Royal Baby George: Kind of Boring, but Kind of Innovative

Will and Kate have named their new son George Alexander Louis. Nameberry.com’s Pamela Redmond Satran on why the moniker is a little bit traditional and a little bit not.

George Alexander Louis is the name of the new royal baby—and in typical Will and Kate style, it’s both a traditional choice as well as a departure from the expected.

First of all, the royal baby has three names rather than the traditional four that his father and grandfather have. And his middle names, Alexander and Louis, while still royal, are a surprise as they’re not the names of his father, grandfather, or great-grandfather.

Of course, George is the name of more kings of England over the past three centuries than any other name. A Greek name meaning “farmer,” George was the name used as king by Queen Elizabeth’s father, called King George VI but whose given name was Albert. (George VII is expected to be the name used by Prince Charles should he ascend the throne.)

The couple has seemingly made a habit of doing things a little bit as they’ve always been done and at the same time making them their own. The baby was born at the Lindo Wing of St. Mary’s Hospital, as was Prince William, but his father was the only one in the delivery room for the birth, and the royal couple spent four hours alone with their new son before announcing his arrival to the world.

George is a top-100 name in England but less popular in the U.S., where it’s more closely associated with George Bush (senior and junior) than with glamorous George Clooney or playful Curious George.

Celebrities ranging from Kristin Scott Thomas to Jane Kaczmarek and George Foreman—of course—all have sons named George.

Alexander, meanwhile is an imperial name popular throughout the Western world, also of Greek origin and meaning “defending men.” Louis, the name of Prince Charles’s mentor Louis Mountbatten, is a German and French name meaning “renowned warrior.” It was used most famously by French royalty.