Game of Thrones may be ending for good in three weeks, but the show’s legacy is going to continue on in a surprising way — through the growing popularity of baby names inspired by the show, especially those belonging to girls.
According to The New York Times, Arya is now the 135th most popular for girls in the United States, with popularity that has steadily risen over the course of the series’ run. In addition, per The New York Times, there were “20 Sansas, 11 Cerseis, 55 Tyrions, and 23 Theons” born in the U.S. in 2017.
In addition, Khaleesi has become a popular baby name, even more so than Daenerys. This news comes despite the fact that Khaleesi is the character’s title, and not her first name. It is, however, much easier to spell than Daenerys — even if some who have given their daughters that name say doctors and teachers have had trouble pronouncing it.
The New York Times story quotes a mother who watched the entire run of Game of Thrones while on bed rest during pregnancy, and was therefore inspired to name her daughter Khaleesi. She had also suffered a miscarriage in a previous pregnancy, something which she saw reflected in the future Mother of Dragons’ Season 1 plot line.
Another pair of parents quoted by the newspaper plan to name their child Winter, so that they may joke throughout the pregnancy that “Winter is coming.”
For perhaps obvious reasons, it does not appear that Joffrey has caught on as a popular baby name in any significant way.
This is not the first time a fantasy-focused work of fiction has inspired baby names. In the late 1970s, there were a number of parents giving their children names from the works of J.R.R. Tolkien, works such as The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit. These names, per Tea With Tolkien, included Aragorn, Arwen, and Willow.
The pregnancy website The Bump put out a list, not long ago, of suggested Game of Thrones-inspired names. This list also included Arya and Khaleesi, as well as Catelyn, Sansa, and Brienne for girls. Suggested boy names include Tyrion, Brandon, Robb, Rickon, and Jaime.
At any rate, the events of the final season’s first few episodes — especially the third one — will likely inspire even more honoring of the character of Arya Stark.
Game of Thrones has just three more episodes remaining. The next one will air next Sunday night on HBO and its associated streaming platforms. The series finale is scheduled to air on May 19.