Want some thoughts on Maya and Maeve

Sorry for posting so many times recently! [name_m]Just[/name_m] wanted to get some thoughts on two more names.

[name_f]Maya[/name_f] –
This one has been on and off my list for the past few years. It’s in the top 100 in the US, which is more popular than I would like, but I have met very few people in real life named [name_f]Maya[/name_f] so it doesn’t seem as popular as the rankings would have me believe.

I think I prefer [name_f]Maya[/name_f] to [name_f]Maia[/name_f], but I would consider both spellings. To me, they are pronounced the same way (MY-uh), and I know some people on here sometimes say that they would pronounce [name_f]Maya[/name_f] as MAY-uh, but I have never heard that pronunciation in real life either so that also seems like less of an issue. Maybe it’s a country/regional thing?

Pros for [name_f]Maya[/name_f]/[name_f]Maia[/name_f] –

  1. [name_f]Maya[/name_f] [name_f]Angelou[/name_f] is a great namesake
  2. [name_u]Strong[/name_u] history behind it, with the Mayan civilization and the goddess [name_f]Maia[/name_f]
  3. Good meaning, with [name_f]Maya[/name_f] meaning water and [name_f]Maia[/name_f] meaning mother I believe
  4. Soft yet strong, simple yet elegant

Potential cons for [name_f]Maya[/name_f]/[name_f]Maia[/name_f] –

  1. Really no good nicknames or short versions at all
  2. Despite all the good history behind it, it feels a little insubstantial almost? Lacking some personality or sparkle or uniqueness?

[name_f]Maeve[/name_f] –
First heard this one on a real life child about a year ago, and fell in love! So spunky and strong but still adorable, can definitely see on a baby to toddler to teenager to adult. I also love that it calls back to my Irish heritage. I definitely prefer the Anglicized spelling, since I’m in an area that wouldn’t handle the traditional spelling well, and I think [name_f]Maeve[/name_f] visually is prettier personally. However, ever since I heard this name, I feel like I’ve seen it EVERYWHERE on Nameberry and I’m worried it’s poised to spike to the top of the charts soon!

Pros for [name_f]Maeve[/name_f] –

  1. Great history and character and strength behind the name
  2. Very sweet, but also very strong
  3. I like the Irish background
  4. Easy to spell and pronounce with this spelling
  5. Could call her “[name_f]Mae[/name_f]” in a pinch (“Hey [name_f]Mae[/name_f], can you grab the milk from the fridge?” etc)

Potential cons for [name_f]Maeve[/name_f] –

  1. Getting far too popular?? Or maybe not? Might be NB bias
  2. [name_f]My[/name_f] last name is one syllable. [name_f]Do[/name_f] you think [name_f]Maeve[/name_f] would work with a one syllable last name?

What are your thoughts? As we all are, I’m sure, I’m really trying to find a sweet spot name that is recognizable but still unique, strong and substantial, passes the resume test, works on a variety of ages, causes others to think “Wow, that’s a cool name!” but doesn’t seem pretentious or snooty or too out-there (i.e. too fantasy, too medieval, not wearable), is not too tired or overused or boring, and will hopefully not be tied to a particular era. I do not want my children to be FirstName LastInitial their whole lives (like I am!), and I also don’t want them to have to explain their name or spell it or hear it pronounced incorrectly by everyone they meet. With that in mind… [name_f]Do[/name_f] you think [name_f]Maya[/name_f] and [name_f]Maeve[/name_f] should have a place on my list?

Current other name crushes/faves: [name_f]Fiona[/name_f], [name_f]Freya[/name_f], [name_f]Eliza[/name_f], [name_f]Eloise[/name_f], [name_f]Pippa[/name_f], [name_f]Juno[/name_f], [name_f]Astrid[/name_f], [name_f]Ramona[/name_f], [name_f]Azalea[/name_f], [name_f]Cosima[/name_f], [name_f]Matilda[/name_f]. Also considering [name_f]Stella[/name_f], [name_u]Vivian[/name_u], and [name_f]Imogen[/name_f], but my husband isn’t a fan of those ones so we will see :wink:

As much as I want to love [name_f]Maya[/name_f] because of [name_f]Angelou[/name_f], I just don’t. I just don’t like the sound, I suppose. The name itself feels sort of flimsy to me. I LOVE [name_f]Maeve[/name_f] though, and I definitely don’t think it’s becoming popular, even if it’s getting more usage.

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I much prefer [name_f]Maya[/name_f]. It feels elegant, classy and simple. [name_f]Maeve[/name_f] has never appealed to me. It sounds harsh and not very pretty imho. On another note, M names are so hard, aren’t they?! I’ve considered [name_f]Maya[/name_f], [name_f]Mia[/name_f], [name_u]Maria[/name_u], and [name_u]Marie[/name_u], and I have the hardest time choosing between them!

I definitely think both [name_f]Maya[/name_f] and [name_f]Maeve[/name_f] are both strong and substantial, pass the resume test, age well, don’t seem pretentious/snooty/out there, and don’t seem tired/overused/boring. So that’s a lot of the tests you mentioned already passed! I would say they’re both recognizable, and likely someone with either name wouldn’t have to explain it/spell it all the time/hear it pronounced incorrectly constantly. Although [name_f]Maya[/name_f]’s two spellings may complicate things a bit. But I’m guessing a [name_f]Maya[/name_f] spelled this way would have an easier time than a [name_f]Maia[/name_f] spelled this way. I’ve never heard the [name_f]May[/name_f]-a pronunciation, always [name_f]My[/name_f]-a (regardless of spelling). It looks like [name_f]Maya[/name_f] is a lot more common than [name_f]Maeve[/name_f] at the moment, at least in the U.S.; but [name_f]Maeve[/name_f] is trending upwards more rapidly (according to SSA data). So [name_f]Maeve[/name_f] could potentially end up seeming more tied to a particular era, although I definitely don’t think it’s trendy. Overall, I would say they’re both great names, and I like different things about each of them. [name_f]Maya[/name_f] is simple, sweet, crosses languages/cultures easily, and, as you mentioned, has a wonderful namesake and cool meanings. [name_f]Maeve[/name_f] feels strong and energetic, has a lot of personality, and has [name_f]Mae[/name_f] as a charming nickname. Honestly, I see them as sisters for different names from your faves list:

[name_f]Maya[/name_f] and [name_f]Eliza[/name_f]
[name_f]Maya[/name_f] and [name_f]Eloise[/name_f]
[name_f]Maeve[/name_f] and [name_f]Fiona[/name_f]
[name_f]Maeve[/name_f] and [name_f]Juno[/name_f]

Both names are lovely.
[name_f]Maia[/name_f] I would definitely pronounce how you intend to pronounce it. I also read [name_f]Maya[/name_f] the same way, but would be less certain of the intended pronunciation. If I heard the name, my first instinct would be to spell with a y, but I would check. A nickname option could be her first and middle initial, if you want an alternative to use sometimes. I know a girl who goes by MJ.
[name_f]Maeve[/name_f] is a nice easy one to pronounce and spell, and I love the nickname [name_f]Mae[/name_f]. It’s very sweet. [name_f]Maeve[/name_f] sounds fine with many single-syllable surnames, like [name_f]Maeve[/name_f] [name_m]Jones[/name_m] or [name_f]Maeve[/name_f] [name_m]Brown[/name_m]. Another option would be [name_f]Mavis[/name_f], where [name_f]Maeve[/name_f] can be used as a nickname.

@jonquils – I feel that way about [name_f]Maya[/name_f] too sometimes, like it just feels a little wispy and lacking substance. But other times I think it sounds quietly powerful! So I go back and forth. I do love [name_f]Maeve[/name_f] I think more than [name_f]Maya[/name_f] right now, but my mind changes often!

@MG1257 – [name_f]My[/name_f] husband agrees with you, he’s not a huge fan of [name_f]Maeve[/name_f]. I don’t think it sounds harsh at all though, I think it sounds really sweet and gentle! Hoping to change his mind over the next several months/year/however long it takes us to have a daughter :stuck_out_tongue: M names are really hard!! I tend to like E, M, and F names… [name_f]Eloise[/name_f] vs [name_f]Eliza[/name_f], [name_f]Maya[/name_f] vs [name_f]Maeve[/name_f] vs [name_f]Matilda[/name_f], [name_f]Fiona[/name_f] vs [name_f]Freya[/name_f] vs [name_f]Flora[/name_f] vs [name_f]Florence[/name_f]. I do like [name_f]Mia[/name_f] as well, but it sounds somewhat nasally when I say it, so I prefer [name_f]Maya[/name_f]. Plus [name_f]Mia[/name_f] is quite popular where I live!!

@dandy_orchid – [name_u]Love[/name_u] this detailed response!!! Thanks so much!! I definitely agree with you, they’re both awesome names in different ways. I really like your pairings! Although [name_f]Maya[/name_f] and [name_f]Eliza[/name_f] are a little too rhyme-y to be sisters for me. [name_m]How[/name_m] about [name_f]Maeve[/name_f] & [name_f]Astrid[/name_f] vs [name_f]Maya[/name_f] & [name_f]Astrid[/name_f]?

@DayJoy – Yeah, I think that makes sense, to think it’s probably MY-uh and probably spelled [name_f]Maya[/name_f] but might need clarification. MJ is cute! That’s a good option! Thanks for the feedback about the last name, you’re right that it doesn’t sound too abrupt. It helps that [name_f]Maeve[/name_f] has the gentle long “e” in the middle which makes it sound like an elongated one syllable name instead of really clippy. [name_f]Mavis[/name_f] is an interesting option!! I think I like [name_f]Maeve[/name_f] better, though. [name_f]Mavis[/name_f] isn’t really my style and I’m not sure why!

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@MG1257 – Oooh, another M name I like is [name_f]Maren[/name_f] (or [name_u]Marin[/name_u], [name_f]Merryn[/name_f], Meryn, not sure which spelling I like best). And [name_f]Meryl[/name_f]! Gosh, so many lovely M names.

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I like both names, but I’m partial to [name_f]Maeve[/name_f] just because I’ve known a lot of Mayas. I do think a girl named [name_f]Maya[/name_f] would have a big chance of being [name_f]Maya[/name_f], last initial at school, but it does have a pretty sound. I have seen [name_f]Maeve[/name_f] a lot of times on NB, but it has such a unique sound, I wouldn’t worry too much about it becoming too popular. I would definitely say [name_f]Maya[/name_f] as “[name_f]My[/name_f]-uh,” but [name_f]May[/name_f] would be a nice nickname. [name_f]Mae[/name_f] would be a nice nickname for [name_f]Maeve[/name_f] and so would [name_f]Ave[/name_f], [name_f]Eve[/name_f], [name_f]Avie[/name_f], or [name_f]Evie[/name_f].

I really like [name_f]Freya[/name_f], [name_f]Eloise[/name_f], [name_f]Pippa[/name_f], [name_f]Astrid[/name_f], [name_f]Azalea[/name_f], [name_f]Cosima[/name_f], [name_u]Vivian[/name_u], and [name_f]Imogen[/name_f] from your list.

Some Ideas (Sorry for Repeats) That Seem Like Your Style:

I really love [name_f]Maeve[/name_f]. I don’t think it will be the next [name_f]Olivia[/name_f] in terms of popularity, but I personally know two Maeves born here in the NYC area in the last six months. Another wonderful “M” name is [name_f]Mairead[/name_f], and not as popular as [name_f]Maeve[/name_f].

I honestly love both. They’ve been on my list for years. If I had to pick one today, I’d go with [name_f]Maeve[/name_f]. But tomorrow it could easily switch. I think both are great, solid names that meet the criteria you’re looking for.

Both of these are gorgeous.

[name_f]Maeve[/name_f] has a sweet simplicity and a warm strength.
[name_f]Maya[/name_f] feels summery, substantial and joyful.

I personally prefer [name_f]Maeve[/name_f] and i think the popularity is NB bias. I’ve met Mayas but never a [name_f]Maeve[/name_f]

I have always loved the name [name_f]Maya[/name_f]. It seems like a name that could fit almost any girl/woman, and it’s very feminine. I personally don’t like [name_f]Maeve[/name_f]. I feel like I don’t get it maybe?

I love [name_f]Maya[/name_f], I think it’s a gorgeous name and only know two ([name_f]Maya[/name_f] and [name_f]Mya[/name_f]). I’m not a huge fan of [name_f]Maeve[/name_f] but I really like [name_f]Maeva[/name_f], so that might be a compromise between the two. With [name_f]Maeve[/name_f] or [name_f]Mae[/name_f] as a nickname. I don’t know any Maeves or Maevas in real life either, so hard to say if it would take off based on popularity here or not.

I think they’re both absolutely lovely names, strong and substantial yet pretty and vibrant. I agree with PP that they both feel like they might work better with different names on your list stylistically.

@findemaxa13 – Would love additional opinions on which names go better together in my list!! That’s definitely something I’m trying to figure out.

I’m thinking that:
[name_f]Maya[/name_f], [name_f]Eloise[/name_f], [name_f]Pippa[/name_f], [name_f]Ramona[/name_f], [name_f]Matilda[/name_f], [name_f]Stella[/name_f], [name_u]Vivian[/name_u], [name_f]Imogen[/name_f]
[name_f]Maeve[/name_f], [name_f]Fiona[/name_f], [name_f]Freya[/name_f], [name_f]Juno[/name_f], [name_f]Astrid[/name_f], [name_f]Azalea[/name_f], [name_f]Cosima[/name_f]


I do love [name_f]Ivy[/name_f]!! That’s a great suggestion. I also like [name_f]Iris[/name_f], which you didn’t suggest but is similar to some of the other names you mentioned. [name_f]Lovely[/name_f] suggestions!

I really like your taste and your reasonings behind each name. I’m thinking for a little more substance you could use [name_f]Amaya[/name_f] and use [name_f]Maya[/name_f] as the nickname. I think [name_f]Amaya[/name_f] matches your list slightly more than [name_f]Maya[/name_f] by itself. (Also I would never have thought to say [name_f]May[/name_f]-uh…so interesting to read)

As far as [name_f]Maeve[/name_f] is concerned, I love the meaning of it and I think it can work with a one syllable last name. I wouldn’t let that stop you if you love it.

I even think [name_f]Amaya[/name_f] [name_f]Maeve[/name_f] or [name_f]Maeve[/name_f] [name_f]Amaya[/name_f] would make a nice combo.