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Is Eva the New Ava?

When we had our first child, our agreed-upon girl's name was Eva, which I still love. Our first ended up being a boy, and now that we're expecting a girl, I was excited to return to Eva. However, my husband has fallen out of love with the name, saying it's too popular with all the little Avas running around our neighborhood. To him, Ava and Eva are basically the same name with overlapping pronunciations. I disagree, but I see his point. Is he right? If so, what is an alternative to Eva? I want something with a Jewish/Israeli connection and preferably short.

–Still Love Eva

Ava and Eva do overlap, as you mention, with similar letters and sounds. In some places and with some accents the two names could be confused, even though the first letter is different. But that connection between the two need not rule Eva out.

I've often argued that popularity doesn't have to be a deal-breaker. (Could it be that your husband has fallen out of love with the name for some other reason, or simply because his tastes have changed?) Being aware of naming trends is one thing, but letting them eliminate your favorite choice is another.

Still, it sounds like you're willing to let Eva go and consider some other options. Eve might be a good compromise, with a big enough change for your husband and a small enough one for you! There's also Chava, the Hebrew name for Eve. And Baby Name Wizard's Laura Wattenberg suggests Ada or Lana as less commonly heard alternatives for Ava. You might also look at Ivy. It's more of a nature name than a Jewish one, but gives you two syllables and a V sound in just three letters, like Ava and Eva.

Or, how about one of these short names with a Jewish, Hebrew, or Israeli link:


If none of those appeal to you the way Eva does, perhaps another appeal to your husband would be in order. Point out that although he may know of a few little Avas, your Eva would be special because she's yours!


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February 1, 2016 6:58 PM
By Anonymous (not verified)

There is also Ziva, which is Jewish and retains the dominant sound of Eva. Or Aviva, a Hebrew word-name used in Israel. Or Evita, the Spanish variant of Eve/Eva.

You might also want to consider a longer name with Eva as the nickname. Something like Geneva or Genevieve perhaps?

February 1, 2016 8:32 PM
By Anonymous (not verified)

What about Noa? It's a Hebrew name used for girls. Short and sweet like Eva!!

February 5, 2016 10:47 AM
By Sakura Wannabee (not verified)

Name her Evangelion and soak up all the geek cred!

February 6, 2016 1:49 AM
By Marina (not verified)

Noa came to mind immediately. Very popular in Israel, almost unheard of in the US. Maya and Yael are two other popular Israeli names for girls. (Yael is pronounced with two syllables, ya-ELL.)

February 7, 2016 9:21 PM
By Sabby (not verified)

The only problem with Noa is that Noah for bits is hugely popular. That could cause confusion. I like Ruth. Short, Hebrew, and feminine.

February 8, 2016 4:13 PM
By Sabby (not verified)

*for boys not bits

February 12, 2016 8:32 PM
By Paz (not verified)

You've gotten some good suggestions. Here are some other Hebrew names that are similar in sound and/or style:

Or you can use my name since it's a short Hebrew name. :-)

February 13, 2016 11:01 PM
By Anonymous (not verified)

I think Eva is getting to be more & more popular, but it's also more confusing! I used to just think it was pronounced Ee-vah, but now I know 3 Evas, all pronounced differently!
Adult Eva says "Ee-vah"
Baby Eva 1 I know is pronounced Ava
Baby Eva 2 I know is pronounced Evvah (short E like in egg)

This name is only 3 letters, but it confuses me so much! So I can see where your husband is coming from!

March 11, 2016 4:42 PM
By Anonymous (not verified)

Where I am from Eva is pronounced eeeeee-va- that is a nice name but I love Ava or even Avia. If not Eve is beautiful

March 25, 2016 2:09 PM
By Kelse (not verified)

- Nara
- Amy
- Evanna
- Eval
- Avalyn / Evalyn

Some suggestions...

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