African Baby Names

AFRICAN is a meta-category. The exact country/region of a name is listed in the notes on each individual name page.

Each country within Africa has distinct naming practices among their different ethnic groups. For example, in Nigeria, the Yoruba culture often chooses names based on a characteristic relative to the moment of birth, such as the day of the week or where it was born. Most Yoruba baby names are picked by the grandparents of the baby. Many Yoruba and Igbo names are often abbreviated. Igbo names are commonly gender-neutral. The predominant religion of certain regions also can influence the baby names, such as Hausa names being more influenced by Islam. In Somalia, a child’s given name can be influenced by birth order. Nicknames are very common in Somalia. The Zulu of South Africa often use expectation names or the baby’s environment at birth. Zulu babies are typically named before birth.

Click on a name to find the name meaning, popularity, origin and other useful information.