Ada is sweet, vintagy and classy, with her two syllable Victoriana quality, ending and beginning in a vowel, Ada(h) may just be the next Ava. The Finns have already beaten us, as she is currently the 3rd most popular female name in Finland, (Aada, 2011).

In English, she is usually pronounced like (AY-duh), but in the rest of the world, she is (AH-dah).

Her origins are various; in the form of Adah, she can be traced to the Hebrew Bible, being a relative of the modern Hebrew unisex name, Adi, meaning (jewel), in ancient Hebrew her meaning is more around the lines of “a piece of jewelry; adornment or; ornament.”

In the Bible, Adah appears twice as the name of a wife of Lemech and again as the name of the wife Esau.

Ada without the H is usually traced to the Germanic element, adal, meaning, “noble,” making her a relative of Adela, Adelaide and Adeline. Among royalty and nobility alike, she was a popular choice across Medieval Europe, being borne by St. Ada, a 7th-century Abbess; Ada of Atholl (d.1264); Ada, Countess of Holland, (1188-1223) and; Ada de Warenne, mother of two Scottish kings and the wife of Henry of Scotland, (1120-1178).

In more contemporary times, Ada is usually associated with Ada Lovelace (née Augusta Ada Byron 1815-1852), the daughter of Lord Byron and a renowned Mathematician, she is often credited by modern scientists as being the first Computer Engineer.

The name could also be of Turkic or Greek origins, but its meaning is lost. It was borne by a female governor of Caria (377-326 B.C.E.) a loyal ally of Alexander the Great.

In the United States, Ada was quite popular around the turn of the 19th-century. The highest she ranked in U.S. naming history was in 1880, coming in as the 33rd most popular female name. By 1985, she completely fell off the charts and reappeared in the top 1000 in 2005. As of 2010, she currently ranks in as the 552nd most popular female name in the United States, (2010). Her rankings in other countries are as follows:

  • # 3 (Aada, Finland, 2011)
  • # 72 (Ada, Norway, 2010)

Other forms of the name include:

  • Ada (Dutch/Estonian/Faroese/Finnish/French/Frisian/German/Greek/Hungarian/Icelandic/Italian/Latvian/Lithuanian/Polish/Plattdeutsch/Scandinavian/Slovene)
  • Aada (Estonian/Finnish)
  • Ade (Estonian)
  • Aata (Finnish)
  • Aatukka (Finnish)
  • Ata (Finnish)
  • Adina (Italian)
  • Ádá (Sami)
  • Adica (Slovene)


Gender: Feminine
Origin: Frisian
Meaning: “noble.”

The name is derived from the Germanic element, adal (noble). It is sometimes used as a feminine form of Tale or Tole (a Frisian form of Thorleif), or it is viewed as the Frisian cognate of Adelheid.

Currently, Talea/Thalea is the 469th most popular female name in Germany, (2011).

The name is sometimes spelled Thalea. Masculine form is Tale.


Gender: Feminine
Origin: Old German
Meaning: “noble kind; noble sort.”
Eng (AD-ə-layd)

An English form of the German name, Adelheid, it is composed of the Germanic elements, adel (noble) and heid (kind, sort, type). It was borne by a 10th-century saint and wife of Otto the Great.

Its popularity in the English-speaking world was sparked in the 19th-century when William IV took Adelaide of Saxe-Meiningen as his wife. As a result, several places throughout the former British Empire were named in her honour, including Adelaide, Australia.

In addition, the name has been borne by several other royal personages throughout history.

Currently, Adelaide is the 434th most popular name in the United States, (2010).

Other forms of the name include:

  • Adelgjejda Адэльгейда (Belarusian)
  • Adeljajda АдэлЯйда (Belarusian)
  • Adelaid (Breton)
  • Adelaida Аделаида (Catalan/Czech/Hungarian/Russian/Slovene/Spanish)
  • Adléta (Czech)
  • Adelaide (Danish/English/Italian/Portuguese/Swedish)
  • Alhed (Danish)
  • Adelheid (Dutch/Finnish/German/Norwegian)
  • Adelheidis (Dutch)
  • Aleida (Dutch/German)
  • Alida (Dutch/Hungarian/Latvian)
  • Aadelheide (Estonian)
  • Alide (Estonian)
  • Adélaïde (French)
  • Alette (French/Norwegian)
  • Aleit (Frisian)
  • Elke (Frisian)
  • Talea (Frisian)
  • Tale (Frisian)
  • Talia/Thalia (Frisian)
  • Talisa (Frisian)
  • Talke/Thalke (Frisian)
  • Adelaira (Galician)
  • Delaira (Galician)
  • Alheit (German)
  • Alke (German)
  • Heide (German)
  • Heidi (German)
  • Adina (Hungarian)
  • Aletta (Hungarian/Italian)
  • Alett (Hungarian)
  • Alitta (Hungarian)
  • Adelasia (Italian: archaic)
  • Aalis (Medieval French)
  • Alides (Norwegian: archaic)
  • Adalais (Occitanian)
  • Asalais or Azalaïs (Occitanian)
  • Ahlheid (Plattdeutsch)
  • Ahlheit (Plattdeutsch)
  • Adelajda (Polish)

Common English diminutives are: Addie, Del and Lady.

The designated name-days are: January 30 (Poland), February 5 (Poland), December 12 (Poland), December 16 (Estonia/Germany/Poland), December 17 (France).