ALLEGRA f Italian, English (Rare)
Means "cheerful, lively" in Italian. It was borne by a short-lived illegitimate daughter of Lord Byron (1817-1822).
AMARO m Galician, Portuguese, Spanish
Possibly from the Germanic name ADELMAR
, maybe influenced by Latin amarus
"bitter". This was the name of a legendary saint who was said to have sailed across the Atlantic to a paradise. He is especially popular in Galicia and Asturias in Spain.
AMUND m Norwegian
Derived from the Old Norse name Agmundr
, from the element egg
"edge of a sword" or agi
"awe, terror" combined with mundr
ASHOKA m Sanskrit
Means "without sorrow" in Sanskrit. This name was borne by Ashoka the Great, a 3rd-century BC emperor of India.
BRÓNACH f Irish
Derived from Irish Gaelic brón
meaning "sorrow". Saint Brónach was a 6th-century mystic from Ireland.
CHARMION f Ancient Greek
Greek name derived from χαρμα (charma)
meaning "delight". This was the name of one of Cleopatra's servants, as recorded by Plutarch.
DEIMOS m Greek Mythology
Means "terror" in Greek. This was one of the sons of the Greek god Ares
. Also, a moon of Mars bears this name.
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).
DOLORES f Spanish, English
Means "sorrows", taken from the Spanish title of the Virgin Mary María de los Dolores
, meaning "Mary of Sorrows". It has been used in the English-speaking world since the 19th century, becoming especially popular in America during the 1920s and 30s.
EDEN f & m Hebrew, English (Modern)
Possibly from Hebrew עֵדֶן
('eden) meaning "pleasure, delight", or perhaps derived from Sumerian 𒂔 (edin)
meaning "plain". According to the Old Testament the Garden of Eden was the place where the first people, Adam
, lived before they were expelled.
EGIL m Norwegian, Swedish, Danish
From the Old Norse name Egill
, a diminutive of names that began with the element agi
"awe, terror". This was the name of a semi-legendary Icelandic warrior.
ELYSIA f Various
, the name of the realm of the dead in Greek and Roman mythology, which means "blissful".
ÉOWYN f Literature
Means "horse joy" in Old English. This name was invented by J. R. R. Tolkien who used Old English to represent the Rohirric language. In his novel 'The Lord of the Rings' (1954) Eowyn is the niece of King Theoden of Rohan. She slays the Lord of the Nazgul in the Battle of the Pelennor Fields.
ERNEST m English, French, Slovene, Polish
Derived from Germanic eornost
meaning "serious". It was introduced to England by the German House of Hanover when they inherited the British throne in the 18th century, though it did not become common until the following century. The American author and adventurer Ernest Hemingway (1899-1961) was a famous bearer of the name. It was also used by Oscar Wilde for a character in his comedy 'The Importance of Being Earnest' (1895).
EUTERPE f Greek Mythology
Means "delight" in Greek, ultimately from ευ (eu)
"good" and τερπω (terpo)
"to satisfy, to cheer". In Greek mythology she was one of the nine Muses, the muse of music and joy. She was said to have invented the double flute.
FORTUNATO m Italian, Spanish, Portuguese
Italian, Spanish and Portuguese form of the Late Latin name Fortunatus
meaning "fortunate, blessed, happy". This was the name of several early saints and martyrs.
GAIUS m Ancient Roman, Biblical Latin, Biblical
Roman praenomen, or given name, of uncertain meaning. It is possibly derived from Latin gaudere
"to rejoice", though it may be of unknown Etruscan origin. This was a very common Roman praenomen, the most famous bearers being Gaius Julius Caesar, the great leader of the Roman Republic, and his adopted son Gaius Octavius (later known as Augustus), the first Roman emperor. This name also appears in the New Testament belonging to a bishop of Ephesus who is regarded as a saint.
GALE (2) m English
From an English surname that was derived from Middle English gaile
GAY f English
From the English word gay
meaning "gay, happy". By the mid-20th century the word had acquired the additional meaning of "homosexual", and the name has subsequently dropped out of use.
HARSHA m Indian, Kannada, Telugu, Sanskrit
Means "happiness" in Sanskrit. This was the name of a 7th-century emperor of northern India. He was also noted as an author.
HILARIUS m Ancient Roman
Roman name derived from Latin hilaris
meaning "cheerful". Alternatively, it could be derived from the Greek name ‘Ιλαρος (Hilaros)
also meaning "cheerful" (the Greek word ‘ιλαρος
was the source of the Latin word hilaris
). Saint Hilarius was a 4th-century theologian and bishop of Poitiers. This was also the name of a 5th-century pope.
JABEZ m Biblical
Means "sorrow" in Hebrew. This is the name of a character in the Old Testament who is blessed by God.
JOY f English
Simply from the English word joy
, ultimately derived from Norman French joie
, Latin gaudia
. It has been regularly used as a given name since the late 19th century.
JOYCE f & m English
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).
LETA f English
Possibly derived from Latin laetus
meaning "glad". Otherwise, it could be a short form of names ending in leta
LETITIA f English
From the Late Latin name Laetitia
meaning "joy, happiness". This was the name of an obscure saint, who is revered mainly in Spain. It was in use in England during the Middle Ages, usually in the spelling Lettice
, and it was revived in the 18th century.
LIRON m & f Hebrew
Means "song for me" or "joy for me" in Hebrew.
LIVIUS m Ancient Roman
Roman family name that may be related to either Latin liveo
"to envy" or lividus
"blue, envious". Titus Livius, also known as Livy, was a Roman historian who wrote a history of the city of Rome.
LYKKE f Danish
Means "good fortune, happiness" in Danish.
LYSSA (2) f Greek Mythology
Means "rage, fury, anger" in Greek. In Greek mythology Lyssa is a goddess associated with uncontrolled rage.
MEHETABEL f Biblical
From the Hebrew name מְהֵיטַבְאֵל (Meheitav'el)
meaning "God makes happy". This name is mentioned briefly in the Old Testament.
MERIWETHER m English (Rare)
From a surname meaning "happy weather" in Middle English, originally belonging to a cheery person. A notable bearer of the name was Meriwether Lewis (1774-1809), who, with William Clark, explored the west of North America.
MERRY (1) f English
From the English word merry
, ultimately from Old English myrige
. This name appears in Charles Dickens' novel 'Martin Chuzzlewit' (1844), where it is a diminutive of MERCY
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".
MISTY f English
From the English word misty
, ultimately derived from Old English. The jazz song 'Misty' (1954) by Erroll Garner may have helped popularize the name.
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.
NOBLE m English
From an English surname meaning "noble, notable". The name can also be given in direct reference to the English word noble
NOBUYUKI m Japanese
From Japanese 信 (nobu)
meaning "trust" or 伸 (nobu)
meaning "extend, stretch, open" combined with 行 (yuki)
meaning "row, line" or 幸 (yuki)
meaning "happiness". Other kanji combinations are possible as well.
OBRAD m Serbian
Possibly derived from Serbian obradovati
"to make happy".
ODIN m Norse Mythology, English (Modern)
Anglicized form of Old Norse Óðinn
, which was derived from óðr
"inspiration, rage, frenzy". It ultimately developed from the early Germanic *Woðanaz
. The name appears as Woden
in Anglo-Saxon sources (for example, as the founder of several royal lineages in the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle) and in forms such as Wotan
in continental Europe. However, Odin is best known from Norse mythology, as the highest of the gods, presiding over art, war, wisdom and death. He resided in Valhalla, where warriors went after they were slain.
OVE m Swedish, Norwegian, Danish
Probably a modern form of the Old Danish name Aghi
, originally a short form of names that contain the Old Norse element egg
"edge of a sword" or agi
PARVIZ m Persian
Means "fortunate, happy" in Persian. This name was borne by a son of the Mughal emperor Jahangir.
PHOBOS m Greek Mythology
Means "fear, panic" in Greek. This was one of the sons of Ares
in Greek mythology. Also, one of the moons of Mars bears this name.
RIDHA m Arabic
Means "satisfaction, contentment" in Arabic. This name was borne by Ali Musi al-Ridha, a 9th-century Shia imam.
ROWENA f English
Meaning uncertain, possibly a Latinized form of a Germanic name derived from the elements hrod
"fame" and wunn
"joy, bliss". According to the 12th-century chronicler Geoffrey of Monmouth, this was the name of a daughter of the Saxon chief Hengist. Alternatively, Geoffrey may have based it on a Welsh name. It was popularized by Sir Walter Scott, who used it for a character in his novel 'Ivanhoe' (1819).
SACHIKO f Japanese
From Japanese 幸 (sachi)
meaning "happiness, good luck" and 子 (ko)
meaning "child". Other kanji combinations are possible.
SA'ID m Arabic
Means "happy, lucky" in Arabic. This was the name of a companion of the Prophet Muhammad
TRISTAN m Welsh, English, French, Arthurian Romance
Old French form of the Pictish name Drustan
, a diminutive of DRUST
. The spelling was altered by association with Latin tristis
"sad". Tristan is a character in medieval French tales, probably inspired by older Celtic legends, and ultimately merged into Arthurian legend. According to the story Tristan was sent to Ireland in order to fetch Isolde
, who was to be the bride of King Mark of Cornwall. On the way back, Tristan and Isolde accidentally drink a potion that makes them fall in love. Their tragic story was very popular in the Middle Ages, and the name has occasionally been used since that time.
WINSTON m English
From a surname derived from an English place name, which was in turn derived from the Old English given name WYNNSTAN
. A famous bearer was Winston Churchill (1874-1965), the British prime minister during World War II. This name was also borne by the fictional Winston Smith, the protagonist in George Orwell's 1949 novel '1984'.
XINYI m & f Chinese
From Chinese 欣 (xīn)
meaning "happy, joyous, delighted" or 心 (xīn)
meaning "heart, mind, soul" combined with 怡 (yí)
meaning "joy, harmony". This name can also be formed from other character combinations.
YUKI f & m Japanese
From Japanese 幸 (yuki)
meaning "happiness" or 雪 (yuki)
meaning "snow". It can also come from 由 (yu)
meaning "reason, cause" combined with 貴 (ki)
meaning "valuable" or 紀 (ki)
meaning "chronicle". Other kanji or kanji combinations are also possible.
YUKIKO f Japanese
From Japanese 幸 (yuki)
meaning "happiness" or 雪 (yuki)
meaning "snow" combined with 子 (ko)
meaning "child". Alternatively, it can come from 由 (yu)
meaning "reason, cause" with 喜 (ki)
meaning "joy" or 貴 (ki)
meaning "valuable" combined with 子 (ko)
meaning "child". Other kanji combinations can also form this name.
ZELOPHEHAD m Biblical
Possibly means either "first born" or "shadow from terror" in Hebrew. In the Old Testament, Zelophehad is a man who dies while the Israelites are wandering in the wilderness, leaving five daughters as heirs.