EEV-lin; EV-uh-lin
"desired; or water, island"

Evelyn Origin and Meaning

The name Evelyn is a boy's name of English origin meaning "desired; or water, island".

Renowned English author Evelyn Waugh pronounced his name "EEV-lin" (fun fact: his first wife, also named Evelyn, was referred to as "She-velyn"). But "EV-uh-lin" also works, and is probably the most familiar pronunciation of the name today.

It may be a Top 10 pick for girls right now, but in the 17th century, it was given more often to boys – as a surname name originally derived from the Norman given name Aveline. It was especially popular among the upper classes, where family surnames as given names were well used.

Evelyn relates to the Norman French female name Aveline, the origins of which are not entirely clear. Theories include "desired" and "water, island".

# in the US

Evelyn Rank in US Top 1000

# 1489 on Nameberry

Evelyn Rank in Nameberry Top 1000

Evelyn Popularity

Famous People Named Evelyn

  • (Arthur) Evelyn St. John WaughEnglish novelist
  • Evelyn Robert Adrian de RothschildEnglish financier
  • Evelyn Leightonson of British author Marie Leighton, brother to poet Roland Leighton and artist Claire Leighton
  • Richard Evelyn ByrdAmerican naval officer and explorer

Evelyn in Pop Culture

  • Theodore Evelyn "Ted" Mosbycharacter on TV's "How I Met Your Mother"
  • Evelyn Napiersuitor of Lady Mary Crawley on TV's "Downton Abbey"
  • Crabtree and Evelynretailer of bath and body products

Evelyn in Nameberry Blog Posts