Baby Names

230+ Unique Middle Names With Origins & Beautiful Meanings

Updated on
unique middle names



Unique middle names are fun, exotic, and exciting – and they can make your little one stand out in a room filled with Johns and Janes.

How do you pick the perfect middle name for your baby? 

Many parents use the formula “popular name” + “unique name” or vice versa.

Of course, you can always follow your heart and combine two unique and rare names together.

Check out our 230+ picks for unique middle names for boys and girls below.


Why Do People Use Middle Names?

Historians believe that middle names for boys were used in ancient Roman times more as an attribute or indication of that person’s branch of the family. (1)

At the time, it was rare to use middle names for girls, and enslaved people didn’t use any. (1)

The practice of using middle names was lost for centuries before it was supposedly revived in the 13th century in Italy. (1)(2)

Historians explain that parents often chose a baby’s middle name after saints, believing they might protect the little ones named after them. (1)(2)

The practice spread to France and other parts of the world in the late 19th century. (1)

Today, popular baby names like “Marie” or “John” are used as first or middle names. They’re even commonly used as nicknames.


The Best First Names That Also Work As Unique Middle Names

What’s The Rarest Name?


What Are Unique Middle Names?






What Are Some Strong & Powerful Middle Names?

  • Amory (English and German name; unisex) – “Home-ruler,” “home strength,” or “powerful leader”


  • Atlas (ancient Greek name) – Greek god name meaning “bearer of the heavens”; after the Titan who carried the heavens on his shoulders to stop from crashing to the ground




  • Logan (Scottish boy name) – “Little hollow”


Edgy & Badass Middle Names



  • Egil (Old Norse boy name) – “Awe,” “terror,” or “the edge of a sword”





Rare Spiritual & Biblical Middle Names

  • Aziel (Hebrew boy name) – “God is my power”


  • Gilles (Latin and French boy name) – “Servant of Jesus,” “shield-bearer,” “pledge,” or “young goat”



Unusual & ‘Weird’ Middle Names


  • Apple (English unisex name) – Fruit name; might be considered more as a nickname than a ‘proper’ middle name


  • Cale (Hebrew boy name) – “Brave dog”


  • Honey (English girl name) – Favorite pet name for a loved one


  • Muffin (English unisex name) – Food name; you might consider using this as a nickname instead


  • Peanut (English unisex name) – Food name; might be better used as a nickname


  • Pickle (English unisex name) – Food name that might be ideal as a pet name; also a place name meaning “pointed and having a narrow corner”


Cool Middle Names

Cool Middle Names For Boys


  • Jax (American boy name) – “Son of Jack”; can also be a variant of “Jackson”



  • Stark (English boy name) – “Firm and unyielding”


  • Titus (Latin, Roman, and Sabine boy name) – “Title of honor” or “of the giants”


Cool Girl Middle Names



  • Rae (American and Hebrew girl name) – “Ewe (female sheep)” as a short form of “Rachel”



Cute & Adorable Middle Names


  • Dawn (Old English girl name) – “Daybreak” or “the first appearance of light”


  • Kai (Māori and Japanese gender-neutral name) – “Food,” meal,” “shell,” “ocean,” “warrior,” or “willow tree”


  • Shay (Gaelic and Irish name for boys) – “Admirable”


Virtue-Inspired Middle Names


  • Frede (German girl name) – “Peace”


Beautiful Names


  • Ingrid (Celtic and Norse girl name) – “Beautiful”


  • Mariam (Hebrew and Arabic girl name) – “Beloved,” “bitter,” or “drop of the sea”; less common variant of “Miriam”



Nature Names

  • Aspen (Old English boy name) – “Aspen tree”


  • Canyon (English boy name) – Earthy name meaning “narrow chasm with steep walls”


  • Cedar (English boy name) – “Cedar tree”


  • Paloma (Latin girl name) – “Dove”


  • Tabitha (Aramaic girl name) – “Gazelle” or “grace”


Trendy But Still-Uncommon Middle Names

  • Ander (Scandinavian and Greek name for boys) – “Lion man”



  • Dax (English and French name for boys) – “Leader” or “water”


  • Sage (Latin unisex name) – “Wise,” “healthy,” or an herb name


  • Sven (Scandinavian boy name) – “Young warrior”; Disney name after the valiant reindeer in “Frozen


Classic & Vintage Baby Names To Honor Your Heritage

  • Bram (Dutch boy name) – “Father of multitudes” as a variant of the Hebrew boy name “Abraham”


  • Nuno (Portuguese and Latin boy name) – “Grandfather” or “nine”


  • Otis (English boy name) – “Wealth”


  • Watkins (English boy name) – “Little Walter” or “son of Walter”


Music-Themed Unique Middle Names

  • Aria (Italian name for girls) – “Solo song or music piece in an opera,” “air,” or “lioness”


  • Gayatri (Sanskrit girl name) – “Song”


‘Cowboy’ & Country Boy Middle Names

  • Knox (Scottish boy name) – “Round hill”


  • Trace (Anglo-Saxon boy name) – “Brave”; after American country singer Trace Adkins


Unique Middle Names From Literature & Pop Culture

Some names that are well-known in pop culture but aren’t commonly used as middle names:


  • Bond (English boy name) – “Farmer”; with links to the “James Bond” series 


  • Jarvis (French boy name) – “Servant spear”; AI in several “Iron Man” and “Avengers” movies


  • Sabrina (English, Latin, Celtic, and Italian girl name) – “From the name of River Severn” or “from the border”; a witchy name after the main character in “Sabrina the Teenage Witch


Rare Magical Middle Names

  • Aslan (Turkish and Iranian boy name) – “Lion”; after the most powerful being in “The Chronicles of Narnia


  • Gandalf (Old Norse boy name) – Elf boy name meaning “wand elf”; among the powerful wizards in J.R.R. Tolkien lore (appears in “The Hobbit” and “The Lord of the Rings”)


  • Iridessa (Latin baby girl name) – “Like a rainbow”; light-talent fairy in the “Tinkerbell” series


  • Rosetta (Italian baby girl name) – “Rose”; garden-talent fairy in the “Tinkerbell” series


  • Undine (Latin girl name) – Mermaid name meaning “wave” or “water nymphs”


Mythical Middle Names

  • Apollo (Greek boy name) – “Protector” as the god of the sun, light, healing, and prophecy in Greek mythology


  • Griffin (Welsh, Irish, and Latin boy name) – “Mythical creature,” “lord,” or “prince”


  • Tatiana (Russian girl name) – “Queen of the fairies”; also a character in “A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” a famous play by William Shakespeare


  • Zeus (Greek boy name) – Greek god of the heavens and the most powerful god in Greek mythology


Family Names (Last Names) As Unique Middle Names

  • Anderson (Scandinavian and Greek boy name) – “Son of Anders” or “son of Andrew


  • Huxley (English boy name) – “Hugh’s meadow” or “inhospitable place”


  • Sawyer (English gender-neutral name) – “Woodcutter”


  • Thatcher (English boy name) – “Roof maker”


Other Gender-Based Unique Monikers & Middle Names

What Are Rare Middle Names For A Girl?

  • Avery (French and English girl name) – Mystical name meaning “ruler of elves”


  • Tiana (Latin and Russian girl name) – “Fairy queen” or “daylight”; also a Disney princess name in “The Princess and the Frog


Unique & Rare Middle Names For Boys

  • Guenther (Old Norse boy name) – “A good leader”


  • Tariq (Arabic boy name) – “One who knocks at the door”


  • Truett (Old Norse and American boy name) – “Warrior for Christ”


Gender-Neutral & Nonbinary Middle Names

  • Auden (Old English nonbinary name) – “Old friend”


  • Spark (English unisex name) – “Glowing particle”


  • Xen (Greek nonbinary name) – “Foreigner” or “guest”


Unique Androgynous (Gender-Free) Middle Names

  • Jalen (Greek and American androgynous name) – “Tranquil,” “calm,” or “healer”


  • Oak (English androgynous name) – “From the oak trees”


  • Wylie (Old English gender-free) – “Crafty” or “clever” 


Rare Middle Names By Syllables

What Are Syllables?

Syllables are pronunciation units having one vowel sound. For example:


  • Levi (Hebrew boy name) – Two-syllable name meaning “joined in harmony”


  • Martina (Roman and Latin girl name) – Three-syllable name meaning “warlike” or “like Mars (Roman god of war)” as a variant of “Martin”


See more examples of baby names by syllables below:


One-Syllable & Short Middle Names

  • Britt (Scandinavian boy name) – “Exalted one”


  • Pim (Dutch boy name) – “Resolute protection” as a variant of the German boy name “William



  • Taj (Sanskrit boy name) – “Crown”


Two-Syllable & Other Short Middle Names

  • Denver (Old English and French boy name) – “Belonging to a green valley”


  • Kylo (American boy name) – “Sky”


Long Three- & Four-Syllable Middle Names For Babies

  • Addison (Old English unisex name) – “Son of Adam”


  • Anastasia (Greek girl name) – “Resurrection”


  • Maverick (American boy name) – “Independent-minded person” or “one who doesn’t give into conformity”


Exotic Middle Names From Around The World

  • Bodhi (Sanskrit boy name) – “Knowing” or “awakened”


  • Callum (Latin boy name) – “Dove”



  • Imogen (Celtic girl name) – “Maiden” or “young lady”


  • Nikhil (Sanskrit boy name) – “The entire world”


  • Shalom (Hebrew boy name) – “Peace”


  • Silas (English and Latin boy name) – “Wood forest”



  • Teodoro (Spanish boy name) – “Gift of god”; variant of the Greek boy name “Theodore”


Celebrity Baby Names

  • Keanu (Hawaiian boy name) – “Cool breeze over the mountains”; after Canadian actor Keanu Reeves


  • Kobe (Swahili – African boy name) – “Turtle”; after American professional basketball player Kobe Bryant


  • Zane (Hebrew baby boy name) – “God is gracious”; after American actor Zane Phillips


Unique Names From A To Z For Your Little One

Unique Middle Names Starting With A

  • Amar (Sanskrit boy name) – “Forever” or “immortal”



  • Asher (Hebrew and Jewish boy name) – “Happiness”


Unique Middle Names Starting With B

  • Basma (Arabic girl name) – “Smile”


  • Blythe (Old English girl name) – “Joyous,” “pleasant,” or “happy”



Unique Middle Names Starting With C

  • Caden (Old English and Gaelic boy name) – “Marsh”


  • Casey (Irish and Scottish Gaelic unisex name) – “Brave,” “vigilant,” or “watchful”



  • Clarissa (Latin girl name) – “Famous and bright”; less common variant of “Claire”


  • Cosmo (Greek name for boys) – Space boy name meaning “universe,” “order,” or “beauty”


Unique Middle Names Starting With D


  • Damon (Greek boy name) – “To subdue” or “to tame”



Unique Middle Names Starting With E

  • Eco (Latin boy name) – “Of the environment”



  • Ewan (Scottish boy name – “From the yew tree”


Unique Middle Names Starting With F

  • Fernanda (Spanish girl name) – “Bold journey” or “adventurous” as a variant of the boy names “Fernando” or “Ferdinand”


  • Forest (English boy name) – “Woods”


  • Francesca (Italian girl name) – “Free” as a variant of the boy name “Francis”


Unique Middle Names Starting With G




Unique Middle Names Starting With H


  • Hawk (English boy name) – “Bird of prey”


  • Herb (Old German boy name) – “Bright and shining,” “illustrious warrior,” or “noble” as a short form of “Herbert”; also a plant name


  • Hershey (Hebrew boy name) – Nature name meaning “deer” or “happiness” and “joyful”


  • Homer (Greek boy name) – “Pledge”


Unique Middle Names Starting With I

  • Iacchus (Greek boy name) – “To shout”




Unique Middle Names Starting With J

  • Jacobo (Hebrew and Spanish boy name) – “Supplanter


  • Jaxtyn (American boy name) – “From the town of Jack


  • Jordana (Hebrew girl name) – “Down flowing”; less popular than the masculine name “Jordan”


Unique Middle Names Starting With K

  • Karsyn (Scottish boy name) – “Son of Carr”




Unique Middle Names Starting With L

  • Lark (English unisex name) – “Lighthearted songbird”


  • Leif (Scandinavian and Old Norse boy name) – “Beloved”


  • Link (German and Jewish boy name) – “Left-handed person”


Unique Middle Names Starting With M

  • Mae (British and Roman girl name) – “Goddess of spring growth”; less common variant of “May”


  • Malia (Hawaiian girl name) – “Of the sea”



  • Myles (Latin and English boy name) – “Soldier”


Unique Middle Names Starting with N


  • North (English boy name) – Direction name


  • Nyla (Gaelic girl name) – “Champion”


Unique Middle Names Starting With O

  • Olalla (Spanish girl name) – “Sweetly-speaking”


  • Ornella (Italian name for girls) – “Flowering ash tree



Unique Middle Names Starting With P

  • Pace (Italian name for boys and girls) – “Peace”


  • Paige (French gender-neutral name) – “Young servant”


  • Paix (French boy name) – “Peace”; pronounced as “peh”


  • Pepper (English girl name) – Spice name


  • Poe (English boy name) – “Peacock”


Unique Middle Names Starting With Q


  • Quest (English boy name) – “To explore”


  • Quinella (Latin girl name) – “Beautiful”


Unique Middle Names Starting With R

  • Ramsay (Scottish boy name) – “The island of garlic” or “low-lying land”


  • Rhett (Dutch and English boy name) – “Advice”


  • Rhys (Welsh unisex name) – “Passionate,” “ardent,” or “enthusiastic”


  • Ryder (Old English gender-neutral name) – “Horseman,” “messenger,” or “cavalry”


Unique Middle Names Starting With S

  • Sebastian (Greek boy name) – “Venerable”


  • Shea (Gaelic unisex name) – “The stately, dauntless one” or “admirable”


  • Sìth (Scottish Gaelic girl name) – “Peace”


  • Slate (English boy name) – “Gray-green rock”


Unique Middle Names Starting With T

  • Terese (Greek girl name) – “Harvester”


  • Tristan (Celtic boy name) – “Sorrowful” or “melancholy”; literature name after one of the main characters in the tragedy “Tristan and Isolde


  • Twain (Old English boy name) – “Divided into two”


Unique Middle Names Starting With U

  • Ulrika (Swedish girl name) – “Power” and “prosperity”; feminine variant of the German boy name “Ulrich”


  • Uri (Hebrew boy name) – “My light”


  • Ursula (Latin girl name) – “Little she-bear”


Unique Middle Names Starting With V

  • Valpuri (Finnish girl name) – “Ruler of the fortress”


  • Vasia (Greek girl name) – “Regal”


  • Vidal (Spanish boy name) – “Life”


Unique Middle Names Starting With W

  • Wilder (English boy name) – “Untamed”


  • Willow (English girl name) – “Willow tree” or “freedom”


  • Wyatt (English boy name) – “Brave in war” or “brave warrior”


Unique Middle Names Starting With X

  • Xander (American boy name) – “Protector of men” or “defender of humankind” as a version of the Greek boy name “Alexander


  • Xavier (Basque, Arabic, and Spanish boy name) – “House” or “new house”


  • Xiomara (Spanish girl name) – “Famous in battle”


Unique Middle Names Starting With Y


  • Yehosheva (Hebrew girl name) – “Yahweh is an oath”



Unique Middle Names Starting With Z

  • Zaharina (Hebrew girl name) – “God remembers”


  • Zeke (Hebrew boy name) – “God will strengthen”


  • Zephaniah (Hebrew boy name) – “Hidden by God”


  • Zyair (African boy name) – “The river that swallows all rivers”


Baby Name Combos

  • Atticus Ren (boy)
  • Darragh Cian (boy)
  • Dougal Moss (boy)
  • Harper Mae (girl)
  • Lindy Lou (girl)
  • Wilma Jo (girl)


More Unique Middle Names

  • Aleta (girl)
  • Aren (boy)
  • Berenice (girl)
  • Cerise (girl)
  • Cillian (boy)
  • Elektra (girl)
  • Fayre (girl)
  • Fletcher (boy)
  • Hendrix (boy)
  • Houston (boy)
  • Hudson (boy)
  • Inoki (boy)
  • Kamalei (boy)
  • Marceline (girl)
  • Marleigh (girl)
  • Moira (girl)
  • Serafina (girl)
  • Tovi (girl)
  • Viviana (girl)
  • Warren (boy)
  • Wison (boy)
  • Xena (girl)
  • Yuki (boy)
  • Zenni (girl)


The top 10 most popular names in the US, based on stats from the SSA (Social Security Administration), are also favorite choices as middle names. (3)

These are the names, arranged by gender and in their respective rank from #1 to #10: (3)


  1. Olivia
  2. Emma
  3. Charlotte
  4. Amelia
  5. Sophia
  6. Isabella
  7. Ava
  8. Mia
  9. Evelyn
  10. Luna


Favorite Middle Names For Boys

  1. Liam
  2. Noah
  3. Oliver – “Olive tree
  4. James
  5. Elijah
  6. William
  7. Henry
  8. Lucas
  9. Benjamin
  10. Theodore



Are Middle Names Legally Significant & Do They Matter?

Yes. Middle names are considered part of a person’s legal name and must be declared in legal documents.

Although they don’t appear first on the list, these middle names matter. That’s why it’s essential to double-check the meanings of your baby’s first and middle names before registering their birth.


Can Nicknames & Pet Names Be Used As Middle Names (Or Vice Versa)?

Yes. Many middle names also double as nicknames or pet names, and vice versa.


Are There Any Unique Middle Names I Should Avoid?

Names from these lists might not be ideal as middle names:



You can also find ideas from the top 15 baby name generators.











– Motherhood Community is reader supported. When you buy through links on our site we may earn an affiliate commission. Learn More