Unisex Names: Christmas


planned break from scheduling tradition on this series, we’re talking about Christmas as the unisex name of the month. Yes…Christmas…


The word is derived from the Late Old English noun Cristesmæsse, made up of Crist meaning “Christ” and mæsse meaning “mass.” In other words, it is made up of Christ and -mas


The usage of Christmas as a name may have first began in the late 16th century². Since that time, it has maintained its status as a very uncommon or rare name throughout the world, especially in this day and age²³. Regarding its unisex status, in England & Wales, from the 17th to the 19th centuries, it was mainly given to boys, with percentages of boys named Christmas varying from around 70% to around 90%³. A similar unisex make-up like this can also be seen in African countries where English is the official language (like Nigeria or Zimbabwe)²⁴. In the United States⁵ and the Philippines⁴, it is currently used mainly for females (in the case of the US, it used to be a masculine-majority name like it was in E&W²). One country some of you may not realise has born-and-bred people named Christmas is Indonesia where it is currently evenly spread among both genders⁴ (given Christianity’s long history in Indonesia, it might not be so surprising to see that there are going to be some people there named Christmas).

That’s the unisex name of the month. If you have any thoughts on this name or this post in general, leave them in the comments section below the sources.

Wiktionary on ‘Christmas’ – https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/Christmas¹
FamilySearch – https://familysearch.org/search²
FreeBMD – http://www.freebmd.org.uk/³
LinkedIn – http://www.linkedin.com/⁴
Social Security Administration – http://www.ssa.gov/OACT/babynames/index.html⁵


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