by Julie Snyder
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are pregnant!
Although Kate Middleton's pregnancy was just confirmed, baby name predictions for the royal baby have been floating around since before their wedding.
Will the parents-to-be keep it in the family by choosing something historically royal or go the popular route with a top-10 pick?
We're not placing bets, but a lot of Britons are.
The bookmakers Ladbrokes, William Hill and Paddy Power all have standing markets on the first name as well as weight, date and even the baby's hair color.
The accession rules changed recently so the first child, whether a boy or a girl will ascend the throne. Pamela Satran of Nameberry explains, "The royal baby name will more closely adhere to protocol, which dictates a name previously used by British royalty as well as one with positive connotations: no unlucky choices (sorry, John) or inharmonious history (bye bye, Diana, at least as a first name)."
Will you find it on the royal baby name list?
A traditional, inherited royal name
Names the royal couple might have on their list include:
✓ Alice: This classic is on the top 50 in Britain. Queen Victoria's daughter, Alice shocked her mother by breastfeeding her baby.
✓ Alfred or Albert: Both names have positive royal history. Albert may have an edge since Alfred and Alfie have been popularized by the show "The Eastenders."
✓ Arthur: A name with legendary and contemporary status. Queen Victoria had a son named Arthur.
✓ Caroline: Although the most recent Queen Caroline was involved by scandal, strong family tied -- the Duchess's mother is named Carole and Prince William's father is named Charles.
✓ Charlotte: A feminized form of Charles, it may be a perfect choice for a future queen.
✓ Eleanor: The wife of King Henry II is a strong female historical figure; an appropriate image for today.
✓ Frederick: The name Frederick is dotted throughout British royal history. It sounds properly regal in its full form and its nickname is popular in the UK.
✓ George, meaning humble farmer was the name of Queen Elizabeth’s grandfather, the king who led Britain through World War I.
✓ Leopold: Queen Victoria named Prince Leopold after a favorite uncle of hers. This Germanic leonine name is expected to be popular in 2012.
✓ Matilda: With an ancient royal history it's a possibility. Closely related Maude could also be on the list.
✓ Philip: The name of the baby's great-grandfather, it's a likely choice for one of the middle names, but not as likely as a first name.
✓ Victoria: One of the most famous queens in British history, this name is a likely choice for a girl. It embodies history and strength while feeling contemporary.
A popular name
Because choosing the baby's name must follow protocol, the first name most likely will not be among the UK's most popular. One of the three middle names could come from this list.
Top 10 girl names: Lily, Emily, Isabella, Sophia, Isabelle, Sophie, Olivia, Ava, Chloe and Isla
Top 10 boy names: Oliver, Jack, Henry, Charlie, James, Joshua, Alfie, Thomas, Jacob and Ethan
Our members speculate
Margaret says, "For a girl I think Elizabeth, William is close to his Granny and Katherine and her mother's middle name is Elizabeth. I actually suggested it to hubby on the day of their wedding."
"I'd like to see an Alastair or Helena. I think Alastair is unlikely given the scandal surrounding the previous royal Alastair, so my second choice is Arthur. I'd lay bets on an equally lovely Alexander or Eleanor. So many beautiful royal names to choose from though. Must be hard!" Bee says.
"Well, boy or girl (s)he will no doubt have an inherited name, especially the first name. I mean, it's the tradition of royalty especially when the baby will be the future king or queen. I think Victoria and Anne are beautiful, though when your name is like four or five names long, you can pretty much get whatever you want in there," ClairesMommy says.
Bonita shares, "I'ill join the dorky club that is excited about this. For a girl I agree with Elizabeth Diana. For a boy I think Edward, Henry, or another family name. I do think that they should be able to choose what ever name they want even if it is not traditional."
Do you have any splendidly royal baby name ideas to add to the list?
Photo courtesy of iStockphoto.