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Gender: F Meaning of Zenobia: "force of Zeus" Origin of Zenobia: Greek

Popularity: this week.

With historical roots as a beautiful and intelligent ancient queen and literary ties to Hawthorne and Edith Wharton novels, this rarity could appeal to adventurous parents seeking the exotically unusual. Tina Fey used it as her daughter Alice's middle name.

Zenobia was the intriguing third century Queen of Palmyra who for a time ruled the eastern Roman Empire, Ethan Frome's wife Zeena was born Zenobia, and Zenobia Moodie was one of the most colorful characters in Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Blithedale Romance.

Zenobia reached a high of Number 683 in 1909; by 1925, she was below Number 1000.

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Famous People Named Zenobia

Zenobia (3rd century), the famous queen of Palmyra
Alice Zenobia Richmond (b. 2005), daughter of Tina Fey

Pop Culture References for the Name Zenobia

Zenobia Forster, dark and queenly character in The Blithedale Romance by Nathaniel Hawthorne
Zenobia ("Zeena"), Ethan Frome's whining hypochondriac wife
The name of Mrs George Collins in G. Bernard Shaw's play Getting Married (1908)
The Queen Zenobia is a cruise ship in the game Resident Evil: Revelations
Zuri Zenobia Ross, full name of one of the main characters on the Disney Channel show Jessie
The second element (-bia) is identical to the name of a personification of Violence, Force; in Greek mythology Bia was the daughter of Pallas and Styx. Together with Hephaestus and her brother Cratos, she chained Prometheus to the rock.
Alternatively Zenobia may be a Greco-Latin form of some Semitic name (e.g., perhaps one akin to the Arabic Zaynab).

Cenobie, Zeba, Zeena, Zenaide, Zenayda, Zenda, Zenina

Zenobia's International Variations

Zenia, Zenaida, Zenobie, Zenna (French) Zenovia, Zinovia (Russian) Cenobia, Senobia (Spanish)