LONGINUS m Ancient Roman
Roman cognomen derived from Latin longus "long"
. According to Christian legend Saint Longinus was the name of the Roman soldier who pierced Jesus
' side with a spear, then converted to Christianity and was martyred. The name was also borne by the 3rd-century Greek philosopher Cassius Longinus.
LONGWANG m Chinese Mythology
From Chinese 龙 (lóng)
meaning "dragon" and 王 (wáng)
meaning "king". This is the Chinese name of the Dragon King, a god associated with water and rain.
LORCÁN m Irish
Means "little fierce one"
, derived from Irish Gaelic lorcc
"fierce" combined with a diminutive suffix. This was the name of a 12th-century archbishop of Dublin.
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.
LORNE m English
From the title Marquis of Lorne
, which was based on the Scottish place name Lorne
, itself possibly derived from the name of the legendary king of Dál Riata, Loarn mac Eirc. This was the title of the first Governor General of Canada, where it has since been most frequently used as a given name. A famous bearer was the Canadian actor Lorne Greene (1915-1987).
LOT (1) m Biblical, Biblical Hebrew
Means "covering, veil"
in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of a nephew of Abraham
. Before Sodom was destroyed by God, he was directed to flee the city without looking back. However, his wife looked back on the destruction and was turned into a pillar of salt.
LOT (2) m Arthurian Romance
From the name of the region of Lothian in southern Scotland, of unknown meaning. A king of Lothian by this name appears in early Latin and Welsh texts (as Leudonus
respectively). He was inserted into Arthurian legend by the 12th-century chronicler Geoffrey of Monmouth, who makes him the father of Gawain
LOTHAR m German, Ancient Germanic
From the Germanic name Chlodochar
meaning "famous army"
, derived from the elements hlud
"famous" and hari
"army". This was the name of a 9th-century Frankish king, the son of Louis I, who ruled the region called Lorraine
. It was also borne by medieval kings of France, Italy and the Holy Roman Empire.
LOU f & m English, French
Short form of LOUISE
. Famous bearers include the baseball player Lou Gehrig (1903-1941) and the musician Lou Reed (1942-2013).
LOUIS m French, English, Dutch
French form of Ludovicus
, the Latinized form of LUDWIG
. This was the name of 18 kings of France, starting with Louis I the son of Charlemagne
. Others include Louis IX (Saint Louis) who led two crusades and Louis XIV (called the Sun King) who was the ruler of France during the height of its power, the builder of the Palace of Versailles, and the longest reigning monarch in the history of Europe. It was also borne by kings of Germany (as Ludwig
), Hungary (as Lajos
), and other places.... [more]
LOUP m French
French form of the Late Latin name Lupus
. Lupus was the name of several early saints, including a 5th-century bishop of Troyes who apparently convinced Attila
to spare the city.
LOWELL m English
From an English surname that was derived from a Norman French nickname, from lou
"wolf" and a diminutive suffix. The surname was borne by American poet and satirist James Russell Lowell (1819-1891).
LUCA (1) m Italian, Romanian
Italian and Romanian form of Lucas
). This name was borne by Luca della Robbia, a Renaissance sculptor from Florence.
LUCAN m History
From the Roman cognomen Lucanus
, which was derived from the name of the city of Luca in Tuscany (modern Lucca). Marcus Annaeus Lucanus, commonly called Lucan, was a 1st-century Roman poet.
LUCIANUS m Ancient Roman
Roman family name that was derived from the Roman praenomen LUCIUS
. Lucianus (or Λουκιανος
in his native Greek) of Samosata was a 2nd-century satirist and author. This name was also borne by a 4th-century saint and martyr from Antioch.
LUCIFER m Judeo-Christian Legend
Means "bringing light"
, derived from Latin lux
"light" and ferre
"to bring". In Latin this name originally referred to the morning star, Venus, but later became associated with the chief angel who rebelled against God's rule in heaven (see Isaiah 14:12
). In later literature, such as the Divine Comedy
(1321) by Dante and Paradise Lost
(1667) by John Milton, Lucifer became associated with Satan himself.
LUCILIUS m Ancient Roman
Roman family name that was a derivative of the given name LUCIUS
. This was the family name of the 2nd-century BC Roman satirist Gaius Lucilius.
LUCIUS m Ancient Roman, Biblical, English
Roman praenomen, or given name, which was derived from Latin lux "light"
. This was the most popular of the praenomina. Two Etruscan kings of early Rome had this name as well as several prominent later Romans, including Lucius Annaeus Seneca (known simply as Seneca), a statesman, philosopher, orator and tragedian. The name is mentioned briefly in the New Testament belonging to a Christian in Antioch. It was also borne by three popes, including the 3rd-century Saint Lucius. Despite this, the name was not regularly used in the Christian world until after the Renaissance.
LUDGER m German, Dutch
From the Germanic name Leudagar
, which was derived from the elements leud
"people" and ger
"spear". Saint Ludger was an 8th-century Frisian Benedictine bishop who founded a monastery at Munster.
LUDOVIC m French
Medieval Latinized form of LUDWIG
. This was the name of an 1833 opera by the French composer Fromental Halévy.
LUDOVIKO m Esperanto
Esperanto form of LUDWIG
. This is the Esperanto name of the philologist Ludwig Zamenhof (1859-1917), the creator of the Esperanto language.
ĽUDOVÍT m Slovak
Means "master of the people"
from the Slavic elements lyudu
"people" and vit
LUDWIG m German
From the Germanic name Chlodovech
meaning "famous battle"
, 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.
LUGH m Irish Mythology
Probably an Irish form of LUGUS
. In Irish mythology Lugh was a divine hero who led the Tuatha De Danann against the Fomorians who were led by his grandfather Balor. Lugh killed Balor by shooting a stone into his giant eye.
LUGHAIDH m Irish, Irish Mythology
Derived from the name of the Irish god LUGH
. This was the name of several characters in Irish legend, including the king Lughaidh mac Con.
LUGUS m Celtic Mythology
Probably from early Celtic meaning "light"
, ultimately from the Indo-European root *leuk
"light, brightness". This was the name of a Celtic (Gaulish) god of commerce and craftsmanship, who was equated by the Romans with Mercury
. He probably forms the basis for the characters and names of Lugh
(Irish) and Lleu
LUKE m English, Biblical
English form of Latin Lucas
, from the Greek name Λουκας (Loukas)
meaning "from Lucania"
, Lucania being a region in southern Italy (of uncertain meaning). Luke was a doctor who travelled in the company of the apostle Paul
. According to tradition, he was the author of the third gospel and Acts in the New Testament. He was probably of Greek ethnicity. He is considered a saint by many Christian denominations.... [more]
LUMÍR m Czech
Meaning unknown, though the second element is likely Slavic miru
meaning "peace" or "world". In Czech legend this is the name of a bard.
LUTHER m English
From a German surname, itself from the Germanic given name LEUTHAR
. The surname was borne by Martin Luther, a 16th-century monk and theologian, who started the Protestant Reformation by nailing his famous 95 theses to a church door. It has since been used as a given name in his honour, especially among Protestants. A notable bearer from the modern era was the American civil rights leader Martin Luther King (1929-1968).
LUX f & m Various
Derived from Latin lux
LYALL m English (Rare)
From a Scottish surname that was derived from the Old Norse given name Liulfr
(which was derived in part from úlfr
LYDOS m Ancient Greek
Meaning unknown. This was the name of the semi-legendary king who gave his name to the region of Lydia
in Asia Minor.
LYLE m English
From an English surname that was derived from Norman French l'isle "island"
LYNDON m English
From an English surname that was derived from a place name meaning "linden tree hill"
in Old English. A famous bearer was American president Lyndon B. Johnson (1908-1973).
LYNN f & m English
From an English surname that was derived from Welsh llyn
. Before the start of the 20th century it was primarily used for boys, but it has since come to be more common for girls. In some cases it may be thought of as a short form of LINDA
or names that end in lyn
MACARIO m Spanish
Spanish form of the Latin name Macarius
, derived from the Greek name Μακαριος (Makarios)
, which was in turn derived from Greek μακαρ (makar)
meaning "blessed, happy"
. This was the name of several early saints.
MACAULAY m English (British)
From a surname, an Anglicized form of Gaelic Mac Amhalghaidh
meaning "son of Amhalghadh"
, itself a given name of unknown meaning. A famous bearer of the surname was Thomas Babington Macaulay (1800-1861), a British Whig politician and noted historian. The given name is borne by the American former child actor Macaulay Culkin (1980-), who was named after the British politician.
MACBETH m History
Anglicized form of the Gaelic given name Mac Beatha
meaning "son of life"
, implying holiness. This was the name of an 11th-century Scottish king. Shakespeare based his play Macbeth
loosely on this king's life.
MACK (1) m English
From a surname that was originally a shortened form of various Gaelic surnames beginning with Mac
(from Gaelic mac
meaning "son"). It is also used as a generic slang term for a man.
MACKENZIE f & m English
From the Gaelic surname Mac Coinnich
, which means "son of COINNEACH"
. A famous bearer of the surname was William Lyon MacKenzie (1795-1861), a Canadian journalist and political rebel. As a feminine given name, it was popularized by the American actress Mackenzie Phillips (1959-). In the United Kingdom it is more common as a masculine name.
MACSEN m Welsh
Welsh form of MAXIMUS
. Magnus Maximus (known as Macsen in Welsh) was a 4th-century co-ruler of the Western Roman Empire. In Wales he was regarded as the founder of several royal lineages. He appears in the Mabinogion, a collection of tales from Welsh myth.
MADAI m Biblical
in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of a son of Japheth
. He was the ancestor of the Medes, an ancient people related to the Persians.
MADDOX m English (Modern)
From a Welsh surname meaning "son of MADOC"
. It was brought to public attention when the actress Angelina Jolie gave this name to her adopted son in 2002.
MADE m & f Indonesian, Balinese
From Sanskrit मध्य (madhya)
. This name is traditionally given to the family's second-born child.
MADHAVA m Sanskrit, Hinduism
Means "vernal, of the springtime"
in Sanskrit. This is an epithet of several Hindu gods. It was also the name of a 14th-century Hindu scholar.
MADISON f & m English
From an English surname meaning "son of MAUD"
. It was not commonly used as a feminine name until after the movie Splash
(1984), in which the main character adopted it as her name after seeing a street sign for Madison Avenue in New York City. It was ranked second for girls in the United States by 2001. This rise from obscurity to prominence in only 18 years represents an unprecedented 550,000 percent increase in usage.... [more]
MADOC m Welsh
Possibly derived from Welsh mad
combined with a diminutive suffix.
MÁEDÓC m Ancient Irish
Meaning unknown. Saint Máedóc (also known as Áedán) of Ferns was a 7th-century Irish bishop.
MAËL m French, Breton
French form of Breton Mael
, which was derived from a Celtic word meaning "chieftain"
. Saint Mael was a 5th-century Breton hermit who lived in Wales.
MÁEL MÁEDÓC m Ancient Irish
Means "disciple of Saint MÁEDÓC"
in Irish. Saint Máel Máedóc (also known as Malachy) was a 12th-century archbishop of Armagh.
MÁEL SECHNAILL m Ancient Irish
Means "disciple of Saint SEACHNALL"
in Irish. This was the name of two Irish high kings: Máel Sechnaill mac Máele Ruanaid who ruled all of Ireland in the 9th century; and Máel Sechnaill mac Domnaill (called Malachy) who defeated the Norse of Dublin in the 10th century.
MAGDY m Arabic (Egyptian)
Alternate transcription of Arabic مجدي
). This corresponds more closely with the Egyptian Arabic pronunciation of the name.
MAGNUS m Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Late Roman
Late Latin name meaning "great"
. It was borne by a 7th-century saint who was a missionary in Germany. It became popular in Scandinavia after the time of the 11th-century Norwegian king Magnus I, who was said to have been named after Charlemagne
, or Carolus Magnus in Latin (however there was also a Norse name Magni
). The name was borne by six subsequent kings of Norway as well as three kings of Sweden. It was imported to Scotland and Ireland during the Middle Ages.
MAHATMA m History
From the Indian title महात्मा (Mahatma)
meaning "great soul"
, derived from Sanskrit महा (maha)
meaning "great" and आत्मन् (atman)
meaning "soul, spirit, life". This title was given to, among others, Mohandas Karamchand, also known as Mahatma Gandhi (1869-1948).
MAHAVIRA m Sanskrit
Means "great hero"
from Sanskrit महा (maha)
meaning "great" and वीर (vira)
meaning "hero, man". This was the name of the 6th-century BC founder of Jainism.
MAHERSHALA m Various
From the longer name Mahershalalhashbaz
, which appears in the Old Testament at Isaiah 8:1
in reference to Isaiah's symbolic son. It is written in Hebrew as מַהֵר שָׁלָל חָשׁ בַּז
, and is composed of the two-word phrases מַהֵר שָׁלָל (maher shalal)
and חָשׁ בַּז (chash baz)
, which both mean "hurry to the plunder"
. A famous bearer is the American actor Mahershala Ali (1974-), whose full name is Mahershalalhashbaz.
MAHLAH f & m Biblical
From the Hebrew name מַחְלָה (Machlah)
, possibly from חָלָה (chalah)
meaning "weak, sick"
. This name is used in the Old Testament as both a feminine and masculine name. In some versions of the Bible the masculine name is spelled Mahalah
MAHLI m Biblical
From the Hebrew name מַחְלִי (Machli)
, possibly meaning "weak, sick"
. This was the name of two characters mentioned briefly in the Old Testament.
MAHPIYA m Native American, Sioux
Means "cloud, sky"
in Dakota and Lakota. This is the first part of the names of the Dakota chief Mahpiya Wicasta (1780-1863), known as Cloud Man, and the Lakota chiefs Mahpiya Luta (1822-1909), known as Red Cloud, and Mahpiya Iyapato (1838-1905), known as Touch the Clouds.
MAINA m Eastern African, Kikuyu
Means "sing, dance"
in Kikuyu. Kikuyu males were traditionally organized into age sets or generations, each lasting about 30 years. The Maina
generation occupied the last part of the 19th century.
MAINCHÍN m Irish
Means "little monk"
, derived from Irish manach
"monk" combined with a diminutive suffix.
MAITLAND m English (Rare)
From an English surname that was from a Norman French place name possibly meaning "inhospitable"
MAJ m Slovene
Either a masculine form of MAJA (1)
, or else from the Slovene name for the month of May.
MAJOR m English
From a surname that was originally derived from the given name Mauger
, an Old French form of the Germanic name Malger
meaning "council spear". The name can also be given in reference to the English word major
MAKOTO m & f Japanese
From Japanese 誠 (makoto)
meaning "sincerity", as well as other kanji or kanji combinations.
MALACHI m Hebrew, English, Biblical, Biblical Latin
From the Hebrew name מַלְאָכִי (Mal'akhi)
meaning "my messenger"
or "my angel"
. This is one of the twelve minor prophets of the Old Testament, the author of the Book of Malachi, which some claim foretells the coming of Christ. In England the name came into use after the Protestant Reformation.
MALCOLM m Scottish, English
From Scottish Gaelic Máel Coluim
, which means "disciple of Saint COLUMBA"
. This was the name of four kings of Scotland starting in the 10th century, including Malcolm III, who became king after killing Macbeth, the usurper who had murdered his father. The character Malcolm in Shakespeare's tragedy Macbeth
(1606) is based on him. Another famous bearer was Malcolm X (1925-1965), an American civil rights leader.
MALIK (1) m Arabic
in Arabic. In Islamic tradition الملك (al-Malik)
is one of the 99 names of Allah. This can also be another way of transcribing the name مالك
MALKHAZ m Georgian
Possibly means "beautiful, elegant, youthful"
MALO m Breton
Means "bright pledge"
, derived from Old Breton mach
"pledge, hostage" and lou
"bright, brilliant". This was the name of a 6th-century Welsh saint, supposedly a companion of Saint Brendan
on his trans-Atlantic journey. He later went to Brittany, where he founded the monastic settlement of Saint-Malo.
MALONE m English (Rare)
From an Irish surname, an Anglicized form of Ó Maoil Eoin
meaning "descendant of a disciple of Saint JOHN"
MALVOLIO m Literature
Means "ill will"
in Italian. This name was invented by Shakespeare for a character in his play Twelfth Night
MANAIA f & m Maori
From the name of a stylized design common in Maori carvings. It represents a mythological creature with the head of a bird and the body of a human.
MANASSEH m Biblical
Means "causing to forget"
in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of the oldest son of Joseph
and the ancestor of one of the twelve tribes of Israel. It was also borne by a 7th-century BC king of Judah, condemned in the bible for allowing the worship of other gods.