COSETTE f French, Literature
From French chosette
meaning "little thing"
. This is the nickname of the illegitimate daughter of Fantine in Victor Hugo's novel Les Misérables
(1862). Her real name is Euphrasie
, though it is seldom used. In the novel young Cosette is the ward of the cruel Thénardiers until she is retrieved by Jean Valjean.
COURTNEY f & m English
From an aristocratic English surname that was derived either from the French place name Courtenay
(originally a derivative of the personal name Curtenus
, itself derived from Latin curtus
"short") or else from a Norman nickname meaning "short nose". As a feminine name in America, it first became popular during the 1970s.
CRESSIDA f Literature
Medieval form of CHRYSEIS
. Various medieval tales describe her as a woman of Troy, daughter of Calchus, who leaves her Trojan lover Troilus for the Greek hero Diomedes. Shakespeare's play Troilus and Cressida
(1602) was based on these tales.
CRUZ f & m Spanish, Portuguese
in Spanish or Portuguese, referring to the cross of the crucifixion.
CRYSTAL f English
From the English word crystal
for the clear, colourless glass, sometimes cut into the shape of a gemstone. The English word derives ultimately from Greek κρυσταλλος (krystallos)
meaning "ice". It has been in use as a given name since the 19th century.
CSENGE f Hungarian
Possibly derived from Hungarian cseng
meaning "to ring, to clang"
CSILLA f Hungarian
Derived from Hungarian csillag
. This name was created by the Hungarian author András Dugonics for an 1803 novel and later used and popularized by the poet Mihály Vörösmarty.
CVETKA f Slovene
Derived from Slovene cvet
meaning "blossom, flower"
CYBELE f Near Eastern Mythology (Latinized)
Meaning unknown, possibly from Phrygian roots meaning either "stone"
. This was the name of the Phrygian mother goddess associated with fertility and nature. She was later worshipped by the Greeks and Romans.
CYBILL f English (Rare)
Variant of SIBYL
. This name was borne by actress Cybill Shepherd (1950-), who was named after her grandfather Cy and her father Bill.
CYNEBURG f Anglo-Saxon
Means "royal fortress"
from Old English cyne
"royal" and burg
"fortress". Saint Cyneburga, a daughter of a king of Mercia, was the founder of an abbey at Gloucester in the 7th century.
CYNTHIA f English, Greek Mythology (Latinized)
Latinized form of Greek Κυνθια (Kynthia)
, which means "woman from Kynthos"
. This was an epithet of the Greek moon goddess Artemis
, given because Kynthos was the mountain on Delos on which she and her twin brother Apollo
were born. It was not used as a given name until the Renaissance, and it did not become common in the English-speaking world until the 19th century.
CYRA f History
Meaning unknown. Saint Cyra was a 5th-century Syrian hermit who was martyred with her companion Marana.
DA m & f Chinese
From Chinese 达 (dá)
meaning "achieve, arrive at, intelligent" (which is usually only masculine), 大 (dà)
meaning "big, great, vast, high", or other characters with a similar pronunciation.
DAENERYS f Literature
Created by author George R. R. Martin for a character in his series A Song of Ice and Fire
, first published 1996, and the television adaptation Game of Thrones
(2011-2019). An explanation for the meaning of her name is not provided, though it is presumably intended to be of Valyrian origin. In the series Daenerys Targaryen is a queen of the Dothraki and a claimant to the throne of Westeros.
DAFFODIL f English (Rare)
From the name of the flower, ultimately derived from Dutch de affodil
meaning "the asphodel".
DAFNA f Hebrew
in Hebrew, of Greek origin.
DAGRUN f Norwegian
From the Old Norse name Dagrún
, which was derived from the Old Norse elements dagr
"day" and rún
DÁIRÍNE f Irish
Derived from Irish Gaelic dáire
meaning "fruitful, fertile"
DAISY f English
Simply from the English word for the white flower, ultimately derived from Old English dægeseage
meaning "day eye". It was first used as a given name in the 19th century, at the same time many other plant and flower names were coined.
DAIVA f Lithuanian
Created by the Lithuanian writer Vydūnas, who possibly derived it from a Sanskrit word meaning "destiny"
DAKOTA m & f English (Modern)
Means "allies, friends"
in the Dakota language. This is the name of a Native American people of the northern Mississippi valley.
DALE m & f English
From an English surname that originally belonged to a person who lived near a dale or valley.
DALIA (2) f Lithuanian, Baltic Mythology
Means "fate, luck"
in Lithuanian. This was the name of the Lithuanian goddess of weaving, fate and childbirth, often associated with Laima.
DALLAS m & f English
From a surname that was originally taken from a Scottish place name meaning "meadow dwelling"
. A city in Texas bears this name, probably in honour of American Vice President George Mifflin Dallas (1792-1864).
DALMA f Hungarian
Created by the Hungarian poet Mihály Vörösmarty for a male character in his epic poem Zalán Futása
(1825). It was used by later writers such as Mór Jókai for female characters.
DAMAYANTI f Hinduism
in Sanskrit. In the Hindu epic the Mahabharata
this is the name of a beautiful princess, the wife of Nala.
DAMHNAIT f Irish
from Gaelic damh
"stag, ox" combined with a diminutive suffix.
DANA (2) m & f English
From a surname that originally belonged to a person who was Danish. It was originally given in honour of American lawyer Richard Henry Dana (1815-1882), the author of Two Years Before the Mast
DANAË f Greek Mythology
From Δαναοι (Danaoi)
, a word used by Homer
to designate the Greeks. In Greek mythology Danaë was the daughter of the Argive king Acrisius. It had been prophesized to her father that he would one day be killed by Danaë's son, so he attempted to keep his daughter childless. However, Zeus
came to her in the form of a shower of gold, and she became the mother of Perseus
. Eventually the prophecy was fulfilled and Perseus killed Acrisius, albeit accidentally.
DANICA f Serbian, Croatian, Slovene, Slovak, Macedonian, English
From a Slavic word meaning "morning star, Venus"
. This name occurs in Slavic folklore as a personification of the morning star. It has sometimes been used in the English-speaking world since the 1970s.
DANIELLE f French, English
French feminine form of DANIEL
. It has been commonly used in the English-speaking world only since the 20th century.
DANUTĖ f Lithuanian
Meaning uncertain, possibly a feminine form of DANIEL
. It is found in Lithuania from at least 14th century, being borne by a sister of Vytautas the Great.
DAPHNE f Greek Mythology, English, Dutch
in Greek. In Greek mythology she was a nymph turned into a laurel tree by her father in order that she might escape the pursuit of Apollo
. It has been used as a given name in the English-speaking world since the end of the 19th century.
DAR f & m Hebrew
Means "mother-of-pearl, nacre"
DARA (2) f & m Khmer
in Khmer, ultimately from Sanskrit.
DARBY m & f English
From an English surname, which was derived from the name of the town of Derby
, meaning "deer town" in Old Norse.
DARCY f & m English
From an English surname that was derived from Norman French d'Arcy
, originally denoting one who came from Arcy in France. This was the surname of a character in Jane Austen's novel Pride and Prejudice
DARLENE f English
From the English word darling
combined with the popular name suffix lene
. This name has been in use since the beginning of the 20th century.
DAWN f English
From the English word dawn
, ultimately derived from Old English dagung
DEANNA f English
Either a variant of DIANA
or a feminine form of DEAN
. This name was popularized by the Canadian actress and singer Deanna Durbin (1921-), whose birth name was Edna. Her stage name was a rearrangement of the letters of her real name.
DEARBHÁIL f Irish
Means "daughter of Fál"
, derived from the Old Irish poetic word der
meaning "daughter" and Fál
, a legendary name for Ireland.
DEBORAH f English, Biblical
From the Hebrew name דְּבוֹרָה (Devorah)
. In the Old Testament Book of Judges, Deborah is a heroine and prophetess who leads the Israelites when they are threatened by the Canaanites. She forms an army under the command of Barak
, and together they destroy the army of the Canaanite commander Sisera. Also in the Old Testament, this is the name of the nurse of Rebecca.... [more]
DEE f & m English
Short form of names beginning with D
. It may also be given in reference to the Dee
River in Scotland.
DEIANEIRA f Greek Mythology
From Greek δηιοω (deioo)
meaning "to slay" and ανηρ (aner)
meaning "man". In Greek mythology this was the name of the wife of Herakles
. She unwittingly poisoned her husband by giving him the Shirt of Nessus.
DEIRBHILE f Irish
Means "daughter of a poet"
from Old Irish der
"daughter" and file
"poet". This was the name of a 6th-century Irish saint.
DEIRDRE f English, Irish, Irish Mythology
From the older Gaelic form Derdriu
, meaning unknown, possibly derived from Old Irish der
. This was the name of a tragic character in Irish legend who died of a broken heart after Conchobhar
, the king of Ulster, forced her to be his bride and killed her lover Naoise
DEJA f Various
from the French phrase deja vu
meaning "already seen".
DELARA f Persian
Means "adorning the heart"
, from Persian دل (del)
meaning "heart" and آرا (ara)
meaning "decorate, adorn".
DELIA (1) f English, Italian, Spanish, Romanian, Greek Mythology
Means "of Delos"
in Greek. This was an epithet of the Greek goddess Artemis
, given because she and her twin brother Apollo
were born on the island of Delos. The name appeared in several poems of the 16th and 17th centuries, and it has occasionally been used as a given name since that time.
DELICIA f English (Rare)
Either from Latin deliciae
"delight, pleasure" or a variant of the English word delicious
. It has only been used since the 20th century (rarely).
DELILAH f Biblical, Biblical Hebrew, English
Means "delicate, weak, languishing"
in Hebrew. In the Old Testament she is the lover of Samson
, whom she betrays to the Philistines by cutting his hair, which is the source of his power. Despite her character flaws, the name began to be used by the Puritans in the 17th century. It has been used occasionally in the English-speaking world since that time.
DELL m & f English
From an English surname that originally denoted a person who lived in a dell or valley.
DELPHIA f English
Possibly from the name of the Greek city of Delphi, the site of an oracle of Apollo
, which is possibly related to Greek δελφυς (delphys)
meaning "womb". It was used in the play The Prophetess
(1647), in which it belongs to the title prophetess.
DELPHINA f Late Roman
Feminine form of the Latin name Delphinus
, which meant "of Delphi"
. Delphi was a city in ancient Greece, the name of which is possibly related to Greek δελφυς (delphys)
meaning "womb". The Blessed Delphina was a 14th-century Provençal nun.
DELTA f English
From the name of the fourth letter in the Greek alphabet, Δ
. It is also the name for an island formed at the mouth of a river.
DELYTH f Welsh
From an elaboration of Welsh del "pretty"
DEMELZA f English (British)
From a Cornish place name meaning "fort of Maeldaf"
. It has been used as a given name since the middle of the 20th century. It was popularized in the 1970s by a character from the British television series Poldark
, which was set in Cornwall.
DEMETER (1) f Greek Mythology
Possibly means "earth mother"
, derived from Greek δα (da)
meaning "earth" and μητηρ (meter)
meaning "mother". In Greek mythology Demeter was the goddess of agriculture, the daughter of Cronus
, the sister of Zeus
, and the mother of Persephone
. She was an important figure in the Eleusinian Mysteries, which were secret rites performed at Eleusis near Athens.
DENA f English
Possibly a short form of names ending with dena
. It has also been used as a variant of DEANNA
DERYA f & m Turkish
Means "sea, ocean"
in Turkish, ultimately from Persian.
DERYN f Welsh
Possibly from Welsh aderyn
DESIREE f English
English form of DÉSIRÉE
. It was popularized in the English-speaking world by the movie Désirée
DESPOINA f Greek Mythology, Greek
Means "mistress, lady"
in Greek. In Greek mythology this was the name of the daughter of Demeter and Poseidon. She was worshipped in the Eleusinian Mysteries, which were secret rites practiced at Eleusis near Athens.
DESTINY f English
Means simply "destiny, fate"
from the English word, ultimately from Latin destinare
"to determine", a derivative of stare
"to stand". It has been used as a given name in the English-speaking world only since the last half of the 20th century.
DEVON m & f English
Variant of DEVIN
. It may also be partly inspired by the name of the county of Devon in England, which got its name from the Dumnonii, a Celtic tribe.
DIAMOND f English (Modern)
From the English word diamond
for the clear colourless precious stone, the birthstone of April. It is derived from Late Latin diamas
, from Latin adamas
, which is of Greek origin meaning "invincible, untamed".
DIANA f English, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, Romanian, Catalan, German, Dutch, Danish, Swedish, Norwegian, Russian, Bulgarian, Lithuanian, Polish, Czech, Slovak, Roman Mythology
Probably derived from an old Indo-European root meaning "heavenly, divine"
, related to dyeus
). Diana was a Roman goddess of the moon, hunting, forests, and childbirth, often identified with the Greek goddess Artemis
DİDEM f Turkish
Meaning unknown, possibly from Persian دیده (dideh)
DIDO f Roman Mythology
Meaning unknown, possibly "virgin"
in Phoenician. Dido, also called Elissa
, was the queen of Carthage in Virgil
. She burned herself to death after Aeneas left her.
DIEDE m & f Dutch
Short form of DIEDERIK
and other names beginning with the same element, originally from Germanic theud
DIETLINDE f German
From the Germanic name Theudelinda
, derived from the elements theud
"people" and lind
"soft, tender, flexible". Theudelinda was a 6th-century queen of the Lombards.
DIKE f Greek Mythology
in Greek. In Greek mythology Dike was the goddess of justice, one of the ‘Ωραι