|Using This Reference||Searching||Other Features|
The main feature of this website is a listing of names and their meanings. Entries are displayed in the following manner:
Not all names have usages, other scripts or pronunciations. The meaning and history is a sentence or short paragraph describing the etymology and source language of the name. It also sometimes gives details about the name's etymological elements, its historical usage, and some of its notable bearers.
In many cases a name is a form of another name. For example: Mike is a short form of Michael. Another example: Varvara is the Russian cognate of Barbara. In these cases the meaning will be listed at the other name, so follow the link provided to go to that other name.
For instructions and tips on doing searches please see the search page.
On the search page you will find two different types of searches. Search for Names allows you to search the name database in many different ways. Search for Additional Information on a Name finds similar-sounding and related names, as well as popularities, namesakes, name days and more.
For those interested, someone has created an OpenSearch plugin for behindthename.com - supported by Firefox 2+, Internet Explorer 7+, etc.
Besides the main name database, there are several other features on this website.
- The most popular names provides lists of the names used most frequently in many parts of the world.
- The namesakes provides many different lists of famous people, organized by given name.
- The name days provides lists of given names which are associated with the days of the year in many parts of the world.
- The comments is a collection of comments about names left by users of this website.
- The message boards are a good place to ask and answer questions about names.
- The submit-a-name page is the place to add names that are missing from the database.
- By signing up for a completely free user account, you get complete access to the message boards and polls, as well as the ability to create a profile and customized lists of names.
Also, Behind the Surname is a sister site, dealing with surnames instead of given names.
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