Pippin, Pépin

The name is Germanic and of disputed meaning. It is most likely derived from a Germanic element bib- meaning “to tremble,” which formed an etymological basis for the Late Latin nickname, pippinus (little child). This same root is related to the modern French word, pépin, which means “seed” or “pulp” in French, but also a “glitch” in modern French slang.

This was a name that appeared among the Carolingian rulers of the Franks. It was most notably borne by King Pepin the Short (8th-century CE), father of Charlemagne, as well as Pepin of Landen, an ancestor, who was revered as a saint in Belgium (6th-century CE).

Pépin appeared in the French Top 500 between 1902-1945, peaking at #358 in 1942.

Its Dutch form of Pepijn (PEP-pine) currently appears in Netherlands’ Top 100, coming in as the 64th most popular male name in the Netherlands (2019).

Forms and usages in other languages are as follows:

  • Pepyn (Afrikaans, Frisian)
  • Pippin (Alemmanish, English, Estonian, German, Letzburgerish, Swedish)
  • Pepín (Aragonese)
  • Pipí (Catalan)
  • Pepin (Czech, English, Hungarian, Polish, Romanian, Slovak, Walloon)
  • Pipin (Danish, English, Finnish, German, Norwegian)
  • Pepijn, Pippijn (Dutch)
  • Pépin (French, Gaelic)
  • Pipino (Italian, Spanish)
  • Pêpenê (Kurdish)
  • Pippinus (Late Latin)
  • Pepinas, Pipinas (Lithuanian)
  • Pepino (Portuguese)


Richilde, Richelle

Richilde, Countess of Hainault

The Germanic name, Richilde, is most often heard under the guise of the Mid-century sounding Richelle in the Anglophone world.

Richilde was borne by the 2nd wife of Charles the Bald (9th-century CE) who was inturn deemed consort and Empress of the Franks, and it was also borne by the 11th-century Richilde of Hainault, consort of Flanders.

The 13th-century Richeza of Poland is recorded as Richilde in some history texts, but it seems Richeza has a separate etymology.

Richilde is composed of the Old Germanic elements, ric (rich) & hiltja (battle). It was particularly common in Norman England; the earliest incarnation of it’s more modern sounding Richelle is recorded in 13th-century England as Richell.

In modern French, richelle is also the word for neapolitan wheat and is also a French surname which may likely be a matrynomic based on the aforementioned Richilde.

Richelle appeared in the U.S. Top 1000 between 1963 and 1991, most likely influenced by the popularity of the name Michelle, and peaked at #603 in 1972.

L’Insee, the French statistical office, has recorded 8 Richelles born in France since 1991, but these statistics only go so far as back as 1900. In any event, the Richelle form is recorded in several medieval French records.

The name is borne by American fantasy author, Richelle Mead (b.1976).

Other forms include:

  • Rikilda (Anglo-Norman)
  • Richell (Anglo-Norman, Medieval French)
  • Ricolda (Anglo-Norman)
  • Richolda (Anglo-Norman)
  • Riquilda (Catalan, Portuguese, Spanish)
  • Richelle (Dutch, English, French)
  • Richilde (Dutch, English, French, German, Italian)
  • Richeut (French: archaic)
  • Richelda (Italian)
  • Richildes, Richildis (Late Latin)
  • Rikilla (Late Latin)



Gender: Feminine
Origin: French
Meaning: “famous in battle.”

The name is derived from the Frankish name Chlotichilda, which is composed of the elements, hlud meaning “famous” and hild meaning “battle.”

The name was borne by a Frankish queen and saint who is known for converting her husband and the Franks to Christianity.

As of 2010, Clotilde was the 430th most popular female name in France.

Other forms of the name include:

  • Klotildis (Dutch/Frisian)
  • Clotilde (English/French/Italian/Portuguese/Spanish)
  • Clothilde (French)
  • Chlothilde/Klothilde (German)
  • Chrodechild (German: archaic)
  • Klotild (Hungarian)
  • Chrodigildis/Clotildis (Late Latin)
  • Klotylda (Polish)
  • Clotilda (Swedish)

In France, the designated name-day is June 4.


  1. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Clotilde
  2. http://www.behindthename.com/php/related.php?name=clotilde


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: Masculine
Origin: German
Meaning: “peaceful ruler.”
Eng (FRED-eh-rick; FRED-rick)

The name is composed of the Germanic elements, frid (peace) and rich (ruler). The name has been popular in the Germanic world since the 10th century. It was borne by three dukes of Austria, including Frederick the Fair (1289-1330), the first king of Austria. It was extremely popular among minor German royalty and was eventually borne by Frederick II, King of Prussia, also known as Frederick the Great (1712-1786)

Among Danish Royalty, it has been tradition to alternate naming the eldest son either Christian or Frederick each generation. Frederick, so far, has been borne by nine Danish kings and is currently borne by the Danish Crown Prince (b.1968).

In the Middle Ages, it was borne by three Holy Roman Emperors, including the illustrious Crusader, Frederick I Barberossa (the Red Beard).

The name was introduced into England by the Normans, but became popular in the 18th-century when the German Hanovers inherited the British Throne, which has issued at least one Frederick thus far: Frederick, Prince of Wales (1707–1751), eldest son of King George II of England.

As of 2010, its Danish form of Frederik was the 7th most popular male name in Denmark. His rankings in other countries are as follows:

  • # 11 (Federico, Italy, 2010)
  • # 16 (Federico, Argentina, 2009)
  • # 35 (Fredrik, Norway, 2010)
  • # 95 (England/Wales, 2010)
  • # 393 (Frederik, Netherlands, 2010)
  • # 496 (United States, 2010)

Other forms of the name include:

  • Ferry (Alsatian)
  • Frederig (Breton)
  • Frederic (Catalan)
  • Bedřich (Czech)
  • Frederick (English)
  • Fríðrikur (Faroese)
  • Fredrik (Finnish/Scandinavian)
  • Frédéric (French)
  • Freark (Frisian)
  • Fridric (Frisian)
  • Frerich (German)
  • Friedrich (German)
  • Frigyes (Hungarian)
  • Friðrik (Icelandic)
  • Feardorcha (Irish)
  • Federico (Italian/Spanish)
  • Federigo (Italian)
  • Fredo (Italian)
  • Fricis (Latvian)
  • Frīdrihs (Latvian)
  • Frydrichas (Lithuanian)
  • Friduric (Old High German)
  • Friðrikr (Old Norse)
  • Freerk (Plattdeustch)
  • Fryderyk (Polish)
  • Frédéri (Poitvin)
  • Frederico (Portuguese)
  • Frederi (Provançal)
  • Fadri (Romansch)
  • Frideric (Romansch)
  • Riet (Romansch)
  • Riget (Romansch)
  • Friderik (Slovene)
Common diminutives include:
  • Bedřišek (Czech)
  • Béďa (Czech)
  • Béďánek (Czech)
  • Bédísek (Czech)
  • Fedder (Danish)
  • Fred (English/Scandinavian)
  • Freddy (English/Scandinavian)
  • Frits (Faroese)
  • Fiete (Frisian)
  • Fiddy (German)
  • Freidi (German)
  • Freidl (German)
  • Fre(r)k (German)
  • Fritz (German)
Its feminine form of Federica is currently the 21st most popular female name in Italy, (2009), while Frederikke is currently the 38th most popular female name in Denmark, (2010) and Frédérique is the 150th most popular female name in the Netherlands, (2010).
Other feminine forms include:
  • Bedřiška (Czech)
  • Frederikke (Danish/Norwegian)
  • Frédérique (Dutch/French)
  • Frederica (English/Portuguese)
  • Friðrika (Faroese/Icelandic)
  • Fredrika (Finnish/Swedish)
  • Friederike (German)
  • Federica (Italian)
  • Fryderyka (Polish)
  • Fadrica (Romansch)
  • Fadrina (Romansch)


Gender: Feminine
Origin: German/Persian
Eng (AY-vah); Germ/Per (AH-vah)

This vintagy, two syllable name has risen way up to the US top 10, coming in at # 5 most popular female name in the United States, (2010).

The name was relatively rare before 2000, and came out of nowhere, thanks, no doubt, to such Hollywood trendsetters as Heather Locklear and Reese Witherspoon, both of whom used the name for their daughters in the late 1990s. Both actresses named their daughters in honour of actress, Ava Gardner (1922-1990), whose full name was Ava Lavinia Gardner.

The name has several different origins and meanings, the beloved English counterpart is probably derived from a medieval Frankish name, which was borne in the 9th-century by a saint and the daughter of King Pepin II. In this case, it might be derived from the Germanic element avi meaning “desired.” Other sources have related it to the Frisian awa (water) or from the old Saxon, aval (power).

Another notable bearer is Ava of Melk (1060-1127), a Medieval poetess credited as being the first German language writer. Its recent popularity in German-speaking countries may in part be in tribute to her millennial anniversary and in part to Hollywood.

The name is also a popular Persian female name and is commonly used in Iran and throughout Central Asia. It can either be related to the Persian meaning, “sound, voice” or it may be connected with the Avestan word meaning “first.”

In Ireland and Scotland, it is sometimes used as an anglicized form of Aoife.

Its rankings in other countries are as follows:

  • # 3 (Scotland, 2010)
  • # 6 (Canada, B.C., 2010)
  • # 6 (Ireland, 2010)
  • # 11 (England/Wales, 2010)
  • # 14 (Australia, 2010)
  • # 20 (Northern Ireland, 2010)
  • # 188 (Germany, 2011)
  • # 246 (France, 2009)
  • # 444 (the Netherlands, 2010)


Gender: Masculine
Origin: Frankish
Meaning: “praised fighter.”

The name is derived from the old Frankish name Chlodevich which is composed of the elements, chlod (praise) and vech (fighter).

It is believed that Clovis is the proto-name of Louis.

The name was borne by Clovis I (466-511), the first king to unite all the Frankish tribes under one ruler. Three other Frankish kings bore the name after him.

Currently, Clovis is the 157th most popular male name in Quebec, Canada (2010) and the 223rd most popular in France, (2009).

Other forms of the name include:

  • Clodeveu (Aragonese/Catalan)
  • Klovis (Basque/Frisian)
  • C’hlodwig (Breton)
  • Hlodwig (Breton)
  • Klodvig (Croatian/Hungarian)
  • Chlodvík (Czech)
  • Clovis (Dutch/English/French)
  • Klodvig (Finnish/Norwegian)
  • Chlodwig (German/Polish)
  • Clodoveo (Italian/Spanish)
  • Chlodovechus (Latin)
  • Chlodvigas (Lithuanian)
  • Clodovèu (Occitanian)
  • Clóvis (Portuguese)
  • Klodevig (Scandinavian)
  • Cluduveu (Sicilian)


Gender: Masculine
Origin: German
Meaning: “land ruler.”
Eng (LAN-dree); Fre (LAWn-DREE)

Considered the second oldest surname in France, it is a name steeped in history and religion. It is currently one of the most popular male names among Cajun-Americans.

The earliest record of the name Landry is in the 5th-century, where it is recorded as the name of the Bishop of  Sées, later canonized as a saint. In the 5th-century it was borne by another male saint, St. Landry the Bishop of Paris, he is particularly noted for founding the first hospital in Paris, the Hôtel-Dieu. Another Medieval saint who bears the name is St. Landry of Metz.

The name was such a common given name in Medieval France that it later carried over as a patronymic.

St. Landry Parish in Louisiana was named by French settlers in honour of St. Landry of Paris. The name has since fallen out of fashion in France but has remained a classic among the Acadians of Louisiana. In fact, it is currently the 891st most popular male name in the United States, 2010.

The name is derived from the Frankish name, Landericus, which is composed of the Germanic elements, land (land) and ric (power; rule; might).

The name is currently borne by American football player, Landry Jones (b.1989).

It is the name of a town in France, which was also named in honour of St. Landry of Paris.

Other forms of the name include:

Landerik (Czech)
Landerico (Italian/Spanish)
Landeryk (Polish)


  1. http://www.behindthename.com/top/lists/us/2010

Hugh, Hugo

Gender: Masculine
Origin: German
Meaning: “heart; mind; spirit
(HYOO); (HYOO-go)

The name is derived from the Germanic element, hug, meaning “heart; mind; spirit” or even “memory.” The original meaning of the name seems to refer to abstract consciousness.

It appears in Norse mythology in the form of Hugin(n), (thought), the name of one of Odin’s messenger ravens who would fly around Midgård and bring Odin messages. The other raven’s name was Muninn (memory).

It was a very popular name among the Franks and was introduced into England after the Norman invasion. It was borne by an early British saint, Hugh of Lincoln. The name’s popularity spread across the British Isles, often being Gaelicized in Ireland as Aodh and in Scotland as Ùisdean.

It was borne by a 10th-century French monarch, Hugh Capet, founder of the Capetian dynasty.

Hugh is currently the 963rd most popular male name in the United States, while it’s Latin cognate of Hugo ranks significantly higher at # 441. Hugo is currently a very trendy name across Europe. Its rankings in other countries are as follows:

#4 (Spain, 2010)
#6 (Sweden, 2010)
#8 (France, 2008)
# 12 (Catalonia, Spain, 2009)
#13 (Belgium, 2008)
#50 (the Netherlands, 2o1o)
#86 (Australia, NSW, 2010)

Other forms of the name include:

Hugo (Catalan/Czech/Dutch/English/Estonian/Finnish/French/German/Hungarian/Icelandic/Latvian/Polish/Portuguese/Romanian/Scandinavian/Slovak/Slovene/Spanish)
Hugh (English)
Hugues (French)
Hauke (Frisian)
Huguo (German)
Ughetto (Italian)
Ughino (Italian)
Ugo (Italian)
Ugolino (Italian)
Ugone (Italian)
Uguccione (Italian)
Hugas (Lithuanian)
Hudde/Hud (Middle English)
Huginn (Old Norse/Icelandic)
Hugon (Polish)
Ugu (Sardinian)
Shug (Scottish)
Hugolín (Slovak)
Huw (Welsh)

Common English diminutives are: Hewie and Hughie.

Feminine forms include, Huguette (French), Uga (Italian), Ughetta (Italian), Ugolina (Italian).

The designated name-days are: Febuary 3 (Estonia), April 1 (Estonia/Hungary/Poland/Slovakia), April 29 (Germany/Poland), November 3 (Sweden), November 17 (Latvia/Poland).

The rest of its bearers are too numerous to list.


  1. http://www.behindthename.com/name/hugo
  2. Ernst Förstemann, Altdeutsches namenbuch (1900), page 923


Gender: Masculine
Origin: German/Frankish
Meaning: “people of the spear; spear people.”
Fre (leh-ZHAY)

The name is derived from the Old German name, Leudgari, which is composed of the Germanic elements, leud (people) and gar (spear).

The name was borne by an early saint, St. Léger of Autun, a 5th-century bishop and martyr. He was tortured by the Duke of Champagne, by having his eyes gouged out and cauterized and was not murdered until years later.

Other forms of the name include:

Leodogari (Catalan)
Leodegarius (Dutch/Late Latin)
Leodegar (English/Polish)
Leodogar (German)
Leodogario (Italian)

The designated name-day is October 2 (France and Poland).


  1. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leodegar
  2. http://www.behindthename.com/namedays/lists/10.php