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I have always wondered how the X-Men got their name. Is it because of Prof. Xaviers' starting letter? or maybe because they are xtremely cool ;)

Any thoughts and/or proofs?

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up vote 19 down vote accepted

As stated on the Marvel Comics webpage for X-Men:

Xavier spent months recruiting his early students (code-named Cyclops, Iceman, Angel, Beast and Marvel Girl), dubbing them "X-Men" because each possessed an "extra" ability normal humans lacked.

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Thank god they didnt name them C-men, beacause it was Charles xavier ! – gprasant Jan 7 '12 at 15:19
Even the Comics Code guys couldn't that stupid! – wbogacz Jan 7 '12 at 16:19
@gprasant - See this Sheldon Cooper t-shirt! – wbogacz Mar 23 '12 at 15:38

Scoping it within the limits of the X-Men movies, specifically X-Men: First Class we have the following on the movie's IMDB Quotes page:

Raven Darkholme: We have to call him, Havok. That's his name now. And we were thinking...
[points to Charles]
Raven Darkholme: should be Professor X...
[points to Erik]
Raven Darkholme: ...and you should be Magneto.
Erik Lehnsherr: Exceptional.

And then later on with MacTaggert;

Dr. Moira MacTaggert: You know, one day the government is going to realize that how lucky they were to have Professor X on their side.
Professor Charles Xavier: I suppose I am a real professor, aren't I? Next thing you know, I'll be going bald. We're still on the government side, Moira. We're still G-Men. Just without the "G".
Dr. Moira MacTaggert: No. You're your own team now. It's better. You're X-Men.
Professor Charles Xavier: Yes, I like the sound of that.

So within the scope of the movie, Professor Charles got the idea from MacTaggert and she got the idea from Raven. Though this is not correct within the comics, this is how it is played out within the movie.

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I could've sworn, in that scope, when he was first talking to Logan in the first movie he mentioned the kids started calling them X-Men as well. Obviously First-Class comes first chronologically, and is most likely a bit of a writing flub. But curious nonetheless in the movie scope. – TylerShads Jan 4 '12 at 16:49
I actually never have watched the movies, only exposed through the comics. I assumed with a theme so well established it would be forced to be consistent, since the audience would be vocal. – wbogacz Jan 4 '12 at 17:19

Also, the mutant gene that they posses is called the "X-Gene".

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