Usage Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Romanian, Slovak, German, Dutch, English, Late Roman, Roman Mythology
Meaning & History
Feminine form of SILVIUS. Rhea Silvia was the mother of Romulus and Remus, the founders of Rome. This was also the name of a 6th-century saint, the mother of the pope Gregory the Great. It has been a common name in Italy since the Middle Ages. It was introduced to England by Shakespeare, who used it for a character in his play The Two Gentlemen of Verona (1594). It is now more commonly spelled Sylvia in the English-speaking world.