When your parents give you a name, chances are you’ll be using it for the rest of your life. But do you know the meaning behind your name? Here we round up the names of people in our office…

TAGS:

Angela

Came into use as an English name in the 18th century. Derived from the name for a heavenly creature.

Lianne

A variant of Leanne, which is a combination of Lee (from the surname derived from the Olde English ‘leah’ meaning clearing) and Anne, which dates back to the Bible’s Hannah.

Natasha

A Russian diminutive of Natalya, only used in English since the 20th century. It is derived from the Latin Natalia, meaning Christmas Day.

Alex

From Alexander, which is the Latinised version of the Greek name Alexandros, which meant ‘defending men’.

Louise

Feminine form of Louis, which itself comes from the Germanic Ludwig – ultimately referring to ‘famous battle’.

Tanya

Russian diminutive of Tatiana, used in the English-speaking world since the 1930s. This name apparently originates from a 3rd-century saint.

Francesca

Feminine form deriving from the Latin name Franciscus, or Frenchman.

Kate

Used in England since the Middle Ages, this comes from Katherine. There’s some debate about what it derives from – although one suggestion is that it could relate to the Greek word for torture.

Gilly

Comes from the family of names associated with male Julius. Said to relate to Roman god Jupiter.

Matthew

Used in English since the Middle Ages, it ultimately relates to the Hebrew name Mattilyahu – meaning gift of God.

Dawn

No surprises here – from the English word dawn.

Glenda

A 20th century name from the Welsh glan, meaning ‘pure, clean’, and da, meaning ‘good’.

Tim

From the Greek name Timotheos, meaning honouring God.

Susan

From the Hebrew word Shoshannah, which is said to be derived from the Hebrew word for lily.

Sophie

French form of Sophia, which stands for wisdom in Greek.

Oliver

Related to the Germanic Alfher – composed of the elements ‘elf’ and ‘army’. Fell out of favour in England after Oliver Cromwell, only gaining popularity again after Charles Dickens published Oliver Twist.

Robert

From the Germanic name Hrodebert, meaning ‘bright fame’. Introduced to Britain by the Normans.

Steven

Originates from Stepahanos, the Greek word for ‘crown’. Common in the Christian world as the first Christian martyr was believed to be St Stephen.

Mark

A form of Marcus, probably derived from the name of the Roman god Mars.

Katie

Related to Katherine – the origin of which is debated, but it became associated with the Greek word katharos, meaning ‘pure’.

Donna

From the Italian word donna, which means ‘lady’.

Caroline

French feminine form of Carolus, which in turn is related to Charles.

Gemma

A medieval Italian nickname, meaning ‘gem’ or ‘precious stone’.

Annie

Related to Anna, which, like Lianne, is in turn a form of Hannah – meaning ‘favour’ or ‘grace’.

Sharon

In Hebrew, means ‘plain’ – as in the fertile plain near coast of Israel rather than any reflection of their looks!

Sarah

Another Hebrew-derived name, this time meaning ‘lady, princess, noblewoman’.

Claire

French form of Clara, meaning ‘clear, bright, famous’.

Evlin

Derivation of Evelyn, which in turn was derived from the given name Aveline, possibly meaning ‘desired’.

Charlotte

French feminine form of Charles, which possibly derives from the Germanic word meaning ‘man’ or alternatively relates to ‘army, warrior’.

Hayley

From a surname originally derived from the name of an English town, meaning ‘hay clearing’.

Deborah

Means ‘bees’ in Hebrew.

Christine

Related to Christian, meaning ‘a Christian’.

Jessica

First used by Shakespeare in The Merchant Of Venice, where it belongs to the daughter of Shylock. Probably based on the biblical name Iscah, which meant ‘to behold’.

Mary

Usual English form of MariaThe meaning is not known for certain, but there are several theories including ‘rebelliousness’ and ‘wished for child’. However, it was most likely originally an Egyptian name, perhaps derived in part from ‘mry’ – ‘beloved’.

Paul

From the Roman family name Paulus, which means ‘small’ or ‘humble’ in Latin.

Amanda

In Latin, this means ‘loveable’ or ‘worthy of love’.

Danielle

French feminine form of Daniel, meaning ‘God is my judge’.

 

Check out what your name means at behindthename.com