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Gender: F Meaning of Gladys: "lame" Origin of Gladys: Welsh

Popularity: this week.

Hard as it might be to believe, Gladys was the Harper of 1900, emerging almost out of nowhere to take the naming world by storm, becoming a favorite among parents--and writers of romantic Edwardian novels, seen as somewhat exotic. One impetus was the 1870 Ouida novel Puck, whose heroine was the idealized beauty, Gladys Gerant.

Gladys reached as high as Number 11 at the turn of the last century, popular along with other s-ending names such as Doris. Though Gladys hasn't shown any signs of revival yet, some parents might respond to the 'glad'ness of it, and it's gladiola-flower feel.

It's been associated in the U.S. with singer Gladys Knight.

Famous People Named Gladys

Saint Gladys, Welsh queen of saint-king Gwynllyw Milwr, mother of Cadoc the Wise
Gladys Maria Knight, American singer of The Pips
Gladys Constance Cooper, English actress
Gladys Moncreiff, Australian singer
Gladys Love Presley, mother of singer Elvis Presley
Gladys Blossom Noon Spellman, U.S. Congresswoman from Maryland
Gladys Hulette, American silent film actress
Gladys May Aylward, English missionary to China
Gladys Gillem, American pro wrestler
Gladys Medalie Heldman, American tennis promoter
Gladys Pearl Baker Mortensen, mother of actress Marilyn Monroe

Pop Culture References for the Name Gladys

Gladys Eysenarch, character in "Jezebel" by Irene Nemirovsky (1936)
Gladys Herdman, character in "The Best Christmas Pageant Ever" by Barbara Robinson
Gladys Biggs, character in "Meet Mr Mulliner" (1927) by P. G. Wodehouse
Gladys and Enid Worsley, twins in Sylvia Scarlett (1918) by Compton Mackenzie
Gladys Kravitz, neighbor on TV's "Bewitched"

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