What's in a Baby Name?


You know that the child of two people as good looking as Eva Mendes and Ryan Gosling is incredibly beautiful. So it's fitting that their daughter (born Sept. 12) got her name from another stunning woman, this one from literature: "Ryan and I both love the Esmeralda character from the Victor Hugo novel, The Hunchback of Notre Dame," Mendes told The Violet Files of the choice. And Amada, which comes from Mendes's grandma, means "beloved."

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What's in a Baby Name?


We're used to unique spellings (Khloé and Kourtney raised our tolerance for that), but Robert Downey Jr. and his wife Susan got even more creative with the their daughter (born on Nov. 4): It's pronounced Ay-vree (like Avery, without the middle vowel). But it's her middle name where the real linguistic fun happens. The first two letters are for the actor's father, Robert Downey Sr., his wife Rosemary, and Susan's mom Rosie. The "el" part comes from the actor's mother Elsie and Susan's father, Eliot Levin. So many shoutouts with so few letters.

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What's in a Baby Name?


Apparently Ashton Kutcher and Mila Kunis do their best brainstorming on the basketball court. "I had to get the creative juices going, so we were going to a Lakers game, and I just started listing off anything and everything I saw: 'sign, truck, wall, door ... ' She [was] like, 'Shut up!' Then I was like, 'I've got a really dumb idea. What about Wyatt?' She goes, 'That's it,'" Kutcher explained of coming up with a name for their daughter, born Oct. 1. Her middle name, however, is less random. Kunis's grandfather is Yitzhak, which translates to Isaac, so an I name is in honor of him.

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What's in a Baby Name?


The winner of the Most Retro Name of the Year Award goes to ... the daughter of Scarlett Johansson and fiancé Romain Dauriac (she was born when roses are in bloom, in late summer of 2014). As for Dorothy, it is an homage to Johansson's grandmother, whom the actress called "the first Francophone in my family."

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What's in a Baby Name?


If Pete Wentz and girlfriend Meagan Camper's little one had been born a few weeks earlier, he might have earned a different first name. "I think at some point, the name Saint came up because we thought he'd be a saint if he waited to arrive until his dad was home from tour, and he did," the couple told PEOPLE of their baby boy, born Aug. 20.

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What's in a Baby Name?


What goes well with Olive? In naming their second daughter, born April 22, Drew Barrymore and husband Will Kopelman wanted something that didn't clash with their first-born. "Every [name] started sounding like a color or a food. Hazel's a great name. No, that's two shades of green. And I love the name Pepper so much, but we were like, 'Olive and Pepper. Like that's two things you find in a pantry,'" the actress said. The cool unisex choice they settled on also has a family tie: "My mother-in-law's maiden name is Franco and I love her so much that it reminds me of her as well," Barrymore explained.

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What's in a Baby Name?


Olivia Wilde and fiancé Jason Sudeikis made a musical choice for their son, born April 20, naming him after the legendary 1960s singer Otis Redding. "I was a 10-year-old kid with posters of Otis Redding on my wall," the actress told PEOPLE. Wonder if "Sittin' on the Dock of the Bay" is this family's go-to bedtime song.

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What's in a Baby Name?


Halle Berry and husband Olivier Martinez received the ultimate present when they welcomed their new baby boy on Oct. 5, 2013 – so it's no surprise the first half of his name means "gift of God." The "Maceo" part is said to be of Spanish origin – the French actor's father, Robert Martinez, was a Spanish boxer – and the couple picked "a name that's great in both the U.S. and France," a source close to Martinez tells PEOPLE.

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What's in a Baby Name?


Is Jimmy Fallon a fan of The Wonder Years? Although the new dad calls Danica McKellar's '90s alter ego "the coolest girl on TV ever," he and wife Nancy Juvonen – who welcomed their 3-week-old daughter via surrogate in July 2013 – actually picked a name nodding to New Hampshire's Lake Winnipesaukee, where the couple vacationed together every summer and got engaged. "You overthink names – you don't want a name that's been done, but then you don't want something so weird people are like, 'What?!' Winnipesaukee's a little long," the late-night talker told Today. "Also she's a 'win' for us."

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What's in a Baby Name?


Only time will tell if a casino career is in the cards for Jessica Simpson and fiancé Eric Johnson's baby boy, whom they welcomed on June 30, 2013. His middle name, however, honors Johnson's Swedish grandfather, a rep tells PEOPLE. Ace's sister, Maxwell Drew, 14 months, also keeps it in the family: Maxwell is Johnson's middle name, while Drew is Simpson's mother Tina's maiden name.

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What's in a Baby Name?


Pushing konventions aside, new parents Kim Kardashian and Kanye West went in quite a different direction when they named their daughter, born on June 15, 2013, after the cardinal direction. Though they once quashed rumors that they were considering the cheeky moniker, Kardashian's mom, Kris Jenner, revealed she's "pro North" during a June 25 appearance on The View. "North means the highest power," she explained. "[Kim] says that North is their highest point together."

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What's in a Baby Name?


For Drew Barrymore, her daughter's name jumped off the page – literally. "I was reading a book with my husband [Will Kopelman]. I was three months pregnant," she recalled during a visit to The Ellen DeGeneres Show in December 2012, months after welcoming her baby girl on Sept. 26. "They said, 'Your baby is the size of an olive.' And that was it. We never looked back."

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What's in a Baby Name?


Name – or good luck charm? "Harper is an old English name, which we love," David Beckham explained on Facebook days after welcoming a daughter July 10, 2011, with wife Victoria. "One of the reasons is Victoria's favorite book is To Kill a Mockingbird and the author was Harper Lee." As for her numerical middle name, "[Seven] symbolizes spiritual perfection," he added. "In many cultures around the world, it's regarded as a lucky number."

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What's in a Baby Name?


Now, that's a colorful moniker. "I wanted to give my daughter a unique name," mom Holly Madison explained to E! News days after the March 5, 2013 arrival of her daughter with boyfriend Pasquale Rotella. "Growing up, there was a girl in my school named Rainbow, and I was so envious of that name. I thought it was so pretty and unique!"

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What's in a Baby Name?


Kate Hudson and rocker fiancé Matt Bellamy looked no farther than their own folks when they named their son, born July 9, 2011. "For those wondering, Bingham is my mum's maiden name and Bing Russell was [Kurt Russell's] dad," Bellamy Tweeted. "Family connections all round!"

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What's in a Baby Name?


Feeling blue? Not Beyoncé Knowles and Jay-Z's daughter, who was born Jan. 7, 2012. Fans suggested that her first name could be a reference to one of Jay-Z's albums and that "Ivy" was a nod to the couple's favorite number, four. But Beyoncé seemed to answer the baby name origin question when she quoted Rebecca Solnit's 2005 book, A Field Guide to Getting Lost, on her blog: "This light does not touch us, does not travel the whole distance, the light that gets lost, gives us the beauty of the world, so much of which is in the color blue."

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What's in a Baby Name?


Naturally, movie mogul Harvey Weinstein turned to the big screen for inspiration when he welcomed a son with wife Georgina Chapman on April 11, 2013. The name nods to 1934's The Thin Man (based on the novel by Dashiell Hammett), which he referenced on the couple's first date when Chapman tripped into a restaurant. "First, there is a God because that evened the playing field right away," he recalled on CBS This Morning. "Secondly, I said to her, 'That was the opening scene when Myrna Loy walked into William Powell.'"

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What's in a Baby Name?


We expect some epic accomplishments from NFL star Reggie Bush's daughter, whom he welcomed with girlfriend Lilit Avagyan on May 6, 2013. In Greek mythology, the name refers to the mythical queen at the heart of a clash between Achilles and Agamemnon that plays out in Homer's epic poem Iliad.

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What's in a Baby Name?


Try saying this one five times fast! Mom Uma Thurman was motivated by her 14-year-old daughter Maya to choose the tongue-twisting name for her newborn, her child with beau Arpad Busson born on July 15, 2012. Her reasoning: "I probably wouldn't get to have any more children," she said on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, "so I just put every name that I like [into her name]." But you can call her by her nickname, Luna.

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What's in a Baby Name?


You might say Nick and Vanessa Lachey's baby boy, born Sept. 12, 2012, inherited some serious street smarts. After many a trip to his wife's obstetrician's office on Camden Drive, he thought, "Hey, what about Camden?" (And maybe their baby will have a play date with Kristin Cavallari's son, also named Camden, who was born the month prior.)

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