SIBYL f English
From Greek Σιβυλλα (Sibylla)
, meaning "prophetess, sibyl". In Greek and Roman legend the sibyls were ten female prophets who practiced at different holy sites in the ancient world. In later Christian theology, the sibyls were thought to have divine knowledge and were revered in much the same way as the Old Testament prophets. Because of this, the name came into general use in the Christian world during the Middle Ages. The Normans brought it to England, where it was spelled both Sibyl
. It became rare after the Protestant Reformation, but it was revived in the 19th century, perhaps helped by Benjamin Disraeli's novel 'Sybil' (1845).
SIDONY f English (Archaic)
Feminine form of SIDONIUS
. This name was in use in the Middle Ages, when it became associated with the word sindon
(of Greek origin) meaning "linen", a reference to the Shroud of Turin.
SIEGBERT m German
Derived from the Germanic elements sigu
"victory" and beraht
"bright". This was the name of several Frankish kings, including the 7th-century Sigebert III of Austrasia who is regarded as a saint.
SIEGFRIED m German, Germanic Mythology
Derived from the Germanic elements sigu
"victory" and frid
"peace". Siegfried was a hero from Germanic legend, chief character in the 'Nibelungenlied'. He secretly helped the Burgundian king Günther
overcome the challenges set out by the Icelandic queen Brünhild
so that Günther might win her hand. In exchange, Günther consented to the marriage of Siegfried and his sister Kriemhild
. Years later, after a dispute between Brünhild and Kriemhild, Siegfried was murdered by Hagen
with Günther's consent. He was stabbed in his one vulnerable spot on the small of his back, which had been covered by a leaf while he bathed in dragon's blood. His adventures were largely based on those of the Norse hero Sigurd
. The story was later adapted by Richard Wagner to form part of his opera 'The Ring of the Nibelung' (1876).
SIET m Frisian
Frisian short form of names beginning with the Germanic element sigu
SIGISMUND m German, Ancient Germanic
Form of SIGMUND
in which the first element is sigis
, an older form of sigu
. Saint Sigismund was a 6th-century king of the Burgundians. This was also the name of kings of Poland and a ruler of the Holy Roman Empire.
SIGMUND m German, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, English
Derived from the Germanic elements sigu
"victory" and mund
"protector" (or in the case of the Scandinavian cognate, from the Old Norse elements sigr
"victory" and mundr
"protector"). In Norse mythology this was the name of the hero Sigurd
's father, the bearer of the powerful sword Gram. A notable bearer was the Austrian psychologist Sigmund Freud (1856-1939), the creator of the revolutionary theory of psychoanalysis.
SIGURD m Norwegian, Danish, Swedish, Norse Mythology
From the Old Norse name Sigurðr
, which was derived from the elements sigr
"victory" and varðr
"guardian". Sigurd was the hero of the Norse legend the 'Volsungasaga', which tells how his foster-father Regin sent him to recover a hoard of gold guarded by the dragon Fafnir. After slaying the dragon Sigurd tasted some of its blood, enabling him to understand the language of birds, who told him that Regin was planning to betray him. In a later adventure, Sigurd disguised himself as Gunnar
(his wife Gudrun
's brother) and rescued the maiden Brynhildr
from a ring of fire, with the result that Gunnar and Brynhildr were married. When the truth eventually came out, Brynhildr took revenge upon Sigurd. The stories of the German hero Siegfried
were in part based on him.
SIKKE m Frisian
Frisian diminutive of Germanic names beginning with the element sigu
which means "victory".
SILVESTER m Dutch, English, Slovene, Slovak, German, Late Roman
From a Roman name meaning "of the forest" from Latin silva
"wood, forest". This was the name of three popes, including Saint Silvester I who supposedly baptized the first Christian Roman emperor, Constantine
the Great. As an English name, Silvester
) has been in use since the Middle Ages, though it became less common after the Protestant Reformation.
SILVIA f Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Romanian, Slovak, English, German, Late Roman, Roman Mythology
Feminine form of SILVIUS
Silvia was the mother of Romulus
, the founders of Rome. This was also the name of a 6th-century saint, the mother of the pope Gregory the Great. It has been a common name in Italy since the Middle Ages. It was introduced to England by Shakespeare, who used it for a character in his play 'The Two Gentlemen of Verona' (1594).
SIMEON m Biblical, Bulgarian, Serbian
From Συμεων (Symeon)
, the Old Testament Greek form of the Hebrew name Shim'on
). In the Old Testament this is the name of the second son of Jacob
and the founder of one of the twelve tribes of Israel. In the New Testament the Greek rendering Σιμων (Simon)
is more common, though Συμεων
occurs belonging to a man who blessed the newborn Jesus
. He is recognized as a saint in most Christian traditions.... [more]
SIMÓN m Spanish
Spanish form of SIMON
. This name was borne by the South American revolutionary Simón Bolívar (1783-1830).
SIMON m English, French, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, German, Dutch, Hungarian, Slovene, Romanian, Macedonian, Georgian, Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
From Σιμων (Simon)
, the New Testament Greek form of the Hebrew name שִׁמְעוֹן (Shim'on)
which meant "he has heard". This name is spelled Simeon
, based on Greek Συμεων
, in many translations of the Old Testament, where it is borne by the second son of Jacob
. In the New Testament Simon
is the name of several characters, including the man who carried the cross for Jesus
. Most importantly however it was borne by the leading apostle Simon, also known as Peter
(a name given to him by Jesus).... [more]
SIMONE (1) f French, English
French feminine form of SIMON
. A famous bearer was Simone de Beauvoir (1908-1986), a French feminist and philosopher.
SITA f Hinduism, Indian, Hindi, Nepali
Means "furrow" in Sanskrit. Sita is the name of the Hindu goddess of the harvest in the 'Rigveda'. This is also the name of the wife of Rama
(and an avatar of Lakshmi
) in the Hindu epic the 'Ramayana'. In this story Sita is rescued by her husband from the demon king Ravana.
SIXTEN m Swedish
From the Old Norse name Sigsteinn
, which was derived from the elements sigr
"victory" and steinn
SIXTUS m Late Roman
Latin form of the Greek name Ξυστος (Xystos)
meaning "scraped, polished". This name was borne by five popes. The first pope by this name was the sixth to serve after Saint Peter, so there is a possibility that this name is in fact derived from Latin sextus
SJRA m Limburgish
Limburgish form of GERARD
. Its spelling has been influenced by the French pronunciation of Gérard.
SŁAWOMIR m Polish
Derived from the Slavic element slava
meaning "glory" combined with meru
meaning "great, famous" or miru
meaning "peace, world".
SNORRI m Ancient Scandinavian, Icelandic
Derived from Old Norse snerra
"attack, onslaught". This name was borne by Snorri Sturluson, a 13th-century Icelandic historian and poet, the author of the Prose Edda.
SOBIESŁAW m Polish
Derived from Slavic elements, possibly sebe
meaning "for oneself", combined with slava
"glory". This name (in the Czech form Soběslav
) was borne by two 12th-century dukes of Bohemia.
SOFIA f Norwegian, Swedish, German, Italian, Portuguese, Catalan, Greek, Finnish, Estonian, Slovak, Romanian
Form of SOPHIA
SOLANGE f French
French form of the Late Latin name Sollemnia
, which was derived from Latin sollemnis
"religious". This was the name of a French shepherdess who became a saint after she was killed by her master.
SOLOMON m Biblical, English, Jewish
From the Hebrew name שְׁלֹמֹה (Shelomoh)
which was derived from Hebrew שָׁלוֹם (shalom)
"peace". As told in the Old Testament, Solomon was a king of Israel, the son of David
. He was renowned for his wisdom and wealth. Towards the end of his reign he angered God by turning to idolatry. Supposedly, he was the author of the Book of Proverbs, Ecclesiastes and the Song of Solomon.... [more]
SOLVEIG f Norwegian, Swedish
From an Old Norse name which was derived from the elements sól
"sun" and veig
"strength". This is the name of the heroine in Henrik Ibsen's play 'Peer Gynt' (1876).
SONDRA f English
Variant of SAUNDRA
. It was popularized in the English-speaking world by a character in Theodore Dreiser's novel 'An American Tragedy' (1925) and the subsequent movie adaptation (1931).
SONJA f German, Dutch, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Icelandic, Finnish, Slovene, Serbian, Croatian, Macedonian
Form of SONYA
SONYA f Russian, English
Russian diminutive of SOPHIA
. This is the name of a character in Leo Tolstoy's novel 'War and Peace' (1869, English translation 1886).
SOPHIA f English, Greek, German, Ancient Greek
Means "wisdom" in Greek. This was the name of an early, probably mythical, saint who died of grief after her three daughters were martyred during the reign of the emperor Hadrian. Legends about her probably arose as a result of a medieval misunderstanding of the phrase Hagia Sophia
"Holy Wisdom", which is the name of a large basilica in Constantinople.... [more]
SORAYA f Persian, Spanish, French
Persian form of THURAYYA
. It became popular in some parts of Europe because of the fame of Princess Soraya, wife of the last Shah of Iran, who became a European socialite.
SØREN m Danish, Norwegian
Danish form of SEVERINUS
. Søren Kierkegaard (1813-1855) was a Danish philosopher who is regarded as a precursor of existentialism.
STEFANUS m Dutch
Official Dutch form of STEPHEN
, used on birth certificates but not commonly in daily life.
STEPHEN m English, Biblical
From the Greek name Στεφανος (Stephanos)
meaning "crown", more precisely "that which surrounds". Saint Stephen was a deacon who was stoned to death, as told in Acts in the New Testament. He is regarded as the first Christian martyr. Due to him, the name became common in the Christian world. It was popularized in England by the Normans.... [more]
SUHAIL m Arabic, Urdu
Means "level, even" in Arabic. This is the Arabic name of the second brightest star in the sky, known in the western world as Canopus.
SÜLEYMAN m Turkish
Turkish form of SOLOMON
. Süleyman the Magnificent was a sultan of the Ottoman Empire in the 16th century. He expanded Ottoman territory into Europe and Persia, reformed the government, and completed several great building projects.
SUMATI f Hinduism, Indian, Hindi
Means "wise, good mind", derived from Sanskrit सु (su)
meaning "good" and मति (mati)
meaning "mind, thought". In the Hindu epic the 'Mahabharata' this is the name of King Sagara's second wife, who bore him sixty thousand children.
SUNITA f Hinduism, Indian, Hindi, Marathi, Nepali
Means "well conducted, wise", derived from the Sanskrit prefix सु (su)
meaning "good" combined with नीत (nita)
meaning "conducted, led". In Hindu legend this is the name of the daughter of King Anga of Bengal.
SUNNIVA f Norwegian
Scandinavian form of the Old English name Sunngifu
, which meant "sun gift" from the Old English elements sunne
"sun" and giefu
"gift". This was the name of a legendary English saint who was shipwrecked in Norway and killed by the inhabitants.
SUSAN f English
English variant of SUSANNA
. This has been most common spelling since the 18th century. A notable bearer was the American feminist Susan B. Anthony (1820-1906).
SUSANNA f Italian, Swedish, Finnish, Russian, Dutch, English, Biblical, Biblical Latin, Old Church Slavic
From Σουσαννα (Sousanna)
, the Greek form of the Hebrew name שׁוֹשַׁנָּה (Shoshannah)
. This was derived from the Hebrew word שׁוֹשָׁן (shoshan)
meaning "lily" (in modern Hebrew this also means "rose"), perhaps ultimately from Egyptian sšn
"lotus". In the Old Testament Apocrypha this is the name of a woman falsely accused of adultery. The prophet Daniel
clears her name by tricking her accusers, who end up being condemned themselves. It also occurs in the New Testament belonging to a woman who ministers to Jesus
SVANTEPOLK m Ancient Scandinavian
Old Norse form of SVYATOPOLK
. It was borne by the prominent 13th-century Swedish nobleman Svantepolk Knutsson. He may have been named after a relative of his Pomeranian mother.
SVERRE m Norwegian
From the Old Norse name Sverrir
which meant "wild, swinging, spinning".
TABEA f German
German short form of TABITHA
. This form was used in earlier editions of the Luther Bible.
TABITHA f English, Biblical, Biblical Greek
Means "gazelle" in Aramaic. Tabitha in the New Testament was a woman restored to life by Saint Peter
. Her name is translated into Greek as Dorcas (see Acts 9:36). As an English name, Tabitha
became common after the Protestant Reformation. It was popularized in the 1960s by the television show 'Bewitched', in which Tabitha (sometimes spelled Tabatha) is the daughter of the main character.