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User comments for Philomena

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This is the name of Esther Greenwood's benefactoress in "The Bell Jar".
-- kiwifruit  8/13/2006
Actually, Philomena comes from the Greek philomênê, which means "loved", it's the past participle of the verb philein, meaning "to love". [noted -ed]
-- lillinparadise  1/27/2007
Philomena´s pet forms are Philly, Phil, Minna, Mena, Philona, Phyllis.
-- Ronja  5/12/2007
Philomena is also the Czech and Slovak form.
Name Day: 11th August (Czech).
-- Karcoolka  7/14/2007
St. Philomena was dropped from the Roman Catholic calendar in 1961.
-- Kosta  8/1/2007
I hate the name. PHIL-O-MENA. Yuck.
-- Anonymous User  4/3/2009
One of my teacher's daughters had the name Philomene which is a French version of Philomena. I think it's very unique and I like Philomene more than Philomena.
-- Milena Scialfa  12/31/2009
I really like this name; it's classy, strong, youthful, and just altogether a really lovely name. :)
-- walesgal92  5/15/2010
This name has also been used in The Netherlands, in this spelling (not just Filomena was used here). I should know, since this was the first name of my (Dutch) great-greatgrandmother.

Philomena is quite old-fashioned here, however, so one can consider it a rare name on those born in The Netherlands after 1980.
-- Lucille  5/30/2010
This is the name of Princess Celestia's pet phoenix from the show, "My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic".
-- boingloings  8/9/2011
This is my mothers name. She doesn't like it much, therefor I guess it's put me off it. Thankfully names are not carried on down the way they used to be years ago so I've avoided passing it onto my children! It is normally a nun's name I would have thought!
-- mageire77  11/30/2011
It reminds me of philharmonics.
-- Meapergirl  12/27/2011
Annabella Gloria Philomena Sciorra (born 1960 in New York City) is an American actress.
-- Anonymous User  7/25/2012
The name Philomena was given to 40 baby girls born in the US in 2012.
-- Oohvintage  7/19/2013
Philomena is the title of a biographical story by Martin Sixsmith. It was made into a film starring Dame Judi Dench.
-- Anonymous User  4/11/2014
What a nice name Philomena is, strong and feminine.
-- EqualityandLoveRall  5/21/2014
The name doesn't mean "friend, lover of strength," etc. The original form is Filumena, suggesting the of the word "lumena," or light. Also lumena means lamp, lantern, light of day, the eye, clearness, understanding. The name exclusively originates from the "obscure saint of the 1st century," as the description of this name indicates. It was a name invented by the Saint's parents, who were Greek, and who originally named her "Lumena" and then, at her baptism, had her name registered as "Filumena." "Filia" meaning daughter in Latin, so "daughter of light." I've submitted corrections and resources to Behind The Name.

Philomena wasn't dropped from the Church in 1961. She wasn't listed on the martyrology, but that didn't mean that the Church didn't concede she was a martyr and a saint. Five Popes were devotees of her and approved her devotion and several Saints were devoted to her as well. Her archconfraturnity still exists, her shrine in Mugnano, Italy, still exists (I've been there, it's very beautiful), her feast day was moved, etc. Information from and

That said, this is MY name and I like it a lot. Most people find it very exotic (in the US) and also don't know how to pronounce it (I have the French spelling), which opens up a lot of interesting conversations about etymology. It also makes me memorable. I like the variety of nicknames that can be derived from it, as well; they are either very cool, or very cute, and there is a large variety of them that can be made up. People have been very inventive. All in all, as someone who has this name, I can say, it has been a good experience.
-- Anonymous User  9/2/2015

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