AGRIPPINAfAncient Roman Feminine derivative of AGRIPPA. This name was borne by the scheming mother of the Roman emperor Nero, who eventually had her killed. This was also the name of a 3rd-century Roman saint who is venerated in Sicily.
ALANISfEnglish (Rare) Feminine form of ALAN. Canadian musician Alanis Morissette (1974-) was named after her father Alan. Her parents apparently decided to use this particular spelling after seeing this word in a Greek newspaper.
ALBA (1)fItalian, Spanish, Catalan This name is derived from two distinct names, ALBA (2) and ALBA (3), with distinct origins, Latin and Germanic. Over time these names have become confused with one another. To further complicate the matter, alba means "dawn" in Italian, Spanish and Catalan. This may be the main inspiration behind its use in Italy and Spain.
ALEXANDRIAfEnglish Feminine form of ALEXANDER. Alexander the Great founded several cities by this name (or renamed them) as he extended his empire eastward. The most notable of these is Alexandria in Egypt, founded by Alexander in 331 BC.
AMANDAfEnglish, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, Dutch, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Late Roman In part this is a feminine form of AMANDUS. However, it was not used during the Middle Ages. In the 17th century it was recreated by authors and poets who based it directly on Latin amanda meaning "lovable, worthy of love". Notably, the playwright Colley Cibber used it for a character in his play Love's Last Shift (1696). It came into regular use during the 19th century.
ANASTASIAfGreek, Russian, Ukrainian, Belarusian, English, Spanish, Italian, Georgian, Ancient Greek Feminine form of ANASTASIUS. This was the name of a 4th-century Dalmatian saint who was martyred during the persecutions of the Roman emperor Diocletian. Due to her, the name has been common in Eastern Orthodox Christianity (in various spellings). As an English name it has been in use since the Middle Ages. A famous bearer was the youngest daughter of the last Russian tsar Nicholas II, who was rumoured to have escaped the execution of her family in 1918.
ANATOLIAfLate Roman Feminine form of ANATOLIUS. This was the name of a 3rd-century Italian saint and martyr. This is also a place name (from the same Greek origin) referring to the large peninsula that makes up the majority of Turkey.
ANGELICAfEnglish, Italian, Romanian Derived from Latin angelicus meaning "angelic", ultimately related to Greek ἄγγελος (angelos) meaning "messenger". The poets Boiardo and Ariosto used this name in their Orlando poems (1483 and 1532), where it belongs to Orlando's love interest. It has been used as a given name since the 18th century.
ANISSAfEnglish 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 (see ANISA), 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.
ARTEMISIAfAncient Greek Feminine form of ARTEMISIOS. This was the name of the 4th-century BC builder of the Mausoleum, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. She built it in memory of her husband, the Carian prince Mausolus.
BEATRICEfItalian, English, Swedish Italian form of BEATRIX. Beatrice Portinari (1266-1290) was the woman who was loved by the Italian poet Dante Alighieri. She serves as Dante's guide through paradise in his epic poem the Divine Comedy (1321). This is also the name of a character in Shakespeare's comedy Much Ado About Nothing (1599), in which Beatrice and Benedick are fooled into confessing their love for one another.
BEATRIXfGerman, Hungarian, Dutch, English, Late Roman Probably from Viatrix, a feminine form of the Late Latin name Viator meaning "voyager, traveller". It was a common name amongst early Christians, and the spelling was altered by association with Latin beatus "blessed, happy". Viatrix or Beatrix was a 4th-century saint who was strangled to death during the persecutions of Diocletian.... [more]
BRENDAfEnglish Possibly a feminine form of the Old Norse name Brandr, meaning "sword", which was brought to Britain in the Middle Ages. This name is sometimes used as a feminine form of BRENDAN.
BRIANAfEnglish Feminine form of BRIAN. This name was used by Edmund Spenser in The Faerie Queene (1590). The name was not commonly used until the 1970s, when it rapidly became popular in the United States.