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Top Canadian baby names for 2012: William and Maya

Jordana Divon
Shine On
December 10, 2012

The results are in. And well...we're still pretty conventional.

Today's Parent has compiled a list of the top baby names in Canada for 2012 and it appears that the British Empire still reigns supreme, at least when it comes to what we choose to call our children.

The popular magazine collected available data from provincial vital Statistics departments (barring Prince Edward Island) and William emerged as the top boys' name of the year across the country.

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Rounding out the top five were Jacob, Liam (last year's No. 1 pick), Nathan and Noah -- indicating that biblical names still have a powerful draw as well.

Over in the girls' corner, we learned that Maya and its variants (Mia, Mya) will be the most commonly shouted name around preschool playgrounds in about three years' time.

Sophia, Olivia, Emma and Emily will accompany little Mayas in fewer, but certainly no less important numbers.

Things got a little more interesting in the province-to-province breakdowns.

While some spots, like Alberta, B.C. and Ontario, stuck fairly close to the national party line, a few provinces veered off course and showed a bit of regional spirit.

Boys' names in the Northwest Territories better reflect the area's rugged terrain with a host of Hunters and Masons breaking the top five.

Ava proved the most popular girls' name, while Hannah, Chloe, Eva and Neveah (or "Heaven" written backwards) made for a more original list.

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And thanks to the beauty of the French language, this year's crop of baby girls in Quebec will also get to distinguish themselves from the national average.

Lea was the most popular name across the board, with Emma, Florence, Zoe and Juliette closing off spots two to five.

New Quebec parents kept a little closer to the norm when it came to their sons, choosing William as their No. 1.

A look at trends south of the border reveals that Canada's top picks aren't much different from those of our U.S. neighbours.

Their top girls' names for 2012 were Sophia, Emma, Olivia, Isabella and Ava, while many an American boy will soon answer to the names Aiden, Jackson, Ethan, Liam and Mason.

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