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.


  2. Ernst Förstemann, Altdeutsches namenbuch (1900), page 923


Gender: Masculine
Origin: German
Meaning: “brave power.”
Eng (RICH-erd)

The name was first introduced into the English speaking world by the Norman Conquerors, and the name has been a long standing classic since.

It was most notably borne by Richard I the Lionhearted of England, who has remained a sort of national folk hero in Britain.

Richard has been declining somewhat in the U.S. popularity charts, coming in as the 107th most popular male name (2008), in 2007, he was the 100th most popular male name.

The name is composed of the Germanic elements ric meaning “power; rule” and hard meaning “brave; hardy.”

His rankings in other countries are as follows:

  • # 53 Ricardo (Chile, 2006)
  • # 39 Richárd (Hungary, 2008)
  • # 328 Ricardo (the Netherlands, 2009)
  • # 480 (the Netherlands, 2009)

Other forms of the name include:

  • Rikard Рычард (Basque/Belarusian/Bosnian/Bulgarian)
  • Richarzh (Breton)
  • Ricard Ричард (Catalan/Occitanian/Serbian)
  • Ričard (Croatian)
  • Rikard (Croatian/Danish/Finnish/Norwegian/Swedish)
  • Richard Ричард (Czech/Dutch/English/French/German/Romanian/Russian/Slovak/Ukrainian)
  • Rijkert (Dutch: RYE-kairt)
  • Riho (Estonian)
  • Rikhard (Finnish)
  • Rickert (Frisian)
  • Ricohard (German: very rare and archaic)
  • Richárdos Ριχάρδος (Greek: Modern)
  • Richárd/Rikárd (Hungarian)
  • Ríkarður (Icelandic)
  • Risteárd (Irish-Gaelic: RISH-taird)
  • Riccadetto (Italian)
  • Riccardino (Italian)
  • Riccardo (Italian: common form)
  • Ricciardo (Italian)
  • Ricco (Italian)
  • Rizzardo (Italian)
  • Rîşarê (Kurdish)
  • Richardus (Late Latin)
  • Ričards (Latvian)
  • Rihards (Latvian)
  • Ričardas (Lithuanian)
  • Ryszard (Polish: RIH-shard)
  • Ricardo (Portuguese/Romanian/Spanish)
  • Rico (Romansch)
  • Rikkar (Saami)
  • Ruiseart (Scottish-Gaelic)
  • Riccardu (Sicilian)
  • Rihard (Slovene)
  • Rhisiart (Welsh)

Diminutives include the Medieval English Hudde (HUD) the inspiration of such surnames as Hudson. Others include Dick, Dicky, Rich, Richie, Rick and Ricky.
Czech diminutive: Ríša
Finnish diminutive: Riku
Polish: RysiekRysioRysiu and Rychu
Slovak diminutives: Rišo, Riško
Spanish: Caíto, Cayo (Guatemala), Ricardito, Rico, Ricky, Riqui

Feminine forms are include:

  • Richardine (French)
  • Ricarda (German/Spanish)
  • Riccarda (Italian)
  • Riccardina (Italian)
  • Ricca (Italian)
  • Ricciarda (Italian)
  • Rizzarda (Italian)

The designated name-days are: April 3 (Czech Republic, France, Hungary and Slovakia), February 7 (Estonia).