ADDISONf & mEnglish
From an English surname meaning "son of ADAM
". Its recent popularity as a feminine name stems from its similarity in sound to Madison
AINSLEYf & mScottish, English (Modern)
From a surname which was from a place name: either Annesley in Nottinghamshire or Ansley in Warwickshire. The place names themselves derive from Old English anne
"alone, solitary" or ansetl
"hermitage" and leah
ALEXm & fEnglish, Dutch, German, French, Portuguese, Italian, Romanian, Greek, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Icelandic, Hungarian, Russian
Short form of ALEXANDER
, and other names beginning with Alex
ALEXISm & fGerman, French, English, Greek, Ancient Greek
From the Greek name Αλεξις (Alexis)
, which meant "helper" or "defender", derived from Greek αλεξω (alexo)
"to defend, to help". This was the name of a 3rd-century BC Greek comic poet, and also of several saints. It is used somewhat interchangeably with the related name Αλεξιος
, borne by five Byzantine emperors. In the English-speaking world it is more commonly used as a feminine name.
ALPHAf & mEnglish
From the name of the first letter in the Greek alphabet, Α
ANDYm & fEnglish
Diminutive of ANDREW
or sometimes ANDREA (2)
. American pop artist and filmmaker Andy Warhol (1928-1987) was a famous bearer of this name.
ANGELm & fEnglish, Bulgarian, Macedonian
From the medieval Latin masculine name Angelus
which was derived from the name of the heavenly creature (itself derived from the Greek word αγγελος (angelos)
meaning "messenger"). It has never been very common in the English-speaking world, where it is sometimes used as a feminine name in modern times.
ARDENm & fEnglish
From an English surname, originally taken from various place names, which were derived from a Celtic word meaning "high".
ARIELm & fHebrew, English, French, Spanish, Biblical, Biblical Greek
Means "lion of God" in Hebrew, from אֲרִי ('ari)
meaning "lion" and אֵל (el)
meaning "God". In the Old Testament it is used as another name for the city of Jerusalem. Shakespeare used it as the name of a spirit in his play 'The Tempest' (1611), and one of the moons of Uranus bears this name in his honour. As an English name, it became more common for females in the 1980s, especially after it was used for the title character in the Walt Disney film 'The Little Mermaid' (1989).
ARLIEf & mEnglish
From a surname which was derived from a place name meaning "eagle wood" in Old English. This name can also be a diminutive of ARLENE
ASHm & fEnglish
Short form of ASHLEY
. It can also come directly from the English word denoting either the tree or the residue of fire.
ASHLEYf & mEnglish
From an English surname which was originally derived from place names meaning "ash tree clearing", from a combination of Old English æsc
. Until the 1960s it was more commonly given to boys in the United States, but it is now most often used on girls.
ASHTONm & fEnglish
From a surname which was originally derived from a place name which meant "ash tree town" in Old English.
ASTONm & fEnglish (Rare)
From a surname which was originally derived from either a place name meaning "east town" in Old English or from the given name ÆÐELSTAN
AUBREYm & fEnglish
Norman French form of the Germanic name ALBERICH
. As an English masculine name it was common in the Middle Ages, and was revived in the 19th century. Since the mid-1970s it has more frequently been given to girls, due to Bread's 1972 song 'Aubrey' along with its similarity to the established feminine name Audrey
BAILEYm & fEnglish
From a surname derived from Middle English baili
meaning "bailiff", originally denoting one who was a bailiff.
BEVERLYf & mEnglish
From a surname which was originally derived from the name of an English city, itself meaning "beaver stream" in Old English. It came into use as a masculine given name in the 19th century, and it became common as an American feminine name after the publication of George Barr McCutcheon's novel 'Beverly of Graustark' (1904).
BLAIRm & fScottish, English
From a Scottish surname which is derived from Gaelic blár
meaning "plain, field, battlefield".
BRETTm & fEnglish
From a Middle English surname meaning "a Breton", referring to an inhabitant of Brittany. A famous bearer is the American football quarterback Brett Favre (1969-).
BRONTEm & fEnglish (Rare)
From a surname, an Anglicized form of Irish Ó Proinntigh
meaning "descendant of Proinnteach". The given name Proinnteach
meant "bestower" in Gaelic. The Brontë sisters - Charlotte, Emily, and Anne - were 19th-century English novelists. Their father changed the spelling of the family surname from Brunty
, possibly to make it coincide with Greek βροντη
BROOKm & fEnglish
From an English surname which denoted one who lived near a brook.
BRYNm & fWelsh, English
Means "hill, mound" in Welsh. It is now used as a feminine name as well.
CAMERONm & fEnglish
From a Scottish surname meaning "crooked nose" from Gaelic cam
"crooked" and sròn
CAMILLEf & mFrench, English
French feminine and masculine form of CAMILLA
. It is also used in the English-speaking world, where it is generally only feminine.
CAROL (1)f & mEnglish
Short form of CAROLINE
. It was formerly a masculine name, derived from CAROLUS
. The name can also be given in reference to the English vocabulary word, which means "song" or "hymn".
CARSONm & fScottish, English
From a Scottish surname of uncertain meaning. A famous bearer of the surname was the American scout Kit Carson (1809-1868).
CASEYm & fEnglish, Irish
From an Irish surname, an Anglicized form of Ó Cathasaigh
meaning "descendant of CATHASACH
". This name can be given in honour of Casey Jones (1863-1900), a train engineer who sacrificed his life to save his passengers. In his case, Casey
was a nickname acquired because he was raised in the town of Cayce, Kentucky.
CATf & mEnglish
Diminutive of CATHERINE
. It can also be a nickname from the English word for the animal.
CEDARf & mEnglish (Rare)
From the English word for the coniferous tree, derived (via Old French and Latin) from Greek κεδρος (kedros)
CELESTINEf & mEnglish
English form of CAELESTINUS
. It is more commonly used as a feminine name, from the French feminine form Célestine
CHARLIEm & fEnglish
Diminutive or feminine form of CHARLES
. A famous bearer is Charlie Brown, the main character in the comic strip 'Peanuts' by Charles Schulz.
CHEROKEEf & mEnglish (Rare)
Probably derived from the Creek word tciloki
meaning "people of a different speech". This is the name of a Native American people who live in the east of North America.
CHEYENNEf & mEnglish
Derived from the Dakota word shahiyena
meaning "red speakers". This is the name of a Native American people of the Great Plains. The name was supposedly given to the Cheyenne by the Dakota because their language was unrelated to their own. As a given name, it has been in use since the 1950s.
CLAUDEm & fFrench, English
French masculine and feminine form of CLAUDIUS
. In France the masculine name has been common since the Middle Ages due to the 7th-century Saint Claude of Besançon. It was imported to Britain in the 16th century by the aristocratic Hamilton family, who had French connections. A famous bearer of this name was the French impressionist painter Claude Monet (1840-1926).
COURTNEYf & mEnglish
From an aristocratic English surname which 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.
DAKOTAm & fEnglish (Modern)
Means "allies, friends" in the Dakota language. This is the name of a Native American people of the northern Mississippi valley.
DALEm & fEnglish
From an English surname which originally belonged to a person who lived near a dale or valley.
DALLASm & fEnglish
From a surname which 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).
DANA (2)m & fEnglish
From a surname which 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'.
DARBYm & fEnglish
From an English surname, which was derived from the name of the town of Derby
, meaning "deer town" in Old Norse.
DARCYf & mEnglish
From an English surname which 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' (1813).
DEEf & mEnglish
Short form of names beginning with D
. It may also be given in reference to the Dee
River in Scotland.
DELLm & fEnglish
From an English surname which originally denoted a person who lived in a dell or valley.
DEVONm & fEnglish
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.
DUSTYm & fEnglish
From a nickname originally given to people perceived as being dusty. It is also used a diminutive of DUSTIN
. A famous bearer was British singer Dusty Springfield (1939-1999), who acquired her nickname as a child.
EDENf & mHebrew, English (Modern)
Means "place of pleasure" in Hebrew. In the Old Testament the Garden of Eden was the place where the first people, Adam
, lived before they were expelled.
EMERSONm & fEnglish
From an English surname meaning "son of EMERY
". The surname was borne by Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), an American writer and philosopher who wrote about transcendentalism.
EMERYm & fEnglish
Norman form of EMMERICH
. The Normans introduced it to England, and though it was never popular, it survived until the end of the Middle Ages. As a modern given name, it is likely inspired by the surname Emery
, which was itself derived from the medieval given name. It can also be given in reference to the hard black substance called emery.
ESMÉm & fEnglish, Dutch
Means "esteemed" or "loved" in Old French. It was first recorded in Scotland, being borne by the first Duke of Lennox in the 16th century.
EVELYNf & mEnglish, German
From an English surname which was derived from the given name AVELINE
. In the 17th century when it was first used as a given name it was more common for boys, but it is now regarded as mainly feminine due to association with the related name Evelina
FLANNERYf & mEnglish (Rare)
From an Irish surname which was derived from Ó Flannghaile
meaning "descendant of Flannghal". The given name Flannghal
means "red valour". A famous bearer was American author Flannery O'Connor (1925-1964).
FLORENCEf & mEnglish, French
From the Latin name Florentius
or the feminine form Florentia
, which were derived from florens
"prosperous, flourishing". Florentius
was borne by many early Christian saints, and it was occasionally used in their honour through the Middle Ages. In modern times it is mostly feminine.... [more]
FRANCISm & fEnglish, French
English form of the Late Latin name Franciscus
which meant "Frenchman", ultimately from the Germanic tribe of the Franks, who were named for a type of spear that they used. This name was borne by the 13th-century Saint Francis of Assisi, who was originally named Giovanni but was given the nickname Francesco by his father, an admirer of the French. Francis went on to renounce his father's wealth and devote his life to the poor, founding the Franciscan order of friars. Later in his life he apparently received the stigmata.... [more]
GARNET (2)m & fEnglish
From an English surname which either referred to a person who made hinges (Old French carne
) or was derived from the Norman name GUARIN
GRAYm & fEnglish
From an English surname meaning "grey", originally given to a person who had grey hair or clothing.
HADLEYf & mEnglish
From an English surname which was derived from a place name meaning "heather field" in Old English.
HARLEYm & fEnglish
From a surname which was from a place name, itself derived from Old English hara
"hare" and leah
HARLOWf & mEnglish
From a surname which was from a place name which was derived from Old English hær
"rock" or here
"army", combined with hlaw
HARPERf & mEnglish
From an Old English surname which originally belonged to a person who played the harp or who made harps. A notable bearer was the American author Harper Lee (1926-2016), who wrote 'To Kill a Mockingbird'.
HAVENf & mEnglish
From the English word for a safe place, derived ultimately from Old English hæfen
HAYDENm & fEnglish
From an English surname which was derived from place names meaning either "hay valley" or "hay hill", derived from Old English heg
"hay" and denu
"valley" or dun
HILARYf & mEnglish
Medieval English form of HILARIUS
. During the Middle Ages it was primarily a masculine name. It was revived in Britain at the beginning of the 20th century as a predominantly feminine name. In America, this name and the variant Hillary
seemed to drop in popularity after Hillary Clinton (1947-) became the first lady.
HILDREDf & mEnglish
Possibly from the Old English masculine name Hildræd
, which was composed of the elements hild
"battle" and ræd
"counsel". This name was revived in the late 19th century, probably because of its similarity to the popular names Hilda
HOLLISm & fEnglish
From an English surname which was derived from Middle English holis
"holly trees". It was originally given to a person who lived near a group of those trees.
HUNTERm & fEnglish
From an occupational English surname for a hunter, derived from Old English hunta
. A famous bearer was the eccentric American journalist Hunter S. Thompson (1937-2005).
INDIANAf & mEnglish
From the name of the American state, which means "land of the Indians". This is the name of the hero in the 'Indiana Jones' series of movies, starring Harrison Ford.
INDIGOf & mEnglish (Rare)
From the English word indigo
for the purplish-blue dye or the colour. It is ultimately derived from Greek Ινδικον (Indikon)
"Indic, from India".
JACKIEm & fEnglish
Diminutive of JACK
. A notable bearer was baseball player Jackie Robinson (1919-1972), the first African-American to play in Major League Baseball.
JADEf & mEnglish, French
From the name of the precious stone that is often used in carvings. It is derived from Spanish (piedra de la) ijada
meaning "(stone of the) flank", relating to the belief that jade could cure renal colic. As a given name, it came into general use during the 1970s. It was initially unisex, though it is now mostly feminine.
JADENm & fEnglish (Modern)
An invented name, using the popular aden
suffix sound found in such names as Braden
. This name first became common in American in the 1990s when similar-sounding names were increasing in popularity. It is sometimes considered a variant of JADON
JAMIEm & fScottish, English
Originally a Lowland Scots diminutive of JAMES
. Since the late 19th century it has also been used as a feminine form.
JEWELf & mEnglish
In part from the English word jewel
, a precious stone, derived from Old French jouel
, which was possibly related to jeu
"game". It is also in part from the surname Jewel
(a derivative of the Breton name JUDICAËL
), which was sometimes used in honour of the 16th-century bishop of Salisbury John Jewel. It has been in use as a given name since the 19th century.
JOCELYNf & mEnglish, French
From a Germanic masculine name, variously written as Gaudelenus
, along with many other spellings. It was derived from the Germanic element Gaut
, which was from the name of the Germanic tribe the Goths, combined with a Latin diminutive suffix. The Normans brought this name to England in the form Goscelin
, and it was common until the 14th century. It was revived in the 20th century primarily as a feminine name, perhaps an adaptation of the surname Jocelyn
(a medieval derivative of the given name). In France this is a masculine name only.
JODYf & mEnglish
Probably either a variant of JUDY
or a diminutive of JOSEPH
. It was popularized by the young hero in Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings' novel 'The Yearling' (1938) and the subsequent film adaptation (1946).
JORDANm & fEnglish, French, Macedonian
From the name of the river which flows between the countries of Jordan and Israel. The river's name in Hebrew is יַרְדֵן (Yarden)
, and it is derived from יָרַד (yarad)
meaning "descend" or "flow down". In the New Testament John
the Baptist baptizes Jesus
Christ in its waters, and it was adopted as a personal name in Europe after crusaders brought water back from the river to baptize their children. There may have been some influence from the Germanic name JORDANES
, notably borne by a 6th-century Gothic historian.... [more]
JOYCEf & mEnglish
From the medieval masculine name Josse
, which was derived from the earlier Iudocus
, which was a Latinized form of the Breton name Judoc
meaning "lord". The name belonged to a 7th-century Breton saint, and Breton settlers introduced it to England after the Norman conquest. It became rare after the 14th century, but was later revived as a feminine name, perhaps because of similarity to the Middle English word joise
"to rejoice". This given name also formed the basis for a surname, as in the case of the Irish novelist James Joyce (1882-1941).
JUSTICEm & fEnglish
From an occupational surname which meant "judge, officer of justice" in Old French. This name can also be given in direct reference to the English word justice
KELLYm & fIrish, English
Anglicized form of the Irish given name CEALLACH
or the surname derived from it Ó Ceallaigh
. As a surname, it has been borne by actor and dancer Gene Kelly (1912-1996) and actress and princess Grace Kelly (1929-1982).
KELSEYf & mEnglish
From an English surname which is derived from town names in Lincolnshire. It may mean "Cenel's island", from the Old English name Cenel
"fierce" in combination with eg
KENDALLm & fEnglish
From a surname which comes from the name of the city of Kendale in northwest England meaning "valley on the river Kent".
KENNEDYf & mEnglish, Irish
From an irish surname, an Anglicized form of Ó Cinnéidigh
meaning "descendant of CENNÉTIG
". The name is often given in honour of assassinated American president John F. Kennedy (1917-1963).
KERRYm & fEnglish
From the name of the Irish county, called Ciarraí
in Irish Gaelic, which means "CIAR
KIM (1)f & mEnglish
At the present it is usually considered a short form of KIMBERLY
, but it in fact predates it as a given name. The author Rudyard Kipling used it for the title hero of his novel 'Kim' (1901), though in this case it was short for KIMBALL
. In her novel 'Show Boat' (1926) Edna Ferber used it for a female character who was born on the Mississippi River and was named from the initials of the states Kentucky, Illinois and Mississippi. The name was popularized in America by the actresses Kim Hunter (1922-2002) and Kim Novak (1933-), both of whom assumed it as a stage name.
KYRIEm & fEnglish (Modern)
From the name of a Christian prayer, also called the Kyrie eleison
meaning "Lord, have mercy". It is ultimately from Greek κυριος (kyrios)
meaning "lord". In America it was popularized as a masculine name by basketball player Kyrie Irving (1992-), whose name is pronounced differently than the prayer.
LACYf & mEnglish
From a surname which was derived from Lassy
, the name of a town in Normandy. The name of the town was Gaulish in origin, perhaps deriving from a personal name which was Latinized as Lascius
LAKEm & fEnglish (Rare)
From the English word lake
, for the inland body of water. It is ultimately derived from Latin lacus
LAURENf & mEnglish
Variant or feminine form of LAURENCE (1)
. Originally a masculine name, it was first popularized as a feminine name by actress Betty Jean Perske (1924-), who used Lauren Bacall as her stage name.
LAVERNEf & mEnglish
From a surname which was derived from a French place name, ultimately derived from the Gaulish word vern
meaning "alder". It is sometimes associated with the Roman goddess Laverna
or the Latin word vernus
LEEm & fEnglish
From a surname which was derived from Old English leah
meaning "clearing". The surname belonged to Robert E. Lee (1807-1870), commander of the Confederate forces during the American Civil War. In his honour, it has been commonly used as a given name in the American South.
LEITHm & fEnglish (Rare)
From a surname, originally from the name of a Scottish town (now a district of Edinburgh), which is derived from Gaelic lìte
"wet, damp". It is also the name of the river that flows though Edinburgh.
LENNONm & fScottish, English (Modern)
Anglicized form of the Irish surname Ó Leannáin
, which means "descendant of Leannán". The name Leannán
means "lover" in Gaelic. This surname was borne by musician John Lennon (1940-1980), a member of the Beatles.
LENNOXm & fScottish, English (Modern)
From a Scottish surname which was derived from the name of a district in Scotland. The district, called Leamhnachd
in Gaelic, possibly means "place of elms".
LESLIEf & mEnglish
From a Scottish surname which was derived from a Scottish place name, probably derived from Gaelic leas celyn
meaning "garden of holly". It has been used as a given name since the 19th century. In America it was more common as a feminine name after the 1940s.
LINDSAYf & mEnglish, Scottish
From an English and Scottish surname which was originally derived from the name of the region Lindsey
, which means "LINCOLN
island" in Old English. As a given name it was typically masculine until the 1960s (in Britain) and 1970s (in America) when it became popular for girls, probably due to its similarity to Linda
and because of American actress Lindsay Wagner (1949-).
LINDYm & fEnglish
Originally this was a masculine name, coming into use in America in 1927 when the dance called the Lindy Hop became popular. The dance was probably named for aviator Charles Lindbergh. Later this name was used as a diminutive of LINDA
LOGANm & fScottish, English
From a surname which was originally derived from a Scottish place name meaning "little hollow" in Scottish Gaelic.
LONDONf & mEnglish (Modern)
From the name of the capital city of the United Kingdom, the meaning of which is uncertain. As a surname it was borne by the American author Jack London (1876-1916).
LOUf & mEnglish, French
Short form of LOUISE
. Famous bearers include the baseball player Lou Gehrig (1903-1941) and the musician Lou Reed (1942-2013).
LYNNf & mEnglish
From an English surname which was derived from Welsh llyn
"lake". Before the start of the 20th century it was primarily used for boys, but it has since come to be more common for girls. In some cases it may be thought of as a short form of LINDA
or names that end in lyn
MACKENZIEf & mEnglish
From the Gaelic surname Mac Coinnich
, which means "son of COINNEACH
". A famous bearer of the surname was William Lyon MacKenzie (1795-1861), a Canadian journalist and political rebel. As a feminine given name, it was popularized by the American actress Mackenzie Phillips (1959-).
MADISONf & mEnglish
From an English surname meaning "son of MAUD
". It was not commonly used as a feminine name until after the movie 'Splash' (1984), in which the main character adopted it as her name after seeing a street sign for Madison Avenue in New York City. A famous bearer of the surname was James Madison (1751-1836), one of the authors of the American constitution who later served as president.
MARIAf & mItalian, 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]
MARIEf & mFrench, Czech, German, English, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish
French and Czech form of MARIA
. A notable bearer of this name was Marie Antoinette, a queen of France who was executed by guillotine during the French Revolution. Another was Marie Curie (1867-1934), a physicist and chemist who studied radioactivity with her husband Pierre.... [more]
MEADEm & fEnglish (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
MEREDITHm & fWelsh, English
From the Welsh name Maredudd
, possibly meaning "great lord" or "sea lord". Since the mid-1920s it has been used more often for girls than for boys in English-speaking countries, though it is still a masculine name in Wales. A famous bearer of this name as surname was the English novelist and poet George Meredith (1828-1909).
MERLEf & mEnglish
Variant of MERRILL
. The spelling has been influenced by the word merle
meaning "blackbird" (via French, from Latin merula
MERLYNm & fEnglish
Variant of MERLIN
, sometimes used as a feminine form. It has perhaps been influenced by the Welsh word merlyn
MICKEYm & fEnglish
Diminutive or feminine form of MICHAEL
. This was the name that Walt Disney gave to Ub Iwerks' cartoon character Mickey Mouse, who was originally named Mortimer Mouse. Another famous bearer was the American baseball player Mickey Mantle (1931-1995).
MONTANAf & mEnglish (Modern)
From the name of the American state, which is derived from Latin montanus
MORGAN (1)m & fWelsh, English, French
From the Old Welsh masculine name Morcant
, which was possibly derived from Welsh mor
"sea" and cant
"circle". Since the 1980s in America Morgan
has been more common for girls than boys, perhaps due to stories of Morgan
le Fay or the fame of actress Morgan Fairchild (1950-).
OCEANm & fEnglish (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.
ODELLm & fEnglish
From a surname which was originally from a place name meaning "woad hill" in Old English. A woad is a herb used for dyeing.
ORA (1)f & mEnglish
Perhaps based on Latin oro
"to pray". It was first used in America in the 19th century.
PARKERm & fEnglish
From an English occupational surname which meant "keeper of the park".
PATm & fEnglish
Short form of PATRICK
. A famous bearer of this name was Pat Garrett (1850-1908), the sheriff who shot Billy the Kid.
PEYTONm & fEnglish
From an English surname, originally a place name meaning "PÆGA
's town". A famous bearer was Peyton Randolph (1721-1775), the first president of the Continental Congress. It is also borne by American football quarterback Peyton Manning (1976-).
PHOENIXm & fEnglish (Modern)
From the name of a beautiful immortal bird which appears in Egyptian and Greek mythology. After living for several centuries in the Arabian Desert, it would be consumed by fire and rise from its own ashes, with this cycle repeating every 500 years. The name of the bird was derived from Greek φοινιξ (phoinix)
meaning "dark red".
PIPm & fEnglish
Diminutive of PHILIP
. This was the name of the main character in 'Great Expectations' (1860) by Charles Dickens.
PRESLEYf & mEnglish
From an English surname which was originally derived from a place name meaning "priest clearing" (Old English preost
). This surname was borne by musician Elvis Presley (1935-1977).
PRUDENCEf & mEnglish, French
Medieval English form of Prudentia
, the feminine form of PRUDENTIUS
. In France it is both the feminine form and a rare masculine form. In England it was used during the Middle Ages and was revived in the 17th century by the Puritans, in part from the English word prudence
, ultimately of the same source.
PURDIEm & fEnglish (Rare)
From an English surname which was derived from the Norman French expression pur die
"by God". It was perhaps originally a nickname for a person who used the oath frequently.
QUINNm & fIrish, English
From an Irish surname, an Anglicized form of Ó Cuinn
meaning "descendant of CONN
RAINEf & mEnglish (Rare)
Possibly based on the French word reine
meaning "queen". A famous bearer is the British socialite Raine Spencer (1929-), the stepmother of Princess Diana. In modern times it can also be used as a variant of RAIN (1)
or a short form of LORRAINE
RAVENf & mEnglish
From the name of the bird, ultimately from Old English hræfn
. The raven is revered by several Native American groups of the west coast. It is also associated with the Norse god Odin
REAGANf & mEnglish (Modern), Irish
From an Irish surname, an Anglicized form of Ó Ríagáin
meaning "descendant of RIAGÁN
". This surname was borne by American president Ronald Reagan (1911-2004).
REILLYm & fEnglish (Modern)
From an Irish surname which was derived from the given name Raghailleach
, meaning unknown.
RILEYm & fEnglish
From a surname which comes from two distinct sources. As an Irish surname it is a variant of REILLY
. As an English surname it is derived from a place name meaning "rye clearing" in Old English.
RIVERm & fEnglish (Modern)
From the English word that denotes a flowing body of water. The word is ultimately derived (via Old French) from Latin ripa
ROBINm & fEnglish, Dutch, Swedish
Medieval diminutive of ROBERT
. Robin Hood was a legendary hero and archer of medieval England who stole from the rich to give to the poor. In modern times it has also been used as a feminine name, and it may sometimes be given in reference to the red-breasted bird.
ROWANm & fIrish, English (Modern)
From an Irish surname, an Anglicized form of Ó Ruadháin
meaning "descendant of RUADHÁN
". This name can also be given in reference to the rowan tree.
SAGEf & mEnglish (Modern)
From the English word sage
, which denotes either a type of spice or else a wise person.
SELBYm & fEnglish (Rare)
From an English surname which was from a place name meaning "willow farm" in Old Norse.
SEPTEMBERf & mEnglish (Rare)
From the name of the ninth month (though it means "seventh month" in Latin, since it was originally the seventh month of the Roman year), which is sometimes used as a given name for someone born in September.
SEQUOIAf & mEnglish (Rare)
From the name of huge trees that grow in California. The tree got its name from the 19th-century Cherokee scholar Sequoyah
(also known as George Guess), the inventor of the Cherokee writing system.
SHANNONf & mEnglish
From the name of the River Shannon, the longest river in Ireland, called Abha na tSionainn
in Irish. It is associated with the goddess Sionann
and is sometimes said to be named for her. However it is more likely the goddess was named after the river, which may be related to Old Irish sen
"old, ancient". As a given name, it first became common in America after the 1940s.
SHELBYm & fEnglish
From a surname, which was possibly a variant of SELBY
. Though previously in use as a rare masculine name, it was popularized as a feminine name by the main character in the movie 'The Woman in Red' (1935). It was later reinforced by the movie 'Steel Magnolias' (1989) in which Julia Roberts played a character by this name.
SHELLEYf & mEnglish
From a surname which was originally derived from a place name meaning "clearing on a bank" in Old English. Two famous bearers of the surname were Percy Bysshe Shelley (1792-1822), a romantic poet whose works include 'Adonais' and 'Ozymandias', and Mary Shelley (1797-1851), his wife, the author of the horror story 'Frankenstein'. As a feminine given name, it came into general use after the 1940s.
SHERIDANm & fEnglish
From an Irish surname which was derived from Ó Sirideáin
meaning "descendant of Sirideán". The name Sirideán
means "searcher" in Gaelic.
SHIRLEYf & mEnglish
From a surname which was originally derived from a place name meaning "bright clearing" in Old English. This is the name of the main character in Charlotte Brontë's semi-autobiographical novel 'Shirley' (1849). The child actress Shirley Temple (1928-2014) helped to popularize this name.
SIDNEYm & fEnglish
From the English surname SIDNEY
. It was first used as a given name in honour of executed politician Algernon Sidney (1622-1683). Another notable bearer of the surname was the poet and statesman Sir Philip Sidney (1554-1586).
SINCLAIRm & fEnglish (Rare)
From a surname which was derived from a Norman French town called "Saint CLAIR
". A notable bearer was the American author Sinclair Lewis (1885-1951).
STACYf & mEnglish
Either a diminutive of ANASTASIA
, or else from a surname which was derived from Stace
, a medieval form of EUSTACE
. As a feminine name, it came into general use during the 1950s, though it had earlier been in use as a rare masculine name.
SUNNYf & mEnglish
From the English word meaning "sunny, cheerful".
SYDNEYf & mEnglish
From a surname which was a variant of the surname SIDNEY
. This is the name of the largest city in Australia, which was named for Thomas Townshend, 1st Viscount Sydney in 1788. Since the 1990s this name has been mainly feminine.
TAYLORm & fEnglish
From an English surname which originally denoted someone who was a tailor, from Norman French tailleur
, ultimately from Latin taliare
"to cut". Its modern use as a feminine name may have been influenced by British author Taylor Caldwell (1900-1985).
TEAGANm & fEnglish (Modern)
From an Irish surname, an Anglicized form of Ó Tadhgáin
meaning "descendant of Tadhgán". The given name Tadhgán
is a diminutive of TADHG
TEMPLEm & fEnglish (Rare)
From a surname which originally belonged to a person who was associated with the Knights Templar, a medieval religious military order.
TERRY (1)m & fEnglish
From an English surname which was derived from the medieval name Thierry
, a Norman French form of THEODORIC
TERRY (2)m & fEnglish
Diminutive of TERENCE
. A famous bearer was Terry Fox (1958-1981), a young man with an artificial leg who attempted to run across Canada to raise money for cancer research. He died of the disease before crossing the country.
TOBYm & fEnglish
Medieval form of TOBIAS
. It was sometimes used as a feminine name in the 1930s and 40s due to the influence of American actress Toby Wing (1915-2001).
TRACYf & mEnglish
From an English surname which was taken from a Norman French place name meaning "domain belonging to THRACIUS
". Charles Dickens used it for a male character in his novel 'The Pickwick Papers' (1837). It was later popularized as a feminine name by the main character Tracy Lord in the movie 'The Philadelphia Story' (1940). This name is also sometimes used as a diminutive of THERESA
VIVIANm & fEnglish, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish
From the Latin name Vivianus
which was derived from Latin vivus
"alive". Saint Vivian was a French bishop who provided protection during the Visigoth invasion of the 5th century. It has been occasionally used as an English (masculine) name since the Middle Ages. In modern times it is also used as a feminine name, in which case it is either an Anglicized form of BÉBINN
or a variant of VIVIEN (2)
WALLISm & fEnglish (Rare)
From a surname which was a variant of WALLACE
. Wallis Simpson (1895-1986) was the divorced woman whom Edward VIII married, which forced him to abdicate the British throne.
WHITNEYf & mEnglish
From a surname which was originally derived from a place name meaning "white island" in Old English. Its popular use as a feminine name was initiated by actress Whitney Blake (1925-2002) in the 1960s, and further boosted in the 1980s by singer Whitney Houston (1963-2012).
WILLIEm & fEnglish
Masculine or feminine diminutive of WILLIAM
. A notable bearer is the retired American baseball player Willie Mays (1931-).
WINDSORm & fEnglish (Rare)
From an English surname which was from a place name meaning "riverbank with a windlass" in Old English (a windlass is a lifting apparatus). This has been the surname of the royal family of the United Kingdom since 1917.