Viola, Violet

Gender: Feminine
Origin: Latin
Botanical Name
Eng: VIE-lət, VIE-ə-lət. vaɪˈoʊlə, VIE-oh-LUH

One of the very few floral name to have been in usage since the Middle Ages, Violet is the English form of the French Violette, which was introduced to the English speaking world via the Normans. In England, Violet wasn’t very common till the 19th-century, it has been in prevalent usage in Scotland since the 15oos.Viola is a latinate form that was common in the Middle Ages and appears in Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night.

Violette was derived from the Old French Violaine which was from the Latin Viola which in itself is derived from the Greek ion and viera meaning “weaving; flexible; sinous.” Violet is also synonymous with the colour purple in most languages and is a shade of purple in English.

Both names have been in and out of vogue in the United States since the 1880s, its peak year was 1910 where it came in at # 79. The name fell out of the top 1000 by the 1960s. In recent years, the name has become more and more fashionable, as of last year, she stands as the 184th most popular female name, meanwhile in Canada, she comes in even higher at # 71.

Ben Affleck and Jennifer Garner named their eldest daughter Violet.

Usually the designated name-day is October 30. The violet is an autumnal flower, depending on the species.

Other forms of the name include:

  • Vjollca (Albanian)
  • Violeta (Bulgarian, German, Lithuanian, Romanian, Portuguese, Spanish)
  • Viola (Czech, English, German, Hungarian, Italian, Latin, Spanish, Swedish)
  • Jolana (Czech/Slovak)
  • Viol (Danish)
  • Jolanda (Slovene/Dutch)
  • Fjóla (Faroese/Icelandic)
  • Viula (Finnish)
  • Violette (French)
  • Iolana (Hawaiian)
  • Jola/Jolán/Jolánta (Hungarian)
  • Viole (Italian)
  • Violetta (Italian)
  • Violanta (Latin/Italian)
  • Violė/Vijolė (Lithuanian)
  • Iolanda/Violante (Medieval Spanish/Portuguese forms)
  • Violaine/Yolande (Old French)
  • Jolanta (Polish: Jola is the diminutive)
  • Wiola/Wioleta/Wioletta (Polish)
  • Vióla/Violétta (Russian/Ukrainian/Icelandic)
  • Vijoleta (Slovenian)
  • Yolanda (Spanish)

There are two Italian male forms: Violo and Violetto