The name is derived from the Greek Σαλωμη which is from an Aramaic name that was related to the Hebrew word שָׁלוֹם (shalom). The name is associated with the notorious daughter of Herodias who danced for King Herod and was rewarded by dancing with the head of John the Baptist on a platter. Though it was the name of a Herodias’ daughter, the name was used by Christians in reference to the handmaid of the Virgin Mary, (mentioned in the New Testament), who witnessed the Crucifixion, and is considered a saint by the Catholic Church and Orthodox Church. The name was also borne by Salome Alexandra (136-67 BCE) who was the only Jewish regnant queen in history. In Jewish sources she is known as Shalomzion שְׁלוֹמְצִיּוֹ. There are a few other characters in the New Testament mentioned with the name Salome, and it seems to have been common in the Jewish royal family. The name has experienced prevalent usage in Poland, Germany, France, Spain and Portugal.
It was borne by Blessed Salomea (sometimes spelled Salomeja) also known as Salomea of Krakow and Błogosławiona Salomea in Polish, was a Polish princess (1211-1268) and upon being widowed entered the Poor Clares. She is up for canonization. In Polish literature it is the name of a character in Stefan Żeromski‘s 1912 classic the Faithful River (Wierna Rzeka). Polish diminutive forms are Meja, Salcia, Salka, Salomejcia and Salusia (thanks to Magdalena for contributing the latter two diminutive forms). The name is also borne by a famous Lithuanian poetess Salomėja Nėris (1904-1946) and a famous Ukrainian opera singer Salomiya Kruscelnytska (1872-1952).
The designated name-day is October 22.
Other forms of the name include:
- Saloma (Croatian/Faroese)
- Salome (Dutch/German/English/Latvian)
- Saalome (Estonian)
- Salomé (French/Portuguese/Spanish)
- Salomi (Greek Modern)
- Shlomtzion (Hebrew Modern)
- Szalóme (Hungarian)
- Salóme (Icelandic)
- Salomè/Salomina (Italian: latter form was originally a diminutive form: thanks to Magdalena for contributing the info)
- Salomėja (Lithuanian)
- Salomea (Polish/Czech/Romanian/Romansch/Slovak)
- Salomeja (Polish)
- Saloména (Slovakian)
- Solomia (Slovakian)
- Salomiya (Ukrainian)
- Saltscha (Yiddish)