Gender: Feminine
Origin: Breton
Meaning: “fair and generous”

Derived from the Breton male name, Gwenhael, this name has recently become a trend  in France. For an English-speaker, it might be appealing due to the fact that is can be shortened to Gwen, Nelle or Elle.

Gwenhael was the name of a Breton Saint. He was an abbot and confessor and died circa 518 (C.E).

As of 2010, was the 498th most popular female name in France.

Another form is Gwenaela. A franconized masculine form is Gwenaël.


Gender: Feminine
Origin: Faroese
Meaning: “beautiful woman.”

I hope I don’t scare my readers away by posting this one today 🙂 But I got to admit, there is something romantically appealing about this name.

Fríðfljóð is composed of the Nordic elements, fríðr (beautiful; fair; beloved) and fljóð (woman).

As of 2010, this was the 8th most popular female name in the Faroe Islands.


Costume Design by Poulina Joanesardottir via Nordic Fashion Biennale

Gender: Feminine
Origin: Old Norse
Meaning: “beautiful; beloved.”

The name is derived from the Old Norse, fríðr, meaning, “beautiful; beloved.”

As of 2010, Fríða was the 4th most popular female name in the Faroe Islands.

Other forms of the name include:

  • Fríða (Faroese/Icelandic)
  • Fríður (Icelandic)
  • Frid (Norwegian/Swedish)
  • Fryd (Norwegian)
  • Fríðr (Old Norse)


Gender: Masculine
Origin: Arabic  حسن 
Meaning: “the handsome; the good.”

The name is derived from the Arabic noun plus definite article الحسن (al-Ḥasan) literally meaning, “the good, the handsome, the beautiful.”

The name was borne by one of the beloved grandsons of the Prophet Mohammed and the son of Ali.

According to Shia and Sunni sources the Archangel Gabriel commanded the Propheth Mohammed to name his grandson, Hasan, a pre-Islamic name. Hasan eventually went on to succeed his father as the Caliph and eventually retired to Madinah where he was poisoned by one of his wives, (the identity of whom is somewhat debated). He is considered a martyr by both Sunni and Shi’a Muslims.

It was the 24th most popular male name in Turkey, (2010) and the 94th most popular in Bosnia & Herzegovina, (2010).

The name is sometimes transliterated as Hassan, especially in the former French colonies, however, this transliteration is actually incorrect as when an extra S is added, the meaning of the name changes, being from the Arabic  حسّان Hassan meaning, “doer of good.”

Other forms of the name include:

  • Hasan Хасан (Albanian/Arabic/Baskkir/Bosnian/Chechen/Dagestani/Kazakh/Kyrgyz/Ossetian/Persian/Tajik/Tatar/Turkmen/Turkish/Ughur/Urdu/Uzbek)
  • Hassan حسن مجتبی (Algerian/Javanese/Malaysian/Moroccan/Persian/Tunisian)
  • Həsən (Azeri)
  • Gasan (Dagastani)
  • Hesan (Kurdish)
  • Alassane (Sub-Saharan African)
  • Lassana (Sub-Saharan African)
  • Hesen (Zazaki)


Gender: Masculine
Origin: Arabic جمال
Meaning: “beautiful”

The name comes directly from the Arabic word for beautiful.

Currently, it is the 610th most popular male name in the United States, (2010).

Other forms of the name include:

Djemal (Albanian)
Camal (Azeri)
Ćemal (Bosian)
Džemal (Bosnian)
Gamal (Egyptian)
Djamal (Indonesian)
Hamal” Гамаль (Kazakh/Chechen/Tatar)
Jamaal (Somalian)
Cemal (Turkish/Azeri)

The name was borne by Egyptian president Gamal Abdel Nasser (1918-1970).



Callistus, Callista

443px-François_Boucher_012Origin: Greek/Late Latin
Meaning: “most beautuful.”

Callistus and Callista is a Late Latin form of the Greek Καλλιστοσ (Kallistos) meaning “most beautiful” which is ultimately derived from the Greek feminine name Kalliste or Kalliste.

In Greek mythology, Callisto was the daughter of King Lycaon of Arcadia, she was a hunting companion or nymph of the goddess Artemis, and took an oath to remain a virgin. Zeus disguised himself as Artemis in order to get close to the virgin, upon embracing the false image of Zeus, Zeus took on his true form and raped Callisto. When Artemis discovered that one of her virgin maids was pregnant and defiled, she turned Callisto into a bear and Callisto gave birth to her son Arcas. Zeus placed Callisto and her son in the constellation Ursa Minor. Later, Kallisto became an epithet for the goddess Artemis Kalliste. A moon of Jupiter was also named in the nymph’s honour.

In later years, the masculine form of Callistus was borne by three popes, also known as Callixtus, one of which was canonized a saint. His designated name-day is October 14.

The feminine version is borne by actress Calista Flockhart (b.1964). It was also borne by a 19th-century American female Baptist missionary Calista Vinton (1807-1864).

Spelled Callista, it is the name of a genus of molusc, and an orchid genus. It was also the name of the title character in the 1855 novel by John Henry Newman (Callista). A fictionalized version of Christians in ancient Rome.

Kallista is the name of a suburb of Melbourne Australia, and Kalista is the name of a village in Bulgaria.

Other forms of the name include, male versions:

  • Calistu (Corsican)
  • Kalist (Croatian/Slovak)
  • Calixus (Danish)
  • Kallistus/Kalixtus (German)
  • Kallistos (Greek)
  • Callisto (Italian)
  • Callixtus/Callistus (Late Latin)
  • Kalikstas (Lithuanian)
  • Kalikst (Polish)
  • Calisto/Calixto (Spanish/Portuguese)

Female forms include

  • Kalliste/Kallisto (Classic Greek)
  • Calista (English spelling, has been in usage since at least the 18th-century. Also used in Spanish and Portuguese speaking countries)
  • Callista (Late Latin/Italian)
  • Kallisti (Modern Greek)
  • Kalista/Kaliksta (Bulgarian, Czech/Slovak, Croatian, Polish)
  • Calixta (Spanish/Portuguese)

English nickname options include Calla and Callie.


pysna_princeznaGender: Feminine
Origin: Czech/Slovak, Bulgarian, Serbo-Croatian, Slovenian, Macedonian
Meaning: “lover of beauty.”

The name is composed of the Old Slavonic elements kras meaning “beauty” and mil meaning “love; favour; grace.” In Czech and Slovak, the name is associated with Pysna Princezna a beloved Czechoslovak fairy tale written by Bozena Nemcova, the story was adapted into a classic Czech film in the 1950s. The protagonist princess is named Krasomila. The designated name-day is October 10.