigh49
Lynleigh49
Mayleigh48
Arleigh43
Brenleigh43
Bentleigh43
Berkleigh41
Brynnleigh40
Rhyleigh40
Brileigh37
Caileigh37
Bexleigh36
Braleigh36
Kinzleigh36
Emileigh35
Emaleigh34
Elleigh33
Jaleigh33
Tinleigh33
Bradleigh31
Evaleigh31
Henleigh30
Shayleigh30
Haileigh29
Kalleigh29
Ainsleigh28
Kaeleigh28
Kynzleigh28
Mckinleigh28
Braeleigh27
Finnleigh26
Lynnleigh26
Myleigh26
Skyleigh26
Tinsleigh25
Heavenleigh24
Averleigh22
Tyleigh22
Coraleigh21
Renleigh21
Tayleigh21
Atleigh20
Halleigh20
Jaeleigh20
Wesleigh20
Whitleigh20
Annsleigh19
Kamreigh18
Lileigh18
Paizleigh18
Blakleigh17
Avereigh16
Ensleigh16
Adeleigh15
Aleigh15
Amberleigh15
Annleigh15
Breleigh15
Cambreigh15
Eveleigh15
Keleigh15
Kesleigh15
Graceleigh14
Zaleigh14
Fynleigh13
Huntleigh13
Jaileigh13
Kaisleigh13
Molleigh13
Tynleigh13
Addaleigh12
Hartleigh12
Keeleigh12
Kingsleigh12
Makynleigh12
Paysleigh12
Baeleigh11
Braileigh11
Hazleigh11
Khyleigh11
Lilleigh11
Mckenleigh11
Tenleigh11
Brexleigh10
Caeleigh10
Chesleigh10
Emreigh10
Keyleigh10
Kileigh10
Quinnleigh10
Anzleigh9
Ileigh9
Kayzleigh9
Kentleigh9
Kynnleigh9
Payzleigh9
Wrenleigh9
Addileigh8
Addleigh8
Alleigh8
Angeleigh8
Brantleigh8
Iveigh8
Journeigh8
Kelleigh8
Khaleigh8
Lakeleigh8
Raileigh8
Remeigh8
Riverleigh8
Zaeleigh8
Cyleigh7
Daleigh7
Dayleigh7
Haisleigh7
Isleigh7
Keileigh7
Kimberleigh7
Kleigh7
Makenleigh7
Sadeigh7
Wyleigh7
Adileigh6
Ayleigh6
Breigh6
Brookleigh6
Greyleigh6
Jleigh6
Karaleigh6
Kaysleigh6
Linleigh6
Mckynleigh6
Nyleigh6
Rynleigh6
Zyleigh6
Greigh6
Leveigh6
Aisleigh5
Audreigh5
Conleigh5
Daveigh5
Greenleigh5
Hazeleigh5
Hensleigh5
Hynleigh5
Kennleigh5
Kyeleigh5
Makinleigh5
Mckayleigh5
Mileigh5
Nayleigh5
Rinleigh5
Ryeleigh5
Shaeleigh5
Shealeigh5
Solveigh5
Taleigh5
Timberleigh5
Valeigh5
Zaileigh5

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