Meaning: “maiden; girl.”
The name was popularized through Shakespeare’s play, Cymbeline (1609), in which it is the name of the wife of Posthumus.
According to most sources, in particular the 1986 Oxford Edition, Imogen was either an intentional or accidental misprint of the Celtic, Innogen, which was derived from the Celtic word, inghean, meaning, “girl; maiden.”
As of 2010, Imogen was the 26th most popular female name in England/Wales. Her rankings in other countries are as follows:
- # 50 (Australia, NSW, 2010)
- # 77 (Scotland, 2010)
Other forms of the name include:
- Imogene (English/Italian: Eng IM-ə-jeen; It ee-moh-JEY-ney)
- Imogène (French: e-moh-ZHEHN)
- Imogena (Polish/Spanish)
Common nickname options are Immy and Genny (pronounced like Jenny).
Notable bearers include American actress and comedienne, Imogene Coca (1908-2001), Australian model and actress, Imogen Bailey (b. 1977), American photographer, Imogen Cunningham (1883-1976) and British singer-songwriter Imogen Heap (b.1977).
- Who’s Who in Shakespeare By Peter Quennell, Hamish Johnson, p. 107