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Mohammed retakes top spot in English baby names
August 14th, 2012
12:19 PM ET

Mohammed retakes top spot in English baby names

By Richard Allen Greene, CNN

Mohammed reclaimed its place as the most popular name for baby boys born in England and Wales in 2011 - convincingly ahead of Harry, in second place, according to data released by the government this week.

The government declared that Harry was the most popular boy's name, but if you add up the five most popular different spellings of Mohammed, that name comes top.

Mohammed is also the most popular boy's name of the past five years for England and Wales, ahead of Oliver and Jack. It came first or second every year since 2007, the only name to do so.

And it could become even more popular in 2012, given the adulation around long-distance runner Mo Farah, who won two gold medals for Britain at the Olympics.

The popularity of the name comes as Britain's Muslim population is expected to double in the next 20 years.

The country, which was about 2% Muslim in 1990, grew to 4.6% Muslim in 2010, with nearly 2.9 million followers of the faith, according to analysis by the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life.

By 2030, the United Kingdom will be just over 8% Muslim, with more than 5.5 million adherents, the Washington-based think tank projected in a 2011 report, "The Future of the Global Muslim Population."

Mohammed first became the most popular boy's name in England in 2009, then was knocked back into second place the next year as Oliver enjoyed a huge surge in popularity.

Harry, the name of Prince William's younger brother and J.K. Rowling's boy wizard, leaped into second place in 2011, with 7,523 boys given the moniker, topping the 7,007 Olivers.

But the name of the Muslim prophet was given to 7,907 baby boys, according to CNN analysis of Office of National Statistics data. Mohammed, Muhammad and Mohammad were all among the top 100 most popular names, with Muhammed and Mohamed also coming in the top 200.

A total of 37,564 babies have been given a variation of the name in the past five years. Some 36,653 Olivers and 36,581 Jacks were born in England and Wales since 2007. The British government keeps separate statistics for Scotland and for Northern Ireland, the other two nations that make up the United Kingdom.

The 2011 British census had an optional question about religion. Results are expected in November.

At least four different spellings of the name Mohammed are among the 1,000 most popular American boys' names in 2011, according to the Social Security Administration.

Mohamed is the top, in 428th place, with Muhammad in 480th, Mohammed in 562nd and Mohammad in 609th.

The United States is about 0.8% Muslim, with about 2.6 million adherents, the Pew Forum calculates.

- Newsdesk editor, The CNN Wire

Filed under: Islam • Muslim • United Kingdom

soundoff (1,026 Responses)
  1. nessus

    What is genetic drift?

    Fear is a powerful tool and as such makes it one of the most effective forms of mind control
    What does it mean to prime someone?
    Nothing is as destructive as blind rage
    If people only comment to articles then you probably dont really care
    Can you be controlled without knowing do you have empirical data to prove it?

    August 12, 2013 at 5:44 pm |
  2. arishsahani

    All 1.5 billions are convert muslim 500 millions hindu convert to islam . saudi culture of islam treats them as third class citizen will never allow any one to live in their nation. No saudi girl will ever marry these fools who are antinational and anti cultural of own nations.. Shame no convert has a simple understanding saudi uses them as foot soldier to destroy their own nations. 57 nations destroyed by none but locals and more to follow.

    July 26, 2013 at 10:36 am |
  3. Cali

    Note to self: No trips to UK.

    July 25, 2013 at 10:05 am |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

      Avoid London and Birmingham and you'll have a good time. I recommend a visit to Somerset and the Isle of Skye.

      July 25, 2013 at 10:12 am |
      • Lucifer's Evil Twin

        Isle of Skye = Good scotch

        July 25, 2013 at 10:28 am |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

          Damn right.

          July 25, 2013 at 10:40 am |
  4. Vasco DeGama

    number1 Mohammed number2 Jihad Martyr....

    July 25, 2013 at 9:25 am |
  5. Gentle Knight

    NO IT ISN'T!

    It's 19th

    Contrary to the beliefs of some folk Islam is vocal, but by no means populous in England.

    Mohammed (or any other spelling of the name in the top 100 names in England and Wales) comes 19th in the boy's list, hardly number 1 of both lists together. Though this incorporates Wales as well as England, still if it were that popular in England I'd expect to find much higher than 19th. I should mention that this is down two places from 2010.

    Blessings

    David

    Check for yourself if you wish:

    The most popular baby names 2011

    Here's the most recent set of official statistics on the 100 most popular baby names in England and Wales as released by the Office for National Statistics.

    You may not give two figs whether the baby name you're thinking of is on every other parents' list. But when choosing a baby name you may want to avoid the sort of situation when, a few years hence, you bellow your child's name in the playground and one in three children come running.

    Boys' names
    1 Harry
    2 Oliver
    3 Jack
    4 Alfie
    5 Charlie
    6 Thomas
    7 Jacob
    8 James
    9 Joshua
    10 William
    11 Ethan
    12 George
    13 Riley
    14 Daniel
    15 Samuel
    16 Noah
    17 Oscar
    18 Joseph
    19 Mohammed
    20 Max
    21 Dylan
    22 Muhammed
    23 Alexander
    24 Archie
    25 Benjamin
    26 Lucas
    27 Leo
    28 Henry
    29 Jake
    30 Logan
    31 Tyler
    32 Jayden
    33 Isaac
    34 Finley
    35 Mason
    36 Ryan
    37 Harrison
    38 Adam
    39 Lewis
    40 Edward
    41 Luke
    42 Freddie
    43 Matthew
    44 Liam
    45 Zachary
    46 Callum
    47 Sebastian
    48 Connor
    49 Jamie
    50 Theo
    51 Toby
    52 Harvey
    53 Michael
    54 Nathan
    55 Harley
    56 Kai
    57 David
    58 Aaron
    59 Alex
    60 Charles
    61 Aiden
    62 Leon
    63 Mohammad
    64 Luca
    65 Tommy
    66 Finlay
    67 Jenson
    68 Arthur
    69 Louis
    70 Rhys
    71 Owen
    72 Reuben
    73 Ollie
    74 Louie
    75 Gabriel
    76 Bobby
    77 Cameron
    78 Dexter
    79 Blake
    80 Stanley
    81 Kian
    82 Evan
    83 Jude
    84 Frankie
    85 Elliot
    86 Hayden
    87 Ashton
    88 Joel
    89 Caleb
    90 Bailey
    91 Elijah
    92 Taylor
    93 Robert
    94 Kayden
    95 Kyle
    96 Frederick
    97 Ben
    98 Reece
    99 Jackson
    100 John

    http://www.ons.gov.uk/ons/interactive/top-100-baby-names-in-england-and-wales-dvc11/index.html

    http://www.mumsnet.com/baby-names/most-popular-baby-names-england-wales

    July 25, 2013 at 9:08 am |
    • Saraswati

      Your list doesn't account for the different spellings of the name Mohammed which are all considered together here.

      Why, btw, are people commenting on this year old story?

      July 25, 2013 at 9:15 am |
      • Gentle Knight

        accounting for names much lower in the list makes virtually no change. Maybe, just maybe it will change position 19 to position 18 but that's the most. So, I did in fact account for it, and since other spellings and 22nd and 63rd it was obviously not worth making any adjustment. Mohammed (or any other variant) has NEVER been number 1 on the list of England and Wales.

        This article is at best disinformation or propaganda of the worst sort.

        July 26, 2013 at 7:15 am |
        • xasianzombie

          why are you so mad at Muhammad being #1?

          Is that a problem? is it wrong or weird?

          July 26, 2013 at 1:42 pm |
    • Saraswati

      Two calculations were done, one using the top 5 variants of Mohammed, the other using the top 12 and they still beat Harry. However, variants of Harry also should be considered.

      July 26, 2013 at 1:56 pm |
      • Sirassweteh

        Why are you fighting for Harry, Won't you worry about Indian names which aren't even on the list. Different spelling..
        .

        August 11, 2013 at 9:31 pm |
        • Saraswati

          "Why are you fighting for Harry, Won't you worry about Indian names which aren't even on the list. Different spelling.."

          I'm afraid I don't understand what "fighting for Harry" means or why you think I would be worried about Indian names?

          August 11, 2013 at 9:35 pm |
  6. morganfrost

    Slight tremors felt around the French city of Rouen were traced to the body of Richard the Lionhearted, spinning wildly in its grave.

    July 25, 2013 at 9:03 am |
  7. ScottinVA

    Any predictions on when England finally falls to Islamic rule? Based on the current trajectory and the fact muslims don't need to be a majority to gain power, I predict no later than 2030.

    July 25, 2013 at 8:17 am |
    • David Harris

      My prediction – never.

      Current population of England and Wales: 62,369
      Current Muslim population of England and Wales: 2,869
      percentage: 4.6%

      Contrary to the beliefs of some folk Islam is vocal, but by no means populous in England.

      July 25, 2013 at 9:05 am |
      • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

        000 is missing twice.

        July 25, 2013 at 9:09 am |
  8. Tom

    My favorite muslim name would be 'Bacon Sammich'

    July 25, 2013 at 7:59 am |
  9. Keyser

    And so it goes. Mohammed in the UK, Rufus or Dufus or RJ, DJ, or MJ in the US in the near future.

    July 25, 2013 at 7:09 am |
  10. Paolo

    When your home is filled with termites it's time to call an exterminator before your home collapses.

    July 25, 2013 at 6:36 am |
    • ScottinVA

      The problem is getting the homeowner to admit he has termites in the first place.

      July 25, 2013 at 8:19 am |
    • Cindy

      Thomas Jefferson said that the only way to deal with people who want to kill you, is to kill them first.
      He said if islamics want to go to paradise so badly, the US of America should send them.
      The man was brilliant.

      July 25, 2013 at 9:03 am |
  11. chuck

    We've seen quite a number of known radical Muslims in the White House. ISNA. ICNA, Muslim Brotherhood, just to name a few. Hillary Clinton as Sec. of State liked to lick Huma Abedin (Anthony Weiner's wife) so much she made her Chief of Staff and traveled with her everywhere. Huma's parents convinced her to "go along" so they could have an operative in the top of the State Dept.. As a good Muslim she obeyed. Huma Abedin's parents have both sat on the boards of known terrorist organizations. Who knows how many secrets she passed on to her parents before Hillary finally stepped down? She also spent 13 years working directly for the Muslim World League, a major funder of Osama Bin Laden. America has yet again been injured by a Clinton's perverted lusts. But I digress. Of course corrupt politicians are a huge problem for America but Islam is the problem we can not afford to have them ignore. Obama is a devout Muslim with a particular hatred for America. Islam has made tremendous inroads into our federal government under his leadership with the help, of course, of Hillary Clinton, Valerie Jarrett, Eric Holder, etc.. It is no accident our military is being targeted by anti-Christians. It is no accident our schools, and yes even our churches, are being targeted by pro-Islamists. Islam is the enemy, make no mistake about it. There are no "good Muslims" only dangerous ones.

    July 25, 2013 at 5:57 am |
    • Lucifer's Evil Twin

      You are a lunatic...

      July 25, 2013 at 10:31 am |
  12. harry

    4.6% they must be all called Mohummad.. doesn't that just water it down a little?

    July 25, 2013 at 2:08 am |
  13. rastus

    I like the name Princ Murray myself

    July 25, 2013 at 2:03 am |
  14. Bob

    This is what happens when you let the trash in your house. They take over. Same goes with the United States. The most popular name there will be Jesus, Manual and Jose.

    July 25, 2013 at 1:29 am |
    • vivarto

      The Mexicans will eventually integrate and become good Americans.
      Mohammedans on the other hand will create a separate society and will destroy the host country.

      July 25, 2013 at 4:27 am |
      • Cali

        I don't believe it for a second. So many are now coming for our "freebies", this was not the way it originally began. Illegals were very hard working, proud people, but I have seen a dramatic change over the past 5-6 years.

        July 25, 2013 at 10:08 am |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

          Don't blame them, blame the administration which hands out the freebies.

          July 25, 2013 at 10:10 am |
  15. Pete

    Followed by Abdullah, Abdul and just plain Dull.

    July 25, 2013 at 12:58 am |
  16. Wayne Hinds

    CNN – the spokesperson for the muslimization of the world. left wing obamamites. twisting words, statistics and ideals.

    christianity and the crusaders will ride again.

    July 25, 2013 at 12:50 am |
  17. charles sutter

    England my England what have you done!!

    July 25, 2013 at 12:35 am |
  18. Chris

    Goodbye England. Let this be a lesson to America and the new immigration bill.

    July 25, 2013 at 12:24 am |
  19. reed

    The way muslims are acting today around the world, pretty soon the most popular name will be
    les hammed.

    July 25, 2013 at 12:11 am |
  20. jetalong

    This what the British get for failing at the Crusades.

    July 24, 2013 at 10:07 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.