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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. ryantorgeson

    This is great. Look at the xenophobes come unglued!

    August 14, 2012 at 2:36 pm |
  2. Jason

    Alah is a homer-se-xu-al and muhammad is his bee – ach!

    August 14, 2012 at 2:36 pm |
    • Anonymous

      You are literally too stupid to insult

      October 8, 2013 at 9:17 am |
  3. Mohammid

    Um....5% of the population creates the most popular name? What does this mean, that 75% of Muslim males are named a variation of Mohammid? That's funny.

    August 14, 2012 at 2:36 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      Given the Muslim tradition of naming first-born boys "Mohammed" yes, this is exactly why 4.8% of the population makes it the most popular name.

      It's really not much of a news story.

      August 14, 2012 at 2:41 pm |
  4. crystalclear008

    Did Britain ever make a Muslim country it's colony...just curious to know?

    August 14, 2012 at 2:35 pm |
    • yaa.hoo4

      Well they made a hindu country (India) their colony. Few lowly hindus were force converted to Islam. Then no one wanted them so pakistan was formed out of a piece of India like district 13....some of them immigrated to britain to screw it up

      August 14, 2012 at 2:58 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      assuming your question is genuine, most of the Muslims in Britain have a Pakistani or Indian background.

      While part of the British Empire the Indian Raj (also called Hindustan) was not necessarily a "Muslim" colony, but there were lots of Muslims there.

      65 years ago tonight at midnight, the part'tion of Pakistan and India occured in 1947. Today (8/14) is independence day in Pakistan (majority Muslim) and tomorrow (8/15) is independence day in India (majority Hindu).

      August 14, 2012 at 3:01 pm |
    • Richard

      Egypt, Palestine, Jordan, Iraq, Aden, Oman, Bahrain, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Dubai, Kuwait.

      August 14, 2012 at 5:22 pm |
  5. crappygovernment

    Brits think National suicide in the name of 'Diversity' is great!

    August 14, 2012 at 2:32 pm |
    • ridiculusppl

      I will support your cause of stopping the Muslim "invasion" if you agree to take all your people back to the UK from the US...

      August 14, 2012 at 3:08 pm |
  6. Robert

    Disgusting...Why are our societies hell bent on being detroyed

    August 14, 2012 at 2:32 pm |
  7. palintwit

    How about some Sarah Palin baby name suggestions instead... Mudflap, Spatula, Bristol, Fargo, Trig, Trak, Pinworm, Garden-Slug, Puppy-Breath.

    August 14, 2012 at 2:30 pm |
    • ryantorgeson

      LOL

      August 14, 2012 at 2:37 pm |
    • sandalwood

      What's wrong with Puppy-Breath?

      August 14, 2012 at 2:40 pm |
    • Cita

      kudos on being good about your reoloutisns. my new year's reoloutisn this year was to stop at one plate (yes, i'm an overeater, and yes it was an attempt to be a marathon running ballerina too). sadly, it's just made me more aware of my eating less than controlling it. stay safe in those car burning riots okay.

      September 7, 2012 at 8:54 am |
  8. Jason

    ha! HA1

    August 14, 2012 at 2:30 pm |
  9. Weili

    The Great Britainistan.

    August 14, 2012 at 2:29 pm |
  10. crystalclear008

    hmm this is what they did to India. Illegal immigrants came from Bangladesh and Pakistan into India and each of the family has at least 7-8 kids and no food to provide for. they are simply adding numbers to their religion not ot be in minorities but it is a wrong policy.

    August 14, 2012 at 2:29 pm |
    • makesperfectsense

      Well said... First, they ruined India, then France, now our beloved UK, and soon the US.
      When will the West wake up to contain this parasite??

      August 14, 2012 at 2:48 pm |
  11. rick

    What do you expect from a Muslim country? And you only have yourselves to blame for not rebelling and toppling your government if that is what it would take to stop this immigration. The U.S is next on the Muslim agenda!!!!

    August 14, 2012 at 2:29 pm |
    • crystalclear008

      Well mind u lot of business in US in owned by ARABS (oil =cash strapped middle east countries). specially in the downfall of economy lot of business/properties/hotels etc have been bought by ARABS.

      August 14, 2012 at 2:32 pm |
  12. Nate Higgers

    Gotta love the "diversity" and "multiculturalism" being forced upon us by our own governments. It will be the end of England and America as we know it; africa and the Middle East, part 2. It's basically already here, and the negative effects are blatantly obvious. This will be the downfall of every all-White country eventually. Good things never last forever.

    August 14, 2012 at 2:26 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      @Nate

      Does it make you feel good to be a useless troll all day long?

      August 14, 2012 at 2:28 pm |
    • crappygovernment

      Many greasy ex-Communists moved to the West after ww2 to spread their 'diversity' and 'multiculturalism' schemes to naive Westerners.

      August 14, 2012 at 2:31 pm |
    • Cynic

      Hawaiiguest: I'm guessing that you won't mind, then, when usurpers come into your country, co-opt your culture with their own, have the bleeding-hearts in government reward them with more rights and privileges than you have (freely given to them from the taxes YOU pay), and make you feel like a stranger in your own country, although your ancestors called it home for centuries.

      August 14, 2012 at 2:35 pm |
    • ridiculusppl

      @ Cynic Ask the Native Americans for advice...

      August 14, 2012 at 2:48 pm |
    • yaa.hoo4

      If you want to live in a all white country, go back to europe. That is where whites belonged before they took indian countries.

      August 14, 2012 at 2:56 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      @Cynic

      Pure conjecture, and really a very unlikely scenario meant to foster paranoia and islamaphobic feelings.

      August 14, 2012 at 3:31 pm |
  13. civic

    may be brits should start migrating to iran or something. by 2030, 8% of iran will be Harry...

    August 14, 2012 at 2:25 pm |
  14. crappygovernment

    Old Nazis are probably kicking themselves for not invading Britain as 'immigrants' or 'asylum seekers,' like today's foreign invaders.

    August 14, 2012 at 2:25 pm |
    • civic

      you sure have your head in the rectum

      August 14, 2012 at 2:27 pm |
    • crappygovernment

      Did we win your lousy group of people in WW2, Civic?

      August 14, 2012 at 2:29 pm |
    • civic

      "Did we win your lousy group of people in WW2, Civic?" ????????!!! w t f ...

      August 14, 2012 at 2:32 pm |
    • Cynic

      Civic, I guess you won't mind if I come over to your house, kick your door down, make myself at home, crap on your family heirlooms, and lock you and your family out. You must be one of these people who take what you did not earn and still have the indecency to think well of yourself.

      August 14, 2012 at 2:39 pm |
    • ME II

      Go back to your Moon Landing Conspiracy blogs, please.

      August 14, 2012 at 2:39 pm |
    • ME II

      sorry, that was directed @crappygovernment.

      August 14, 2012 at 2:40 pm |
  15. civic

    Well, part of my family is muslim. I also have muslim friends. Lez just say, islam is not a very tolareant tridition neither. every one gets what deserved.

    August 14, 2012 at 2:24 pm |
  16. sandalwood

    I always said if I ever have a pet skunk I'm going to name it Mohammad.

    August 14, 2012 at 2:24 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      My daughter has a stuffed cow that I have named Moohammed.

      August 14, 2012 at 2:25 pm |
    • bristoltwit palin... America's favorite dancing cow

      Hey, I'm a stuffed cow, too !!

      August 14, 2012 at 2:33 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      @bristoltwit palin

      Yes, but you are not named Moohammed, therefore inferior to all other stuffed cows.

      August 14, 2012 at 3:32 pm |
  17. crappygovernment

    Is this what Britain 'won' in WW2? The right to be invaded by 3rd world scabs?

    August 14, 2012 at 2:21 pm |
    • sandalwood

      Just a bunch of sheep all named Mohammad following a lying pedophile of a prophet. Cowards all. They won't even show their faces when they are all hyped up and wanting to kill.

      August 14, 2012 at 2:33 pm |
    • Cynic

      Yes, and you forgot to add "after the war, come home to less than you had and live on food rations for the next ten years."

      You are right to be upset that Britain is turning into a 3rd world hellhole.

      August 14, 2012 at 2:42 pm |
  18. Kiko

    That's cool England/Wales....Jose is going to be #1 in U.S.ofA. very soon.

    August 14, 2012 at 2:21 pm |
    • Clint Eastwood

      Jose of Wales? That's too close for comfort pilgrim.

      August 14, 2012 at 2:25 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      According to the SSA, in 2011, Jose was number four in Texas, but doesn't crack the top five in any other state.

      http://www.ssa.gov/oact/babynames/state/top5_2011.html

      August 14, 2012 at 2:31 pm |
    • sandalwood

      Jose and Maria. It's coming because we have a stupid President who wants every illegal to have more rights than our citizens.

      August 14, 2012 at 2:34 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      @sandalwood,

      Nice try. Maria doesn't crack the top 5 in any state. Nor does it make the top 20 nationwide.

      August 14, 2012 at 2:38 pm |
  19. JonfromLI

    Allah help us!

    August 14, 2012 at 2:20 pm |
  20. Christian

    This is terrifying!!. It is time to put a limit on the amount of kids people can have.

    August 14, 2012 at 2:20 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      So, you like the Chinese approach?

      August 14, 2012 at 2:34 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.