ZIV m & f Hebrew
Means "bright, radiant" in Hebrew. This was the ancient name of the second month of the Jewish calendar.
ŽIVA f Slavic Mythology, Slovene
Means "living, alive" in Slavic. This was the name of a Slavic goddess associated with life, fertility and spring.
ZOE f English, Italian, Ancient Greek
Means "life" in Greek. From early times it was adopted by Hellenized Jews as a translation of EVE
. It was borne by two early Christian saints, one martyred under emperor Hadrian, the other martyred under Diocletian. The name was common in the Byzantine Empire, being borne by a ruling empress of the 11th century. As an English name, Zoe
has only been in use since the 19th century. It has generally been more common among Eastern Christians (in various spellings).
ZOLA (1) f English
Meaning unknown, perhaps an invented name. It has been in occasional use in the English-speaking world since the 19th century. It coincides with an Italian surname, a famous bearer being the French-Italian author Émile Zola (1840-1902).
ZONA f Various
Means "girdle, belt" in Greek. This name was made popular by the Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist and poet Zona Gale.
ZORAIDA f Spanish
Perhaps means "enchanting" or "dawn" in Arabic. This was the name of a minor 12th-century Spanish saint, a convert from Islam. The name was used by Cervantes for a character in his novel 'Don Quixote' (1606), in which Zoraida is a beautiful Moorish woman of Algiers who converts to Christianity and elopes with a Spanish officer.
ZRINKA f Croatian
Possibly from Zrin
, the name of a village in Croatia, or from the noble Zrinski family which originated there.
ZULA (2) f English
Meaning unknown. It has been in use since the 19th century. It is possibly related to the name of the African tribe that lives largely in South Africa, the Zulus. In the 19th century the Zulus were a powerful nation under their leader Shaka.
ZULEIKA f Literature
Possibly means "brilliant beauty" in Persian. According to medieval legends this was the name of Potiphar's wife in the Bible. She has been a frequent subject of poems and tales.