In honor of my 40th (yikes!) birthday coming up, I arranged the top names of 1972 by spelling. Here they are for girls (boys list coming soon I hope):
Top Girls' Names of 1972
There were a lot of interesting names in 1972-- it boasted the only year the name Marijuana showed up (there were 5). People tell me this is a perfectly normal name in Spanish, and that it has nothing to do with drugs in that language... so why hasn't it shown up more?
On a similar note, there were 9 Sativas born in 1972. The name, the species name for Cannibus sativa first showed up in 1970, skipped 1971, then returned in 1972. It had a few shaky years in the 1980s, but Sativa has been in the top 7000 since 1991 consistently. The Latin word sativa means "cultivated variety" and is the species name of many plants, including Avena sativa (oats), Oryza sativa (rice), Medicago sativa (alfalfa) etc. However, it's the cannibus plant that it is most associated with! (and the couple I've met have been reported to have been named for).
Other names in 1972 (parenthetical numbers are how many babies were given those names):
Angles (7) -- probably a typo/misspelling of Angeles, but still kind of funny
Aquanette (5)-- like the hairspray. First and only time it showed up since the 50s (and then it was only in 2 years)
Attica (6) -- the only year this name showed up. Probably named for the Attica prison riots of the previous year.
Candle (5)-- why not? 1982 was the only other year this name showed up.
Cantina (17)-- sounds pretty, kind of like Candace + Tina... however, it's also the name for a bar, dining hall, or saloon!
Carry (24)-- not the best alt spelling of Carrie!
Celestial (5)-- this heavenly adjective only showed up 2 years-- 1970 and 1972.
Cortina (47)-- means "curtain" in Spanish. Probably these are named for the Ford Cortina, though!
Jeffifer (11) -- combo of Jeff and Jennifer? Typo? Not sure!
Little (5)-- this name has actually been on record since the early 1900s. It disappeared after the 1970s.
March (6)-- April, May, and June are popular names, but March?
Media (6) -- maybe a form of Medea?
Patches (9)-- maybe their parents really wanted a cat.
Patina (10)-- it sounds pretty, doesn't it? Kind of like Patricia + Katrina. However, it's also the word for a tarnish that forms on certain metals (sometimes put there on purpose).
Pleshette (25) -- probably single handedly the result of the actress Suzanne Pleshette (1937-2008)
Racine (5)-- means 'root' in French. Also the 5th largest city in Wisconsin!
Retina (5)-- As a name, it's probably pronounced /reh TEE na/-- kind of like Regina + Tina. However, it's also part of your eyeball.
Rotunda (9)-- means "round." It's an architectural term for a round room.
Schnell (5) -- means "fast" in German. As a girls' name? Maybe an alternate spelling of Chanel? 1972 was the first year it showed up.
Sossity (5)-- from the Jethro Tull song, "Sossity, You're a Woman." This is the first year the name showed up. The only other year was 1976, when Jethro Tull's album Stand Up, with that song on it was re-released.
Tangerine (9)-- there were 5 girls that year named Apple, and 16 named Peaches. why not?
Tango (9)-- I'm sure this isn't the first dance for a kid to be named after.
Tangy (11)-- I think this was pronounced /tan-jee/ and may have been another spelling for Tanji/Tangie, but still! Strange adjective to be associated with!
Tine (7) -- the prong of a fork. I hope this is a foreign name I'm not familiar with!
Toy (10)-- ditto
Trellis (11)-- OK, Trellis has been showing up since the 1900s, but still. Not the most melodious of nouns.
Trivia (7)-- I have no idea about this one
Tundra (6) -- kind of pretty sounding, even though it means "frozen wasteland." One of the only 3 years this name showed up!
Vendetta (5)-- say it to yourself. It sounds pretty! However, as a name? Not so much.
Veranda (5)-- maybe they were born on a porch.
Virgen (12)-- Spanish name honoring the Virgin Mary, I know. Still, I'm glad that wasn't *my* name in high school!
Wintress (6)-- no idea about this one. 1972 and 1973 are the only years this name shows up.
Shell (6)-- Shelly and Michelle were popular at the time, why not? Kind of like Candle-- quick, name your kid the first thing you see!
Shannondoah (5)-- respelling of Shenandoah to include the popular name Shannon. Nifty, eh? 1972 and 1991 were the only years this name showed up!
Smith (5)-- ok, why not?
Stracy (5)-- parents couldn't decide between Tracy and Stacy? 1970 and 1972 are the only years this name shows up.
Sugar (5)-- this name is... sweet. Not the first or only year this name was used, but still. Unusual.
Tequila (20)-- maybe this is what the parents conceived with.
Topeka (5)-- the capital of Kansas enjoyed use as a girls' name throughout the 1970s. It died away after that.
Trease (8)-- maybe an alt spelling of Therese?
Valency (11)-- this is the only year this name ever showed up.
Here are some more names that showed up only in 1972:
Amenia (5)-- didn't show up again until 2006!