Gender Feminine
Usage English, Welsh
Pronounced Pron. WIN-ə-frid(English)
  [key·IPA]

Meaning & History

From Latin Winifreda, possibly from a Welsh name Gwenfrewi (maybe influenced by the Old English masculine name Winfred). Saint Winifred was a 7th-century Welsh martyr, probably legendary. According to the story, she was decapitated by a prince after she spurned his advances. Where her head fell there arose a healing spring, which has been a pilgrimage site since medieval times. Her story was recorded in the 12th century by Robert of Shrewsbury, and she has been historically more widely venerated in England than in Wales. The name has been used in England since at least the 16th century.

Related Names

VariantWinnifred(English)
DiminutivesFreda, Freddie, Winnie(English)
Other Languages & CulturesWinifreda, Winefride(History)

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Entry updated January 21, 2022