I am looking for datasets or huge lists of human forenames. There's plenty of websites that curate lists of names. But none of these seems to offer functionality to export either raw data/lists of names, nor to list more than a few dozen names per page.

My criteria to the data are:

  • each entry needs be unique
  • each entry needs be human readable (not just a random collection of letters such as: quwertzpl)
  • entries need to number 10'000+ (ten thousand and/or more)
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    I won't add them all to my answer, but most country's have a baby name data page (for example, Sweden) – philshem Mar 19 '15 at 13:20

The best source of international human given (first) names comes from a German computer magazine. The text file has nearly 50k names that are classified by likely gender, and how popular in each country. It's carefully curated and has a friendly license (GNU Free Documentation License 1.2).

The file can be downloaded here : ftp://ftp.heise.de/pub/ct/listings/0717-182.zip (name_dict.txt contains the data).

Instead of parsing this file, you can use the python port SexMachine (really) - package and github repo. I'm sure other languages have their own ports. There is also a windows executable (details).

(my reference)

For US baby names, you can use the Social Security Admin's download (overview) and link to data. This data can be national or on the state level, and going back to the late 19th century.

To safeguard privacy, we restrict our list of names to those with at least 5 occurrences.

You'll also find ports of this data to various languages.

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If you are a R user, you can download the SSA 'babynames' dataset directly in R via the package 'babynames' (from the great Hadley Wickham) which is on CRAN: here

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Here are csv files containing first names and surnames on a cool data-sharing platoform: https://data.world/len/us-first-names-database

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For information on SSA dataset.

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