Eva, Eve

Gender: Feminine
Origin: Hebrew
Meaning: “life.”
Eng (EEV); (EE-vuh); Germ/Sp/Pol (EV-ah)

The name is borne in the Bible and in the Quran by the first woman created by God. She and her husband were expelled from the Garden of Eden after eating from the Tree of Knowledge.

The name is believed to be derived from the Hebrew roots חַוָּה, Ḥavvāh, from the Hebrew root ḥāyâ meaning “life” and the Semitic element, ḥyw “to live.” Both the Hebrew word chavah meaning “to live” and chayah meaning “to breath” share the same root.

Despite Eve’s fall from Grace in the Bible, the name was always in usage among Jewish, Christian and Muslim communities. In England, its usage can be traced back to the 12th-century. Its Latinate form of Eva, has always been a classic in continental Europe, especially in Germany, Poland, Slovakia and the Czech Republic.

As of 2010, Eva was the most popular female name in the Faroe Islanda and in Slovenia. Eve, Eva and all her various forms’ rankings in other countries are as follows:

  • # 3 (Iceland, 2010)
  • # 4 (French-speaking, Switzerland, 2010)
  • # 5 (Netherlands, 2010)
  • # 7 (Ieva, Lithuania, 2010)
  • # 10 (Armenia, 2010)
  • # 10 (Evie, England/Wales, 2010)
  • # 14 (Northern Ireland, 2010)
  • # 15 (France, 2009)
  • # 17 (Scotland, 2010)
  • # 20 (Belgium, 2009)
  • # 24 (New Zealand, 2010)
  • # 26 (Australia, NSW, 2010)
  • # 29 (Croatia, 2010)
  • # 31 (Evie, Scotland, 2010)
  • # 33 (Evie, Australia, NSW, 2010)
  • # 37 (England/Wales, 2010)
  • # 44 (Eevi, Finland among Finnish-speakers, 2010)
  • # 44 (Ireland, 2010)
  • # 46 (Austria, 2010)
  • # 47 (Canada, BC, 2010)
  • # 48 (Spain, 2010)
  • # 55 (Catalonia, 2010)
  • # 55 (Éabha, Ireland, 2010)
  • # 56 (Eve, Northern Ireland, 2010)
  • # 59 (Eve, Ireland, 2010)
  • # 86 (Norway, 2010)
  • # 91 (United States, 2010)
  • # 92 (Eve, England/Wales, 2010)
  • # 99 (Eve, Australia, NSW, 2010)
  • # 201 (Eve, France, 2009)
  • # 589 (Eve, United States, 2010)
  • # 705 (Evie, United States, 2010)

Other forms of the name include:

  • Eva Ева ევა
    (Afrikaans/Albanian/Armenian/Basque/Belarusian/Bosnian/Catalan/Croatian/Czech/Dutch/Faroese/French/Frisian/Galician/Georgian/German/Icelandic/Italian/Portuguese/Romansch/Spanish/Scandinavian)
  • Evis (Albanian)
  • Mahalet/Mahlet (Amharic)
  • Hawa حواء Хауа (Arabic)
  • Yeva (Armenian)
  • Həvva (Azeri)
  • Yeva Ева Эва (Belarusian/Russian/Ukrainian)
  • Yevga Евга (Belarusian)
  • Hava (Bosnian)
  • Evy (Danish/Norwegian/Swedish: initially a diminutive form, occasionally used as an independent given name)
  • Eveke (Dutch: initially a diminutive form, used as an independent given name, EV-eh-ke)
  • Eve (English/Estonian/Walon)
  • Evie (English)
  • Hawat/Hewa (Egyptian/Coptic)
  • Eeva (Estonian/Finnish)
  • Eevi (Estonian/Finnish)
  • Evi (Estonian)
  • Ivi/Iivi (Estonian)
  • Iivika (Estonian)
  • Ève (French)
  • Eefje, Eefke (Frisian)
  • Hawwa ሕይዋን (Ge-ez)
  • Eua Ευα (Greek)
  • Chava חַוָה (Hebrew: Modern: KHAH-vah, gutteral CH sound)
  • Éva (Hungarian: AY-vaw, diminutive form is Évike)
  • Hawa (Indonesian/Malayalam)
  • Éabha (Irish-Gaelic)
  • Ieva (Latvian/Lithuanian: YEH-vah)
  • Evuzus (Malaysian)
  • Aaue (Manx)
  • Èva (Occitanian)
  • Ewa (Polish: EH-vah, diminutive forms are Ewka, Ewunia and Ewusia)
  • Evá (Sami)
  • Evelia (Spanish)
  • Evita (Spanish)
  • Eba (Tagalog)
  • Havva (Turkish)
  • Efa (Welsh)

Italian masculine form is Evo.

Traditionally, in most European countries, the name-day for Adam and Eve is December 24.

Cecilia, Cecily

Gender: Feminine
Origin: Latin
Meaning “blind”
Eng (seh-SEE-lee-yuh); Lat (kay-KEE-lyah); Italian (chay-CHEEL-yah).

This four syllable, melodic name has been in usage throughout the Western World since the early Middle Ages. Thanks to the cult of Saint Cecilia, an early Christian martyr, considered to be the patron saint of music and musicians.

Geoffrey Chaucer made the saint a subject of his writings and refers to the name as meaning “lily of heaven”; “the way for the blind”; “contemplation of heaven and an active life”; “as if lacking in blindness”; “a heaven for people to gaze upon.”

However, these were only epithets used by the early English writer describing the wondrous attributes and virtues of the saint, and should not be confused for its real meaning.

The name is a feminine form of the Latin Caecilius which comes from the word caecus meaning blind.

The name was introduced into England after the Norman conquest in the form of Cecily (SES-ih-LEE). The name was very popular in England until the Protestant Reformation where it fell out of usage.

Its Latin counterpart of Cecilia was not introduced into the English speaking world until the 18th-century, afterwards, its early English form of Cecily became quite popular during Victorian England.

As of 2010, its Danish form of Cecilie was the 30th most popular female name in Denmark. Her rankings in other countries are as follows:

  • # 39 (Silje, Denmark, 2010)
  • # 65 (Silje, Norway, 2010)
  • # 277 (Cecilia, United States, 2010)
  • # 385 (Cécile, France, 2009)
  • # 486 (Cecilia, France, 2009)
  • # 741 (Cecelia, United States, 2010)

There is the masculine English form of Cecil. Other forms of the name include:

  • Aziliz (Breton)
  • Cicilia (Corsican)
  • Cecilija (Croatian)
  • Cila (Croatian)
  • Cecílie (Czech: tset-TSEEL-yeh)
  • Cecilie (Danish/Norwegian)
  • Cille (Danish)
  • Sille (Danish)
  • Cecile/Ceciel (Dutch)
  • Cecilia (Dutch/Finnish/German/Italian/Romanian/Spanish/Swedish)
  • Cilla (Dutch/Swedish)
  • Cecelia (English)
  • Säsil (Estonian)
  • Sesilia (Faroese)
  • Selja/Silja (Finnish)
  • Cécile (French)
  • Silke (Frisian/German: ZIL-kə)
  • Síle (Gaelic)
  • Kek’ik’ilia კიკილია (Georgia)
  • Cäcilia/Caecilia (German: tsay-TSEEL-yah or tsay-TSEE-lee-yah)
  • Cäcilie (German: tsay-TSEEL-yə or tsay-TSEE-lee-yə)
  • Zilla (German: originally a diminutive form sometimes used as an independent given name, another diminutive is Zilly)
  • Kekilia (Greek Modern)
  • Sissiilia/Sissii (Greenlandic)
  • Kikilia (Hawaiian)
  • Cecília (Hungarian/Portuguese/Slovak)
  • Cili (Hungarian/Slovene)
  • Szöszill (Hungarian)
  • Seselía, Sesilía, Sesselía, Sessilía (Icelandic)
  • Sisilia (Indonesian)
  • Sheila (Irish)
  • Caecilia (Latin)
  • Cecilė/Cilė(Lithuanian)
  • Cissolt (Manx: SIS-solt)
  • Sidsel (Norwegian/Danish)
  • Silje (Norwegian/Danish)
  • Sissel (Norwegian/Danish)
  • Cilgia (Romansch)
  • Tsetsiliya (Russian)
  • Sìleas (Scottish)
  • Cecília (Slovakian)
  • Šejla (Slovakian)
  • Cecilija (Slovenian)
  • Cilika (Slovenian)
  • Cilka (Slovenian)
  • Sisel (Yiddish)
  • Zisel (Yiddish)

Male forms include

  • Cecil (English)
  • Cecilio (Italian/Spanish)
  • Caecilius (Latin)
  • Cecilijus (Lithuanian)
  • Cecilián (Slovakian)

Czech diminutive forms are: Cecilka, Celia, Cilia, Cilka and Cilinka.

English diminutive forms are: Cece, Celia and Sissy.

The designated name-day is November 22nd.

Anna, Anne

Gender: Feminine
Origin: Biblical Hebrew
Meaning: “grace.”
(ANN; AHN). (ANN-uh; AHN-nah). (HANN-uh; HAHN-nah)

Anne is possibly one of the quintessential classic English and French female names. Prior to the 18th-century, it seems that every other girl born in England was either named Anne, Jane or Mary. There were several British and French queens who bore this simplistic moniker, including the ill fated Anne Boleyn, the mother of Elizabeth I. The history of Anne is rather long and complicated.

It was foremost popularized through the cult of St. Anne, a legendary figure who was said to be the mother of the Virgin Mary and the grandmother of Christ.

In Brittany, the name became especially popular because it happened to coincide with the name of an ancient Celtic goddess, her cult being replaced by St. Anne’s. In fact, it was borne by one Breton Princess, Anne of Brittany.

The name was introduced into Britain by the French-Normans after the invasion in 1066. Previously, there had been a minor Saxon king named Anna, but in this case the name is related to the Saxon arn (eagle). Anna and Anne are still occasionally used as male given names in Friesland.

Other than the apocryphal saint, the name Anne can be traced directly back to the Bible. In the New Testament, it is the name of a prophetess who predicts the Crucifixion of Christ.

Anna (Αννα), is the Greek translation of the early Hebrew Channah חַנָּה, usually transliterated as Hannah, meaning “grace.”

Hannah is borne in the Old Testament by the faithful mother of the prophet, Samuel.

Hannah has always been popular among Jewish families, but was virtually unheard of among non-Jews before the Reformation, except in some cases where it may have been used as a diminutive form of Johanna, spelled Hanna.

It was the Byzantines who had introduced the Anna form to the world, making it popular throughout Eastern and Southern Europe. It was a very popular name among the Byzantine royal family and it was borne by the majestic Anna of Byzantium.

Anna may be the more melodic form of the bunch, but Anne’s minimalistic qualities are charming. Short, to the point, no frills. It’s not a bad name, though it does lack some spice, which is why parents are probably more attracted to its more exotic alternatives. In fact, Anne only comes in at # 608 in the top 1000 female names of the United States. It is safe to say, however, that she is very much loved in the middle name spot.

Anna is currently one of the most popular female names in Europe and abroad. Her rankings are as follows:

  • # 1 (Austria, 2010)
  • # 1 (Estonia, 2011)
  • # 2 (Hungary, 2010)
  • # 3 (Ana, Georgia, 2010)
  • # 3 (Iceland, 2010)
  • # 4 (Ana, Croatia, 2010)
  • # 4 (Czech Republic, 2010)
  • # 4 (Germany, 2011)
  • # 4 (Ukraine, 2010)
  • # 5 (Faroe Islands, 2010)
  • # 5 (Ana, Portugal, 2010)
  • # 6 (Armenia, 2010)
  • # 6 (Ane, Greenland, 2002-2003)
  • # 6 (Ana, Romania, 2009)
  • # 6 (Ana, Serbia, 2010)
  • # 7 (Latvia, 2011)
  • # 7 (Russia, 2011)
  • # 8 (German-speaking Switzerland, 2010)
  • # 9 (Denmark, 2011)
  • # 10 (Netherlands, 2010)
  • # 10 (Northern Ireland, 2010)
  • # 10 (Norway, 2010)
  • # 11 (Italy, 2010)
  • # 12 (Ireland, 2010)
  • # 14 (Poland, 2010)
  • # 16 (Catalonia, 2010)
  • # 26 (Canada, B.C., 2010)
  • # 28 (Italian-speaking Switzerland, 2010)
  • # 28 (United States, 2010)
  • # 29 (Scotland, 2010)
  • # 40 (France, 2009)
  • # 46 (French-speaking Switzerland, 2010)
  • # 53 (Belgium, 2009)
  • # 63 (England/Wales, 2010)
  • # 71 (Australia, 2010)
  • # 81 (Sweden, 2010)
  • # 83 (Spain, 2010)
Other forms of the name include:
  • Anneen (Afrikaans/Low German)
  • Anna Анна (Afrikaans/Albanian/Armenian/Breton/Bulgarian/Catalan/Corsican/Czech/Dutch/English/Estonian/Faroese/Finnish/French/Frisian/German/Greek/Hungarian/Icelandic/Italian/Latvian/Limburgish/Maltese/Polish/Russian/Ukrainian/Scandinavian/Slovak)
  • Anne (Basque/Dutch/English/French/Scandinavian)
  • Gánna Га́нна (Belarusian)
  • Annaig (Breton)
  • Annick (Breton)
  • Maina (Breton)
  • Mannaig (Breton)
  • Mannick (Breton)
  • Naig (Breton)
  • Ana Ана ანა (Bulgarian/Croatian/Galician/Georgian/Lombard/Macedonian/Portuguese/Romanian/Samogaitian/Serbian/Slovene/Spanish/Venetian)
  • Jana (Croatian/Ladino)
  • Aneta (Czech/Polish/Samogaitian/Slovak)
  • Aina (Catalan)
  • Anica (Croatian/Serbian/Slovene)
  • Ane (Danish)
  • Anika (Danish)
  • Anneke (Dutch)
  • Anneken (Dutch)
  • Annika (Dutch/Finnish/German/Latvian/Scandinavian)
  • Anka (Dutch/Frisian/German)
  • An(n)ke (Dutch/Frisian)
  • Anouk (Dutch/French)
  • Ans (Dutch)
  • Enneke (Dutch)
  • Enneken (Dutch)
  • Anita (English/German/Polish/Spanish)
  • Annette (English/French/German)
  • Anissa (English)
  • Annelle/Annella (Estonian)
  • Anete (Estonian/Latvian)
  • Anett (Estonian)
  • Anu (Estonian)
  • Anni (Finnish)
  • Annikki (Finnish)
  • Anniina (Finnish)
  • Annukka (Finnish)
  • Niina (Finnish)
  • Anaïs (French/Provençal)
  • Annouche (French)
  • Ninette (French)
  • Ninon (French)
  • Ninouk (French)
  • Anje (Frisian)
  • Ankea (Frisian)
  • Antje (Frisian)
  • Antjen (Frisian)
  • Anute (Fruilian)
  • Anano (Georgian)
  • Annchen (German)
  • Annel (German)
  • Annele (German/Latvian)
  • Anneli(e) (German/Finnish/Swedish)
  • Annet (German)
  • Anina (German)
  • Anja (German/Slovene)
  • Anouschka (German/Italian/Russian)
  • Annaki (Greek)
  • Annoula (Greek)
  • Noula (Greek)
  • Anikó (Hungarian)
  • Annuska (Hungarian)
  • Panni (Hungarian)
  • Áine (Irish)
  • Ánna (Irish)
  • Annarella (Italian)
  • Annella (Italian)
  • Annetta (Italian)
  • Annettina (Italian)
  • Nona (Italian/Romansch)
  • Ance (Latvian)
  • Annija (Latvian)
  • Anninya (Latvian)
  • Ona (Lithuanian)
  • Annamma (Malayalam)
  • Annam (Malayalam)
  • Onnee (Manx)
  • Âone (Norman)
  • Aenna/Aenne (Old High German)
  • Annehe (Old High German)
  • Änna/Änne (Old High German)
  • Neta (Piedmontese)
  • Noto (Piedmontese)
  • Anke (Plattdeutsch)
  • Anneke(n) (Plattdeutsch)
  • Analia (Romansch/Spanish)
  • Annina (Romansch)
  • Annotta (Romansch)
  • Anca (Romanian)
  • Anicuta (Romanian)
  • Anėta (Samogaitian)
  • Anėkė (Samogaitian)
  • Annag (Scottish)
  • Ghianna (Sicilian)
  • Janna (Sicilian)
  • Nanna (Sicilian)
  • Anniken (Swedish)
  • Ann (Welsh)
  • Nan (Welsh)
  • Nanno (Welsh)
  • Nanw (Welsh)
  • Aana (Wolof)
As for the Hannah forms

Hanna without an H is the prefered form on Continental Europe, usually pronounced (HAHN-nah) and in French like Anna. Hanna and Hanne (HAHN-neh) are also used as diminutive forms of Johanna/Johanne in the Netherlands, Sweden, Norway, Denmark and Germany. There is the Hungarian Hajna pronounced (HOY-no). The Czech/Slovak form of Hana nickname Hanka. There are the Yiddish forms of Heyna, Hayna, Hejna (all pronounced like HAY-nah) including the diminutive forms of HenaHende, Hendel and Henye.  The Polish diminutive form of Hania, which might make an interesting alternative to Anya or Hannah. Hannah, Hanna and Henna are all used in the Middle East.

Of course, how could we ever forget the popular diminutive forms of Annie and Nan.

Paul

Gender: Masculine
Origin: Latin
Meaning: “short; small; humble; few.”
Eng (PAWL)

The name is derived from the Latin Roman family name, Paulus, which could translate as meaning, “small, short; humble; few.”

Paul and his various forms has to be one of the most common male names used throughout the Christian world. It has been used equally among Orthodox Christians, Roman Catholics and Protestants.

Its most famous bearer was Paul of Tarsus, whose real name was Saul. St. Paul, as referred to by the Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox Churches, is attributed as being the author of much of the New Testament.

The name was borne by several popes, royals and saints thereafter.

Currently, its Germanic form of Paul is the 8th most popular male name in Germany, (2011). His rankings in other countries are as follows:

  • # 13 (Austria, 2010)
  • # 22 (France, 2009)
  • # 41 (Romania, 2009)
  • # 90 (Ireland, 2010)
  • # 130 (Scotland, 2010)
  • # 178 (United States, 2010)
  • # 485 (Netherlands, 2010)
His foreign equivalents rankings are as follows:
  • # 3 (Pablo, Spain, 2010)
  • # 4 (Páll, Faroe Island, 2010)
  • # 4 (Pau, Catalonia, 2010)
  • # 17 (Paweł, Poland, 2010)
  • # 26 (Pablo, Chile, 2010)
  • # 29 (Pavel, Czech Republic, 2010)
  • # 31 (Pablo, Catalonia, 2010)
  • # 44 (Pau, Spain, 2010)
  • # 91 (Pál, Hungary, 2010)
  • # 144 (Pablo, France, 2009)
  • # 202 (Paolo, France, 2009)
  • # 361 (Pablo, United States, 2010)

Other forms of the name include:

  • Pali (Albanian)
  • Paulë (Albanian)
  • Boulos/Bulos بولس (Arabic)
  • Faulus (Aramaic)
  • Boghos Պողոս (Armenian)
  • Poghos Պողոս (Armenian)
  • Paul (Basque/Dutch/English/Estonian/German/French/Romanian/Scandinavian/Silesian)
  • Paweł Павeл (Belarusian/Polish)
  • Polus (Berber)
  • Paol (Breton)
  • Pavel Павел (Bulgarian/Czech/Russian/Slovene)
  • Pavolo (Calabrian)
  • Pavulu (Calabrian)
  • Pau (Catalan/Occitanian)
  • Pawl (Cornish/Welsh)
  • Paulu (Corsican/Sardinian/Sicilian)
  • Pavao (Croatian)
  • Pavle პავლე Павле (Croatian/Georgian/Macedonian/Serbian)
  • Pavo (Croatian)
  • Palle (Danish)
  • Poul (Danish)
  • Pauwel (Dutch)
  • Paavel (Estonian)
  • Paavo (Estonian/Finnish)
  • Páll (Faroese/Icelandic)
  • Paavali (Finnish)
  • Pauli (Finnish)
  • Pol (Flemmish/Romansch)
  • Paale (Frisian)
  • Pals (Frisian)
  • Paulus पौलुस (Frisian/Hindi/Latin)
  • Pay (Frisian)
  • Powles (Frisian)
  • Pouw (Frisian)
  • Pauli (Fruilian)
  • Pódhl (Gaelic)
  • Pól (Gaelic)
  • Paulo (Galician)
  • Pavlos Παυλος (Greek)
  • Pāl पॉल (Hindi)
  • Pál (Hungarian)
  • Pósa (Hungarian)
  • Paolo (Italian/Portuguese)
  • Paolino (Italian/Portuguese)
  • Paulinus (Latin)
  • Pāvils (Latvian)
  • Paulius (Lithuanian)
  • Povilas (Lithuanian)
  • Paol (Lombard)
  • Paulose (Malayalam)
  • Pawl (Maltese)
  • Pawlu (Maltese)
  • Payl (Manx)
  • Paora (Maori)
  • Pål (Norwegian/Swedish)
  • Pavel (Romanian)
  • Paulin (Romansch)
  • Polet (Romansch)
  • Polin (Romansch)
  • Pulegn (Romansch)
  • Pàl (Scots-Gaelic)
  • Pawůł (Silesian)
  • Pavol (Slovak)
  • Pawoł (Sorbian)
  • Pablo (Spanish)
  • Paoro (Tahitian)
  • Pàul (Tuscan)
  • Pavlo Павло (Ukrainian)

For a Reference a Female forms See Paula and Paulina (soon to come)

Peter

Gender: Masculine
Origin: Greek
Meaning: “rock.”
Eng (PEE-ter)

The name is derived from the Greek Πετρος (Petros) meaning, “rock.”

The name is found in the New Testament as a vernacular translation for the Aramaic Cephas (rock) a nickname designated to the Apostle Simon Bar-Jonah by Jesus. He is known as St. Peter, and Catholics traditionally attribute him as being the first Pope.  Among other denominations, he is considered to be one of Christ’s most prominent apostles.

Due to the associations with the apostle, Peter became an extremely prevalent male name throughout the Christian world.

The name seems to have been in usage in England since early times, but became especially popular after the Norman invasion. During this period, the form of Piers was preferred, being gradually replaced in popularity by Peter over the centuries.

Currently, Peter is 191st most popular male name in the United States, (2009). He has been steadily declining in the United States for the past 10 years, in 2000 he ranked in at # 125. His rankings in other countries, however, has not faltered. His rankings including his vernacular forms are as follows:

  • # 7 Pedro (Brazil, 2009)
  • # 9 Petar (Bulgaria, 2008)
  • # 15 Petr (Czech Republic, 2009)
  • #38 Pierre (France, 2006)
  • # 3 (Greenland, 2003-2004)
  • # 8 (Hungary, 2008)
  • # 33 Petur (Iceland, 2008)
  • # 70 (Ireland, 2008)
  • # 25 Pietro (Italy, 2007)
  • # 8 Pēteris (Latvia, 2005)
  • # 9 Petar (Macedonia, 2006)
  • # 10 Piotr (Poland, 2008)
  • # 3 (Slovakia, 2004)
  • # 59 (Slovenia, 2005)
  • # 50 Pedro (Spain, 2008)

Other forms of the name include:

  • Petrus (Afrikaans/Dutch/German/Indonesian/Latin/Limburgish/Plattdeutsch/Swedish)
  • Pieter (Afrikaans)
  • Pjetër/Pjetri (Albanian)
  • Ṗeṭros ጴጥሮስ (Amharic/Ethiopian)
  • Pero (Aragonese)
  • Bedros/Pedros Պետրոս (Armenian)
  • Botros/Boutros/Butros بطرس (Arabic/Coptic)
  • Pedru (Asturian/Konkoni)
  • Pyotr (Azeri)
  • Betiri (Basque)
  • Kepa (Basque)
  • Peio (Basque)
  • Peru (Basque)
  • Petri (Basque)
  • Piatro Пятро (Belarusian)
  • Piotr Пётр (Belarusian/Polish)
  • Pêr (Breton)
  • Pierrick (Breton)
  • Penko Пенко (Bulgarian)
  • Petar Петар (Bulgarian/Croatian/Macedonian/Serbian)
  • Pere (Catalan)
  • Peder (Cornish/Danish/Lombard/Norwegian)
  • Petru (Corsican/Romanian/Sicilian)
  • Pyè (Creole)
  • Pero (Croatian/Serbian)
  • Petar Петар (Croatian/Macedonian/Serbian/Slovene)
  • Petr (Czech)
  • Pelle (Danish/Norwegian/Swedish: originally a diminutive, now occasionally used as an independent given name. PEL-le)
  • Peer (Danish/Dutch/German)
  • Per (Danish/Faroese/Norwegian/Swedish)
  • Peter (Danish/Dutch/English/German/Luxembourgish/Norwegian/Slovak/Swedish)
  • Peeter (Estonian)
  • Peiru (Extramadura)
  • Pætur/Petur (Faroese)
  • Patras پطرس (Farsi)
  • Pekka (Finnish)
  • Petteri (Finnish)
  • Petri (Finnish)
  • Pietari (Finnish)
  • Pierre (French)
  • Piter/Pier/Pit (Frisian)
  • P’et’re პეტრე (Georgian)
  • Petros Πέτρος (Greek)
  • Pathros (Hindi)
  • Péter (Hungarian)
  • Petres (Hungarian)
  • Peto (Hungarian)
  • Pétur (Icelandic)
  • Peadar (Irish-Gaelic)
  • Pietro (Italian/Albanian)
  • Petronius (Latin)
  • Pēteris (Latvian)
  • Petras (Lithuanian)
  • Pir (Luxembourgish)
  • Petre Петре (Macedonian/Romanian)
  • Pathrose (Malayalam)
  • Pietru (Maltese)
  • Peddyr (Manx)
  • Petera (Maori)
  • Petter (Norwegian/Swedish)
  • Pèir/Pèire/Pèr (Occitanian)
  • Pedro (Portuguese/Spanish)
  • Pêro (Portuguese: archaic)
  • Pidru (Quecha)
  • Peadar/Peader/Peder/Peidar/Peider (Romansch)
  • Pyotr Пётр (Russian)
  • Pedru/Perdu/Pretu (Sardinian)
  • Peadar/Peadair (Scottish-Gaelic)
  • Pyjter/Piter (Silesian)
  • Pětr (Sorbian)
  • Petero (Swahili)
  • Pär (Swedish)
  • Pethuru (Tamil)
  • Raayappar (Tamil)
  • Petro Петро (Ukrainian)
  • Piter (Uzbek)
  • Piero (Venetian)
  • Piitre (Vöro: an Eastern Estonian dialect)
  • Pedr (Welsh)

In French, Pierre is used in a number of compound names. Some of the most common include:

Some common Italian compound names include: Piergiuseppe, Pietropaolo, Pierpaolo, Pietrantonio, Pierantonio, Pierluigi , Piergiorgio , Pietrangelo, Pierangelo, Pierce, Pierfrancesco, Piermaria and Piersilvio

Its feminine form of Petra was once a very popular name in German-speaking countries, but is now considered rather dated. Throughout Central Europe, however, she is experiencing a strong trend. Her current rankings are as follows:

  • # 46 (Czech Republic, 2009)
  • # 9 (Hungary, 2008)
  • # 46(Slovenia, 2005)

Feminine forms include:

  • Peta (Afrikaans/English)
  • Penka Пенка (Bulgarian)
  • Petra(Bulgarian/Croatian/Czech/Dutch/Finnish/German/Greek/Hungarian/Scandinavian/Serbian/Slovak/Slovene/Spanish)
  • Petrina (Croatian/German)
  • Pernille (Danish/Norwegian)
  • Petrea (Danish)
  • Petrine (Danish/German/Norwegian)
  • Petronella (Danish/Norwegian/Swedish)
  • Pietronella (Dutch)
  • Parnel/Pernel (English: archaic)
  • Peronel (English: archaic)
  • Petronel (English: archaic)
  • Petriina (Finnish)
  • Pernelle (French)
  • Pernette (French)
  • Péroline (French)
  • Péronelle (French)
  • Perrenotte (French)
  • Perrette (French)
  • Perrine (French)
  • Pétronelle (French)
  • Peyronne (French)
  • Pierrine/Pierrette (French)
  • Pétronille (French)
  • Peekje (Frisian)
  • Peterke (Frisian)
  • Petje (Frisian)
  • Petke (Frisian)
  • Pierke/Pierkje (Frisian)
  • Pieterke (Frisian)
  • Pietje/Piertje (Frisian)
  • Petrónia (Hungarian)
  • Petronia (Italian/Latin/Polish)
  • Petronilla (Italian/Latin)
  • Piera/Pierina (Italian)
  • Pieretta (Italian)
  • Pieruccia (Italian)
  • Pietra/Pietrina (Italian)
  • Pietruccia (Italian)
  • Petronela (Polish/Romanian)
  • Petrona (Spanish)
  • Pernilla (Swedish)

Italian female compound forms include: Pierangela and Pieranna.

Common German pet forms are: Pedi, Petzi and Pezi

The designated name-days are: April 29 (Hungary) and June 29 (Hungary, Germany, Slovakia, Sweden).

Sources

Patrick, Patricia

Origin: Latin
Meaning: “patrician.”

Patrick is derived from the Latin designation, patricius, meaning “patrician” or “nobleman.” Its usage as a given name started after the fame and cult of St. Patrick of Ireland.

St. Patrick was believed to have been a Romanized Briton who was captured by Irish raiders and enslaved. After six years of slavery, he was able to return to his homeland, but felt a call to return to Ireland to bring Christianity. He was able to establish a bishopric in Armagh. He is considered a national folk hero for the Irish and is also considered the patron saint and apostle of Ireland. Many legendary miracles were attributed to him during his life.

It is also believed that Patrick (or Patricius) was a nickname or title given to him by the Druid chieftans and that his real name was Succat.

St. Patrick’s Day which falls on March 17 is a national holiday in Ireland and also a popular festival in the United States and other English-speaking countries with large Irish immigrant populations.

Patrick is still a very common name in Ireland. As of 2008, he ranked in as the 19th most popular male name. His rankings in other countries are as follows:

  • # 54 (Australia, 2008)
  • # 25 (Hungary, 2008)
  • # 397 (the Netherlands, 2009)
  • # 34 (Slovenia, 2005)
  • # 127 (the United States, 2009)

Other forms of the name include:

  • Patirki (Basque)
  • Padrig (Breton/Welsh)
  • Patrik Патрик (Bulgarian/Croatian/Czech/Hungarian/Russian/Serbian/Slovak/Swedish/Ukrainian)
  • Pitrik Питрик (Bulgarian)
  • Patrici (Catalan)
  • Patrick (Danish/English/Estonian/Finnish/French/German/Norwegian)
  • Pátrikur (Faroese)
  • Patrice (French)
  • Patrikios Πατρίκιος (Greek: Modern)
  • Patrícius (Hungarian)
  • Patrekur (Icelandic)
  • Patrizio (Italian)
  • Pádraic/Pádraig (Irish-Gaelic: PAW-dric; PAW-drig)
  • Patricius (Latin)
  • Patriks (Latvian)
  • Patrikas (Lithuanian)
  • Patrizju (Maltese)
  • Paden (Manx)
  • Pherick (Manx)
  • Patariki (Maori)
  • Patryk (Polish: more common form)
  • Patrycjusz (Polish: rare)
  • Patrício (Portuguese)
  • Patrique (Portuguese)
  • Patriciu (Romanian)
  • Patritziu (Sardinian)
  • Pàdraig (Scots-Gaelic)
  • Patricio (Spanish)

Common male French diminutives include: Pat, Patoche, Patou and Patounet.

Common English diminutives are Pat, Paddy (Irish) and occasionally Rick.

Patricia is its Latin feminine equivalent and is used in Danish, English, French, German, Hungarian, Norwegian, Portuguese, Spanish and Swedish. At one time, Patricia was one of the most popular female names in the United States, peaking at # 3 between 1937 and 1952. Currently, she ranks in at a measly # 498 (2008). In other countries, her rankings are as follows:

  • # 67 (Hungary, 2008)
  • # 15 (Poland, 2008)
  • #50 Patricija (Slovenia, 2005)
  • # 52 (Spain, 2008)

Other feminine forms include:

  • Patricija (Croatian/Slovene)
  • Patricie (Czech: pah-TREET-sye)
  • Patrizia (German/Italian: pah-TREET-see-ah)
  • Patrizie (German)
  • Patrícia (Hungarian/Portuguese/Slovak: pah-TREET-syah in Slovak)
  • Pádraigín (Irish-Gaelic: PAW-drig-EEN)
  • Patrizja (Maltese)
  • Patrycja (Polish: pah-TRITS-yah)

Common English diminutive are: Pat, Patsy, Patty, Tricia and Trish. In the English-speaking world, Tricia is occasionally used as an independent given name.

German short forms are Patti and Patze. A common Spanish short form is Patti.

The Polish diminutive is usually Tysia.

The designated name-day is March 17.

Sources

  1. Elizabeth Gidley Withycombe, The Oxford Dictionary of English Christian Names (1945)
  2. Kálmán Béla,  A nevek világa
  3. http://www.askoxford.com/firstnames/patrick?view=uk
  4. http://www.behindthename.com/php/find.php?name=patrick

Christian

Gender: Masculine
Origin: Latin
Meaning: “anointed one; Christian.”

Christian is derived from the Latin, Christianus, which literally means, “anointed one” but in actuality was used to describe one of the Christian faith.

In the English speaking world, the name has been in usage since the Middle Ages, but has been consistently popular in the Germanic countries, most probably due to a few Danish kings who bore the name.

It was also the second name of Danish children’s author, Hans Christian Anderson (1805-1875).

Originally, in English, Christian was occasionally used as an anglicized feminine form of the Latin name, Christiana. Christian fell out of usage as a female name and resurged as a masculine English name around the 17th-century.

As of 2008, Christian stood as the 23rd most popular male name in the United States. His rankings in other countries are as follows:

  • # 45 (Australia, 2008)
  • # 5 (Bulgaria, 2008)
  • # 100 (Canada, B.C., 2008)
  • # 93 (Chile, 2006)
  • # 44 (Czech Republic, 2009)
  • # 15 (Denmark, 2009)
  • # 4 (Faroe Islands, 2008)
  • # 5 (Estonia, 2007)
  • # 89 (Germany, 2009)
  • # 29 (Hungary, 2008)
  • # 9 (Iceland, 2004-2007)
  • # 88 (Ireland, 2008)
  • # 196 (the Netherlands, 2008)
  • # 49 (Norway, 2009)

Other forms of the name include:

  • Christiaan (Afrikaans/Dutch)
  • Kristian (Albanian/Danish/Estonian/Norwegian/Swedish)
  • Kristo (Albanian)
  • Christo (Bulgarian)
  • Kristijan Кристијан (Croatian/Serbian)
  • Kristián (Czech/Slovak)
  • Carsten/Karsten/Kerstan/Kersten (Danish/Dutch/Frisian/Norwegian)
  • Christian (Danish/Dutch/English/French/German/Norwegian/Swedish)
  • Kresten (Danish)
  • Kristen (Danish/Norwegian/Swedish)
  • Kristjan (Danish)
  • Chrétien (French: archaic form)
  • Coerst (Frisian)
  • Críosdaidh (Gaelic)
  • Chrístos Χρίστος (Greek: modern)
  • Keresztély (Hungarian)
  • Keresztes (Hungarian)
  • Krisztián (Hungarian)
  • Kristján (Icelandic)
  • Cristiano (Italian/Portuguese)
  • Christianus (Latin)
  • Krišjānis (Latvian)
  • Chriet (Limburgish)
  • Kristijonas/Krizas/Krišcius (Lithuanian)
  • Creestee (Manx)
  • Crestian (Occitanian)
  • Krystian/Chrystian (Polish)
  • Krystyn (Polish: obscure)
  • Crétin (Provençal)
  • Cristian (Romanian/Italian/Galician)
  • Kristjan (Slovene)
  • Cristián (Spanish)
  • Christer/Krister (Swedish)

Swiss German diminutive forms are: Chrigel, Hitsch, Chrigi and Chrigu.

Bavarian diminutives are: Chris, Chrissi and Chrischan.

A Romanian diminutive is Cristi.

Christina and Christine are usually the default feminine forms.

Christina and Christine have been in usage on the continent since at least the Middle Ages. Their popularity may be due to an early Christian saint and martyr of Syria. However, one of its most notable bearers was Queen Christina of Sweden.

Currently, Christina stands as the 20oth most popular female name in the United States, (2008). The highest she has ranked was in 1985, coming in as the 12th most popular female name. Its French counterpart of Christine, currently comes in as the 589th most popular female name, (2008), but at one time stood as the 14th most popular female name between 1967 and 1970.

Her popularity in other countries are as follows:

  • 9 (Czech Republic, 2009)
  • # 127 (Germany, 2009)
  • # 50 (Hungary, 2008)

Her Scandinavian forms of Kristin and Kirsten have been prevalent in the United States since the 1980s. Currently, Kirsten stood as the 567th most popular female name, (2008), while Kristin came in as the 883rd most popular female name, (2008), but once came in as the 31st most popular female name, back in 1981.

Other feminine forms include:

  • Kristina Кристина (Arabic/Bulgarian/Croatian/Czech/German/Lithuanian/Russian/Scandinavian/Serbian/Slovene
  • Crestina (Aragonese)
  • Kistiñe (Basque)
  • Christel (Bavarian: initially a diminutive form, but now used as an independent given name)
  • Hristina Христина (Bulgarian)
  • Cristina (Catalan/Corsican/Galician/Italian/Portuguese/Romanian/Spanish)
  • Kristýna (Czech)
  • Christa (Danish/English/German)
  • Kirstine (Danish)
  • Stina (Danish/Norwegian/Swedish)
  • Stine (Danish/Norwegian)
  • Tine (Danish/Norwegian)
  • Tineke (Dutch)
  • Stien (Dutch/Limburgish)
  • Christiana (English/Latin)
  • Tina (English/German/Italian/Scandinavian)
  • Kristiina (Estonian/Finnish)
  • Kirsi (Finnish)
  • Kirsti (Finnish)
  • Stiina (Finnish)
  • Tiina (Finnish)
  • Christelle (French)
  • Chrétienne (French: archaic)
  • Christiane (French/German)
  • Christine (French)
  • Christin/Kristin (German/Scandinavian)
  • Krista (German/Swedish)
  • Christína Χριστίνα (Greek)
  • Kilikina (Hawaiian)
  • Kriszta (Hungarian)
  • Krisztiána (Hungarian)
  • Krisztina (Hungarian)
  • Kristín (Icelandic)
  • Kristjana (Icelandic)
  • Cristiana (Italian/Portuguese)
  • Kristiana (Latvian)
  • Krystiana (Polish)
  • Krystyna (Polish)
  • Kjerstin (Norwegian)
  • Kjersti (Norwegian)
  • Cristìna (Sardinian)
  • Cairistìona (Scottish)
  • Kirsteen (Scottish)
  • Kirstie (Scottish)
  • Kirstin (Scottish)
  • Kristína (Slovak)
  • Kerstin (Swedish)
  • Crystin (Welsh)

English and German diminutives are: Chris, Christy, Chrissy and Tina.

French diminutives are: Chris, Chrisette and Titine.

A common Italian and Spanish compound form is Maria Cristina.

Designated name-days are: July 24 (Greece), November 12 (France), December 25 (Greece).

Bridget

Gender: Feminine
Origin: Celtic
Meaning: debated
(BRID-jet)

Bridget is an anglicization of the Irish Gaelic Brighid, which is of somewhat debated meaning. One theory is that it is derived from the Gaelic brígh, meaning, “power, strength, vigor, virtue.”

Another theory put out by Gods and Fighting Men (1904), translated by Lady Augusta Gregory, is that it is from the Gaelic breo-saighit meaning, “fiery arrow.”

Other sources have suggested it to mean “exalted one.”

In Celtic mythology, this was the name of an extremely important and powerful goddess.

According to the medieval Irish anthology, Lebor Gabála Érenn, Bridget was a goddess of poetry and was the daughter of Dagda. She was also associated with fire, wisdom and anything with an elevated status, whether it be a high mountain top, or someone of high social status.

The name was also borne by an early Irish saint, whose story and legend often melds with that of the ancient goddess. St. Bridget of Kildare was believed to have been a nun and one of the first converts under St. Patrick.

The St. Bridget’s Cross is often attributed to her, according to legend, she came upon a dying non- Christian man, in an effort to convert him to the new religion, she made a cross from the reeds that were beside him. That is all that is known of the origins of the St. Bridget’s Cross, but traditionally, a new one is made each year, on the feast of St. Bridget, (Feb. 1) while the old one is burned.

The feast of St. Bridget, which in some calenders falls on the 1st or 2nd of February,was originally one of the major festivals of the Celtic calender, known as Imbolc, it marked the first days of spring.

The name Bridget spread outside the Celtic world to the Germanic countries, it was popularized in Scandinavia by St. Bridget of Sweden, a Swedish noblewoman, mystic and founder of the Bridgettine order of nuns. She was also the mother of St. Katherine of Vadstena.

Between the 18th and 19th-centuries, when Irish immigrants first settled in the United States, the name was so common among the Irish, that Bridget or its diminutive form of Biddy became a slang term for any Irish woman.

Currently, Bridget 394th most popular female name in the United States, 2008. Its cognate of Brigitta is currently the 88th most popular female name in Hungary, (2008).

Other forms of the name include:

  • Brigit (Asturian/Scottish)
  • Birkide/Birxita (Basque: beer-KEE-de, beer-SHEE-tah)
  • Brec’hed (Breton: modern)
  • Brigantis (Breton: ancient)
  • Brigita Бригита (Bulgarian/Croatian/Czech/Latvian/Lithuanian/Romanian/Slovak/Slovene)
  • Brígida (Catalan/Portuguese/Spanish)
  • Brigantia (Celtic)
  • Berit (Danish/Norwegian: BEH-reet)
  • Birgit (Danish/Norwegian/Swedish: BEER-geet)
  • Birgitta (Danish/Dutch/Estonian/Finnish/German/Icelandic/Lithuanian: beer-GEET-tah)
  • Birgitte (Danish/German: beer-GEET-te)
  • Birte/Birthe (Danish/Norwegian: BEER-te)
  • Gitte (Danish: originally a diminutive form, used as an independent given name: GEET-te)
  • Bridget (English/German)
  • Pirjo (Finnish: PEER-yo)
  • Pirkko (Finnish” PEERK-ko)
  • Piritta (Finnish: PEE-reet-tah)
  • Priitta (Finnish: PREET-tah)
  • Brigitte (French: bree-ZHEET)
  • Bríxida (Galician: BREE-shee-dah)
  • Berecyntia (Gaulic)
  • Brigindo/Brigandu (Gaulic)
  • Birgid (German: BEER-geet)
  • Brida (German: obscure)
  • Brigida (German/Sardinian: bree-GEE-dah)
  • Brigitta (German/Hungarian)
  • Bríd (Irish-Gaelic: BREED)
  • Brídín (Irish-Gaelic: brid-EEN)
  • Brighid/Brigid (Irish-Gaelic)
  • Bedelia (Irish)
  • Bride (Irish: BRIDE or BREED)
  • Brigidine (Irish)
  • Brigida (Italian: BREEJ-ee-dah)
  • Brigidina (Italian: obscure)
  • Briej (Limburgish)
  • Brede (Manx)
  • Breesha (Manx)
  • Breeshey (Manx)
  • Breda (Norwegian: BREH-dah)
  • Brita/Britta/Brit/Britt (Norwegian/Swedish: BREE-tah, BRIT-tah, BRITT)
  • Bryda (Polish)
  • Brygida (Polish: brih-GEE-dah)
  • Braida/Brida (Romansch)
  • Brìghde/Brìde (Scots-Gaelic)
  • Gittan (Swedish: originally a diminutive form, used as an independent given name: GEET-tahn)
  • Ffraid (Welsh: FRAID)

A Swiss German diminutive form is Brigittli. German short forms are: Biggi, Briggi, Gitte, Gitti and Gittl.

Irish and English diminutives are: Biddy, Bride, Bree, Brie, Bridie and Bridge.

Alice, Allison

Gender: Feminine
Origin: debated
Meaning: debated
Eng (AL-is)

The name is of debated origin and meaning, and is usually narrowed down to two possible origins and meanings, one, the most popular theory, is that it is a French Norman form of Alaïs, which is an old French form of the Germanic, Adalheid, meaning, “noble; high.” Other sources like to link the name with a Greek source, meaning, “truth”, however, though this is a popular etymology, I was never able to confirm it.

Alice was quite popular in Medieval Europe, as were her offshoots: Alicia, Alix and Alison.

In 1880, Alice was the 8th most popular female name in the United States, today, Alice stands at a meagre # 326, being replaced by her more modern sounding counterparts: Alicia and Allison.

Allison is the 32nd most popular female name in the United States, (2008).

Contrary to popular belief, Allison/Alison is a very old feminine given name, which can be traced all the way back to the Normans. Its was originally a diminutive form of Aalis, (the Norman form of Alice), and was introduced into England during the 11th-century. Allison/Alison disappeared at the end of the Middle Ages, and was revived in the 20th-century. She first appeared in the U.S. top 1000 in 1946, coming in as the 903rd most popular female name.

Another very current version is Alicia, which is actually fading in popularity. As of 2008, she was the # 178th most popular female name in the United States, but back in 1983, she was the 41st most popular female name.

The Alice is form is not just relegated to English-speaking countries. Her usage is found in France, pronounced, (ah-LEES), in Italy as (ah-LEE-che), in the Czech Republic as (ah-LEET-seh). She is also used in German-speaking countries, Portuguese-speaking countries and in Scandinavia. Her current rankings are as follows:

  • # 99 (Australia, 2008)
  • # 58 (Belgium, 2006)
  • # 46 (England/Wales, 2008)
  • # 358 (Germany, 2009)
  • # 85 (Ireland, 2008)
  • # 10 (Italy, 2006)
  • # 488 (the Netherlands, 2008)
  • # 1 (Sweden, 2009)

Her Latinate counterpart of Alicia is also very transcultural, her rankings are as follows:

  • # 97 (Australia, 2008)
  • # 62 (Belgium, 2006)
  • # 95 (England/Wales, 2008)
  • # 94 (Germany, 2009)
  • # 110 (the Netherlands, 2008)
  • # 17 Alicja (Poland, 2008)
  • # 90 (Scotland, 2008)
  • # 43 (Spain, 2008)
  • # 29 (Sweden, 2009)

Other forms of the name include:

  • Alizia (Aragonese)
  • Licia (Asturian)
  • Alike (Basque)
  • Alícia (Catalan/Spanish: ah-LEE-thee-ah Spanish European. ah-LEE-see-ah Latin American Spanish)
  • Alice (Czech/Danish/Dutch/English/French/German/Icelandic/Italian/Norwegian/Swedish)
  • Alicia (English/Galician/German/Italian: ah-LEE-shuh in English and ah-LEE-chah in Italian)
  • Aila/Aile (Estonian)
  • Aili (Estonian/Scottish)
  • Aliise (Estonian)
  • Aliisa (Finnish)
  • Alison (French)
  • Alix (French: ah-LEEKS)
  • Aliki/Alíkē Aλίκη (Greek: Modern)
  • Aliz (Hungarian)
  • Ailís (Irish-Gaelic: AY-leesh)
  • Alise (Latvian)
  • Alicija (Lithuanian)
  • Ealee (Manx)
  • Ealish (Manx)
  • Aalis (Norman)
  • Alicja (Polish: ah-LEET-syah)
  • Alisa Алиса (Russian)
  • Aileas (Scots-Gaelic)
  • Alica (Slovakian: ah-LEET-sah)
  • Allis (Swedish)
  • Alis (Welsh)

An obscure Italian masculine form is  Alicio.

In popular fiction, it is borne by the protagonist of Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland (1865).

Designated name-days are Janury 15 (Czech Republic), June 23rd (Sweden), September 16 (Estonia) and December 16 (France).

Mary, Maria, Miriam

Mary and its various forms has to be one of the quintessential, classic female names of all time, she has been used in Protestant England in the form of Mary, in the Islamic world as Maryam, in Jewish communities in the form of Miriam and in the Catholic world as Maria, Marie or Mary.

In the United States, she has never quite detracted from the top 100, if Mary is not in fashion then it is usually one of her other forms that may take her place, such as Molly, Mariah, Maria or Mia, all depending on the flavor of the day.

Currently, Mary is the 97th most popular female name in the United States, (2008). Mary’s rankings in other countries are as follows:

  • # 7 (Armenia, 2008)
  • # 57 (Ireland, 2007)

Its French form of Marie is popular outside the Hexagon, she currently ranks in as the 546th most popular female name in the United States, but in other countries, she appears in the top 10. Her rankings are as follows:

  • # 9 (Armenian, 2008)
  • # 4 (Belgium, 2008)
  • # 17 (Czech Republic, 2008)
  • # 24 (Denmark, 2008)
  • # 20 (France, 2009)
  • # 9 (Germany, 2009)
  • # 270 (the Netherlands, 2008)

The continental form of Maria is extremely popular across Europe and Latin America, her rankings in other countries are as follows:

  • # 4 (Argentina, 2009)
  • # 8 (Basque Country, Spain, 2008)
  • # 3 (Belarus, 2005)
  • # 3 (Bulgaria, 2008)
  • # 89 (Canada, B.C., 2008)
  • # 6 (Catalonia, Spain, 2008)
  • # 8 (Chile, 2008)
  • # 91 (England/Wales, 2008)
  • # 6 (Estonia, 2007)
  • # 4 (Faroe Islands, 2008)
  • # 59 (Germany, 2009)
  • # 1 (Greece, 2004)
  • # 90 (Hungary, 2008)
  • # 5 (Iceland, 2004-2007)
  • # 49 (Ireland, 2008)
  • # 1 (Israel, among Christian girls, 2004)
  • # 9 Marija (Latvia, 2005)
  • # 1 Marija (Macedonia, 2006)
  • # 1 (Malta, 2008)
  • # 39 (the Netherlands, 2008)
  • # 14 (Norway, 2008)
  • # 17 (Poland, 2009)
  • # 1 (Portugal, 2008)
  • # 2 (Romania, 2008)
  • # 2 (Russia, 2007)
  • # 99 (Scotland, 2008)
  • # 1 (Slovakia, 2004)
  • # 2 (Spain, 2008)
  • # 96 (Sweden, 2008)
  • # 7 (Ukraine, 2009)
  • # 64 (United States, 2008)

Her diminutive offshoot of Mia, has also been quite trendy the last 10 years, as of 2008, she was the 14th most popular female name in the United States. In other countries, her rankings are as follows:

  • # 1 (Australia, 2008)
  • # 25 (Canada, B.C., 2008)
  • # 44 (Chile, 2006)
  • # 11 (England/Wales, 2008)
  • # 1 (Germany, 2009)
  • # 23 (Ireland, 2008)
  • # 5 (Isle of Man, 2009)
  • # 350 (the Netherlands, 2008)
  • # 24 (New Zealand, 2009)
  • # 12 (Norway, 2008)
  • # 26 (Scotland, 2008)
  • # 46 (Slovenia, 2005)
  • # 3 (Switzerland, among Romansch-speakers, 2008)

Another common diminutive offshoot, is Molly, which is mostly used in the English speaking world, but has also shifted over to some of the Scandinavian countries. Her rankings in other countries are as follows:

  • # 57 (Australia, 2007)
  • # 84 (Canada, B.C., 2008)
  • # 32 (England/Wales, 2008)
  • # 25 (Ireland, 2008)
  • # 33 (New Zealand, 2009)
  • # 39 (Scotland, 2008)
  • # 11 (Sweden, 2008)
  • # 104 (United States, 2008)

Miriam is another common choice which is popular throughout Europe and the Middle East. Her rankings are as follows:

  • # 1 Mariam (Georgia, 2008)
  • # 6 Maryam (Iran, 2007)
  • # 4 Maryam (Israel, among Muslim girls, 2004)
  • # 6 Maryam (Pakistan)
  • # 48 Miriam (Spain, 2008)
  • # 1 Mariam (Tunisia, 2005)
  • # 309 Miriam (United States, 2008)

As for its meaning and derivation, though the its origins can be traced back to the Bible, its lingustic and etymological meaning has long been debated. Many hypothesis include that the name could be a derivative of the Hebrew meri, ‘rebel’ related to the Hebrew verb MRH, mara or Marah which means’ to be “rebellious.” Or that it is related to the Hebrew word מרא (MRA, mara) which means ‘well-fed’, something which would have been considered a comely attribute in Biblical times.

One of the most popular etymological theories is its association with the Hebrew מר (MR, mar), meaning. “bitter” or “bitterness, and another very well established hypothesis suggests that it is from an Egyptian source, mry “beloved” or mr meaning “love.”

Other possible theories include:

That is it a combination of the Hebrew words מר (MR, mar), meaning “bitter” or the Hebrew (mar) meaning, “drop”; or (mor) meaning, “myrrh” or ” (mari ) meaning “mistress’.

The name is borne by several female characters in both the Old and New Testament.

Among Jews, the name was originally used in honour of the sister of Aaron, Miriam the Prophetess.

Among Muslims and Christians, (particularly Catholics and Eastern Orthodox), the name is usually used in honour of the Virgin Mary, the mother of Jesus.

However, in certain eras and cultures, Mary or Maria was considered too sacred of a name to use on a child, and in other cultures, the name Maria is so honorable to have, that it is even bestowed upon males, usually in conjunction with a male name or as a middle name. This is especially so in Spanish-speaking countries, French speaking countries and occasionally done in other predominate Catholic countries such as Ireland, Poland and in Bavaria, Germany.

The name has made is presence known in British royalty as well as in the continental ruling houses. Other forms are as follows:

Latinate Forms
Forms used in Latin-based languages

  • Marieta (Catalan: originally a diminutive form, used as an independent given name in Spanish-speaking countries)
  • Miryam (Catalan: archaic form from the 13th-century)
  • Maria (Corsican/Italian/Occitanian/Portuguese/Romanian/Romansch/Latin)
  • Manon (French: originally a diminutive form of Marie, the name has been used as an independent given name for centuries. In fact, it currently ranks in as the 7th most popular female name in Belgium (2006), the 4th most popular female name in France (2006), and the 184th most popular female name in the Netherlands (2008). Pronunciation can be heard here: http://www.forvo.com/search/Manon/)
  • Marie (French: she is one of the most popular middle names in the English speaking world. In French, this form is bestowed on males in conjunction with other male names or as a middle name. There are several common French female names used in conjunction with Marie, as well. Those of which, I will save for future postings).
  • Marielle (French: originally a diminutive form of Marie, now used exclusively as an independent given name)
  • Mariette (French: a diminutive form of Marie, occasionally used as an independent given name, now considered dated in French-speaking countries).
  • Mariolle(French: obscure, very old diminutive form of Marie, the inspiration of the Polish offshoot, Mariola).
  • Marion (French: a medieval French diminutive form of Marie, now exclusively used as an independent given name, the name was borne in legend by the love interest of Robin Hood, Maid Marion, and is borne by French actress, Marion Cotillard. In France, it is the 59th most popular female name (2006)
  • Myriam (French: form of the Biblical, Miriam, she ranks in as the 95th most popular female name in France (2006)
  • Mariella (Italian: originally a diminutive form of Maria, now exclusively used as an independent given name)
  • Marietta (Italian: a diminutive form of Maria, occasionally used as an independent given name).
  • Marigia (Italian: obscure)
  • Mariuzza/Maruzziella (Italian: obscure)
  • Mariana (Portuguese: Mariana is usually considered a name of a seperate etymology, but is used in Portuguese and Spanish as a form of Miriam. She is the 73rd most popular female name in Chile, 2006).
  • María (Spanish/Galician).
  • Marita (Spanish: a diminutive form of Maria, now often used as an independent given name)
  • Maritza (Spanish: a Latin American spin-off of Maria, originally a diminutive form, now a trendy given name, especially among Mexican-Americans, she is currently the 560th most popular female name in the United States).
  • Mareye (Walon)

An Italian diminutive form is Mimi. A Portuguese diminutive form is Mariazinha.

Masculine forms are:

  • Mari (Catalan)
  • Mariu (Corsican)
  • Mario (Italian/Galician)
  • Marius (Latin/French/Romanian)
  • Mário (Portuguese)

Germanic Forms
Forms used in Germanic-speaking countries

  • Maiken/Majken (Danish/Norwegian/Swedish: originally a diminutive form of Maria, now used exclusively as an independent given name).
  • Maria (Danish/Dutch/English/Faroese/Frisian/German/Norwegian/Swedish)
  • Marie (Danish/German/Norwegian/Swedish: a borrowing from the French)
  • Mari (Danish)
  • Maaike/Maike (Dutch/Frisian/German: originally a diminutive form, used exclusively as an independent given name. In 2008, it was the 98th most popular female name in the Netherlands)
  • Marieke(Dutch: originally a diminutive form, now exclusively used as an independent given name. In 2008, it was the 188th most popular female name in the Netherlands)
  • Marijke (Dutch: mah-RYE-keh)
  • Marike (Dutch: originally a diminutive form of Maria, now used exclusively as an independent given name, pronounced mah-REE-keh)
  • Marja (Dutch/Faroese/Gothic/Limburgish: MAHR-yah).
  • Meike (Dutch/German: originally a diminutive form, now used as an independent given name, it was the 53rd most popular female name in the Netherlands of 2008.)
  • Mia (Dutch/German/English/Scandinavian: originally a diminutive form, now used as an independent given name)
  • Mieke (Dutch/Limburgish: originally a diminutive form, used exclusively as an independent given name MEE-keh)
  • Miep(Dutch: a diminutive form, but occasionally used as an independent given name MEEP).
  • Miet (Dutch: originally a diminutive form, occasionally used as an independent given name MEET).
  • Mirjam (Dutch/German/Swedish: form of the Biblical Miriam).
  • Mariel (English: just an anglicized form of the French, Marielle).
  • Mariota (English: archaic, form used in the 13th-century)
  • Mary (English)
  • Molly/Mollie (English: originally a diminutive form, now used more often as an independent given name)
  • Polly (English: originally a diminutive form, now used more often as an independent given name)
  • Marý(Faroese)
  • Mareike (Frisian/German: originally a diminutive form of Maria, now used exclusively as an independent given name)
  • Maja (German/Scandinavian: originally a diminutive form of Maria, used exclusively as an independent given name. It is the 2nd most popular female name in Sweden, (2008)
  • Mariele(German: originally diminutive form of Maria, used exclusively as an independent given name, pronounced mah-REE-leh).
  • Miriam(German/English: Biblical form, often used in German and English speaking countries)
  • Mitzi (German/English: not really used as an independent given name in German speaking countries, but experienced a short usage of popularity as an independent given name in the United States).
  • Ria(German/Dutch: originally diminutive forms, occasionally used as independent given names)
  • Mæja (Icelandic: originally a diminutive form of Maria, used exclusively as an independent given name)
  • María(Icelandic)
  • Mies (Limburgish: diminutive form of Maria, used as an independent given name in the Netherlands. MEES)
  • Mathie (Normand: mah-TEE)
  • My(Swedish: originally a diminutive form of Maria, now used as an independent given name MEE. In 2007, it was the 79th most popular female name in Sweden).
  • Mirele מִירֶעל(Yiddish: a form of Miriam. MEER-eh-leh)

Common English diminutives include May, Mayme, Mare, Mia, Molle, Molly, Moll and Polly, German diminutive forms are Mariechen and Mitzi.

Masculine forms include:

  • Marius (Dutch/German/English/Norwegian/Swedish)
  • Marjus (Faroese)
  • Maríus (Icelandic)

Baltic Forms
Variations used in Baltic countries.

  • Maaja (Estonian)
  • Maare/Maari (Estonian)
  • Maarika (Estonian/Finnish)
  • Maaria/Maarja (Estonian)
  • Maie/Maiu (Estonian: initially diminutive forms, now used as independent given names, MY-eh, MY-oo)
  • Maila/Maili/Mailu (Estonian: Maili is pronounced somewhat like Miley)
  • Mari (Estonian/Finnish)
  • Marjam (Estonian)
  • Marje/Marjen (Estonian)
  • Marjette (Estonian)
  • Mary (Estonian)
  • Maija/Maiju (Finnish)
  • Maikki (Finnish: a Finnicized form of the Sweden and Danish Majken, pronounced somewhat like Mikey)
  • Maaria/Maria (Finnish)
  • Marika (Finnish)
  • Maritta (Finnish)
  • Marjatta (Finnish: can also mean “without a berry” in Finnish, and is the name of a character in the Kalevala, but is often used as a variation of Maria; also used in Estonia)
  • Marjo (Finnish)
  • Marjukka (Finnish)
  • Marjut (Finnish)
  • Miia (Finnish)
  • Mirja (Finnish: translation of Miriam)
  • Mirjam/Mirjami (Finnish)
  • Maija (Latvian)
  • Maila (Latvian: MY-lah)
  • Mairita/Mairīta/Mairīte (Latvian)
  • Mairuta (Latvian)
  • Mare (Latvian: final E is pronounced)
  • Mareka (Latvian)
  • Mareta/Māreta (Latvian)
  • Marī (Latvian)
  • Mārica (Latvian)
  • Mariela (Latvian)
  • Mārieta (Latvian)
  • Marija (Latvian/Lithuanian)
  • Mārika (Latvian)
  • Marite/Mārita/Mārīte/Marīte (Latvian)
  • Marjama (Latvian)
  • Maruta/Māruta/Marute (Latvian)
  • Mare (Lithuanian)
  • Maryte (Lithuanian)

Masculine forms are:

  • Maarius/Mairo/Mario (Estonian)
  • Marijus/Marius (Lithuanian)

Slavic Forms
Forms used in Slavic countries

  • Merjem (Bosnian)
  • Mirjana (Bosnian/Croatian/Serbian/Slovene: translation of Miriam)
  • Mariya (Bulgarian/Russian/Ukrainian)
  • Marija (Croatian/Macedonian/Serbian/Slovene)
  • Marie (Czech: MAHR-yeh)
  • Maria (Polish)
  • Marieta (Polish)
  • Mariola (Polish: mahr-YOLE-ah)
  • Marita (Polish)
  • Maryla (Polish: mah-RIH-lah)
  • Marzena (Polish: not really etymologically related, but has had a historical usage as a variation of Maria in Poland. The name is actually the name of an ancient Polish goddess and it may be linked with the either Polish word for “hope; dream” or with the Old Slavonic word for “death.” mahr-ZHEH-nah, diminutive form is Marzenka).
  • Mária (Slovakian)
  • Marika (Slovakian)
  • Marica (Slovene: initially a diminutive form, used as an independent given name in Slovenia, but is also used as a diminutive form in Bosnian, Croatian, Serbian, Czech and Slovakian, mah-REET-sah).
  • Mojca (Slovene: initially a diminutive form, now used exclusively as an independent given name in Slovenia. MOY-tsah)
  • Marya Марья (Russian)

Czech and Slovak diminutive forms are: Mája, MáňaMaruška and Maryška. Serbian and Slovene diminutives are Maša. Russian diminutives are Manya, Masha, Mashenka and Mashka. Polish diminutives are MasiaMarysia (mah-RISH-ah) and Maryska.

Masculine forms are:

  • Marian (Polish)
  • Mariusz (Polish)
  • Marij/Mario (Slovene)

Celtic Forms
Forms used in Celtic Languages

  • Mari (Breton)
  • Mallaidh (Irish-Gaelic: translation of Molly)
  • Maira/Máire (Irish-Gaelic)
  • Mairenn/Máirín (Irish-Gaelic)
  • Muire (Irish-Gaelic)
  • Mariod/Mariot (Manx)
  • Moirrey/Voirrey (Manx)
  • Màiri (Scotch-Gaelic)
  • Mhari (Scotch-Gaelic)
  • Mhairi/Mhairie (Scotch-Gaelic)
  • Moire (Scotch-Gaelic)
  • Mair (Welsh)

Other Forms
Forms used in other languages not listed in the above

  • Maria (Albanian/Kiswahili)
  • Maryam مريم (Arabic)
  • Mariam (Armenian)
  • Məryəm (Azeri)
  • Maia (Basque)
  • Miren (Basque)
  • Mariam (Coptic/Egyptian)
  • Mariami (Georgian)
  • Maria Μαρία (Greek: Modern)
  • Maroula/Roula (Greek: Modern: initially diminutive forms)
  • Malia (Hawaiian/Zuni)
  • Mária (Hungarian)
  • Maria (Indonesian)
  • Meryem (Kurdish/Turkish)
  • Mariam/Mariamma/Mariamme (Malayalam)
  • Marija (Maltese)
  • Mere (Maori)
  • Miriama (Maori)

The name has several name-days.