ÆLFGIFU f Anglo-Saxon
Derived from the Old English elements ælf
"elf" and giefu
"gift". This was the name of the first wife of the English king Æðelræd II.
ARTEMIDOROS m Ancient Greek
Means "gift of Artemis"
from the name of the goddess ARTEMIS
combined with Greek δῶρον (doron)
meaning "gift". This was the name of a Greek author of the 2nd century who wrote about the interpretation of dreams.
CSABA m Hungarian
Possibly means either "shepherd"
in Hungarian. According to legend this was the name of a son of Attila
DONATO m Italian, Spanish, Portuguese
From the Late Latin name Donatus
. Several early saints had this name. The name was also borne by two Renaissance masters: the sculptor Donato di Niccolo di Bette Bardi (also known as Donatello), and the architect Donato Bramante.
DOROTHEA f German, Dutch, Danish, Norwegian, English, Late Greek
Feminine form of the Late Greek name Δωρόθεος (Dorotheos)
, which meant "gift of God"
from Greek δῶρον (doron)
meaning "gift" and θεός (theos)
meaning "god". The name Theodore
is composed of the same elements in reverse order. Dorothea was the name of two early saints, notably the 4th-century martyr Dorothea of Caesarea. It was also borne by the 14th-century Saint Dorothea of Montau, who was the patron saint of Prussia.
DOROTHY f English
Usual English form of DOROTHEA
. It has been in use since the 16th century. The author L. Frank Baum used it for the central character in his fantasy novel The Wonderful Wizard of Oz
(1900) and several of its sequels.
EUDORA f Greek Mythology
Means "good gift"
in Greek, from the elements εὖ (eu)
meaning "good" and δῶρον (doron)
meaning "gift". This was the name of a nymph, one of the Hyades, in Greek mythology.
GERASIMOS m Greek, Late Greek
Derived from Greek γέρας (geras)
meaning "honour, gift"
. Saint Gerasimus was a 5th-century hermit who lived near the Jordan River.
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.
GODIVA f Anglo-Saxon (Latinized)
Latinized form of the Old English name Godgifu
meaning "gift of god"
, from the elements god
"gift". Lady Godiva was an 11th-century English noblewoman who, according to legend, rode naked through the streets of Coventry to protest the high taxes imposed by her husband upon the townspeople.
JESSE m English, Dutch, Finnish, Biblical
From the Hebrew name יִשַׁי (Yishai)
, which possibly means "gift"
. In the Old Testament Jesse is the father of King David
. It began to be used as an English given name after the Protestant Reformation. A famous bearer was Jesse James (1847-1882), an American outlaw who held up banks and stagecoaches. He was eventually shot by a fellow gang member for a reward. Another famous bearer was the American athlete Jesse Owens (1913-1980), whose real name was James Cleveland (or J. C.) Owens.
JOASH m Biblical
From the Hebrew name יוֹאָשׁ (Yo'ash)
, possibly meaning "fire of YAHWEH"
. In the Old Testament this name was borne by several characters including the father of Gideon
, a king of Judah, and a son of King Ahab
JONATHAN m English, French, German, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Dutch, Biblical
From the Hebrew name יְהוֹנָתָן (Yehonatan)
, contracted to יוֹנָתָן (Yonatan)
, meaning "YAHWEH has given"
, derived from the roots יְהוֹ (yeho)
referring to the Hebrew God and נָתַן (natan)
meaning "to give". According to the Old Testament, Jonathan was the eldest son of Saul
. His relationship with his father was strained due to his close friendship with his father's rival David
. Along with Saul he was killed in battle with the Philistines.... [more]
LEMUEL m Biblical, Mormon, Biblical Hebrew
Means "for God"
in Hebrew. This was the name of a king briefly mentioned in Proverbs in the Old Testament. In the Book of Mormon it is the name of a son of Lehi and Sariah. It is also borne by the hero of Jonathan Swift's novel Gulliver's Travels
MATTANIAH m Biblical
Means "gift of YAHWEH"
in Hebrew. This was the original name of Zedekiah, a king of Judah, in the Old Testament.
MATTHEW m English, Biblical
English form of Ματθαῖος (Matthaios)
, which was a Greek form of the Hebrew name מַתִּתְיָהוּ (Mattityahu)
meaning "gift of YAHWEH"
, from the roots מַתָּן (mattan)
meaning "gift" and יָה (yah)
referring to the Hebrew God. Matthew, also called Levi
, was one of the twelve apostles. He was a tax collector, and supposedly the author of the first gospel in the New Testament. He is considered a saint in many Christian traditions. The variant Matthias
also occurs in the New Testament belonging to a separate apostle. The name appears in the Old Testament as Mattithiah
MENODORA f Ancient Greek
Means "gift of the moon"
, derived from Greek μήνη (mene)
meaning "moon" and δῶρον (doron)
meaning "gift". This was the name of a 4th-century saint who was martyred with her sisters Metrodora and Nymphodora.
PANDORA f Greek Mythology
Means "all gifts"
, derived from a combination of Greek πᾶν (pan)
meaning "all" and δῶρον (doron)
meaning "gift". In Greek mythology Pandora was the first mortal woman. Zeus
gave her a jar containing all of the troubles and ills that mankind now knows, and told her not to open it. Unfortunately her curiosity got the best of her and she opened it, unleashing the evil spirits into the world.
SHAI m & f Hebrew
Either from Hebrew שַׁי (Shai)
or else a Hebrew diminutive of ISAIAH
SUNNIVA f Norwegian
Scandinavian form of the Old English name Sunngifu
, which meant "sun gift"
from the Old English elements sunne
"sun" and giefu
"gift". This was the name of a legendary English saint who was shipwrecked in Norway and killed by the inhabitants.
THEODORA f English, Greek, Ancient Greek
Feminine form of THEODORE
. This name was common in the Byzantine Empire, being borne by several empresses including the influential wife of Justinian in the 6th century.
THEODORE m English
From the Greek name Θεόδωρος (Theodoros)
, which meant "gift of god"
from Greek θεός (theos)
meaning "god" and δῶρον (doron)
meaning "gift". The name Dorothea
is derived from the same roots in reverse order. This was the name of several saints, including Theodore of Amasea, a 4th-century Greek soldier; Theodore of Tarsus, a 7th-century archbishop of Canterbury; and Theodore the Studite, a 9th-century Byzantine monk. It was also borne by two popes.... [more]
ZEBULUN m Biblical
Possibly derived from Ugartic zbl
. In the Old Testament Zebulun is the tenth son of Jacob
(his sixth son by Leah
) and the ancestor of one of the twelve tribes of Israel. Genesis 30:20
implies two different roots for the name: זָבַל (zaval)
meaning "to dwell" and זֵבֵד (zeved)
meaning "gift, dowry". These are probably only folk etymologies.