The Baby Names Banned In Australia And Around The World
Unique baby names have definitely been gaining popularity over recent years.
This has probably been aided by some ‘out there’ celeb baby names, Cameron Diaz and Benji Madden’s recent arrival, Raddix, being one of them.
But if you are a parent to be and thinking a name that is a bit left of centre might be on the cards for your baby, you may need to have a read of this.
It seems living in Australia means not everything is as relaxed as some countries when it comes to choosing a baby name (namely the US), and there are certain restrictions in place about what you can and cannot name your baby.
Geoff Brailey, social researcher from McCrindle, told 10 daily: “Every country has a list of names that are not allowed to be recorded by the Registrar."
"In Australia, certain names are prohibited under the Births, Deaths and Marriages Registration Act of 1996.”
According to Brailey, the Registrar can refuse to register a birth in certain circumstances, including any of the following:
1. It is obscene or offensive.
2. It cannot be established by repute or usage because it’s too long or contains symbols (such as an exclamation mark).
3. It is displayed in the form of initials or acronyms.
4. It creates confusion in the community.
5. It contains an official title or rank recognised in Australia.
6. It may be considered reasonably likely to insult, humiliate, offend or intimidate a person or group.
So, with this in mind, these are a no-go in the land of Oz:
Banned Baby Names In Australia
Although the US is one of the most laid-back when it comes to creative expression through baby names, many other countries around the world share a similar system to Australia, banning particular names or establishing criteria that must be followed when naming a child.
In Malaysia the name Sor Chai is banned. The word which means 'insane' is seen as offensive.
There are also other restrictions in Malaysia, including not being able to call babies after animals, insects, fruit, vegetables or colours. Numbers are also not allowed and children cannot be named any royal or honorary titles.
The country gives parents the right to choose any baby name, but the government can get involved if the chosen name would endanger the child’s well-being by exposing them to mocking and humiliation or by being offensive.
There are also some specific names which are banned including: Osama, Hitler and Lucifer. But if you love the last one, just head on over to the land of the free where Lucifer is A-Okay.
It seems that although Sweden has some great benefits if you are having a baby or raising a child, in the name department -- it is a little bit more strict, although arguably sensible.
In 1996, a court rejected the appeal of parents who wanted to name their child a 43 letter first name. Yes, that’s nearly double the alphabet.
Brfxxccxxmnpcccclllmmnprxvclmnckssqlbb11116, pronounced Albin (obviously) was not permitted.
The Swedes have also banned Ikea but again, the US allows the furniture retailer’s name to be used for humans. In fact, in 1989 there were 72 girls and nine boys given the name.
It’s a big pas moyen (no way) for Prince William and Mini Cooper. The two names requested by parents for their son were rejected by a French court who told them naming their son this would lead to a “lifetime of mockery.”
Nutella, Strawberry, Jihad and Babar (as in the cartoon elephant) are also not allowed.
Our Kiwi neighbours have given the thumbs down to: Messiah, Lucifer, Talula Does the Hula from Hawaii (yes, that was an actual name request), Anal and Princess.
It seems Mexico is not such a fan of Hollywood characters (or at least naming children after them). The government has rejected name requests for Robocop, Batman, James Bond, Terminator, Rocky and Rambo.
It also recently denied the name Facebook.
But it is Iceland who is one of the strictest when it comes to choosing a name for your child. It still has a list of ‘recognised names’ -- 1853 female and 1712 male, that parents must choose from.
If the name you want to give your child is not on the list, you can seek approval from the Icelandic Naming Committee. But it must adhere to their criteria, as follows:
- The name must contain only letters in the Icelandic alphabet,
- must be adaptable to Icelandic grammar rules,
- and must not cause the child any future embarrassment.
Due to this, Harriet, a name in Australia’s top 100 in 2019, is in fact prohibited in Iceland. Go figure.
Featured image: Getty