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ScriptsМартин RussianBulgarianMacedonian
PronouncedPron.MAHR-tin EnglishSwedishNorwegianDanish
MAR-TEN French
MAR-teen GermanSlovak
MAWR-teen Hungarian
mar-TIN Bulgarian
MAHR-teen Finnish

Meaning & History

From the Roman name Martinus, which was derived from Martis, the genitive case of the name of the Roman god MARS. Saint Martin of Tours was a 4th-century bishop who is the patron saint of France. According to legend, he came across a cold beggar in the middle of winter so he ripped his cloak in two and gave half of it to the beggar. He was a favourite saint during the Middle Ages, and his name has become common throughout the Christian world.

An influential bearer of the name was Martin Luther (1483-1546), the theologian who began the Protestant Reformation. The name was also borne by five popes (two of them more commonly known as Marinus). Other more recent bearers include the German philosopher Martin Heidegger (1889-1976), the American civil rights leader Martin Luther King (1929-1968), and the American filmmaker Martin Scorsese (1942-).
VariantsMerten German Mårten Swedish Morten Norwegian Morten Danish Márton Hungarian Martti Finnish
DiminutivesMartie, Marty English Tine, Tinek Slovene Tin Croatian
Feminine FormsMartina English Martine French Martina German Martina Swedish Martine Norwegian Martina Czech Martina Slovak Martina Slovene Martina Croatian
Other Languages & CulturesMartinus Ancient Roman Mattin, Matxin Basque Martí Catalan Maarten, Marten, Martijn, Martinus, Tijn Dutch Máirtín Irish Martino, Tino Italian Mārtiņš Latvian Martynas Lithuanian Martîn Norman Marcin Polish Martim, Martinho Portuguese Mars Roman Mythology Martín Spanish Martyn Ukrainian Martyn Welsh
Same SpellingMartín, Martîn


Depiction of Saint Martin splitting his cloak by El Greco (1599)Depiction of Saint Martin splitting his cloak by El Greco (1599)
Martin Luther King (1964)Martin Luther King (1964)


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Entry updated December 8, 2017   Contribute