Gender: Masculine
Origin: Latin
Meaning: “happy; lucky.”
Eng (FEE-liks); Germ (FEH-leeks)

Felix is derived from an Old Roman agnomen, (nickname), which describes one who is happy or lucky.

In ancient History, it was bestowed as a descriptive nick name upon the Roman dictator, Lucius Cornelius Sulla, (c.138 B.C.E-78 B.C.E), it was also borne by a few other Roman officials.

The name also makes an appearance in the New Testament.

The name was borne by at least 15 saints and 5 popes, rendering the name extremely popular in Medieval Continental Europe.

The name was also in usage in Medieval England, but seems to have gone out of style after the Protestant Reformation, being revived again in the 19th-century.

Currently, Felix is the 9th most popular male name in Germany (2011), in the United States, however, he only ranked in as the 3331st most popular male name, (2010). The highest he has ever ranked in U.S. naming history was in 1884, coming in as the 137th most popular male name.

In the English speaking world, Felix is usually associated with the Cartoon character, Felix the Cat.

His rankings in other countries are as follows:

  • # 14 (Austria, 2010)
  • # 38 (Denmark, 2010)
  • # 50 (Sweden, 2010)
  • # 83 (Norway, 2010)
  • # 177 (France, 2009)
  • # 201 (the Netherlands, 2010)

A list of all the variations are as follows:

  • Feliu (Catalan)
  • Felix Феликс (Croatian/Czech/Dutch/English/Finnish/German/Romanian/Russian/Scandinavian/Serbian)
  • Feliks (Croatian/Polish/Croatian/Serbian/Slovene)
  • Feeliks (Finnish)
  • Feliksas (Finnish)
  • Félix (French/Hungarian/Portuguese/Slovakian/Spanish)
  • Feliksz (Hungarian)
  • Felice (Italian)
  • Felicetto (Italian)
  • Felicino (Italian)
  • Felicio (Italian)
  • Feluccio (Italian)
  • Felicius (Latin)
  • Szczęsny (Polish:a vernacular form of Felix, this form is archaic and has been replaced in usage by Felix)
  • Felici (Romansch)
  • Srečko (Slovene; Croatian: direct translation, literally meaning “happy, lucky” in Southern Slavic languages)

Another offshoot is the Latin Felician, which literally means “the happy one” or “the lucky one.”

Derivatives are:

  • Felician (English)
  • Félicien (French)
  • Feliciano (Italian/Portuguese/Spanish)
  • Feliziano (Italian)
  • Liciano (Italian)
  • Felicianus (Latin)
  • Felicjan (Polish: fe-LEET-syahn)
  • Felicián (Slovak)

Its feminine form of Felicia has been in usage in England since the Middle Ages, currently, she does not appear in the U.S. top 1000, she was last seen in 2005 coming in as 993rd most popular female name. The highest she ever ranked in U.S. naming history was in 1986 coming in as the 90th most popular female name.

She is currently the 251st most popular female name in the Netherlands (2008) and the 15th most popular in Sweden (2007).

Variations are:

  • Felicia (English/Italian/Romanian: feh-LEE-shah Eng; fay-LEE-chah Italian)
  • Félicie (French: fay-lee-SEE)
  • Félicienne (French)
  • Felicie (German: fe-LEE-tsee-e)
  • Felícia (Hungarian/Portuguese)
  • Felicetta (Italian: obscure)
  • Feliciana (Italian/Latin/Spanish)
  • Felicina (Italian: obscure)
  • Felicja (Polish: Felcia, Felka, Fila and Filka are the diminutives. fe-LEET-syah)
  • Felina (Polish)
  • Feliksa (Polish)
  • Szczęsna (Polish)
  • Srečka (Slovene/Croatian)

The name was borne by German composer, Felix Mendelssohn (1809-1847).

The designated name-days are January 14 (Sweden), February 12 (France), May 30 (Germany), June 9 (Hungary), November 1st (Czech Republic), November 20 (Slovakia).

2 thoughts on “Felix

  1. I really have a thing for the Polish name Szczęsny. I don’t know why but I think it’s because it sounds so good to me in combination with other names when I’ve seen it in the geneologies of Polish nobility(Stanisław Szczęsny Potocki, Szczęsny Jerzy Potocki).

    My Polish name book also lists the feminine form Szczęsna. I’ve seen this name used well into the 20th century myself but it is very rare.

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