rainbow_Maya's Personal Name List

ADA
Gender: Feminine
Usage: English, German, Polish, Hungarian, Italian, Finnish
Pronounced: AY-də (English), A-da (Polish), AH-dah (Finnish)
Short form of ADELAIDE and other names beginning with the same sound. This name was borne by Augusta Ada King (1815-1852), the Countess of Lovelace (known as Ada Lovelace), a daughter of Lord Byron. She was an assistant to Charles Babbage, the inventor of an early mechanical computer.

ALVA (1)
Gender: Feminine
Usage: Swedish, Norwegian
Feminine form of ALF (1).

AMABEL
Gender: Feminine
Usage: English (Rare)
Medieval feminine form of AMABILIS.

AMAYA
Gender: Feminine
Usage: Basque, Spanish
Variant of AMAIA.

ANNABEL
Gender: Feminine
Usage: English, Dutch
Pronounced: AN-ə-bel (English)
Variant of AMABEL influenced by the name ANNA. This name appears to have arisen in Scotland in the Middle Ages.

ANNIE
Gender: Feminine
Usage: English, French, Dutch
Pronounced: AN-ee (English), A-NEE (French)
Diminutive of ANNE (1).

ANOUK
Gender: Feminine
Usage: Dutch, French
Dutch and French diminutive of ANNA.

ÁRPÁD
Gender: Masculine
Usage: Hungarian
Pronounced: AR-pad
From Hungarian árpa meaning "barley". This was the name of a 9th-century Magyar ruler who led his people into Hungary. He is considered a Hungarian national hero.

ARTEMIS
Gender: Feminine
Usage: Greek Mythology, Greek
Other Scripts: Αρτεμις (Greek)
Pronounced: AR-TE-MEES (Classical Greek), AHR-tə-mis (English)
Personal note: nn Arte
Meaning unknown, possibly related either to Greek αρτεμης (artemes) "safe" or αρταμος (artamos) "a butcher". Artemis was the Greek goddess of the moon and hunting, the twin of Apollo and the daughter of Zeus and Leto. She was known as Diana to the Romans.

ARTHUR
Gender: Masculine
Usage: English, French, German, Dutch, Norwegian, Danish, Swedish, Welsh Mythology, Arthurian Romance
Pronounced: AHR-thər (English), AR-TUYR (French), AR-tuwr (German), AHR-tuyr (Dutch)
Personal note: nn Arty
The meaning of this name is unknown. It could be derived from the Celtic elements artos "bear" combined with viros "man" or rigos "king". Alternatively it could be related to an obscure Roman family name Artorius. Arthur is the name of the central character in Arthurian legend, a 6th-century king of the Britons who resisted Saxon invaders. He may or may not have been a real person. He first appears in Welsh poems and chronicles (some possibly as early as the 7th century) but his character was not developed until the chronicles of the 12th-century Geoffrey of Monmouth.

The name came into general use in England in the Middle Ages due to the prevalence of Arthurian romances, and it enjoyed a surge of popularity in the 19th century. Famous bearers include German philosopher Arthur Schopenhauer (1788-1860), mystery author and Sherlock Holmes creator Arthur Conan Doyle (1859-1930), and science-fiction author Arthur C. Clarke (1917-2008).

ARWEN
Gender: Feminine
Usage: Literature
Means "noble maiden" in Sindarin. In 'The Lord of the Rings' (1954) by J. R. R. Tolkien, Arwen was the daughter of Elrond and the lover of Aragorn.

ASTA
Gender: Feminine
Usage: Swedish, Norwegian, Danish
Pronounced: AHS-tah (Swedish, Norwegian)
Short form of ASTRID.

AUGUST
Gender: Masculine
Usage: German, Polish, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Catalan, English
Pronounced: OW-guwst (German), OW-goost (Polish), AW-gəst (English)
German, Polish, Scandinavian and Catalan form of AUGUSTUS.

BARNABY
Gender: Masculine
Usage: English (Archaic)
Pronounced: BAHR-nə-bee
Medieval English form of BARNABAS.

BEATRIX
Gender: Feminine
Usage: German, Hungarian, Dutch, English (Rare), Late Roman
Pronounced: be-A-triks (German), BE-a-triks (German), BE-aw-treeks (Hungarian), BAY-ah-triks (Dutch), BEE-ə-triks (English), BEE-triks (English)
Personal note: nns Bea, Trix
Probably from Viatrix, a feminine form of the Late Latin name Viator which meant "voyager, traveller". It was a common name amongst early Christians, and the spelling was altered by association with Latin beatus "blessed". Viatrix or Beatrix was a 4th-century saint who was strangled to death during the persecutions of Diocletian.

In England the name became rare after the Middle Ages, but it was revived in the 19th century, more commonly in the spelling Beatrice. Famous bearers include the British author and illustrator Beatrix Potter (1866-1943), the creator of Peter Rabbit, and Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands (1938-).

BENJAMIN
Gender: Masculine
Usage: English, French, German, Dutch, Danish, Swedish, Norwegian, Biblical
Other Scripts: בִּנְיָמִין (Ancient Hebrew)
Pronounced: BEN-jə-min (English), BEN-ZHA-MEN (French), BEN-ya-meen (German)
From the Hebrew name בִּנְיָמִין (Binyamin) which means "son of the south" or "son of the right hand". Benjamin in the Old Testament is the twelfth and youngest son of Jacob and the founder of one of the southern tribes of the Hebrews. He was originally named בֶּן־אוֹנִי (Ben-'oniy) meaning "son of my sorrow" by his mother Rachel, who died shortly after childbirth, but it was later changed by his father (see Genesis 35:18).

As an English name, Benjamin came into general use after the Protestant Reformation. A famous bearer was Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790), an American statesman, inventor, scientist and philosopher.

BERNARD
Gender: Masculine
Usage: English, French, Dutch, Polish, Croatian, Slovene, Czech, Ancient Germanic
Pronounced: bər-NAHRD (American English), BU-nəd (British English), BER-NAR (French), BER-nahrt (Dutch), BER-nart (Polish, Croatian)
Derived from the Germanic element bern "bear" combined with hard "brave, hardy". The Normans brought it to England, where it replaced the Old English cognate Beornheard. This was the name of several saints, including Saint Bernard of Menthon who built hospices in the Swiss Alps in the 10th century, and Saint Bernard of Clairvaux, a 12th-century theologian and Doctor of the Church. Other famous bearers include the Irish playwright and essayist George Bernard Shaw (1856-1950) and the British World War II field marshal Bernard Montgomery (1887-1976).

CARA
Gender: Feminine
Usage: English
Pronounced: KAHR-ə, KER-ə
Personal note: also Kara
From an Italian word meaning "beloved". It has been used as a given name since the 19th century, though it did not become popular until after the 1950s.

CARLOTTA
Gender: Feminine
Usage: Italian
Pronounced: kar-LOT-ta
Personal note: nn Carla
Italian form of CHARLOTTE.

CARYS
Gender: Feminine
Usage: Welsh
Pronounced: KAHR-is
Personal note: also Cerys
Derived from Welsh caru meaning "love". This is a relatively modern Welsh name, in common use only since the middle of the 20th century.

CATRIONA
Gender: Feminine
Usage: Irish, Scottish
Pronounced: ka-TREE-na, ka-TREE-o-na
Gaelic form of KATHERINE.

CLARIBEL
Gender: Feminine
Usage: English
Pronounced: KLER-ə-bel, KLAR-ə-bel
Combination of CLARA and the popular name suffix bel. This name was used by Edmund Spenser in his poem 'The Faerie Queene' (in the form Claribell) and by Shakespeare in his play 'The Tempest' (1611). Alfred Lord Tennyson also wrote a poem entitled 'Claribel' (1830).

CLOVIS
Gender: Feminine
Usage: Ancient Germanic (Latinized), French
Pronounced: KLO-vis (English), KLAW-VEES (French)
Shortened form of Clodovicus, a Latinized form of Chlodovech (see LUDWIG). Clovis was a Frankish king who united France under his rule in the 5th century.

CORIANDER
Gender: Masculine
Usage: English (Rare)
Pronounced: KAWR-ee-an-dər
From the name of the spice, also called cilantro, which may ultimately be of Phoenician origin (via Latin and Greek).

COSIMA
Gender: Feminine
Usage: Italian
Italian feminine form of COSIMO.

DRYSTAN
Gender: Masculine
Usage: Welsh
Welsh form of TRISTAN.

DYLAN
Gender: Masculine
Usage: Welsh, English, Welsh Mythology
Pronounced: DUL-an (Welsh), DIL-ən (English)
From the Welsh elements dy meaning "great" and llanw meaning "tide, flow". In Welsh mythology Dylan was a god or hero associated with the sea. He was the son of Arianrhod and was accidentally slain by his uncle Govannon.

Famous bearers include the Welsh poet Dylan Thomas (1914-1953) and the American musician Bob Dylan (1941-), real name Robert Zimmerman, who took his stage surname from the poet's given name. Due to those two bearers, use of the name has spread outside of Wales in the last half of the 20th century. It received a further boost in popularity in the 1990s due to a character on the television series 'Beverly Hills 90210'.

ELBA
Gender: Feminine
Usage: Spanish
Pronounced: EL-ba
Possibly a Spanish variant form of ALBA (3).

ELSA
Gender: Feminine
Usage: English, German, Swedish, Icelandic, Finnish, Italian
Pronounced: EL-sə (English), EL-za (German), EL-sah (Finnish)
Short form of ELISABETH.

EMINA
Gender: Feminine
Usage: Bosnian
Bosnian form of AMINAH (2).

EMMA
Gender: Feminine
Usage: English, French, Italian, Spanish, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Icelandic, Finnish, Dutch, German, Ancient Germanic
Pronounced: EM-ə (English), E-MA (French), EM-mah (Finnish), E-ma (German)
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.

After the Norman conquest this name became common in England. It was revived in the 18th century, perhaps in part due to Matthew Prior's poem 'Henry and Emma' (1709). It was also used by Jane Austen for the central character, the matchmaker Emma Woodhouse, in her novel 'Emma' (1816).

ENA (1)
Gender: Feminine
Usage: Irish
Anglicized form of EITHNE.

FINLAY
Gender: Masculine
Usage: Irish, Scottish, English
Personal note: nn Finn
Anglicized form of FIONNLAGH.

FINTAN
Gender: Masculine
Usage: Irish, Irish Mythology
Pronounced: FIN-tan (Irish)
Personal note: nn Finn
Possibly means either "white fire" or "white bull" in Irish. According to legend this was the name of the only Irish person to survive the great flood. This name was also borne by many Irish saints.

FIONA
Gender: Feminine
Usage: Scottish, English
Pronounced: fee-O-nə
Feminine form of FIONN. This name was (first?) used by Scottish poet James Macpherson in his poem 'Fingal' (1762).

FLOSSIE
Gender: Feminine
Usage: English
Pronounced: FLAWS-ee
Personal note: nn for Floss
Diminutive of FLORENCE.

FLYNN
Gender: Feminine & Masculine
Usage: English (Rare)
Pronounced: FLIN
From an Irish surname, an Anglicized form of Ó Floinn meaning "descendant of FLANN".

FRANCIS
Gender: Masculine
Usage: English, French
Pronounced: FRAN-sis (English), FRAHN-SEES (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.

Due to the renown of the saint, this name became widespread in Western Europe during the Middle Ages. However, it was not regularly used in Britain until the 16th century. Famous bearers include Saint Francis Xavier (1506-1552), a missionary to East Asia, the philosopher and scientist Francis Bacon (1561-1626), and the explorer and admiral Sir Francis Drake (1540-1595). In the English-speaking world this name is occasionally used for girls.

FREDERICK
Gender: Masculine
Usage: English
Pronounced: FRED-ə-rik, FRED-rik
English form of a Germanic name meaning "peaceful ruler", derived from frid "peace" and ric "ruler, power". This name has long been common in continental Germanic-speaking regions, being borne by rulers of the Holy Roman Empire, Germany, Austria, Scandinavia, and Prussia. Notables among these rulers include the 12th-century Holy Roman Emperor and crusader Frederick I Barbarossa, the 13th-century emperor and patron of the arts Frederick II, and the 18th-century Frederick II of Prussia, known as Frederick the Great.

The Normans brought the name to England in the 11th century but it quickly died out. It was reintroduced by the German House of Hanover when they inherited the British throne in the 18th century. A famous bearer was Frederick Douglass (1818-1895), an American ex-slave who became a leading advocate of abolition.

FRIEDA
Gender: Feminine
Usage: German, English
Pronounced: FREE-da (German), FREE-də (English)
Variant of FRIDA.

GAIA
Gender: Feminine
Usage: Greek Mythology, Italian
Other Scripts: Γαια (Ancient Greek)
Pronounced: GIE-A (Classical Greek), GIE-ə (English), GAY-ə (English), GA-ya (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.

GILEAD
Gender: Masculine
Usage: Biblical
Other Scripts: גִּלְעָד (Ancient Hebrew)
From an Old Testament place name meaning "monument of testimony" in Hebrew. This was a mountainous region east of the Jordan River. Besides being a place name, it is also borne by people in the Bible.

GRÁINNE
Gender: Feminine
Usage: Irish, Irish Mythology
Pronounced: GRAW-nyə (Irish)
Personal note: Grania, Gronia?
Possibly derived from Gaelic grán meaning "grain". This was the name of an ancient Irish grain goddess. The name also belonged to the fiancée of Fionn mac Cumhail and the lover of Diarmaid in later Irish legend, and it is often associated with gráidh "love".

HANNA (2)
Gender: Feminine
Usage: German, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Finnish, Dutch, Hungarian
Pronounced: HA-na (German), HAN-nah (Danish), HAHN-nah (Finnish), HAWN-naw (Hungarian)
Short form of JOHANNA.

HARRIS
Gender: Masculine
Usage: English
Pronounced: HAR-is, HER-is
From a surname which was derived from the given name HARRY.

HENRIETTA
Gender: Feminine
Usage: English, Hungarian, Finnish, Swedish, Dutch
Pronounced: hen-ree-ET-ə (English), HEN-ree-et-taw (Hungarian), HEN-ree-et-tah (Finnish)
Personal note: nn Etta
Latinate form of HENRIETTE. It was introduced to England by Henriette Marie, the wife of the 17th-century English king Charles I. The name Henriette was also Anglicized as Harriet, a form which was initially more popular.

HERB
Gender: Masculine
Usage: English
Pronounced: HURB
Short form of HERBERT.

HETTIE
Gender: Feminine
Usage: English
Pronounced: HET-ee
Personal note: also Hetty, Hattie & Hatty, nn for ???
Diminutive of HENRIETTA or HESTER.

IANTO
Gender: Masculine
Usage: Welsh
Diminutive of IFAN.

ILA
Gender: Feminine
Usage: Indian, Hindi
Other Scripts: इला (Hindi)
Means "earth" or "speech" in Sanskrit.

JOHANNA
Gender: Feminine
Usage: German, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Dutch, Hungarian, Finnish, Estonian, English, Late Roman
Pronounced: yo-HA-na (German), yo-HAHN-nah (Danish, Dutch), YO-hahn-nah (Finnish)
Latinate form of Ioanna (see JOANNA).

JÓNA
Gender: Masculine
Usage: Icelandic
Icelandic feminine form of JOHN.

JOVAN
Gender: Masculine
Usage: Serbian, Macedonian
Other Scripts: Јован (Serbian, Macedonian)
Serbian and Macedonian form of JOHN.

JULIAN
Gender: Masculine
Usage: English, Polish, German
Pronounced: JOO-lee-ən (English), JOOL-yən (English), YOO-lyan (Polish, German)
Personal note: nn Juls
From the Roman name Iulianus, which was derived from JULIUS. This was the name of the last pagan Roman emperor, Julian the Apostate (4th century). It was also borne by several early saints, including the legendary Saint Julian the Hospitaller. This name has been used in England since the Middle Ages, at which time it was also a feminine name (from Juliana, eventually becoming Gillian).

JUNIPER
Gender: Feminine
Usage: English (Rare)
Pronounced: JOON-ə-pər
Personal note: nn Joon
From the English word for the type of tree, derived ultimately from Latin iuniperus.

KESTER
Gender: Masculine
Usage: Scottish
Personal note: nn Kez
Scottish form of CHRISTOPHER.

LANA
Gender: Feminine
Usage: English, Russian, Croatian, Serbian
Other Scripts: Лана (Russian, Serbian)
Pronounced: LAH-nə (English)
Short form of ALANA (English) or SVETLANA (Russian). In the English-speaking world, it was popularized by actress Lana Turner (1921-1995).

LARKIN
Gender: Feminine & Masculine
Usage: Medieval English
Pronounced: LAHR-kin
Personal note: nn Lark
Medieval diminutive of LAURENCE (1).

LEONIDAS
Gender: Masculine
Usage: Greek, Ancient Greek
Other Scripts: Λεωνιδας (Greek)
Derived from Greek λεων (leon) meaning "lion" combined with the patronymic suffix ιδης (ides). Leonidas was a Spartan king of the 5th century BC who sacrificed his life and his army defending the pass of Thermopylae from the Persians. This was also the name of a 3rd-century saint and martyr, the father of Origen, from Alexandria.

LILEAS
Gender: Feminine
Usage: Scottish
Personal note: also Lilias and Lillias
Scottish form of LILLIAN.

LILITH
Gender: Feminine
Usage: Near Eastern Mythology, Judeo-Christian Legend
Pronounced: LIL-ith (English)
Derived from Akkadian lilitu meaning "of the night". This was the name of a demon in ancient Assyrian myths. In Jewish tradition she was Adam's first wife, sent out of Eden and replaced by Eve because she would not submit to him. The offspring of Adam (or Samael) and Lilith were the evil spirits of the world.

LILJA
Gender: Feminine
Usage: Icelandic, Finnish
Pronounced: LIL-yah (Icelandic), LEEL-yah (Finnish)
Personal note: nn for Lileas and Lilith
Icelandic and Finnish cognate of LILY.

LINNÉA
Gender: Feminine
Usage: Swedish
Pronounced: lin-NE-ah
From the name of a flower, also known as the twinflower. The Swedish botanist Carolus Linnaeus named it after himself, it being his favourite flower.

LINUS
Gender: Masculine
Usage: Greek Mythology (Latinized), Ancient Greek (Latinized), German, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish
Other Scripts: Λινος (Ancient Greek)
Pronounced: LIE-nəs (English), LEE-nuws (German, Swedish)
From the Greek name Λινος (Linos) meaning "flax". In Greek legend he was the son of the god Apollo, who accidentally killed him in a contest. Another son of Apollo by this name was the music teacher of Herakles. The name was also borne by the second pope, serving after Saint Peter in the 1st century. In modern times this was the name of a character in Charles Schulz's comic strip 'Peanuts'.

LUDWIG
Gender: Masculine
Usage: German
Pronounced: LOOT-vikh
From the Germanic name Chlodovech, which was composed of the elements hlud "famous" and wig "war, battle". This was the name of three Merovingian kings of the Franks (though their names are usually spelled in the Latinized form Clovis) as well as several Carolingian kings and Holy Roman Emperors (names often spelled in the French form Louis). Other famous bearers include the German composer Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827) and the Austrian philosopher Ludwig Wittgenstein (1889-1951), who contributed to logic and the philosophy of language.

MABEL
Gender: Feminine
Usage: English
Pronounced: MAY-bəl
Medieval feminine form of AMABILIS. This spelling and Amabel were common during the Middle Ages, though they became rare after the 15th century. It was revived in the 19th century after the publication of C. M. Yonge's novel 'The Heir of Redclyffe' (1854), which featured a character named Mabel (as well as one named Amabel).

MAISIE
Gender: Feminine
Usage: Scottish
Pronounced: MAY-zee
Personal note: nn for ???
Diminutive of MAIREAD.

MATHILDA
Gender: Feminine
Usage: English, Swedish, Ancient Germanic
Pronounced: mə-TIL-də (English, Swedish)
Personal note: also Matilda, nns Tilly and Tilda
Variant of MATILDA.

MERLIN
Gender: Masculine
Usage: Arthurian Romance, English
Pronounced: MUR-lin (English)
Form of the Welsh name Myrddin (meaning "sea fortress") used by Geoffrey of Monmouth in his 12th-century Arthurian tales. Writing in Latin, he likely chose the form Merlinus over Merdinus in order to prevent associations with French merde "excrement".

Geoffrey based parts of Merlin's character on Myrddin Wyllt, a semi-legendary madman and prophet who lived in the Caledonian Forest. Other parts of his life were based on that of the historical 5th-century Romano-British military leader Ambrosius Aurelianus. In Geoffrey's version of the tales and later embellishments Merlin is a wizard and counselor for King Arthur.

MIDGE
Gender: Masculine
Usage: English (Rare)
Pronounced: MIJ
Personal note: nn for ???
Variant of MADGE.

MILLIE
Gender: Feminine
Usage: English
Pronounced: MIL-ee
Personal note: also Milly, nn for ???
Diminutive of MILDRED, MILLICENT and other names containing the same sound.

MINNA
Gender: Feminine
Usage: German (Archaic), Finnish, Swedish
Pronounced: MI-na (German), MEEN-nah (Finnish)
Short form of WILHELMINA.

MORGAINE
Gender: Feminine
Usage: Arthurian Romance
Variant of MORGAN (2), from a French form.

MUNA
Gender: Feminine
Usage: Arabic
Other Scripts: منى (Arabic)
Means "wishes, desires", from the plural of Arabic منية (munyah).

NEHA
Gender: Feminine
Usage: Indian, Hindi, Marathi, Malayalam, Kannada, Punjabi, Gujarati, Bengali, Telugu
Other Scripts: नेहा (Hindi, Marathi), നേഹ (Malayalam), ನೇಹಾ (Kannada), ਨੇਹਾ (Gurmukhi), નેહા (Gujarati), নেহা (Bengali), నేహా (Telugu)
Possibly from Sanskrit स्नेह (sneha) meaning "love, tenderness".

NIMROD
Gender: Masculine
Usage: Biblical
Other Scripts: נִמְרֹד (Ancient Hebrew)
Pronounced: NIM-rahd (English)
Meaning unknown, possibly of Akkadian origin or possibly meaning "rebel" in Hebrew. In the Old Testament Nimrod is a renowned hunter, the great-grandson of Noah. He was the founder of Babylon.

Due to the biblical character, this name was adopted as an English-language vocabulary word meaning "hunter". In American English it acquired a further meaning of "fool", after the oafish cartoon character Elmer Fudd (a hunter) was called such by Bugs Bunny.

NIMUE
Gender: Feminine
Usage: Arthurian Romance
Pronounced: NIM-oo-ay (English)
Meaning unknown. In Arthurian legends this is the name of a sorceress, also known as the Lady of the Lake, Vivien, or Niniane. Various versions of the tales have Merlin falling in love with her and becoming imprisoned by her magic. She first appears in the medieval French 'Lancelot-Grail' cycle.

NINIAN
Gender: Feminine
Usage: Scottish, Irish, Ancient Celtic
Meaning unknown. It appears in a Latinized form Niniavus, which could be from the Welsh name NYNNIAW. This was the name of a 5th-century British saint who was apparently responsible for many miracles and cures. He is known as the Apostle to the Picts.

OTIS
Gender: Masculine
Usage: English
Pronounced: O-tis
From an English surname which was derived from the medieval given name Ode, a cognate of OTTO. In America it has been used in honour of the revolutionary James Otis (1725-1783).

OVID
Gender: Masculine
Usage: History
Pronounced: AH-vid (English)
From the Roman family name Ovidius, which was possibly derived from Latin ovis "a sheep". Alternatively, it could have a Sabellic origin. Publius Ovidius Naso, better known as Ovid, was a 1st-century BC Roman poet who often wrote on the subjects of love and mythology. He was sent into exile by emperor Augustus for no apparent reason.

PAN
Gender: Masculine
Usage: Greek Mythology
Other Scripts: Παν (Ancient Greek)
Pronounced: PAN (Classical Greek, English)
Derived from a Greek word meaning "shepherd". In Greek mythology Pan was a half-man, half-goat god associated with shepherds, flocks and pastures.

PENINNAH
Gender: Feminine
Usage: Biblical
Other Scripts: פְּנִנָּה (Ancient Hebrew)
Pronounced: pi-NIN-ə (English), pee-NIN-ə (English)
Personal note: nn Ninna
Means "precious stone" in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of one of the wives of Elkanah, the other being Hannah.

PERDITA
Gender: Feminine
Usage: Literature
Derived from Latin perditus meaning "lost". Shakespeare created this name for the daughter of Hermione in his play 'The Winter's Tale' (1610).

PHILIPP
Gender: Masculine
Usage: German
Pronounced: FEE-lip
Personal note: nn Pip
German form of PHILIP.

PHILIPPA
Gender: Feminine
Usage: English (British), German
Pronounced: FI-li-pə (English)
Personal note: nn Pippa
Latinate feminine form of PHILIP.

PHINEAS
Gender: Masculine
Usage: Biblical
Other Scripts: פִּינְחָס (Ancient Hebrew)
Pronounced: FIN-ee-əs (English)
Variant of PHINEHAS used in some versions of the Bible.

PHOEBE
Gender: Feminine
Usage: English, Greek Mythology (Latinized), Biblical, Biblical Latin
Other Scripts: Φοιβη (Ancient Greek)
Pronounced: FEE-bee (English)
Latinized form of the Greek name Φοιβη (Phoibe), which meant "bright, pure" from Greek φοιβος (phoibos). In Greek mythology Phoibe was a Titan associated with the moon. This was also an epithet of her granddaughter, the moon goddess Artemis. The name appears in Paul's epistle to the Romans in the New Testament, where it belongs to a female minister in the church at Cenchreae. In England, it began to be used as a given name after the Protestant Reformation. A moon of Saturn bears this name (in honour of the Titan).

PHYLLIS
Gender: Feminine
Usage: Greek Mythology, English, German
Other Scripts: Φυλλις (Ancient Greek)
Pronounced: FIL-is (English)
Personal note: nn Phil
Means "foliage" in Greek. In Greek mythology this was the name of a woman who killed herself out of love for Demophon and was subsequently transformed into an almond tree. It began to be used as a given name in England in the 16th century, though it was often confused with Felicia.

PIP
Gender: Masculine
Usage: English
Pronounced: PIP
Personal note: meaning "Kern", meaning "Ena"
Diminutive of PHILIP or PHILIPPA. This was the name of the main character in 'Great Expectations' (1860) by Charles Dickens.

PIPPIN (1)
Gender: Masculine
Usage: Ancient Germanic
Personal note: nn Pip
Old Germanic form of PÉPIN.

QUENTIN
Gender: Masculine
Usage: French, English
Pronounced: KAHN-TEN (French), KWEN-tin (English)
French form of the Roman name QUINTINUS. It was borne by a 3rd-century saint, a missionary who was martyred in Gaul. The Normans introduced this name to England. In America it was brought to public attention by president Theodore Roosevelt's son Quentin Roosevelt (1897-1918), who was killed in World War I.

QUIRIN
Gender: Masculine
Usage: German
Pronounced: KVEE-rin
German form of QUIRINUS.

RANI (1)
Gender: Feminine
Usage: Indian, Telugu, Hindi, Marathi
Other Scripts: రాణీ (Telugu), रानी (Hindi), राणी (Marathi)
Means "queen" in Sanskrit.

RASMUS
Gender: Masculine
Usage: Danish, Swedish, Norwegian
Pronounced: RAHS-moos
Scandinavian form of ERASMUS.

ROBERTA
Gender: Feminine
Usage: English, Italian, Spanish
Pronounced: rə-BUR-tə (English), ro-BER-ta (Italian, Spanish)
Feminine form of ROBERT.

RONJA
Gender: Feminine
Usage: Swedish
Pronounced: RON-yah
Invented by Swedish children's author Astrid Lindgren, who based it on the middle portion of Juronjaure, the name of a lake in Sweden. Lindgren used it in her book 'Ronia the Robber's Daughter' (Ronia is the English translation).

RUNE
Gender: Masculine
Usage: Norwegian, Danish, Swedish
Pronounced: ROO-ne
Derived from Old Norse rún meaning "secret lore".

RUTH (1)
Gender: Feminine
Usage: English, German, Dutch, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Spanish, Biblical, Biblical Latin
Other Scripts: רוּת (Ancient Hebrew)
Pronounced: ROOTH (English), ROOT (German)
From a Hebrew name which was derived from the Hebrew word רְעוּת (re'ut) meaning "friend". This is the name of the central character in the Book of Ruth in the Old Testament. She was a Moabite woman who accompanied her mother-in-law Naomi back to Bethlehem after Ruth's husband died. There she met and married Boaz. She was an ancestor of King David.

As a Christian name, Ruth has been in use since the Protestant Reformation. It became very popular in America following the birth of "Baby" Ruth Cleveland (1891-1904), the daughter of President Grover Cleveland.

SAGE
Gender: Masculine
Usage: English (Modern)
Pronounced: SAYJ
From the English word sage, which denotes either a type of spice or else a wise person.

SA'IDA
Gender: Feminine
Usage: Arabic
Other Scripts: سعيدة (Arabic)
Feminine form of SA'ID.

SCHEHERAZADE
Gender: Feminine
Usage: Literature
Pronounced: shə-HER-ə-zahd (English)
Anglicized form of SHAHRAZAD.

SELWYN
Gender: Masculine
Usage: English (Rare)
Pronounced: SEL-win
From a surname which was originally derived from an Old English given name, which was formed of the elements sele "manor" and wine "friend".

SHASHI
Gender: Feminine & Masculine
Usage: Indian, Hindi, Marathi, Bengali, Kannada, Telugu
Other Scripts: शशि, शशी (Hindi, Marathi), শশী (Bengali), ಶಶಿ (Kannada), శశి (Telugu)
Traditional name for the moon, it literally means "having a hare" in Sanskrit. This is a transcription of both the masculine form शशि and the feminine form शशी.

SILAS
Gender: Masculine
Usage: English, Greek, Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
Other Scripts: Σιλας (Greek)
Pronounced: SIE-ləs (English)
Probably a short form of SILVANUS. This is the name of a companion of Saint Paul in the New Testament. Paul refers to him as Silvanus in his epistles, though it is possible that Silas was in fact a Greek form of the Hebrew name SAUL (via Aramaic).

As an English name it was not used until after the Protestant Reformation. It was utilized by George Eliot for the title character in her novel 'Silas Marner' (1861).

STELLA (1)
Gender: Feminine
Usage: English, Italian, Dutch, German
Pronounced: STEL-ə (English)
Means "star" in Latin. This name was created by the 16th-century poet Sir Philip Sidney for the subject of his collection of sonnets 'Astrophel and Stella'. It was a nickname of a lover of Jonathan Swift, real name Esther Johnson (1681-1728), though it was not commonly used as a given name until the 19th century. It appears in Tennessee Williams' play 'A Streetcar Named Desire' (1947), belonging to the sister of Blanche DuBois and the wife of Stanley Kowalski.

STERLING
Gender: Masculine
Usage: English
Pronounced: STUR-ling
From a Scottish surname which was derived from city of Stirling, which is itself of unknown meaning. The name can also be given in reference to the English word sterling meaning "excellent". In this case, the word derives from sterling silver, which was so named because of the emblem that some Norman coins bore, from Old English meaning "little star".

STINA
Gender: Feminine
Usage: Swedish, Norwegian, Danish
Scandinavian short form of CHRISTINA and other names ending in stina.

SULLIVAN
Gender: Masculine
Usage: English
Pronounced: SUL-i-vən
From an Irish surname which was derived from Ó Súilleabháin meaning "descendant of Súilleabhán". The name Súilleabhán means "little dark eye" in Irish.

TALIESIN
Gender: Masculine
Usage: Welsh, Arthurian Romance
Pronounced: tal-ee-ES-in (Welsh)
Personal note: nn Tali
Means "shining brow", derived from Welsh tal "brow" and iesin "shining". This was the name of a 6th-century Welsh poet and bard. In later Welsh legends he is portrayed as a wizard and prophet, or as a companion of King Arthur.

TANITH
Gender: Feminine
Usage: Near Eastern Mythology
Derived from Semitic roots meaning "serpent lady". This was the name of the Phoenician goddess of love, fertility, the moon and the stars.

TARA (2)
Gender: Feminine
Usage: Hinduism, Indian, Hindi, Nepali
Other Scripts: तारा (Sanskrit, Hindi, Nepali)
Means "star" in Sanskrit. Tara is the name of a Hindu astral goddess, the wife of Brhaspati. She was abducted by Soma, a god of the moon, leading to a great war that was only ended when Brahma intervened and released her. This is also the name of a Buddhist deity (a female Buddha).

TATUM
Gender: Feminine
Usage: English (Modern)
Pronounced: TA-təm
From a surname which was originally derived from a place name meaning "Tata's homestead" in Old English.

THEA
Gender: Feminine
Usage: German, Swedish, Danish, Norwegian, English
Pronounced: TE-a (German), THEE-ə (English)
Short form of DOROTHEA or THEODORA.

THEODORE
Gender: Masculine
Usage: English
Pronounced: THEE-ə-dawr
From the Greek name Θεοδωρος (Theodoros), which meant "gift of god" from Greek θεος (theos) "god" and δωρον (doron) "gift". The name Dorothea is derived from the same roots in reverse order. This was the name of several saints, including Theodore of Amasea, a 4th-century Greek soldier; Theodore of Tarsus, a 7th-century archbishop of Canterbury; and Theodore the Studite, a 9th-century Byzantine monk. It was also borne by two popes.

This was a common name in classical Greece, and, due to both the saints who carried it and the favourable meaning, it came into general use in the Christian world, being especially popular among Eastern Christians. It was however rare in Britain before the 19th century. Famous bearers include three tsars of Russia (in the Russian form Fyodor) and American president Theodore Roosevelt (1858-1919).

TRISTAN
Gender: Masculine
Usage: Welsh, English, French, Arthurian Romance
Pronounced: TRIS-tən (English), TREES-TAHN (French)
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 which 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.

WILLA
Gender: Feminine
Usage: English
Pronounced: WIL-ə
Feminine form of WILLIAM.

ZACHARIAS
Gender: Masculine
Usage: Biblical, Biblical Greek, Greek
Other Scripts: Ζαχαριας (Greek)
Pronounced: zak-ə-RIE-əs (English), za-kha-REE-as (Late Greek)
Greek form of ZECHARIAH. This form of the name is used in most English versions of the New Testament to refer to the father of John the Baptist. It was also borne by an 8th-century pope (called Zachary in English).

ZACHARY
Gender: Masculine
Usage: English, Biblical
Pronounced: ZAK-ə-ree (English)
Personal note: nn Zack
Usual English form of ZACHARIAS, used in some English versions of the New Testament. This form has been in use since the Middle Ages, though it did not become common until after the Protestant Reformation. It was borne by American military commander and president Zachary Taylor (1784-1850).
Copyright © Mike Campbell 1996-2017.