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Probably the most successful of all the Old French names of Germanic origin that were introduced to England by the Normans. It is derived from Germanic wil ‘will, desire’ + helm ‘helmet, protection’. The fact that it was borne by the Conqueror himself does not seem to have inhibited its favour with the ‘conquered’ population: in the first century after the Conquest it was the commonest male name of all, and not only among the Normans. In the later Middle Ages it was overtaken by John, but continued to run second to that name until the 20th century, when the picture became more fragmented.
6th in the U.S.

Nicknames & variations

Quick facts

Millions
of people in the U.S have this name
3,654,920
to be exact
3,761,499
if you include dead people (since the government started keeping track)
Delaware
has the most people named William per capita
1925
marked the height of its popularity
0.23%
99.77%
46%
55+
32%
30-54
11%
13-29
12%
0-12

Top state populations

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