ÆSC m Anglo-Saxon
Means "ash tree" in Old English. This was the nickname of a 5th-century king of Kent, whose birth name was Oeric.
AINSLEY f & m Scottish, English (Modern)
From a surname which was from a place name: either Annesley in Nottinghamshire or Ansley in Warwickshire. The place names themselves derive from Old English anne
"alone, solitary" or ansetl
"hermitage" and leah
AIRI f Japanese
From Japanese 愛 (ai)
meaning "love, affection" combined with 莉 (ri)
meaning "white jasmine" or 梨 (ri)
meaning "pear". Other combinations of kanji characters are possible.
ALLON m Biblical
Means "oak" in Hebrew. This name is mentioned briefly in the Old Testament.
ANARA f Kazakh, Kyrgyz
Means "pomegranate" in Kazakh and Kyrgyz, ultimately from Persian.
ARLIE f & m English
From a surname which was derived from a place name meaning "eagle wood" in Old English. This name can also be a diminutive of ARLENE
ASH m & f English
Short form of ASHLEY
. It can also come directly from the English word denoting either the tree or the residue of fire.
ASHLEY f & m English
From an English surname which was originally derived from place names meaning "ash tree clearing", from a combination of Old English æsc
. Until the 1960s it was more commonly given to boys in the United States, but it is now most often used on girls.
ASHTON m & f English
From a surname which was originally derived from a place name which meant "ash tree town" in Old English.
ASK m Norse Mythology
Derived from Old Norse askr
"ash tree". In Norse mythology Ask and his wife Embla
were the first humans created by the gods.
ASPEN f English (Modern)
From the English word for the tree, derived from Old English æspe
. It is also the name of a ski resort in Colorado.
ASSE m Frisian
Originally a short form of Germanic names beginning with the element asc
meaning "ash tree" or ans
AVALON f English (Rare)
From the name of the island paradise to which King Arthur
was brought after his death. The name of this island is perhaps related to Welsh afal
meaning "apple", a fruit which was often linked with paradise.
BAI m & f Chinese
From Chinese 白 (bái)
meaning "white, pure", 百 (bǎi)
meaning "one hundred, many" or 柏 (bǎi)
meaning "cypress tree, cedar" (which is usually only masculine). Other Chinese characters can form this name as well. This name was borne in the 8th century by the Tang dynasty poet Li Bai, whose given was 白
BARCLAY m Scottish, English (Rare)
From a Scottish surname which was likely derived from the English place name Berkeley
, meaning "birch wood" in Old English.
BENTLEY m English
From a surname which was from a place name, itself derived from Old English beonet
"bent grass" and leah
"woodland, clearing". Various towns in England bear this name.
BESSARION m Late Greek
Meaning uncertain, possibly from Greek βησσα (bessa)
"wooded valley". This was the name of a 5th-century Egyptian hermit who was a disciple of Saint Anthony the Great. It was later adopted by the scholar Basilios Bessarion (1403-1472), a Greek born in Byzantine Anatolia who became a Roman Catholic bishop.
BOR m Slovene
Short form of names containing bor
, such as BORISLAV
. It is also a South Slavic word meaning "pine tree".
BRISCOE m English (Rare)
From a surname which was derived from a place name meaning "birch wood" in Old Norse.
CEDAR f & m English (Rare)
From the English word for the coniferous tree, derived (via Old French and Latin) from Greek κεδρος (kedros)
CHERRY f English
Simply means "cherry" from the name of the fruit. It can also be a diminutive of CHARITY
. It has been in use since the late 19th century.
CYPRIAN m Polish, English (Rare)
From the Roman family name Cyprianus
which meant "from Cyprus" in Latin. Saint Cyprian was a 3rd-century bishop of Carthage and a martyr under the emperor Valerian.
DAIKI m Japanese
From Japanese 大 (dai)
meaning "big, great" combined with 輝 (ki)
meaning "brightness", 樹 (ki)
meaning "tree" or 貴 (ki)
meaning "valuable". Other combinations of kanji can also form this name.
DAPHNE f Greek Mythology, English, Dutch
Means "laurel" in Greek. In Greek mythology she was a nymph turned into a laurel tree by her father in order that she might escape the pursuit of Apollo
. It has been used as a given name in the English-speaking world since the end of the 19th century.
DARA (1) m Irish
From the Irish Mac Dara
which means "oak tree". This was the name of a 6th-century saint from Connemara. It is also used as an Anglicized form of DÁIRE
DEFOREST m English
From a French surname meaning "from the forest". It was originally given in honour of American author John Deforest (1826-1906).
DIKLAH m & f Hebrew, Biblical, Biblical Hebrew
Possibly means "palm grove" in Hebrew or Aramaic. In the Old Testament this is the name of a son of Joktan
. In modern times it is also used as a feminine name.
EBONY f English
From the English word ebony
for the black wood which comes from the ebony tree. It is ultimately from the Egyptian word hbnj
. In America this name is most often used by black parents.
EGLĖ f Lithuanian
Means "spruce tree" in Lithuanian. In a Lithuanian legend Eglė was a young woman who married a sea snake.
ELAH m Biblical, Biblical Hebrew
Means "terebinth tree" in Hebrew. This was the name of the fourth king of Israel, as told in the Old Testament. He was murdered by Zimri
, who succeeded him.
ELMER m English
From a surname which was derived from the Old English name ÆÐELMÆR
. In the United States it is sometimes given in honour of brothers Jonathan (1745-1817) and Ebenezer Elmer (1752-1843), who were active in early American politics.
ELOWEN f Cornish
Means "elm tree" in Cornish. This is a recently coined Cornish name.
ELWOOD m English
From an English surname which was derived from a place name meaning "elder tree forest" in Old English.
EOGHAN m Irish, Scottish, Irish Mythology
Possibly means "born from the yew tree" in Irish, though it is possibly derived from EUGENE
. It was borne by several legendary or semi-legendary Irish figures, including a son of Niall
of the Nine Hostages.
FORREST m English
From an English surname meaning "forest", originally belonging to a person who lived near a forest. In America it has sometimes been used in honour of the Confederate Civil War general Nathan Bedford Forrest (1821-1877). This name was borne by the title character in the movie 'Forrest Gump' (1994) about a loveable simpleton. Use of the name increased when the movie was released, but has since faded away.
GARRICK m English
From a surname which was originally derived from Occitan garric
meaning "oak tree grove".
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
GROVER m English
From a surname meaning "grove of trees" from Old English graf
. A famous bearer was the American president Grover Cleveland (1837-1908), who popularized the name in the United States at the end of the 19th century. The name is now associated with a muppet character from the children's television program 'Sesame Street'.
GWYDION m Welsh Mythology
Means "born of trees" in Welsh. In the Mabinogion, Gwydion was the nephew of Math
, and like him a powerful magician. He was the uncle of Lleu
Llaw Gyffes, for whom he fashioned a wife, Blodeuwedd
, out of flowers.
HAZEL f English
From the English word hazel
for the tree or the light brown colour, derived ultimately from Old English hæsel
. It was coined as a given name in the 19th century.
HIDEKI m Japanese
From Japanese 秀 (hide)
meaning "excellent, outstanding" or 英 (hide)
meaning "excellent, fine" combined with 樹 (ki)
meaning "tree". Other kanji combinations can also form this name.
HIROKI m Japanese
From Japanese 大 (hiro)
meaning "big, great" and 輝 (ki)
meaning "brightness" or 樹 (ki)
meaning "tree". Other kanji combinations are also possible.
HOLLIS m & f English
From an English surname which was derived from Middle English holis
"holly trees". It was originally given to a person who lived near a group of those trees.
HOLLY f English
From the English word for the holly tree, ultimately derived from Old English holen
IEVA f Lithuanian, Latvian
Lithuanian and Latvian form of EVE
. This is also the Lithuanian and Latvian word for a type of cherry tree (species Prunus padus).
ITSUKI m Japanese
From Japanese 樹 (itsuki)
meaning "tree", using the kanji's nanori reading. Other kanji or kanji combinations can also form this name.
IVES m History
English form of YVES
, used to refer to Saint Ives (also called Ivo) of Huntingdonshire, a semi-legendary English bishop.
IVO (1) m German, Dutch, Italian, Portuguese, Czech, Ancient Germanic
Germanic name, originally a short form of names beginning with the Germanic element iv
meaning "yew". Alternative theories suggest that it may in fact be derived from a cognate Celtic element. This was the name of several saints (who are also commonly known as Saint Yves
IVOR m Irish, Scottish, Welsh, English (British)
From the Old Norse name Ívarr
, which was derived from the elements yr
"yew, bow" and arr
"warrior". During the Middle Ages it was brought to Britain by Scandinavian settlers and invaders, and it was adopted in Ireland, Scotland and Wales.
JUNÍPERO m Various
This was the name assumed by the 18th-century Spanish Franciscan monk Miguel José Serra, a missionary to California. He named himself after one of Saint Francis's companions, who was named from Latin iuniperus
KAEDE f & m Japanese
From Japanese 楓 (kaede)
meaning "maple" or other kanji which are pronounced the same way.
KAURI m Maori
From the name of a type of tree found in New Zealand (species Agathis australis).
KAZUKI m Japanese
From Japanese 一 (kazu)
meaning "one" or 和 (kazu)
meaning "harmony, peace" combined with 輝 (ki)
meaning "brightness", 希 (ki)
meaning "hope" or 樹 (ki)
meaning "tree", as well as other combinations of kanji characters.
KEITH m English, Scottish
From a Scottish surname which was originally derived from a place name, itself probably derived from the Brythonic element cet
meaning "wood". This was the surname of a long line of Scottish nobles. It has been used as a given name since the 19th century.
KEKOA m Hawaiian
Means "the warrior" from Hawaiian ke
, a definite article, and koa
"warrior, koa tree".
KEZIAH f Biblical
From the Hebrew name קְצִיעָה (Qetzi'ah)
meaning "cassia, cinnamon", from the name of the spice tree. In the Old Testament she is a daughter of Job.
KINGSLEY m English (Modern)
From a surname which was originally derived from a place name meaning "king's wood" in Old English.
KIRI f Maori
Means "skin of a tree or fruit" in Maori. This name has been brought to public attention by New Zealand opera singer Kiri Te Kanawa (1944-).
KIZZY f English
Diminutive of KEZIAH
. This particular spelling was repopularized in the late 1970s by a character in the book and miniseries 'Roots'.
LAURA f English, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, Romanian, Finnish, Estonian, Hungarian, Polish, Slovene, Croatian, Czech, Slovak, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, German, Dutch, Lithuanian, Latvian, Late Roman
Feminine form of the Late Latin name Laurus
, which meant "laurel". This meaning was favourable, since in ancient Rome the leaves of laurel trees were used to create victors' garlands. The name was borne by the 9th-century Spanish martyr Saint Laura, who was a nun thrown into a vat of molten lead by the Moors. It was also the name of the subject of poems by the 14th-century Italian poet Petrarch.... [more]
LAUREL f English
From the name of the laurel tree, ultimately from Latin laurus
LAURENCE (1) m English
From the Roman cognomen Laurentius
, which meant "from Laurentum". Laurentum was a city in ancient Italy, its name probably deriving from Latin laurus
"laurel". Saint Laurence was a 3rd-century deacon and martyr from Rome. According to tradition he was roasted alive on a gridiron because, when ordered to hand over the church's treasures, he presented the sick and poor. Due to the saint's popularity, the name came into general use in the Christian world (in various spellings).... [more]
LAVERNE f & m English
From a surname which was derived from a French place name, ultimately derived from the Gaulish word vern
meaning "alder". It is sometimes associated with the Roman goddess Laverna
or the Latin word vernus
LENNOX m & f Scottish, English (Modern)
From a Scottish surname which was derived from the name of a district in Scotland. The district, called Leamhnachd
in Gaelic, possibly means "place of elms".
LESLIE f & m English
From a Scottish surname which was derived from a Scottish place name, probably derived from Gaelic leas celyn
meaning "garden of holly". It has been used as a given name since the 19th century. In America it was more common as a feminine name after the 1940s.
LIN m & f Chinese
From Chinese 林 (lín)
meaning "forest" or 琳 (lín)
meaning "fine jade, gem". Other characters can also form this name.
LINDEN m English
From a German surname which was derived from Old High German linta
meaning "linden tree".
LINFORD m English (Rare)
From a surname which was originally taken from place names meaning either "flax ford" or "linden tree ford" in Old English.
LINTON m English
From a surname which was originally from place names meaning either "flax town" or "linden tree town" in Old English.
LINWOOD m English
From a surname which was originally from a place name meaning "stream forest" in Old English.
LORETO f & m Italian, Spanish
From the name of a town in Italy, originally called Lauretum
in Latin, meaning "laurel grove". Supposedly in the 13th century the house of the Virgin Mary
was miraculously carried by angels from Nazareth to the town.
LOTUS f English (Rare)
From the name of the lotus flower (species Nelumbo nucifera) or the mythological lotus tree. They are ultimately derived from Greek λωτος (lotos)
. In Greek and Roman mythology the lotus tree was said to produce a fruit causing sleepiness and forgetfulness.
LUBNA f Arabic
Means "storax tree" in Arabic. According to a 7th-century legend Lubna and Qays were a couple forced to divorce by Qays's father.
LUCINA f Roman Mythology
Derived from Latin lucus
meaning "grove", but later associated with lux
"light". This was the name of a Roman goddess of childbirth.
LYNDON m English
From an English surname which was derived from a place name meaning "linden tree hill" in Old English. A famous bearer was American president Lyndon B. Johnson (1908-1973).
MAI (1) f Vietnamese
From Sino-Vietnamese 梅 (mai)
meaning "plum, apricot" (refers specifically to the species Prunus mume).
MEI (1) f Chinese
From Chinese 美 (měi)
meaning "beautiful" or 梅 (méi)
meaning "Chinese plum" (species Prunus mume), as well as other characters which are pronounced similarly.
MELIA f Greek Mythology
Means "ash tree" in Greek, a derivative of μελι (meli)
"honey". This was the name of a nymph in Greek myth, the daughter of the Greek god Okeanos.
MORIKO f Japanese
From Japanese 森 (mori)
meaning "forest" and 子 (ko)
meaning "child". Other kanji combinations are also possible.
MU m & f Chinese
From Chinese 慕 (mù)
meaning "admire, desire", 木 (mù)
meaning "tree, wood", or other characters with similar pronunciations.
MYRA f English
Created by the 17th-century poet Fulke Greville. He possibly based it on Latin myrra
meaning "myrrh" (a fragrant resin obtained from a tree). Otherwise, he may have simply rearranged the letters from the name MARY
. Although unrelated etymologically, this is also the name of an ancient city of Anatolia.
NAOKI m Japanese
From Japanese 直 (nao)
meaning "straight" and 樹 (ki)
meaning "tree", as well as other combinations of different kanji with the same pronunciations.
NASH m English (Modern)
From a surname which was derived from the Middle English phrase atten ash
"at the ash tree". A famous bearer of the surname was the mathematician John Nash (1928-2015). The name was popularized in the 1990s by the television series 'Nash Bridges'.
NGAIO f Maori
Maori name which is derived from the name of a type of tree, also called the mousehole tree. This name was borne by New Zealand crime writer Dame Ngaio Marsh (1895-1982).
NIKAU m Maori
From the name of a type of palm tree found in New Zealand (species Rhopalostylis sapida).
NORWOOD m English
From a surname which was originally taken from a place name meaning "north wood" in Old English.
NYSSA f Various
From the name of an ancient town of Asia Minor where Saint Gregory was bishop. Nyssa is also the genus name of a type of tree, also called the Tupelo.
OGDEN m English
From a surname which was derived from a place name meaning "oak valley" in Old English. A famous bearer was the humourous American poet Ogden Nash (1902-1971).
OLIVA f Late Roman
Late Latin name meaning "olive". This was the name of a 2nd-century saint from Brescia.
OLIVE f English, French
From the English and French word for the type of tree, ultimately derived from Latin oliva
OLIVER m English, German, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Finnish, Estonian, Serbian, Croatian, Macedonian, Czech, Slovak
, a Norman French form of a Germanic name such as ALFHER
or an Old Norse name such as Áleifr
). The spelling was altered by association with Latin oliva
"olive tree". In the Middle Ages the name became well-known in Western Europe because of the French epic 'La Chanson de Roland', in which Olivier was a friend and advisor of the hero Roland.... [more]
OLIVETTE f Literature
Feminine form of OLIVER
. This was the name of the title character in the French opera 'Les noces d'Olivette' (1879) by Edmond Audran.
OLIVIA f English, Italian, Spanish, German, Finnish, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish
This name was first used in this spelling by William Shakespeare for a character in his comedy 'Twelfth Night' (1602). Shakespeare may have based it on OLIVER
, or perhaps directly on the Latin word oliva
meaning "olive". In the play Olivia is a noblewoman who is wooed by Duke Orsino but instead falls in love with his messenger Cesario.... [more]
ORNELLA f Italian
Created by the Italian author Gabriele d'Annunzio for his novel 'La Figlia di Jorio' (1904). It is derived from Tuscan Italian ornello
meaning "flowering ash tree".
PALMER m English
From an English surname meaning "pilgrim". It is ultimately from Latin palma
"palm tree", since pilgrims to the Holy Land often brought back palm fronds as proof of their journey.
PALMIRO m Italian
Means "pilgrim" in Italian. In medieval times it denoted one who had been a pilgrim to Palestine. It is ultimately from the word palma
meaning "palm tree", because of the custom of pilgrims to bring palm fronds home with them. The name is sometimes given to a child born on Palm Sunday.
PERRY m English
From a surname which is either English or Welsh in origin. It can be derived from Middle English perrie
meaning "pear tree", or else from Welsh ap Herry
, meaning "son of HERRY
". A famous bearer of the surname was Matthew Perry (1794-1858), the American naval officer who opened Japan to the West.
PHYLLIS f Greek Mythology, English, German
Means "foliage" in Greek. In Greek mythology this was the name of a woman who killed herself out of love for Demophon and was subsequently transformed into an almond tree. It began to be used as a given name in England in the 16th century, though it was often confused with Felicia
PIHLA f Finnish
Derived from Finnish pihlaja
meaning "rowan tree".
POMONA f Roman Mythology
From Latin pomus
"fruit tree". This was the name of the Roman goddess of fruit trees.
ROSCOE m English
From an English surname, originally derived from a place name, itself derived from Old Norse rá
"roebuck" and skógr
ROWAN m & f Irish, English (Modern)
From an Irish surname, an Anglicized form of Ó Ruadháin
meaning "descendant of RUADHÁN
". This name can also be given in reference to the rowan tree.
SAKURA f Japanese
From Japanese 桜 (sakura)
meaning "cherry blossom", though it is often written using the hiragana writing system. It can also come from 咲 (saku)
meaning "blossom" and 良 (ra)
meaning "good, virtuous, respectable" as well as other kanji combinations.
SELBY m & f English (Rare)
From an English surname which was from a place name meaning "willow farm" in Old Norse.
SEQUOIA f & m English (Rare)
From the name of huge trees that grow in California. The tree got its name from the 19th-century Cherokee scholar Sequoyah
(also known as George Guess), the inventor of the Cherokee writing system.
SHELBY m & f English
From a surname, which was possibly a variant of SELBY
. Though previously in use as a rare masculine name, it was popularized as a feminine name by the main character in the movie 'The Woman in Red' (1935). It was later reinforced by the movie 'Steel Magnolias' (1989) in which Julia Roberts played a character by this name.
SHERWOOD m English
From an English place name (or from a surname which was derived from it) meaning "bright forest". This was the name of the forest in which the legendary outlaw Robin Hood made his home.
SILVESTER m Dutch, English, Slovene, Slovak, German, Late Roman
From a Roman name meaning "of the forest" from Latin silva
"wood, forest". This was the name of three popes, including Saint Silvester I who supposedly baptized the first Christian Roman emperor, Constantine
the Great. As an English name, Silvester
) has been in use since the Middle Ages, though it became less common after the Protestant Reformation.
SILVIA f Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Romanian, Slovak, English, German, Late Roman, Roman Mythology
Feminine form of SILVIUS
Silvia was the mother of Romulus
, the founders of Rome. This was also the name of a 6th-century saint, the mother of the pope Gregory the Great. It has been a common name in Italy since the Middle Ages. It was introduced to England by Shakespeare, who used it for a character in his play 'The Two Gentlemen of Verona' (1594). It is now more commonly spelled Sylvia
in the English-speaking world.
SILVIUS m Late Roman, Roman Mythology
Derived from Latin silva
"wood, forest". This was the family name of several of the legendary kings of Alba Longa. It was also the name of an early saint martyred in Alexandria.
SLY m English
Short form of SYLVESTER
. The actor Sylvester Stallone (1946-) is a well-known bearer of this nickname.
SOMA m Hungarian
From Hungarian som
meaning "dogwood, cornel tree".
TAIKI m Japanese
From Japanese 大 (tai)
meaning "big, great" and 輝 (ki)
meaning "brightness" or 樹 (ki)
meaning "tree". Other kanji combinations are possible.
TAMAR f Hebrew, Georgian, Biblical, Biblical Hebrew
Means "date palm" in Hebrew. According to the Old Testament Tamar was the daughter-in-law of Judah
and later his wife. This was also the name of a daughter of King David
. She was raped by her half-brother Amnon
, leading to his murder by her brother Absalom
. The name was borne by a 12th-century ruling queen of Georgia who presided over the kingdom at the peak of its power.
TAMARA f Russian, Ukrainian, Czech, Slovak, Polish, Slovene, Croatian, Serbian, Macedonian, Hungarian, English, Dutch, Spanish, Italian
Russian form of TAMAR
. Russian performers such as Tamara Karsavina (1885-1978), Tamara Drasin (1905-1943), Tamara Geva (1907-1997) and Tamara Toumanova (1919-1996) introduced it to the English-speaking world. It was also borne by the Polish cubist painter Tamara de Lempicka (1898-1980).
TAMIA f English (Modern)
Elaborated form of the popular name syllable Tam
, from names such as TAMARA
. It was popularized by Canadian singer Tamia Hill (1975-), who is known simply as Tamia.
TANE m Maori, Polynesian Mythology
Means "man" in Maori. In Maori and other Polynesian mythology Tane was the god of forests and light. He was the son of the sky god Rangi
and the earth goddess Papa
, who were locked in an embrace and finally separated by their son. He created the tui bird and, by some accounts, man.
TUBA f Arabic, Turkish
From the name of a type of tree that is believed to grow in heaven in Islamic tradition. It means "blessedness" in Arabic.
TUULIKKI f Finnish, Finnish Mythology
Means "little wind" in Finnish, derived from tuuli
"wind". This was the name of a Finnish forest goddess, the daughter of Tapio.
TYRONE m English
From the name of a county in Northern Ireland which is derived from Irish Gaelic Tir Eoghain
meaning "land of EOGHAN
". This name was popularized by American actor Tyrone Power (1914-1958), who was named after his great-grandfather, an Irish actor.
VERE m English
From a Norman surname which was from a French place name, which was itself derived from a Gaulish word meaning "alder".
VERNA f English
Feminine form of VERNON
, sometimes associated with the Latin word vernus
"spring". It has been in use since the 19th century.