ANISSA f English
This name was first brought to public attention in 1966 by the child actress Anissa Jones (1958-1976). In her case it was a transcription of the Arabic name أنيسة
), given to honour her Lebanese heritage. Other parents who have since used this name may view it simply as an elaboration of ANNA
using the popular name suffix issa
ANITA (1) f Spanish, Portuguese, Croatian, Slovene, English, Dutch, German, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Finnish, Polish, Latvian
Spanish, Portuguese, Croatian and Slovene diminutive of ANA
ANN f English, Manx
English and Manx form of ANNE (1)
. In the English-speaking world, both this spelling and Anne
have been used since the late Middle Ages. Currently Ann
is less popular than Anne
(and both are less popular than their relatives Anna
ANNA f English, Italian, German, Dutch, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Finnish, Estonian, Latvian, Greek, Hungarian, Polish, Russian, Ukrainian, Belarusian, Czech, Slovak, Bulgarian, Icelandic, Faroese, Catalan, Occitan, Breton, Biblical, Old Church Slavic, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
Form of Channah
) used in the Greek and Latin Old Testament. Many later Old Testament translations, including the English, use the Hannah
spelling instead of Anna
. The name appears briefly in the New Testament belonging to a prophetess who recognized Jesus
as the Messiah. It was a popular name in the Byzantine Empire from an early date, and in the Middle Ages it became common among Western Christians due to veneration of Saint Anna (usually known as Saint Anne in English), the name traditionally assigned to the mother of the Virgin Mary
ANNAGÜL f Turkmen
Derived from Turkmen anna
"Friday" and gül
ANNE (1) f French, English, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Finnish, Estonian, German, Dutch, Basque
French form of ANNA
. It was imported to England in the 13th century, but it did not become popular until three centuries later. The spelling variant Ann
was also commonly found from this period, and is still used to this day.... [more]
ANNUNZIATA f Italian
in Italian, referring to the event in the New Testament in which the angel Gabriel tells the Virgin Mary
of the imminent birth of Jesus
ANONA f English
Meaning unknown. It was possibly inspired by an American song by this name written by Vivian Grey in 1903 and recorded by musician Vess Ossman. The lyrics tell of a Native American woman named Anona from Arizona.
ANSA f Finnish
Derived from Finnish ansio "virtue"
or ansa "trap"
ANSALDO m Italian
Italian form of a Germanic name composed of the elements ans
"god" and wald
"power, leader, ruler".
ANSAR m Arabic, Urdu
in Arabic, referring to those who helped the Prophet Muhammad
when he came to Medina.
ANSEL m English
From a surname that was derived from the given name ANSELM
. A famous bearer was American photographer Ansel Adams (1902-1984).
ANSELM m German, English (Rare), Ancient Germanic
Derived from the Germanic elements ans
"god" and helm
"helmet, protection". This name was brought to England in the late 11th century by Saint Anselm, who was born in northern Italy. He was archbishop of Canterbury and a Doctor of the Church.
ANTARES m Astronomy
From Greek Ἀντάρης (Antares)
, traditionally said to mean "opposing ARES"
. This is the name of the brightest star in the constellation Scorpius.
ANTE (2) m Frisian
Short form of names beginning with the Germanic element and
ANTHELM m Ancient Germanic
From the Germanic element and
"wrath, zeal" combined with helm
"helmet, protection". Saint Anthelm was a 12th-century bishop of Belley in France.
ANTHONY m English
English form of the Roman family name Antonius
, which is of unknown Etruscan origin. The most notable member of the Roman family was the general Marcus Antonius (called Mark Antony in English), who for a period in the 1st century BC ruled the Roman Empire jointly with Augustus. When their relationship turned sour, he and his mistress Cleopatra were attacked and forced to commit suicide, as related in Shakespeare's tragedy Antony and Cleopatra
ANTIGONE f Greek Mythology
Derived from Greek ἀντί (anti)
meaning "against, compared to, like" and γονή (gone)
meaning "birth, offspring". In Greek legend Antigone was the daughter of Oedipus and Jocasta. King Creon of Thebes declared that her slain brother Polynices was to remain unburied, a great dishonour. She disobeyed and gave him a proper burial, and for this she was sealed alive in a cave.
ANTIOCHUS m Ancient Greek (Latinized)
From the Greek name Ἀντίοχος (Antiochos)
, derived from Greek ἀντί (anti)
meaning "against, compared to, like" and ὀχή (oche)
meaning "support". This was the name of several rulers of the Seleucid Empire. It was also borne by a 2nd-century Christian martyr, the patron saint of Sardinia.
ANTIOPE f Greek Mythology
Derived from the Greek elements ἀντί (anti)
meaning "against, compared to, like" and ὄψ (ops)
meaning "voice". This was the name of several figures in Greek mythology, including a daughter of Ares
who was one of the queens of the Amazons. She was kidnapped and married by Theseus
ANTIPATER m Ancient Greek (Latinized)
From the Greek name Ἀντίπατρος (Antipatros)
, which meant "like the father"
from Greek ἀντί (anti)
meaning "against, compared to, like" and πατήρ (pater)
meaning "father" (genitive πατρός
). This was the name of an officer of Alexander the Great who became the regent of Macedon during Alexander's absence.
ANTOINETTE f French
Feminine diminutive of ANTOINE
. This name was borne by Marie Antoinette, the queen of France during the French Revolution. She was executed by guillotine.
ANTON m German, Russian, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Icelandic, Dutch, Bulgarian, Ukrainian, Belarusian, Slovene, Slovak, Macedonian, Croatian, Romanian, Estonian, Finnish, English
Form of Antonius
) used in various languages.
ANTONIA f Italian, Spanish, English, German, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Dutch, Romanian, Greek, Croatian, Bulgarian, Ancient Roman
Feminine form of Antonius
ANTONÍN m Czech
Czech form of Antoninus
), also used as the Czech form of Antonius
). A famous bearer was the Czech composer Antonín Dvořák (1841-1904).
ANTONIN m French
French form of Antoninus
). This name was borne by the French playwright Antonin Artaud (1896-1948).
ANTONINO m Italian
Italian form of the Roman name Antoninus
, which was derived from Antonius
). There were several early saints named Antoninus, including the patron saint of Sorrento. This was also the name of a 2nd-century Roman emperor.
ANTONIO m Spanish, Italian, Croatian
Spanish and Italian form of Antonius
). This has been a common name in Italy since the 14th century. In Spain it was the most popular name for boys in the 1950s and 60s.... [more]
ANTONY m English
Variant of ANTHONY
. This was formerly the usual English spelling of the name, but during the 17th century the h
began to be added.
ANUBIS m Egyptian Mythology (Latinized)
Latinized form of Ἄνουβις (Anoubis)
, the Greek form of Egyptian Inpw
(reconstructed as Anapa
and other forms), which coincided with a word meaning "royal child, prince"
. However, it might alternatively be derived from the root inp
meaning "to decay"
. Anubis was the Egyptian god who led the dead to the underworld. He was often depicted as a man with the head of a jackal. The Greeks equated him with their god Hermes
ANUJ m Indian, Hindi, Marathi
Means "born later, younger"
in Sanskrit. This name is sometimes given to the younger sibling of an older child.
ANUSH f Armenian
in Armenian. This was the name of an 1890 novel by the Armenia writer Hovhannes Tumanyan. It was adapted into an opera in 1912 by Armen Tigranian.
ANWAR m Arabic, Urdu, Indonesian
Means "brighter, more luminous"
in Arabic. This name was borne by Egyptian president Anwar Sadat (1918-1981), who was assassinated three years after being awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.
ANZOR m Georgian, Chechen
Possibly derived from the Georgian noble title აზნაური (aznauri)
, ultimately from Middle Persian aznawar
AODH m Irish, Scottish, Irish Mythology
From the old Irish name Áed
, which meant "fire"
. This was a very popular name in early Ireland, being borne by numerous figures in Irish mythology and several high kings. It has been traditionally Anglicized as Hugh
AODHÁN m Irish, Scottish, Irish Mythology
From the old Irish name Áedán
meaning "little fire"
, a diminutive of Áed
). This was the name of an Irish monk and saint of the 7th century. It was also borne by several characters in Irish mythology.
AOI f & m Japanese
From Japanese 葵 (aoi)
meaning "hollyhock, althea" or an adjectival form of 碧 (ao)
meaning "green, blue". Other kanji with the same reading can form this name as well.
AOIBHEANN f Irish
Means "beautiful, pleasant, radiant"
in Irish Gaelic. This was the name of the mother of Saint Enda. It was also borne by Irish royalty.
AOIDE f Greek Mythology
in Greek. In Greek mythology she was one of the original three muses, the muse of song.
AOIFE f Irish, Irish Mythology
from the Irish word aoibh
. In Irish legend Aoife was a warrior princess. In war against her sister Scathach, she was defeated in single combat by the hero Cúchulainn
. Eventually she was reconciled with her sister and became the lover of Cúchulainn. This name is sometimes used as a Gaelic form of EVE
AONGHUS m Irish, Scottish, Irish Mythology
Possibly meaning "one strength"
derived from Irish óen
"one" and gus
"force, strength, energy". Aonghus (sometimes surnamed Mac Og
meaning "young son") was the Irish god of love and youth. The name was also borne by an 8th-century Pictish king and several Irish kings.
APARECIDA f Portuguese
in Portuguese, taken from the Brazilian title of the Virgin Mary Nossa Senhora da Conceição Aparecida
, meaning "Our Lady of the Conception Who Appeared". It refers to a statue of the Virgin Mary that was said to have been pulled from a river by fishermen in the 18th century. Our Lady of Aparecida is regarded as the patron saint of Brazil.
APHRA f Various
Meaning uncertain; possibly a variant of AFRA (1)
, or possibly a variant of Aphrah
, a biblical place name meaning "dust". This name was borne by the English writer Aphra Behn (1640-1689).
APHRODITE f Greek Mythology
Meaning unknown, possibly of Phoenician origin. Aphrodite was the Greek goddess of love and beauty, identified with the Roman goddess Venus
. She was the wife of Hephaestus
and the mother of Eros
, and she was often associated with the myrtle tree and doves. The Greeks connected her name with ἀφρός (aphros)
, resulting in the story that she was born from the foam of the sea. Many of her characteristics are based on the goddess known as Ashtoreth
to the Phoenicians and Ishtar
to the Mesopotamian Semitic peoples, and on the Sumerian goddess Inanna
APOLLINAIRE m French (Rare)
French form of APOLLINARIS
. It was adopted as a surname by the Polish-French poet Guillaume Apollinaire (1880-1918), who based it on his Polish middle name Apolinary.
APOLLINARIS m Ancient Greek
Ancient Greek name derived from the name of the god APOLLO
. This was the name of several early saints and martyrs, including a bishop of Ravenna and a bishop of Hierapolis.
APOLLO m Greek Mythology (Latinized)
From Greek Ἀπόλλων (Apollon)
, which is of unknown meaning, though perhaps related to Indo-European *apelo
. Another theory states that Apollo can be equated with Appaliunas, an Anatolian god whose name possibly means "father lion"
or "father light"
. The Greeks later associated Apollo's name with the Greek verb ἀπόλλυμι (apollymi)
meaning "to destroy"
. In Greek mythology Apollo was the son of Zeus
and the twin of Artemis
. He was the god of prophecy, medicine, music, art, law, beauty, and wisdom. Later he also became the god of the sun and light.
APOLLONIOS m Ancient Greek
From an ancient Greek personal name that was derived from the name of the Greek god APOLLO
. It was borne by a Greek poet of the 3rd century BC. Several saints have also had this name.
APPHIA f Biblical
Greek form of a Hebrew name that possibly meant "increasing"
. This is a name mentioned in Paul
's epistle to Philemon
in the New Testament.
APPIUS m Ancient Roman
This was a Roman praenomen, or given name, used predominantly by the Claudia family. Its etymology is unknown. A famous bearer of this name was Appius Claudius Caecus, a Roman statesman of the 3rd century BC. He was responsible for the Aqua Appia (the first Roman aqueduct) and the Appian Way (a road between Rome and Capua), both of which were named for him.
APRIL f English
From the name of the month, probably originally derived from Latin aperire
"to open", referring to the opening of flowers. It has only been commonly used as a given name since the 1940s.
AQIL m Arabic
Means "intelligent, wise"
in Arabic. This transcription represents two different Arabic spellings.
ARA m Armenian, Armenian Mythology
Meaning unknown, possibly of Sumerian origin. In Armenian legend this was the name of an Armenian king who was so handsome that the Assyrian queen Semiramis went to war to capture him. During the war Ara was slain.
ARABELLA f English
Medieval Scottish name, probably a variant of ANNABEL
. It has long been associated with Latin orabilis
meaning "invokable, yielding to prayer".
ARACELI f Spanish
Means "altar of the sky"
from Latin ara
"altar" and coeli
"sky". This is an epithet of the Virgin Mary
in her role as the patron saint of Lucena, Spain.
ARACHNE f Greek Mythology
in Greek. In Greek myth Arachne was a mortal woman who defeated Athena
in a weaving contest. After this Arachne hanged herself, but Athena brought her back to life in the form of a spider.
ARAGORN m Literature
Meaning unexplained, though the first element is presumably Sindarin ara
"noble, kingly". This is the name of a character in The Lord of the Rings
(1954) by J. R. R. Tolkien. In the book Aragorn is the heir of the Dúnedain kings of the north.
ARAMINTA f English (Rare)
Meaning unknown. This name was (first?) used by William Congreve in his comedy The Old Bachelor
(1693) and later by Sir John Vanbrugh in his comedy The Confederacy
(1705). This was the real name of abolitionist Harriet Tubman (1820-1913), who was born Araminta Ross.
ARAMIS m Literature
The surname of one of the musketeers in The Three Musketeers
(1844) by Alexandre Dumas. Dumas based the character on the 17th-century Henri d'Aramitz, whose surname was derived from the French village of Aramits (itself from Basque aran
ARAN (1) f & m Irish
From the name of the Aran Islands off the west coast of Ireland.
ARANTZAZU f Basque
From the name of a place near the Spanish town of Oñati where there is a sanctuary dedicated to the Virgin Mary
. Its name is derived from Basque arantza
ARARAT m Armenian
From the name of a mountain in eastern Turkey (formerly part of Armenia), the place where Noah
's Ark came to rest according to the Old Testament.
ARASH m Persian, Persian Mythology
Possibly means either "truthfulness"
in Persian. In Persian legend Arash was a Persian archer who was ordered by the Turans to shoot an arrow, the landing place of which would determine the new location of the Persian-Turan border. Arash climbed a mountain and fired his arrow with such strength that it flew for several hours and landed on the banks of the far-away Oxus River.
ARATA m Japanese
From Japanese 新 (arata)
meaning "fresh, new". Other kanji or kanji combinations can also form this name.
ARAWN m Welsh Mythology
Meaning unknown. This was the name of the god of the underworld, called Annwfn, in Welsh mythology.
ARAX f Armenian
From the name of an Armenian river, also called the Aras.
ARCADIA f Various
Feminine form of ARCADIUS
. This is the name of a region on the Greek Peloponnese, long idealized for its natural beauty.