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GenderFeminine
UsageEnglish
PronouncedPron.EL-ə-nawr
[key]

Meaning & History

From the Old French form of the Occitan name Aliénor. Among the name's earliest bearers was the influential Eleanor of Aquitaine (12th century), who was the queen of Louis VII, the king of France, and later Henry II, the king of England. She was named Aenor after her mother, and was called by the Occitan phrase alia Aenor "the other AENOR" in order to distinguish her from her mother. However, there appear to be examples of bearers prior to Eleanor of Aquitaine. It is not clear whether they were in fact Aenors who were retroactively recorded as having the name Eleanor, or whether there is an alternative explanation for the name's origin.

The popularity of the name Eleanor in England during the Middle Ages was due to the fame of Eleanor of Aquitaine, as well as two queens of the following century: Eleanor of Provence, the wife of Henry III, and Eleanor of Castile, the wife of Edward I. More recently, it was borne by first lady Eleanor Roosevelt (1884-1962), the wife of American president Franklin Roosevelt.
Other Languages & CulturesEleonora Bulgarian Eleonora, Ellinor, Ella, Nora Danish Eleonora, Ellen, Noor, Noortje, Nora Dutch Eleonoora, Ella, Elli, Noora Finnish Eléonore French Eleonora, Eleonore, Lore, Leonore, Nora German Eleonora Greek Eleonóra, Nóra Hungarian Eleonora, Leonora, Lora, Lorita, Nora, Norina Italian Noor, Noortje Limburgish Eleonora, Ellinor, Ella, Nora Norwegian Aliénor Occitan Eleonora Polish Leonor Portuguese Eleonora Russian Eilionoir, Eilidh Scottish Leonor Spanish Eleonor, Eleonora, Ellinor, Ella, Nora Swedish Eleonora Ukrainian

Images

Eleanor of Aquitaine's tomb effigyEleanor of Aquitaine's tomb effigy

Categories

A Song of Ice and Fire characters, actresses, athletes, Beatles songs, civil rights, first ladies of the USA, Jane Austen characters, literature, music, never out of the US top 1000, nobility, Ogre Battle characters, Oscar Wilde characters, queens, Shakespearean characters, song titles, Star Ocean characters, Supernatural characters, Tales characters, The Golden Girls characters, The Grim Adventures of Billy and Mandy characters, The Haunting of Hill House characters, uncertain etymology, weather, Will and Grace characters, Winx Club characters
Entry updated July 2, 2017   Contribute