Santos

Photo by Thgusstavo Santana on Pexels.com
  • Origin: Galician Spanish, Portuguese
  • Meaning: “saints.”
  • Gender: unisex
  • Pronunciation: SAHN-tose (Sp)

The name comes directly from the Iberian word for “saints,” since Medieval times, it was originally bestowed on children born on November 1st, the Feast of All Saints, it’s French equivalent being Toussaint. For females, the name was often used in conjunction with Maria, i.e. Maria de los Santos.

While its singular form of Santo is also used, I felt Santos deserved it’s own entry since it’s usage is specific to a Catholic Holiday.

For males, Santos has been in the U.S. Top 1000 Male Names since 1920, peaking at #539 in 1937, in 2019, he ranked in as the 966th most popular male name in the United States.

In the U.S, its use on females peaked in the 1920s, appearing in the U.S. Top 1000 Female Names between 1920-1929, peaking at #742 in 1924.

The name was borne by Confederate Colonel, Santos Benavides (1823-1891) & Mexican artist, Santos Balmori Picazo (1899-1992).

Santos is also the name of a municipality in São Paulo, Brazil.

Sources

Blessing

  • Origin: English
  • Gender: Female

The name comes directly from the word and first came into use as a female given-name in 16th-century English, it was later adopted by the Puritans and has had sporadic use as a given-name by various Christian groups since. The name has recent been very popular among Nigerian Christians.

The word itself derives from the Anglo-Saxon, blǣdsian, which originally meant “to mark with blood,” which was often done during pre-Christian Anglo-Saxon religious rights.

Blessing first entered the U.S. Top 1000 Female Names in 2019, ranking in at #916.

A notable bearer is Nigerian Track & Field Athlete, Blessing Ogakbere (b.1988).

Sources

Atreus

  • Origin: Greek Ἀτρεύς
  • Meaning: “to not tremble; fearless.”
  • Gender: masculine
  • Pronunciation: Eng (AY-tree-us); Grek (ah-TRAY-oos)

The name is composed of the Greek elements, ἀ-, “no” and τρέω, “tremble,” hence meaning, “fearless.”

The name is borne in Greek mythology by the son of Pelops & Hippodamia and the father of Agammennon & Menelaus. Atreus and his brother were expelled from their kingdom after killing their elder brother for the throne. Atreus took refuge in Mycenae where he sat-in as a temporary king while Eurystheus was fighting in a war, but ultimately, Atreus took over the the throne. His descendants thereafter are known as Atreides.

In Frank Herbert’s Dune Series, House of Atreides is the name of one of the great houses.

The name has recently entered the U.S. Top 1000 in 2019, currently ranking in as the 788th most popular name in the United States.

Other forms include:

  • Atreüs (Breton)
  • Atreu (Catalan, Portuguese, Romanian)
  • Atreus (Dutch, English, German, Latin, Scandinavian)
  • Atrée (French)
  • At’revsi ატრევსი (Georgian)
  • Atreusz (Hungarian, Polish)
  • Atreos Ατρέας (Modern Greek)
  • Atreifur (Icelandic)
  • Atreo (Italian, Spanish)
  • Atrėjas (Lithuanian)
  • Atrey Атрей (Russian, Ukrainian)
  • Atrej (Serbo-Croatian, Slovenian)

Sources

Eliel

  • Origin: Hebrew
  • Meaning: “my God is God.”
  • Gender: Masculine
  • Pronunciation: Eng (EL-ee-yel; ee-LYE-yel)

The name is composed of the same Hebrew word אל (‘el) meaning “God,” hence, some translate it to mean “my God is God.” The name is borne by several minor characters in the Old Testament.

A notable bearer was Finnish Architect, Eliel Saarinen (1873-1950).

Though an obscure Jewish name, it experienced a peak in popularity in Finland and other Scandinavian countries at the end of the 19th-century.

Eliel recently entered the U.S. Top 1000 Most Popular Male Names in 2019, currently ranking in at #664.

The designated name day in Finland is April 9th

A Dutch form is Eliël.

Sources

Amias, Amyas

  • Origin: English
  • Usage: English & French
  • Meaning: uncertain
  • Gender: masculine
  • Pronunciation: ENG uh-MYE-es; AME-ee-us; FR (AH-mee-AHS); FR Can (AH-mee-AH)

The name is of uncertain origin or meaning, but first appeared in use in 16th-century England, usually spelled Amyas. It is speculated to be a modern form of the Anglo-Norman male name, Amis, which is a masculine form of Amice (friend). Another theory links it to an Anglo-Norman surname meaning “from Amiens.”

In literature, Amyas appears as the name of a minor character in Edmund Spenser’s The Faerie Queen (1590). It also appears in Mark Twain’s A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court (1889), Charles Kingsley 1855 novel, Westward Ho! and in Agatha Christie’s Five Little Pigs (1942).

It was borne by Sir. Amyas Brampfylde (1560-1626), a British member of Parliament & English diplomat, Amias Paulet (1532-1588). In more recent times, it has been borne by British Air Marshal, Amyas Borton (1886-1969), New Zealand architecht, Amyas Connell (1901-1980) & is currently borne by Sir Amyas Morse (b. 1949), Comptroller and Auditor General of the National Audit Office.

Recently, Amias appeared in the U.S. Top 1000 Most Popular Male Names, coming in as the 819th most popular male name.

Sources

Sekani

  • Origin: Tumbuka
  • Meaning: “laugh.”
  • Gender: masculine

The name comes from the Tumbuka word for “laugh,” and was recently popularized by the 2017 novel by Angie Thomas, The Hate U Give.

Sekani recently entered the U.S. Top 1000 and currently ranks in as the 872nd most popular male name (2019).

It should also be noted that Sekani is the name of a First Nations tribe indigenous to the interior of British Columbia. In this case, Sekani is an anglicization of the word tse’khene meaning “people on the rocks.”

Sources

Dhruv, Dhruva

Vishnu appears before Dhruva – A painting by Raja Ravi Varma.
  • Origin: Sanskrit
  • Meaning: “constant, immovable, fixed; polar star.”
  • Gender: masculine
  • Pronunciation: DROOV; DROO-vah

The name is derived from the Sanskrit word dhruva, meaning, “constant; immovable, fixed” and is also synonymous with the polar star.

Dhruva appears in the Hindu text, Vishnu Parana as the name of the son of Uttānapāda’s second and less favored wife. Dhruva wants to sit on his father’s lap like his older brother, but is thrown off as he is the son of a second wife. Dhruva is heartbroken and is consoled by his mother to contemplate his fate in life and advises him to work hard for what he wants. Dhruva goes into the woods and prays to Vishnu, who eventually transform him into the polar star.

Other forms include:

  • Druwa (Indonesian/Javanese)

Dhruv entered the U.S. Top 1000 Male Names in 2019 and ranks in at #997

Sources