The name has several different origins and meanings, it could either be from the Swahili word meaning “purpose,”, in which case, it is the name of the of the 5th day of Kwanzaa which celebrates the principle of community.

It can also be a Welsh form of the Gaelic Niamh.

In South Eastern Europe, such as Croatia, Slovenia and Greece it is a contracted form of Antonia, now used exclusively as an independent given name.

Currently, Nia is the 90th most popular female name in Slovenia (2010) and the 469th most popular in the United States. Another form is the Slovene Nija.

The name is borne by actresses Nia Long and Nia Vardalos.



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