How Many Names Are There In The World?

There are typically two types of people when it comes to names. The “I can never find a single thing with my name on it” and the “I work/go to school with five people that have my name.” Both sides can be very frustrating. Have you ever found yourself sitting there and wondering just how many names are out there? The answer may surprise you. With well over seven billion people in the world, there are bound to be many different names. 

There are easily over hundreds of millions of different names in the world. The exact number is difficult to calculate as every day, there are babies with new and unique names being born. However, based on the average number of names per language, the number of names is easily over 500 million.

It may seem odd to really sit down and think about just how many names there are in the world. The number could be limitless with the number of babies being born and people changing their names and surnames. When you take into account the number of deaths and births, the number is limitless. Read on to look at the breakdown of different names from different areas and how the number 650 million comes about.

How Many Names Are There In The World?
How Many Names Are There In The World?

Counting Undocumented Names 

Many areas around the world may not have every citizen’s name due to a lack of government structure. Some governments and countries are very underdeveloped, so they may not be able to keep track of every (or in some cases, any) birth and death. 

There are also illegal immigrants in many areas around the world. It would be just about next to impossible to find out the exact number of names. People migrate to different parts of the world every year. Sometimes they change their names, leaving their original name lost in the world.

Additionally, when you consider the isolated indigenous communities and other communities that live off the grid, they may not register new births. As mentioned above, some countries such as Libya and Syria are not as structured as other countries. This creates many births, names, and deaths that are never documented. Also, many may hide from their governments.

A few additional things to think about when thinking about every name in the world is:

  • People who have passed away – Some names have been long gone but still technically a different name. Are those to be counted?
  • Ancient names – Names from the stone age times and anytime between then and now; there simply is no way to know all of them. 
  • Celebrities who change their name for showbiz could also mess with the numbers because some do not legally change their names. 

If all of those were counted, that would make the number much, much higher. That is why it isn’t easy to pinpoint each name to count them. If the amount were for every name ever, it could easily reach into the billions. If we were trying to account for just the people leaving today, even that total would change annually. The number of yearly births around the globe is approximately 140 million. The yearly number of deaths is around 60 million people. 

Doing The Math

The United States has a much more diverse pool of names than some other countries that are accustomed to more common family names and stick with those. There are well over 300 million people in the United States alone. The census reports state that there are roughly 152,000 names out of those 300 million. That is just surnames (last names), not including all the different first names, which are truly diverse.

Jason Kopczynski, who has a BA in Mathematics, has stated, “If every country on earth had the same diversity we in the US have, that would suggest about 750 million unique names exist.” 

However, most of the world is not as diverse as the United States. At most, there could be over seven billion names, and the lowest estimate is said to be approximately 500 million different first names. 

How Many People Have Your Name?

If you are curious and wondering just how many people have your name. You can go to one of these sites listed below. You may be surprised with not only how many people have your first name but even your first, middle, and last name. 

The site How Many Of MeOpens in a new tab. lets you search for people in the United States. They will show you statistics of how many have your first, last, and then the combination of the two. SCBOpens in a new tab. also finds how many individuals there are with your first and last name.

There are sites for overseas to find your names but not a full worldwide name finder yet. Some SSA sites in different areas will have a name list, and you could always perform a search on social media, but it is limited to only those with an existing account.

What Are The Most Common Names Around The World?

Different regions have names that are popular for that area, and this list also changes yearly. Brittany and Jessica may have been popular 20 years ago and Doris and Ethel 60 years ago, but for now, the Emma’s of the world are clearly taking over. However, what is common in the United States is not the same as the most popular names in Australia. 

You also need to take into consideration middle names, surnames, and any name changes. Common names will always change, often as they become popular. 

What are some of the most popular names of the world, though? Here is a list of just a few countries from around the world and their top three female and male names as of 2020. 

Read more: Which Name is the Longest Name in the World?

Top Three Female Names In The World

CountryNumber One NameNumber Two NameNumber Three Name
France EmmaLolaChloe
MexicoXimenaValentinaMaria Fernanda
New ZealandCharlotteIslaEmily
United StatesEmmaOliviaSophia

Top Three Male Names In The World

CountryNumber One NameNumber Two NameNumber Three Name
New ZealandOliverJamesMason
United StatesNoahLiamJacob

There are many similar names on those lists, so it may be hard to wrap your head around how hundreds of millions of different names are in the world. In just those fifteen countries, the top three names make up over 70 different names—seventy different names in a simple shortlist. 

More and more people want different, unique names for their babies. So five years from now, this list could be quite different. When you really sit down and think about it, there are thousands of names in each town, thousands of towns in a region/state, and hundreds of regions in every single country.

The Names Of The World

Every single part of the world has hundreds of thousands of names for that area. The regions around it all have the same. When you think about how there are over seven billion people in the world, it is easier to see just how many names there could be. The potential is endless. Technically, there could be seven billion different names when one considers all of the possible spelling variations. 

Read more: Which Name is the Longest Name in the World? or What Names Make The Most Money?


I just love everything about names. Here I ha’ve gathered everything about names in The United States and around the world...

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