MAHLI m Biblical
From the Hebrew name מַחְלִי (Machliy)
, possibly meaning "weak" or "sick". This was the name of two characters mentioned briefly in the Old Testament.
MAINA m Eastern African, Kikuyu
Means "sing, dance" in Kikuyu. Kikuyu males were traditionally organized into age sets or generations, each lasting about 30 years. The Maina
generation occupied the last part of the 19th century.
MAJOR m English
From a surname which was originally derived from the given name Mauger
, an Old French form of the Germanic name Malger
meaning "council spear". The name can also be given in reference to the English word major
MALIK (1) m Arabic
Means "king" in Arabic. It can also be a variant transcription of MAALIK
. In Islamic tradition الملك (al-Malik)
is one of the 99 names of Allah.
MANOJ m Indian, Hindi, Marathi, Bengali, Punjabi, Gujarati, Odia, Telugu, Tamil, Malayalam, Kannada
Modern form of MANOJA
MARCO m Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, German, Dutch
Italian form of MARK
. During the Middle Ages this name was common in Venice, where Saint Mark was supposedly buried. A famous bearer was the Venetian explorer Marco Polo, who travelled across Asia to China in the 13th century.
MARIA f & m Italian, Portuguese, Catalan, Occitan, German, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Faroese, Dutch, Frisian, Greek, Polish, Romanian, English, Finnish, Corsican, Sardinian, Basque, Russian, Bulgarian, Ukrainian, Biblical Greek, Biblical Latin, Old Church Slavic
Latin form of Greek Μαρια
, from Hebrew מִרְיָם
is the usual form of the name in many European languages, as well as a secondary form in other languages such as English (where the common spelling is Mary
). In some countries, for example Germany, Poland and Italy, Maria
is occasionally used as a masculine middle name.... [more]
MARIO m Italian, Spanish, German, Croatian
Italian and Spanish form of MARIUS
. Famous bearers include American race car driver Mario Andretti (1940-) and Canadian hockey player Mario Lemieux (1965-).
MASON m English
From an English surname meaning "stoneworker", from an Old French word of Germanic origin (akin to Old English macian
MATĚJ m Czech
Czech form of MATTHIAS
, used to refer to the apostle chosen to replace Judas Iscariot.
MEADE m & f English (Rare)
From an English surname which indicated one who lived on a meadow (from Middle English mede
) or one who sold or made mead (an alcoholic drink made from fermented honey; from Old English meodu
MEDAD m Biblical
Means "love" in Hebrew. In the Old Testament Medad is one of the elders who prophesizes in the camp of the Israelites after the flight from Egypt.
MELLE m Dutch
Originally a short form of Germanic names beginning with the element mathal
MENES m Ancient Egyptian
Meaning unknown. Menes was an Egyptian king who united Upper and Lower Egypt around 3000 BC. He is also known as Narmer; Menes was probably his funeral name.
MERLE f & m English
Variant of MERRILL
. The spelling has been influenced by the word merle
meaning "blackbird" (via French, from Latin merula
MERRY (2) m Literature
The name of a hobbit in J. R. R. Tolkien's novel 'The Lord of the Rings' (1954). His full given name was Meriadoc
, a semi-translation into English of his true hobbit name Kalimac
meaning "jolly, merry".
MEYER m Hebrew
Variant transcription of MEIR
. It also coincides with a German surname meaning "mayor, leader".
MICAH m Biblical, English
Contracted form of MICAIAH
. Micah is one of the twelve minor prophets of the Old Testament. He authored the Book of Micah, which alternates between prophesies of doom and prophesies of restoration. It was occasionally used as an English given name by the Puritans after the Protestant Reformation, but it did not become common until the end of the 20th century.
MIDAS m Greek Mythology
Meaning unknown. In Greek myth Midas was a king of Phrygia in Asia Minor. He was granted a wish by the god Dionysos
- that everything he touch be turned to gold.
MIHAI m Romanian
Romanian form of MICHAEL
. Mihai the Brave was a prince of Wallachia who united Romania in the early 17th century.
MILAN m Czech, Slovak, Russian, Serbian, Croatian, Slovene, Bulgarian, Macedonian, Dutch, Hungarian
From the Slavic element milu
meaning "gracious, dear", originally a short form of names that began with that element. A city in Italy bears this name, though it originates from a different source.
MILES m English
From the Germanic name Milo
, introduced by the Normans to England in the form Miles
. The meaning is not known for certain. It is possibly connected to the Slavic name element milu
meaning "gracious". From an early date it was associated with Latin miles
MILOŠ m Czech, Slovak, Serbian, Slovene, Croatian, Macedonian
Originally a diminutive of names beginning with the Slavic element milu
"gracious, dear". This was the name of a 14th-century Serbian hero who apparently killed the Ottoman sultan Murad I at the Battle of Kosovo.
MINOS m Greek Mythology
Possibly from a Cretan word or title meaning "king". This was the name of a king of Crete in Greek mythology. He was the son of Zeus
. Because Minos had refused to sacrifice a certain bull to Poseidon
, the god had caused his wife Pasiphaë to mate with the bull, which produced the half-bull creature called the Minotaur. Minos had Daedalus
construct the Labyrinth to house the beast, but it was eventually slain by Theseus
MIN-SU m & f Korean
From Sino-Korean 民 (min)
meaning "people, citizens" or 旼 (min)
meaning "gentle, affable" combined with 秀 (su)
meaning "luxuriant, beautiful, elegant, outstanding" or 洙 (su)
, which refers to a river in China. Other hanja combinations are possible.
MIRON (2) m Hebrew
From the name of the highest mountain in Israel, Mount Meron. It is also the name of a village on its slopes, thought to be on the same site as the ancient Canaanite city of Merom.
MITRA (1) m & f Hinduism, Indian, Hindi
Means "friend" in Sanskrit, a cognate of MITHRA
. This is a transcription of both the feminine form मित्रा
and the masculine form मित्र
, which is the name of a Hindu god of friendship and contracts who appears in the Rigveda.
MOANA f & m Maori, Hawaiian, Tahitian
Means "ocean, wide expanse of water, deep sea" in Maori and Hawaiian (as well as in other Polynesian languages).
MONET f & m Various
From a French surname which was derived from either HAMON
. This was the surname of the French impressionist painter Claude Monet (1840-1926).
MONTE m English
Either a diminutive of MONTGOMERY
or from the Spanish or Italian vocabulary word meaning "mountain".
MOSES m English, Jewish, Biblical, Biblical Latin
From the Hebrew name מֹשֶׁה (Mosheh)
which is most likely derived from Egyptian mes
meaning "son", but could also possibly mean "deliver" in Hebrew. The meaning suggested in the Old Testament of "drew out" from Hebrew משה (mashah)
is probably an invented etymology (see Exodus 2:10). The biblical Moses was drawn out of the Nile by the pharaoh's daughter and adopted into the royal family, at a time when the Israelites were slaves in Egypt. With his brother Aaron
he demanded the pharaoh release the Israelites, which was only done after God sent ten plagues upon Egypt. Moses led the people across the Red Sea and to Mount Sinai, where he received the Ten Commandments from God. After 40 years of wandering in the desert the people reached Canaan, the Promised Land, but Moses died just before entering it.... [more]
MUNGO m Scottish
Possibly derived from Welsh mwyn
"gentle, kind". This was a nickname of the 6th-century Saint Kentigern.
MYRON m English, Ancient Greek
Derived from Greek μυρον (myron)
meaning "sweet oil, perfume". Myron was the name of a 5th-century BC Greek sculptor. Saints bearing this name include a 3rd-century bishop of Crete and a 4th-century martyr from Cyzicus who was killed by a mob. These saints are more widely revered in the Eastern Church, and the name has generally been more common among Eastern Christians. As an English name, it has been used since the 19th century.
NADAB m Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
Means "generous" in Hebrew. This is the name of a son of Aaron
in the Old Testament. He was consumed by flames and killed when he offered unauthorized fire to God. It was also the name of the second king of Israel.
NADIM m Arabic, Urdu
Means "drinking companion", derived from Arabic ندم (nadima)
meaning "to drink together".
NAHOR m Biblical
Means "snorting" in Hebrew. Nahor is the name of both the grandfather and a brother of Abraham
in the Old Testament.
NAHUM m Biblical
Means "comforter" in Hebrew. Nahum is one of the twelve minor prophets of the Old Testament. He authored the Book of Nahum in which the downfall of Nineveh is foretold.
NAJIB m Arabic
Means "noble" or "intelligent" in Arabic.
NANDA m Hinduism, Indian, Kannada, Tamil
Means "joy" in Sanskrit. In Hindu texts this is a name of both Vishnu
and the foster-father of Krishna
, as well as various other characters. In Buddhist texts this is the name of a god and a disciple of Buddha. Nanda was also the name of a 4th-century BC king who founded a dynasty in Magadha in India.
NAOKI m Japanese
From Japanese 直 (nao)
meaning "straight" and 樹 (ki)
meaning "tree", as well as other combinations of different kanji with the same pronunciations.
NAOMI (2) f & m Japanese
From Japanese 直 (nao)
meaning "straight" and 美 (mi)
meaning "beautiful" (usually feminine) or 己 (mi)
meaning "self" (usually masculine). Other kanji combinations can also form this name.
NAREK m Armenian
From the name of a 10th-century Armenian saint, Grigor of Narek, who came from the town of Narek (formerly in Armenia, now in eastern Turkey).
NASIR m Arabic
Means "helper" in Arabic. This transcription represents two different Arabic names.
NEELY m English
From a Scottish surname, an Anglicized form of Mac an Fhilidh
meaning "son of the poet" in Gaelic.
NENAD m Serbian, Croatian
Means "unexpected" in Serbian and Croatian. In the Serbian folk song 'Predrag and Nenad' this is the name of Predrag
NERVA m Ancient Roman
Roman cognomen derived from Latin nervus
"strength". This is the name by which the 1st-century Roman emperor Marcus Cocceius Nerva is commonly known.
NEVIO m Italian
Italian form of the Roman family name Naevius
, which was derived from Latin naevus
"mole (on the body)". A famous bearer was the 3rd-century BC Roman poet Gnaeus Naevius.
NIELS (1) m Danish
Danish form of NICHOLAS
. A famous bearer was Niels Bohr (1885-1962), a Danish physicist who investigated the structure of atoms.
NIGEL m English
, a medieval Latinized form of NEIL
. It was commonly associated with Latin niger
"black". It was revived in the 19th century, perhaps in part due to Sir Walter Scott's novel 'The Fortunes of Nigel' (1822).
NIKAU m Maori
From the name of a type of palm tree found in New Zealand (species Rhopalostylis sapida).
NITYA f & m Indian, Hindi
Means "always, eternal" in Sanskrit. This is a transcription of both the feminine form नित्या
(an epithet of the Hindu goddess Durga
) and the masculine form नित्य
NJORD m Norse Mythology, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish
From Old Norse Njörðr
, which was possibly derived from the Indo-European root *ner
meaning "strong, vigourous". Njord was the Norse god of the sea, sailing, fishing and fertility. With his children Freyr
he was a member of the Vanir.
NOBLE m English
From an English surname meaning "noble, notable". The name can also be given in direct reference to the English word noble
NOLAN m Irish, English
From an Irish surname which was derived from Ó Nualláin
meaning "descendant of NUALLÁN
". The baseball player Nolan Ryan (1947-) is a famous bearer of this name.
NUADA m Irish Mythology
Possibly means "protector" in Celtic. In Irish myth he was an Irish god and a leader of the Tuatha De Danann. He was killed in battle against the Fomorii.
OBRAD m Serbian
Possibly derived from Serbian obradovati
"to make happy".
OCEAN m & f English (Rare)
Simply from the English word ocean
for a large body of water. It is ultimately derived from Greek Ωκεανος (Okeanos)
, the name of the body of water thought to surround the Earth.
ODELL m & f English
From a surname which was originally from a place name meaning "woad hill" in Old English. A woad is a herb used for dying.
OGDEN m English
From a surname which was derived from a place name meaning "oak valley" in Old English. A famous bearer was the humourous American poet Ogden Nash (1902-1971).
OISÍN m Irish, Irish Mythology
Means "little deer", derived from Irish os
"deer" combined with a diminutive suffix. In Irish legend Oisín was a warrior hero and a poet, the son of Fionn
OMEGA m & f Various
From the name of the last letter in the Greek alphabet, Ω
. It is often seen as a symbol of completion.
OPHIR m Biblical
Meaning unknown. This is the name of a son of Joktan in the Old Testament (where it is also used as a place name).
ORHAN m Turkish
Derived from Turkish or
"great" and the title khan
meaning "leader". This was the name of a 14th-century sultan of the Ottoman Empire.
ORIOL m Catalan
From a Catalan surname meaning "golden". It has been used in honour of Joseph Oriol, a 17th-century saint.
ORION m Greek Mythology
Meaning unknown, but possibly related to Greek ‘οριον (horion)
"boundary, limit". Alternatively it may be derived from Akkadian Uru-anna
meaning "light of the heavens". This is the name of a constellation, which gets its name from a legendary Greek hunter killed by a scorpion sent by Gaia
ORSON m English
From an English surname which was originally a nickname meaning "bear cub", from a diminutive of Norman French ors
"bear", ultimately from Latin ursus
. American actor and director Orson Welles (1915-1985) was a famous bearer of this name.
ORVAR m Swedish, Norse Mythology
Means "arrow" in Old Norse. Orvar Odd is a legendary Norse hero who is the subject of a 13th-century Icelandic saga.
OSAMU m Japanese
From Japanese 修 (osamu)
meaning "discipline, study", as well as other kanji which have the same pronunciation.
OSCAR m English, Irish, Portuguese (Brazilian), Italian, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Dutch, French, Irish Mythology
Possibly means "deer friend", derived from Gaelic os
"deer" and cara
"friend". Alternatively, it may derive from the Old English name OSGAR
or its Old Norse cognate ÁSGEIRR
, which may have been brought to Ireland by Viking invaders and settlers. In Irish legend Oscar was the son of the poet Oisín
and the grandson of the hero Fionn
mac Cumhail.... [more]
OSMAN m Turkish
Turkish form of UTHMAN
. This was the name of the founder of the Ottoman Empire (14th century).
OSWIN m English (Rare)
From the Old English elements os
"god" and wine
"friend". Saint Oswin was a 7th-century king of Northumbria. After the Norman conquest this name was used less, and it died out after the 14th century. It was briefly revived in the 19th century.
OWAIN m Welsh, Welsh Mythology, Arthurian Romance
Probably a Welsh form of EUGENE
, though it might be derived from Welsh eoghunn
meaning "youth". This was the name of several figures from Welsh history and mythology. In Arthurian legend Owain (also called Yvain
in French sources) was one of the Knights of the Round Table, the son of King Urien and husband of the Lady of the Fountain. His character was based on that of Owain ap Urien, a 6th-century Welsh prince who fought against the Angles. This name was also borne by Owain Glyndwr, a 14th-century leader of Welsh resistance against English rule.
PABLO m Spanish
Spanish form of Paulus
). Spanish painter and sculptor Pablo Picasso (1881-1973) was a famous bearer of this name.
PACEY m English (Rare)
From an English surname which was derived from the French place name Pacy
, itself derived from Gaulish given name of unknown meaning.