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Gender: F Meaning of Penelope: "weaver" Origin of Penelope: Greek Penelope's Popularity in 2013: #56

Popularity: this week.

Penelope is a classic name that's been leaping up the charts, thanks to the glamorous image of Spanish actress Penelope Cruz and its choice by Kourtney Kardashian for her young daughter. It's one of the fastest-rising names, leaping to Number 56 in 2013, its first year in the Top 100. Penelope was also picked for their girls by Tina Fey, by Natalie and Taylor Hanson, of the group Hanson, and by Anna Chlumsky. In 2001, before this rash of celebrity usage, Penelope was down at Number 945.

Penelope has long been associated with the faithful, long-suffering wife of Odysseus in Homer's Odyssey. It has several British novelists as namesakes--Penelopes Fitzgerald, Mortimer, Gilliatt and Lively. And yes, she's also a Harry Potter character: Penelope "Penny" is a student at Hogwarts.

Penelope is a strong Nameberry favorite, though instead of the traditional Penny as a nickname, many Berries suggest Nell or Poppy.

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Famous People Named Penelope

Penelope Cruz, Spanish actress
Penelope Andrea Miller, American actress
Penelope Spheeris, American director and producer
Penelope Fitzgerald, English novelist
Penelope Lively, Egyptian-born novelist
Penelope Alice Wilton, English actress
Penelope Houston, American singer-songwriter
Penelope Athena (b. 2011), daughter of Tina Fey
Penelope Anne (b. 2005), daughter of Taylor Hanson
Penelope (b. 2012), daughter of Tracy Anderson and Matt Mogol
Penelope Scotland Disick (b. 2012), daughter of Kourtney Kardashian and Scott Disick
Joyce Penelope Wilhelmina Frankenberg, aka Jane Seymour (English-American actress)
Penelope Salomon, daughter of Canadian actress Jessalyn Gilsig

Pop Culture References for the Name Penelope

1960s film starring Natalie Wood
2006 film starring Christina Ricci
Tom and Lynette's daughter on Desperate Housewives
Penelope Pitstop, Underdog's girlfriend
The Perils of Penelope Pitstop, animated 60s/70s TV series
Penelope Clearwater, Harry Potter character and girlfriend of Percy Weasley
Penelope "Penny" Hume, character on American show Lost
Penelope Garcia, character on the US show Criminal Minds
Penelope Jane Frankin, main character on US show My Boys
Penelope Taynt, nerdy character from The Amanda Show
Penelope Shafai, character on Gossip Girl
Penelope Stamp, Rachel Weisz's character in "The Brothers Bloom"
Penelope "Penny" character from The Big Bang Theory
Penelope "Penny" Proud, main character on The Proud Family
Penelope "Lo" Marin, main character from the book "The Butterfly Clues"

Pelcha, Pen, Peneli, Penina, Penna, Penney, Pennie, Penny

Penelope's International Variations

Pennelope, Pépélope (French) Pipitsa, Popi, Pinelopi (Greek) Peniel (Hebrew) Lopa, Pela, Pelcia (Polish) Penelopa, Peni (Spanish)