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ScriptsΜαγδαληνη Ancient Greek
PronouncedPron.mak-da-LE-nə German
MAG-də-leen English

Meaning & History

From a title which meant "of Magdala". Mary Magdalene, a character in the New Testament, was named thus because she was from Magdala - a village on the Sea of Galilee whose name meant "tower" in Hebrew. She was cleaned of evil spirits by Jesus and then remained with him during his ministry, witnessing the crucifixion and the resurrection. She was a popular saint in the Middle Ages, and the name became common then. In England it is traditionally rendered Madeline, while Magdalene or Magdalen is the learned form.
VariantsMagdalena German Madeleine, Madeline, Magdalen, Magdalena English
DiminutivesAlena, Lena, Lene, Leni, Magda German Lena English
Other Languages & CulturesShelena African American Maialen Basque Magdalena, Magdalina Bulgarian Magdalena Catalan Magdalena, Magda, Majda, Manda, Mandica Croatian Magdaléna, Magdalena, Alena, Lenka, Magda Czech Magdalena, Lena, Magda, Malene Danish Madelon, Magdalena, Magda Dutch Matleena, Leena Finnish Madeleine, Magali, Madeline, Magalie French Magdalini, Lena, Magda Greek Magdaléna, Magdolna, Magda Hungarian Madailéin Irish Maddalena, Lena Italian Magdalena Macedonian Magdalena, Lena, Linn, Magda, Malene, Malin Norwegian Magali, Magdalena Occitan Magdalena, Lena, Magda Polish Madalena, Magda Portuguese Mădălina, Magdalena, Magda Romanian Magdalena, Manda Serbian Magdaléna, Alena, Lenka Slovak Magdalena, Alena, Alenka, Majda Slovene Magdalena, Malena Spanish Madeleine, Magdalena, Lena, Linn, Magda, Malena, Malin Swedish


Mary Magdalene depicted by Gheorghe TattarescuMary Magdalene depicted by Gheorghe Tattarescu


biblical, biblical women, currently out of the US top 1000, Jesus Christ Superstar
Entry updated December 8, 2017   Contribute