ALMA (1) f English, Spanish, Italian, Dutch
This name became popular after the Battle of Alma (1854), which took place near the River Alma in Crimea and ended in a victory for Britain and France. However, the name was in rare use before the battle; it was probably inspired by Latin almus
"nourishing". It also coincides with the Spanish word meaning "the soul".
BIANCA f Italian, Romanian
Italian cognate of BLANCHE
. Shakespeare used characters named Bianca in Taming of the Shrew
(1593) and Othello
CHANG m & f Chinese
From Chinese 昌 (chāng)
meaning "flourish, prosper, good, sunlight" (which is usually only masculine), 畅 (chàng)
meaning "smooth, free, unrestrained" or 长 (cháng)
meaning "long". Other Chinese characters are also possible.
CLARA f German, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, French, Catalan, Romanian, English, Swedish, Danish, Late Roman
Feminine form of the Late Latin name Clarus
, which meant "clear, bright, famous"
. The name Clarus
was borne by a few early saints. The feminine form was popularized by the 13th-century Saint Clare of Assisi (called Chiara
in Italian), a friend and follower of Saint Francis, who left her wealthy family to found the order of nuns known as the Poor Clares. As an English name it has been in use since the Middle Ages, originally in the form Clare
, though the Latinate spelling Clara
became more popular in the 19th century.
ELENA f Italian, Spanish, Romanian, Bulgarian, Macedonian, Slovak, Lithuanian, Russian, Greek, German, English, Medieval Slavic
Form of HELEN
used in various languages, as well as an alternate transcription of Russian Елена
ELMO m English, German, Italian
Originally a short form of Germanic names that began with the element helm
meaning "helmet, protection"
. It is also a derivative of ERASMUS
, via the old Italian diminutive Ermo
. Saint Elmo, also known as Saint Erasmus, was a 4th-century martyr who is the patron of sailors. Saint Elmo's fire is said to be a sign of his protection.
EURYDICE f Greek Mythology (Latinized)
From the Greek Εὐρυδίκη (Eurydike)
meaning "wide justice"
, derived from εὐρύς (eurys)
meaning "wide" and δίκη (dike)
meaning "justice". In Greek myth she was the wife of Orpheus. Her husband tried to rescue her from Hades, but he failed when he disobeyed the condition that he not look back upon her on their way out.
FRANÇOIS m French
French form of Franciscus
). François Villon was a French lyric poet of the 15th century. This was also the name of two kings of France.
GUIDO m Italian, German
Latinized form of WIDO
. This was the name of two 11th-century saints. Other notable bearers include 11th-century music theorist Guido d'Arezzo, 13th-century poet Guido Cavalcanti, and 17th-century painter Guido Reni.
ISMENE f Greek Mythology
Possibly from Greek ἰσμή (isme)
. This was the name of the daughter of Oedipus and Jocasta in Greek legend.
ISOLDE f English (Rare), German, Arthurian Romance
The origins of this name are uncertain, though some Celtic roots have been suggested. It is possible that the name is ultimately Germanic, perhaps from a hypothetic name like Ishild
, composed of the elements is
"ice, iron" and hild
JUSTIN m English, French, Slovene
From the Latin name Iustinus
, which was derived from JUSTUS
. This was the name of several early saints including Justin Martyr, a Christian philosopher of the 2nd century who was beheaded in Rome. It was also borne by two Byzantine emperors. As an English name, it has occasionally been used since the late Middle Ages, though it did not become common until the 20th century. Famous modern bearers include pop stars Justin Timberlake (1981-) and Justin Bieber (1994-).
LEO m German, Dutch, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Finnish, English, Croatian, Late Roman
Derived from Latin leo
, a cognate of LEON
. It was popular among early Christians and was the name of 13 popes, including Saint Leo the Great who asserted the dominance of the Roman bishops (the popes) over all others in the 5th century. It was also borne by six Byzantine emperors and five Armenian kings. Another famous bearer was Leo Tolstoy (1828-1910), a Russian novelist whose works include War and Peace
and Anna Karenina
. Leo is also the name of a constellation and the fifth sign of the zodiac.
MIO f Japanese
From Japanese 美 (mi)
meaning "beautiful" combined with 桜 (o)
meaning "cherry blossom" or 緒 (o)
meaning "thread". Other kanji or kanji combinations can also form this name.
MIRANDA f English, Dutch
Derived from Latin mirandus
meaning "admirable, wonderful"
. The name was created by Shakespeare for the heroine in his play The Tempest
(1611), about a father and daughter stranded on an island. It did not become a common English given name until the 20th century. This is also the name of one of the moons of Uranus, named after the Shakespearean character.
NANA (2) f Japanese
From Japanese 菜 (na)
meaning "vegetables, greens" and/or 奈 (na)
, a phonetic character. The characters can be in either order or the same character can be duplicated, as indicated by the symbol 々
. Other kanji with the same pronunciations can also be used to form this name.
RAVEN f & m English
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
SAKI f Japanese
From Japanese 咲 (sa)
meaning "blossom" and 希 (ki)
meaning "hope", besides other combinations of kanji characters.
SANDRA f Italian, English, French, Spanish, Portuguese, German, Dutch, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Icelandic, Latvian, Lithuanian, Polish, Slovene, Croatian, Serbian, Macedonian, Czech, Romanian
Short form of ALESSANDRA
. It was introduced to the English-speaking world by author George Meredith, who used it for the heroine in his novel Emilia in England
(1864) and the reissued version Sandra Belloni
(1887). A famous bearer is the American actress Sandra Bullock (1964-).
SELENE f Greek Mythology
in Greek. This was the name of a Greek goddess of the moon, a Titan. She was sometimes identified with the goddess Artemis
SKYE f English (Modern)
From the name of the Isle of Skye off the west coast of Scotland. It is sometimes considered a variant of SKY
VELDA f English
Meaning unknown, possibly a derivative of the Germanic element wald
meaning "power, rule"
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.