ÆÐELSTAN m Anglo-Saxon
Derived from the Old English elements æðel
"noble" and stan
"stone". This was the name of a 10th-century English king, the first to rule all of England. The name was rarely used after the Norman Conquest, though it enjoyed a modest revival (as Athelstan
) in the 19th century.
ALEXANDER m English, German, Dutch, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Icelandic, Hungarian, Slovak, Biblical, Ancient Greek (Latinized), Greek Mythology (Latinized)
Latinized form of the Greek name Αλεξανδρος (Alexandros)
, which meant "defending men"
from Greek αλεξω (alexo)
meaning "to defend, help" and ανηρ (aner)
meaning "man" (genitive ανδρος
). In Greek mythology this was another name of the hero Paris
, and it also belongs to several characters in the New Testament. However, the most famous bearer was Alexander the Great, king of Macedon. In the 4th century BC he built a huge empire out of Greece, Egypt, Persia, and parts of India. Due to his fame, and later medieval tales involving him, use of his name spread throughout Europe.... [more]
ATTILA m History, Hungarian
Possibly means "little father"
from Gothic atta
"father" combined with a diminutive suffix. This was the name of a 5th-century leader of the Huns, a nomadic people from Central Asia who had expanded into Eastern Europe by the 4th century. Attila
was the name given to him by his Gothic-speaking subjects in Eastern Europe; his real name may have been Avithohol.
CYRUS m English, Biblical, Biblical Latin, Ancient Greek (Latinized)
From Κυρος (Kyros)
, the Greek form of the Persian name Kūrush
, which may mean "far sighted"
. The name is sometimes associated with Greek κυριος (kyrios)
meaning "lord". It was borne by several kings of Persia, including Cyrus the Great, who conquered Babylon. He is famous in the Old Testament for freeing the captive Jews and allowing them to return to Israel. As an English name, it first came into use among the Puritans after the Protestant Reformation.
GENGHIS m History
From the title Genghis
, meaning "universal ruler", which was adopted by the Mongol Empire founder Temujin
in the late 12th century. Remembered both for his military brilliance and his brutality towards civilians, he went on to conquer huge areas of Asia and Eastern Europe.
NAPOLEON m History, English
From the old Italian name Napoleone
, used most notably by the French emperor Napoléon Bonaparte (1769-1821), who was born on Corsica. The etymology is uncertain, but it is possibly derived from the Germanic Nibelungen
meaning "sons of mist"
, a name used in Germanic mythology to refer to the keepers of a hoard of treasure (often identified with the Burgundians). Alternatively, it could be connected to the name of the Italian city of Napoli (Naples).
SALAH AL-DIN m Arabic
Means "righteousness of religion"
from Arabic صلاح (salah)
meaning "righteousness" combined with دين (din)
meaning "religion, faith". A famous bearer of this name was the sultan Salah al-Din Yusuf Ibn Ayyub, known in the western world as Saladin, the founder of the Ayyubid dynasty in Egypt in the 12th century. He recaptured Jerusalem from the crusaders and repelled the invaders of the Third Crusade. Salah al-Din was an honourific; his birth name was Yusuf.
TIMUR m Tatar, Chechen, Kazakh, Uzbek, Russian, History
From the Turkic and Mongol name Temür
. This was the name of several Mongol, Turkic and Yuan leaders. A notable bearer was Timur, also known as Tamerlane
(from Persian تیمور لنگ (Timur e Lang)
meaning "Timur the lame"), a 14th-century Turkic leader who conquered large areas of Western Asia.
WILLIAM m English
From the Germanic name Willahelm
meaning "will helmet"
, composed of the elements wil
"will, desire" and helm
"helmet, protection". Saint William of Gellone was an 8th-century cousin of Charlemagne
who became a monk. The name was common among the Normans, and it became extremely popular in England after William the Conqueror was recognized as the first Norman king of England in the 11th century. From then until the modern era it has been among the most common of English names (with John