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.
EMIDIO m Italian
From the Late Latin name Emygdius
, which was possibly a Latinized form of a Gaulish name (of unknown meaning). Saint Emygdius was a 3rd-century bishop and martyr, the patron saint against earthquakes.
EMILIANO m Spanish, Italian
Spanish and Italian form of the Roman cognomen Aemilianus
, which was itself derived from the family name Aemilius
EMMA f English, French, Italian, Spanish, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Icelandic, Finnish, Dutch, German, Ancient Germanic
Originally a short form of Germanic names that began with the element ermen
meaning "whole" or "universal". It was introduced to England by Emma of Normandy, who was the wife both of king Ethelred II (and by him the mother of Edward the Confessor) and later of king Canute. It was also borne by an 11th-century Austrian saint, who is sometimes called Hemma
ENNIO m Italian
Italian form of the Roman family name Ennius
which is of unknown meaning. Quintus Ennius was an early Roman poet.
ENRICO m Italian
Italian form of HENRY
. Enrico Fermi (1901-1954) was an Italian physicist who did work on the development of the nuclear bomb.
ENZO m Italian, French
The meaning of this name is uncertain. In some cases it seems to be an old Italian form of HEINZ
, though in other cases it could be a variant of the Germanic name ANZO
. In modern times it is also used as a short form of names ending in enzo
, such as VINCENZO
EPIFANIO m Spanish, Italian
From the Latin name Epiphanius
, which was from the Greek name Επιφανιος (Epiphanios)
, itself derived from the Greek word επιφανεια (epiphaneia)
meaning "appearance, manifestation". This name was borne by a few early saints. It is associated with the event known in English as the Epiphany (Spanish Epifanía
, Italian Epifania
, Latin Epiphania
), the coming of the three Magi to visit the infant Jesus
ERIKA f Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Finnish, German, Hungarian, Czech, Slovene, Croatian, English, Italian
Feminine form of ERIK
. It also coincides with the word for "heather" in some languages.
ERMETE m Italian
Derived from Hermetis
, the Latin genitive form of HERMES
, the name of the Greek messenger god.
EUSTORGIO m Italian
, the Latin form of the Greek name Ευστοργιος (Eustorgios)
, which was from the word ευστοργος (eustorgos)
meaning "content", a derivative of ευ (eu)
"good" and στεργω (stergo)
"to love, to be content". Saint Eustorgius was a 6th-century bishop of Milan.
EVA f Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, English, Czech, Slovak, German, Dutch, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Icelandic, Greek, Slovene, Bulgarian, Croatian, Russian, Georgian, Old Church Slavic, Biblical Latin
Latinate form of EVE
. This form is used in the Latin translation of the New Testament, while Hava
is used in the Latin Old Testament. It is also a variant transcription of Russian YEVA
. This name appears in Harriet Beecher Stowe's novel 'Uncle Tom's Cabin' (1852) belonging to the character Little Eva, whose real name is in fact Evangeline.
EVELINA f English, Italian, Swedish
Latinate form of AVELINE
. It was revived by the author Fanny Burney for the heroine of her first novel 'Evelina' (1778). It is often regarded as a variant of the related name EVELYN
or an elaboration of EVE
FAUSTINO m Spanish, Italian, Portuguese
Spanish, Italian and Portuguese form of the Roman cognomen Faustinus
, which was itself derived from the Roman name FAUSTUS
. Faustinus was the name of several early saints.
FEDERICO m Spanish, Italian
Spanish and Italian form of FREDERICK
. Spanish poet Federico García Lorca (1898-1936) and Italian filmmaker Federico Fellini (1920-1993) are famous bearers of this name.
FERRUCCIO m Italian
Derived from the Late Latin name Ferrutius
, a derivative of ferrum
meaning "iron, sword". Saint Ferrutius was a 3rd-century martyr with his brother Ferreolus.
FIAMMETTA f Italian
Derived from Italian fiamma
"fire" combined with a diminutive suffix.
FINA f Italian
Short form of SERAFINA
. Saint Fina, also known as Saint Serafina, was a 13th-century girl from the town of San Gimignano in Italy.
FIORE f & m Italian
Means "flower" in Italian. It can also be considered an Italian form of the Latin names FLORA
FIORELLA f Italian
From Italian fiore
"flower" combined with a diminutive suffix.
FLORA f English, German, Italian, Roman Mythology
Derived from Latin flos
meaning "flower". Flora was the Roman goddess of flowers and spring, the wife of Zephyr the west wind. It has been used as a given name since the Renaissance, starting in France. In Scotland it was sometimes used as an Anglicized form of Fionnghuala
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.
FRANCESCO m Italian
Italian form of Franciscus
). Francesco Laurana was an Italian Renaissance sculptor.
FREDIANO m Italian
Italian form of the Roman name Frigidianus
, which was derived from Latin frigidus
"cold". This was the name of a 6th-century Irish bishop who made a pilgrimage to Rome and settled as a hermit on Mount Pisano.
FULVIO m Italian
Italian form of the Roman family name Fulvius
, which was derived from Latin fulvus
GAETANO m Italian
Italian form of the Latin name Caietanus
, which meant "from Caieta". Caieta (now called Gaeta) was a town in ancient Italy, its name deriving either from Kaiadas
, the name a Greek location where prisoners were executed, or else from Caieta
, the name of the nurse of Aeneas. Saint Gaetano was a 16th-century Italian priest who founded the Theatines.
GAIA f Greek Mythology, Italian
From the Greek word γαια (gaia)
, a parallel form of γη (ge)
meaning "earth". In Greek mythology Gaia was the mother goddess who presided over the earth. She was the mate of Uranus
and the mother of the Titans and the Cyclopes.
GAVINO m Italian
From the Late Latin name Gabinus
, which possibly referred to the ancient city of Gabii in central Italy. Saint Gavino was martyred in Sardinia in the 3rd century.
GILDA f Italian, Portuguese
Originally an Italian short form of names containing the Germanic element gild
meaning "sacrifice, value".
GINEVRA f Italian
Italian form of GUINEVERE
. This is also the Italian name for the city of Geneva, Switzerland. It is also sometimes associated with the Italian word ginepro
GINO m Italian
Italian short form of names ending in gino
GIOACHINO m Italian
Italian form of JOACHIM
. A famous bearer was the Italian composer Gioachino Rossini (1792-1868).
GIOCONDA f Italian
From the Late Latin name Iucunda
which meant "pleasant, delightful, happy". Leonardo da Vinci's painting the 'Mona Lisa' is also known as 'La Gioconda' because its subject is Lisa del Giocondo.
GIOTTO m Italian
Possibly from Ambrogiotto
, a diminutive of AMBROGIO
. This name was borne by Giotto di Bondone (1267-1337), an Italian painter and architect.
GIOVANNI m Italian
Italian form of Iohannes
). The Renaissance painter Giovanni Bellini (1430-1516) and the painter and sculptor Giovanni Lorenzo Bernini (1598-1680) were two famous bearers of this name.
GIUSEPPE m Italian
Italian form of JOSEPH
. Giuseppe Garibaldi (1807-1882) was a military leader who united Italy in the 19th century.
GLORIA f English, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, German
Means "glory" in Latin. The name (first?) appeared in E. D. E. N. Southworth's novel 'Gloria' (1891) and subsequently in George Bernard Shaw's play 'You Never Can Tell' (1898). It was popularized in the early 20th century by American actress Gloria Swanson (1899-1983). Another famous bearer is feminist Gloria Steinem (1934-).
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.
IDA f English, German, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Dutch, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Hungarian, Slovene, Croatian, Ancient Germanic
Derived from the Germanic element id
meaning "work, labour". The Normans brought this name to England, though it eventually died out there in the Middle Ages. It was strongly revived in the 19th century, in part due to the heroine in Alfred Lord Tennyson's poem 'The Princess' (1847), which was later adapted into the play 'Princess Ida' (1884) by Gilbert and Sullivan.... [more]
ILEANA f Romanian, Spanish, Italian
Possibly a Romanian variant of ELENA
. In Romanian folklore this is the name of a princess kidnapped by monsters and rescued by a heroic knight.
IRENE f English, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Finnish, German, Ancient Greek (Latinized), Greek Mythology (Latinized)
From Greek Ειρηνη (Eirene)
, derived from a word meaning "peace". This was the name of the Greek goddess who personified peace, one of the ‘Ωραι
(Horai). It was also borne by several early Christian saints. The name was common in the Byzantine Empire, notably being borne by an 8th-century empress, who was the first woman to lead the empire. She originally served as regent for her son, but later had him killed and ruled alone.... [more]
IRMA f German, English, Dutch, Finnish, Spanish, Italian, Georgian, Lithuanian, Hungarian (Rare), Ancient Germanic
German short form of names beginning with the Germanic element ermen
, which meant "whole, universal". It is thus related to EMMA
. It began to be regularly used in the English-speaking world in the 19th century.
ISABELLA f Italian, German, English, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Dutch, Romanian
Latinate form of ISABEL
. This name was borne by many medieval royals, including queen consorts of England, France, Portugal, the Holy Roman Empire and Hungary, as well as the powerful ruling queen Isabella of Castile (properly called Isabel
IVAN m Russian, Bulgarian, Ukrainian, Belarusian, Serbian, Croatian, Czech, Slovak, Macedonian, Slovene, English, Italian, Danish, Swedish, Norwegian
Newer form of the old Slavic name Іѡаннъ (Ioannu)
, which was derived from Greek Ioannes
). This was the name of six Russian rulers, including the 15th-century Ivan III the Great and 16th-century Ivan IV the Terrible, the first tsar of Russia. It was also borne by nine emperors of Bulgaria. Other notable bearers include the Russian author Ivan Turgenev (1818-1883), who wrote 'Fathers and Sons', and the Russian physiologist Ivan Pavlov (1849-1936), who is best known for his discovery of the conditioned reflex.
IVO (1) m German, Dutch, Italian, Portuguese, Czech, Ancient Germanic
Germanic name, originally a short form of names beginning with the Germanic element iv
meaning "yew". Alternative theories suggest that it may in fact be derived from a cognate Celtic element. This was the name of several saints (who are also commonly known as Saint Yves
JESSICA f English, French, German, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Italian, Spanish
This name was first used in this form by Shakespeare in his play 'The Merchant of Venice' (1596), where it belongs to the daughter of Shylock. Shakespeare probably based it on the biblical name ISCAH
, which would have been spelled Jescha
in his time. It was not commonly used as a given name until the middle of the 20th century. Notable bearers include actresses Jessica Tandy (1909-1994) and Jessica Lange (1949-).
LARA (1) f Russian, English, German, French, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Dutch, Hungarian, Slovene, Croatian
Russian short form of LARISA
. It was introduced to the English-speaking world by a character from Boris Pasternak's novel 'Doctor Zhivago' (1957) and the subsequent movie adaptation (1965).
LAURA f English, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, Romanian, Finnish, Estonian, Hungarian, Polish, Slovene, Croatian, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, German, Dutch, Late Roman
Feminine form of the Late Latin name Laurus
, which meant "laurel". This meaning was favourable, since in ancient Rome the leaves of laurel trees were used to create victors' garlands. The name was borne by the 9th-century Spanish martyr Saint Laura, who was a nun thrown into a vat of molten lead by the Moors. It was also the name of the subject of poems by the 14th-century Italian poet Petrarch.... [more]
LENA f Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, German, Polish, Russian, English, Italian, Portuguese, Greek
Short form of names ending in lena
, such as HELENA
LEONARDO m Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, History
Italian, Spanish and Portuguese form of LEONARD
. A notable bearer was Leonardo da Vinci (1452-1519), an Italian artist and scientist of the Renaissance. He is also known as the inventor of several contraptions, including flying machines, as well as the painter of the 'Mona Lisa'. Another famous bearer was Leonardo Fibonacci, a 13th-century Italian mathematician. A more recent bearer is American actor Leonardo DiCaprio (1974-).
LINDA f English, Dutch, German, Italian, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Icelandic, French, Latvian, Finnish, Hungarian, Czech, Slovak, Ancient Germanic
Originally a medieval short form of Germanic names containing the element linde
meaning "soft, tender". It also coincides with the Spanish and Portuguese word linda
LISA f English, German, Dutch, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Italian
Short form of ELIZABETH
. This is the name of the subject of one of the world's most famous paintings, the 'Mona Lisa', the portrait of Lisa del Giocondo by Leonardo da Vinci.
LOREDANA f Italian, Romanian
Used by the French author George Sand for a character in her novel 'Mattea' (1833) and later by the Italian author Luciano Zuccoli in his novel 'L'amore de Loredana' (1908). It was possibly based on the Venetian surname Loredan
, which was derived from the place name Loreo
LORENZO m Italian, Spanish
Italian and Spanish form of Laurentius
(see LAURENCE (1)
). Lorenzo de' Medici (1449-1492), known as the Magnificent, was a ruler of Florence during the Renaissance. He was also a great patron of the arts who employed Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, Botticelli and other famous artists.
LORETO f & m Italian, Spanish
From the name of a town in Italy, originally called Lauretum
in Latin, meaning "laurel grove". Supposedly in the 13th century the house of the Virgin Mary
was miraculously carried by angels from Nazareth to the town.
LUANA f English, Italian, Portuguese
From the movie 'Bird of Paradise' (1932), in which it was borne by the main character, a Polynesian girl. The movie was based on a 1912 play of the same name set in Hawaii.