GEREON m German, Late Roman
Possibly derived from Greek γέρων (geron)
meaning "old man, elder"
. This was the name of a saint martyred in Cologne in the 4th century.
GERLINDE f German, Dutch
Derived from the Germanic element ger
meaning "spear" combined with lind
meaning "soft, tender, flexible".
GERMAINE f French
French feminine form of GERMAIN
. Saint Germaine was a 16th-century peasant girl from France.
GERMANUS m Ancient Roman
Roman cognomen meaning "brother"
in Latin. This was the name of several early saints.
GERONIMO m History
, a Spanish form of Hieronymos
). This is the better-known name of the Apache leader Goyathlay
(1829-1909). It was given to him by the Mexicans, his enemies.
GERTRUDE f English, Dutch, French
Means "spear of strength"
, derived from the Germanic elements ger
"spear" and thrud
"strength". Saint Gertrude the Great was a 13th-century nun and mystic writer. It was probably introduced to England by settlers from the Low Countries in the 15th century. Shakespeare used the name in his play Hamlet
(1600) for the mother of the title character. Another famous bearer was the American writer Gertrude Stein (1874-1946).
GERVASIUS m Ancient Germanic (Latinized)
Probably a Latinized form of a Germanic name with a first element deriving from ger
"spear". Saint Gervasius was an early martyr from Milan whose remains were discovered in the 4th century.
GETHSEMANE f Various
From a biblical place name, the garden where Jesus
was arrested, located on the Mount of Olives near Jerusalem. It is derived from Γεθσημανί (Gethsemani)
, the Greek form of an Aramaic name meaning "oil vat". It is very rarely used as a given name.
GÉZA m Hungarian
, possibly derived from a diminutive form of the Hungarian noble title gyevü
, itself from Turkic jabgu
. This was the name of a 10th-century leader of the Hungarians, the father of the first king István
GHASSAN m Arabic
in Arabic. This was the name of an Arabian tribe that existed until the 6th century.
GHISLAIN m French
French form of Gislenus
, a Latinized form of the Germanic name Gislin
, derived from the element gisil
. This was the name of a 7th-century Belgian saint.
GHULAM m Arabic, Urdu, Pashto
Means "servant, boy"
in Arabic. It is often used as the first part of compound names.
GIDEON m Biblical, English, Hebrew
Means "feller, hewer"
in Hebrew. Gideon is a hero and judge of the Old Testament. He led the vastly outnumbered Israelites against the Midianites, defeated them, and killed their two kings. In the English-speaking world, Gideon
has been used as a given name since the Protestant Reformation, and it was popular among the Puritans.
GILBERT m English, French, Dutch, German, Ancient Germanic
Means "bright pledge"
, derived from the Germanic elements gisil
"pledge, hostage" and beraht
"bright". The Normans introduced this name to England, where it was common during the Middle Ages. It was borne by a 12th-century English saint, the founder of the religious order known as the Gilbertines.
GILCHRIST m Scottish
Derived from the Gaelic phrase giolla Chríost
meaning "servant of Christ"
GILDA f Italian, Portuguese
Originally an Italian short form of names containing the Germanic element gild
meaning "sacrifice, value"
GILEAD m Biblical
From an Old Testament place name meaning "heap of witness"
in Hebrew. This was a mountainous region east of the Jordan River. Besides being a place name, it is also borne by people in the Bible.
GILES m English
From the Late Latin name Aegidius
, which is derived from Greek αἰγίδιον (aigidion)
meaning "young goat"
. Saint Giles was an 8th-century miracle worker who came to southern France from Greece. He is regarded as the patron saint of the crippled. In Old French the name Aegidius
and then Gilles
, at which point it was imported to England.
GILGAMESH m Sumerian Mythology, Semitic Mythology
Possibly means "the ancestor is a hero"
, from Sumerian 𒉋𒂵 (bilga)
meaning "ancestor" and 𒈩 (mes)
meaning "hero, young man". This was the name of a Sumerian hero, later appearing in the Akkadian poem the Epic of Gilgamesh
. Gilgamesh, with his friend Enkidu, battled the giant Humbaba and stopped the rampage of the Bull of Heaven, besides other adventures. Gilgamesh was probably based on a real person: a king of Uruk who ruled around the 27th century BC.
GILLESPIE m Scottish
Anglicized form of Scottish Gille Easbaig
or Irish Giolla Easpuig
both meaning "servant of the bishop"
GILLIAN f English
Medieval English feminine form of JULIAN
. This spelling has been in use since the 13th century, though it was not declared a distinct name from Julian
until the 17th century.
GILROY m Irish, Scottish
From an Irish surname, either Mac Giolla Ruaidh
, which means "son of the red-haired servant"
, or Mac Giolla Rí
, which means "son of the king's servant"
GINEVRA f Italian
Italian form of GUINEVERE
. This is also the Italian name for the city of Geneva, Switzerland. It is also sometimes associated with the Italian word ginepro
GINGER f English
From the English word ginger
for the spice or the reddish-brown colour. It can also be a diminutive of VIRGINIA
, as in the case of actress and dancer Ginger Rogers (1911-1995), by whom the name was popularized.
GINO m Italian
Italian short form of names ending in gino
GINTAUTAS m Lithuanian
From Lithuanian ginti
meaning "to defend" and tauta
meaning "people, nation".
GIOACHINO m Italian
Italian form of JOACHIM
. A famous bearer was the Italian composer Gioachino Rossini (1792-1868).
GIOCONDA f Italian
From the Late Latin name Iucunda
, which meant "pleasant, delightful, happy"
. Leonardo da Vinci's painting the Mona Lisa
is also known as La Gioconda
because its subject is Lisa del Giocondo.
GIOTTO m Italian
Possibly from Ambrogiotto
, a diminutive of AMBROGIO
, or Angiolotto
, a diminutive of ANGIOLO
. This name was borne by Giotto di Bondone (1267-1337), an Italian painter and architect.
GIOVANNI m Italian
Italian form of Iohannes
). This name has been very common in Italy since the late Middle Ages, as with other equivalents of John
in Europe. The Renaissance painter Giovanni Bellini (1430-1516) and the painter and sculptor Giovanni Lorenzo Bernini (1598-1680) were two famous bearers of the name.
GIRISHA m Hinduism
Means "lord of the mountain"
in Sanskrit. This is a name of the Hindu god Shiva
, given because of his abode in the Himalayan Mountains.
GISBERT m German, Ancient Germanic
From a Germanic name in which the second element is beraht
"bright". The first element is probably a shortened form of gisil
"pledge, hostage" (making it a variant of GILBERT
), though it could be related to Gallo-Celtic gaiso
GISELLE f French, English (Modern)
Derived from the Germanic word gisil
meaning "hostage, pledge"
. This name may have originally been a descriptive nickname for a child given as a pledge to a foreign court. It was borne by a daughter of the French king Charles III who married the Norman leader Rollo in the 10th century. The name was popular in France during the Middle Ages (the more common French form is Gisèle
). Though it became known in the English-speaking world due to Adolphe Adam's ballet Giselle
(1841), it was not regularly used until the 20th century.
GITA (1) f Indian, Hindi
in Sanskrit. The word appears in the name of the Bhagavad Gita
, a sacred text of Hinduism (meaning "divine song").
GIUSEPPE m Italian
Italian form of JOSEPH
. Giuseppe Garibaldi (1807-1882) was a military leader who united Italy in the 19th century.
GIVI m Georgian
Meaning unknown, possibly from Persian گیو (Giv)
, the name of a hero from the 10th-century epic the Shahnameh
GLADYS f Welsh, English
From the old Welsh name Gwladus
, possibly derived from gwlad
. It has historically been used as a Welsh form of CLAUDIA
. This name became popular outside of Wales after it was used in Ouida's novel Puck
GLÆDWINE m Anglo-Saxon
Old English name derived from the elements glæd
"bright" and wine
"friend". This name was not actually recorded in the Old English era, though it is attested starting in the 11th century.
GLANVILLE m English (Rare)
From an English surname that was taken from a Norman place name, which possibly meant "domain of (a person named) Gland"
in Old French.
GLÁUCIO m Portuguese
Portuguese form of the Roman cognomen Glaucia
, which was derived from Latin glaucus "bluish grey"
, ultimately from Greek.
GLAW m & f Welsh
in Welsh. This is a modern Welsh name.
GLEB m Russian, Ukrainian
Russian and Ukrainian form of the Old Norse name Guðleifr
, which was derived from the elements guð
"god" and leifr
GLENDA f English
Probably a feminine form of GLENN
using the suffix da
(from names such as LINDA
). This name was not regularly used until the 20th century.
GLENN m Scottish, English
From a Scottish surname that was derived from Gaelic gleann "valley"
. A famous bearer of the surname was American astronaut John Glenn (1921-2016).
GLENYS f Welsh
Elaboration of the Welsh word glân
meaning "pure, clean, holy"
. This name was created in the late 19th century.
GLINDA f Literature
Created by author L. Frank Baum for his character Glinda the Good Witch, a kind sorceress in his Oz
series of books beginning in 1900. It is not known what inspired the name.
GLOOSCAP m New World Mythology
Derived from an Eastern Algonquian phrase meaning "man from nothing"
. Glooscap (or Gluskabe) was a hero involved in the creation myths of the Wabanaki people of eastern North America.
GLORIA f English, Spanish, Italian, German
, from the Portuguese and Spanish titles of the Virgin Mary Maria da Glória
and María de Gloria
. Maria da Glória (1819-1853) was the daughter of the Brazilian emperor Pedro I, eventually becoming queen of Portugal as Maria II.... [more]
GLORIANA f English (Rare)
Elaborated form of Latin gloria
. In Edmund Spenser's poem The Faerie Queene
(1590) this was the name of the title character, a representation of Queen Elizabeth I.
GLORINDA f Esperanto
Means "worthy of glory"
in Esperanto, ultimately from Latin gloria
GLYNDWR m Welsh
From a Welsh surname that was originally derived from a place name meaning "valley water"
. This name is often given in honour of Owain Glyndwr, a 14th-century Welsh patriot who led a revolt against England.
GLYNIS f Welsh
Either a variant of GLENYS
or an elaboration of the Welsh word glyn
GNAEUS m Ancient Roman
Roman praenomen, or given name, which is of unknown Etruscan meaning, though it may be related to Latin naevus "birthmark"
. A famous bearer was Gnaeus Pompeius Magnus, also known as Pompey the Great, a Roman general of the 1st century BC.
GOBÁN m Irish
Either means "little smith"
from Irish gobha
"smith" combined with a diminutive suffix, or else derived from the name of the Irish god GOIBNIU
(which is also a derivative of gobha
GOBNAIT f Irish
Feminine form of GOBÁN
. This was the name of a 6th-century Irish abbess, the patron saint of Ballyvourney.
GOCHA m Georgian
Meaning unknown, possibly from a Georgian dialectal word meaning "old man"