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Gender: F Meaning of Virginia: "virginal, pure" Origin of Virginia: Latin Virginia's Popularity in 2013: #551

Popularity: this week.

Virginia is a lovely place name starting with the fashionable V initial and having deep historical roots, yet, unlike some other other girls' classics, has been sorely neglected in recent years.

The colony/state of Virginia was given its name by Sir Walter Raleigh in honor of Elizabeth I, known as the Virgin Queen, and the first child to be born of English parents in the New World was christened Virginia Dare.

Virginia was in the Top 10 for 25 years, from 1912 to 1937, hitting a high of Number 6 in 1921, when there were 19,000 newborn Virginias in their cradles.

She does have a couple of possible downsides--those teasable virgin associations, and the not-quite-ready-for-revival Ginny nickname. But we think they're outweighed by more positive factors and that Virginia is in line for a possible revival.

Virginia has such distinguished namesakes as writer Virginia Woolf, has been the subject of songs by groups ranging from The Rolling Stones to the Foo Fighters and has appeared as a character in any number of books, movies and TV shows--currently co-starring on MAsters of Sex. Ginger Rogers was born Virginia.

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Famous People Named Virginia

Virginia Madsen, American actress
Virginia Capers, American actress
Virginia Woolf, English writer
Virginia Williams, American actress
Virginia Katherine McMath, birth name of American actress Ginger Rogers
Virginia Hamilton, American children's author
Virginia Satir, American author and psychotherapist
Virginia Hensley, birth name of American singer Patsy Cline
Virginia Dare, first child born in America to English parents
Countess Virginia Oldoini, Italian courtesan
Virginia Zucchi, Italian ballerina
Virginia Gamba, daughter of Galileo (later known as Sister Maria Celeste)
Virginia O'Hanlon, 8 year old who wrote to "The Sun" newspaper resulting in the famous "Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus" response
Virginia Johnson, sex researcher of Masters and Johnson fame

Pop Culture References for the Name Virginia

Virginia is one of the 50 American states along with West Virginia
Virginia, Ted's mom on, "How I Met Your Mother"
"Who's Afraid Of Virginia Woolf?" absurdist play by Edward Albee
Virginia "Pepper" Potts, character in the Marvel universe; partner of Tony Stark and CEO of Stark Industries
'Meet Virginia', song by Train
'Leave Virginia Alone', song by Rod Stewart / Tom Petty
'Virginia', song by Tori Amos
Virginia Brush, character in 'The Strawberry Blonde'
Virginia Lewis is the main character in the miniseries 'The 10th Kingdom'
'Yes, Virginia', a 2009 Christmas special that tells the story of Virginia O'Hanlon writing to 'The Sun'
Virginia Dare, vanilla extract company
Virginia Chance, character on TV series 'Raising Hope'
"My name's Virginia - Virgin for short but not for long." (from 'Something Happened' by Joseph Heller)
Virginia "Ginny" Johnson, from Showtime's "Masters of Sex"
Virginia Doyle, mother of Gemma Doyle in the Gemma Doyle trilogy
Virginia, from song "Only the Good Die Young" by Billy Joel

Geena, Geenia, Geenya, Genia, Genya, Ginella, Ginelle, Ginger, Gingia, Ginnee, Ginni, Ginnie, Ginny, Ginya, Jenell, Jenella, Jenelle, Jinia, Jinjer, Jinnie, Jinny, Vergie, Verginia, Verginya, Virge, Virgenya, Virgie, Virgine, Virginnia, Virgy

Virginia's International Variations

Gigi, Virginie (French) Vegenia, Wilikinia (Hawaiian) Gina, Ginata, Ginia (Spanish)