M is a popular first initial among Americans. In 2017, for example, 134,676 baby boys received names starting with M, or 7.34% of baby boys in the United States that year.* There are plenty of names to choose from that start with an M, from unique and cool to sweet and simple. There’s a lot of names to choose from, and they all have their merits! To make the process of finding the best name for your new son a bit easier, the following are some of the top baby names for a boy that start with M.
Mason is an occupational name that was historically given to those who worked with stone, or masonry. The name's popularity spiked in 2011 and has stayed prevalent ever since. Several celebrities have chosen Mason for their children's names, such as Mellissa Joan Hart and Cuba Gooding Jr. Even the famed Walmart Yodeling Kid shares the name. Spelling variations include Macen, Masen, Mayson, or Maison. A cute nickname could be "Mace."
This name has religious roots, referring to the Archangel Michael. It is also derived from a Hebrew name that means "who is like God." The name has been popular in the US for almost a century, although it has also been historically popular across the pond. Many European kings, for example, have had this amazing title. Now, celebrities like Michael Jordan bring attention to this particular name. Pop culture fans will probably know one of Michael’s nicknames, Mike, from characters like Mike Wazowski in Pixar’s Monsters, Inc.
Like Michael, Matthew is also a religious name. Matthew was one of the twelve apostles and the author of the book in the Bible of the same name. The title has roots in Hebrew and Greek, translating to "gift of God." Matthew has been in English use since the Middle Ages, but it became popular in America in the 1960s and has been going strong ever since. Its popularity may be contributed to famous actors like Matthew McConaughey or Matt Damon. Nicknames include Matt or Matty. Variations of the name include Matthias or Mateo.
Mateo is a Spanish version of Matthew. Many historic musicians and writers have been given this name, such as the novelist Matteo Bandello and the poet Matteo Maria Boiardo. As such, it’s no wonder that those named Mateo are said to be talented, perfectionists, and independent. Variations of the name include Mattea, Mateo, Matheo, Mattheo or Teo.
Maverick means "an unorthodox or independent-minded person." The name's popularity began with Samuel Maverick, who was a Texan rancher that refused to brand his calves. The name is often associated with cowboys and the wild west. Even Dallas' basketball team is the Mavericks! Ford also named one of their cars Maverick, adding to the name's masculine reputation. The title has picked up some traction after the movie Top Gun.
Micah is yet another variation of Michael. The Bible has a book called Micah, which is about a prophet that predicted the destruction of Jerusalem and Samaria, as well as Jesus' birth in Bethlehem. Therefore, people who are named Micah are often said to have a strong desire to help others. The name did not become common until the end of the 20th century, and many see it as a new take on the standard Michael. It can share some of the same nicknames as Michael, such as Mike or Mick. Other variations of the name include Mika, Meeka, Micha or Myka. Micah is also gaining traction among girls, making it a great unisex name.
The name Miles derives from the German Milo, and is said to mean "solider" or "mild, peaceful, calm." Sometimes Miles is a surname, but it recently has become common to see it as a first name. The title is prevalent in literature, such as in Mark Twain's The Prince and the Pauper and Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Blithedale Romance. Parents of this generation may have grown up with Miles Hollingsworth from Degrassi. Millennials are probably familiar with Miles Morales, the character who took up the mantle of Spider-Man after Peter Parker. Variations of the name are Milo, Meelo, and Myles.
Max is a classic name. The short and sweet title comes from longer ones, such as Maxwell, Maximus, and Maximillian. Max is of English and German origin, and it means "greatest." The simplicity of this name is what makes it so attractive to many. Many popular characters from children's stories share the name. For example, the main character in Where the Wild Things Are is named Max. There are also several Noble Prize winners that share the name Max, including the famed physicist Max Planck; those who have this name are in good company.
Maxwell is a longer variation of Max, but is still simple and elegant sounding. Just as mentioned above, Maxwell has German, Scottish, and English roots, and means "from the great well." The name started to gain popularity in the 1990s and peaked in about 2015. The title is versatile and can be unisex, as singer Jessica Simpson named her daughter Maxwell. Beatles’ fans might be particularly fond of the name due to the song "Maxwell's Silver Hammer."
Maddox means "son of Madoc" or “fortunate.” In Welsh lore, Madoc was a prince. While only becoming popular in the United States in recent years, the name has been around for centuries in Wales. Maddox spiked in popularity after Angelina Jolie chose it for one of her sons. Maddox is seen as a cool and unique name. This title is also unisex, with many girls also receiving it.
*Note: Statistics on the popularity of these names/number of babies given these names are based on available data from U.S. births in 2017, as reported by the official Social Security website.