Names That Are Variations
There are thousands of names that are variations of other names. These variations might be as small as a spelling difference or as large as variations that seem totally unrelated to the original. Nicknames may be considered variations, as many international versions of the same name.
All the baby names listed on Nameberry as variations of other names are gathered in this list.
Origin:Hebrew, Latin or Germanic
Meaning:"life; bird; water, island"
Description:In medieval times, Ava was a diminutive of Germanic names beginning in Av-, in particular Aveline, from which the name Evelyn would eventually arise. It may derive from a Proto-Germanic root meaning "island" or "water". However, the medieval name eventually fell out of use entirely, only to resurface in contemporary times. This suggests that today’s Ava may be a modern variation of Eva. Alternatively, Ava could also derive from the Latin avis, meaning "bird." Ava has separate Persian roots as a name meaning "voice" or "sound."
Origin:English variation of Jacob, Hebrew
Description:James is an English derivation of the Hebrew name Jacob. James is biblical (the name of two apostles in the New Testament), royal (kings of both England and Scotland), presidential (with more U.S. Chief Executives named James (six) than any other name), and it is shared by countless great writers and entertainers.
Origin:Spanish and Italian variation of Elizabeth, Hebrew
Meaning:"pledged to God"
Description:Isabella is the Latinate form of Isabel, a variation of Elizabeth which originally derived from the Hebrew name Elisheba. Variations Isabelle and Isabel are also popular, with the Scottish spelling Isobel another possibility. Newer alternatives include Sabella and Isabetta.
Origin:Spanish variation of Camilla
Meaning:"young ceremonial attendant"
Description:The Spanish Camila, pronounced ka-MEE-la, is the fastest rising version of this ancient Roman name, but recent royal Camilla may have helped promote the British brand. Camila is one of the top baby names in California for girls. In Roman myth, Camilla was a swift-footed huntress so fast she could run over a field without bending a blade of grass. Pop star Camila Cabello used her first name for her debut album.
Origin:Feminine variation of Emil, Latin
Description:Emily was derived from the Roman name Aemilia, which may have evolved from the Latin word aemulus, meaning "hardworking" or "rival." Amelia, although similar, has separate origins — it was derived from the Germanic name Amalia. Emilia, however, has the same Latin root as Emily.
Meaning:"gift of God"
Description:Mateo is a Latinate form of Matthew, which derived from the Hebrew name Mattiyahu, consisting of the elements mattan, meaning "gift" and yah, which references the Hebrew God. Mateo can also be spelled Matteo, which is the Italian variation. Matheo is an archaic Spanish spelling, although it is used in France as Mathéo.
Origin:English variation of French Provencal Alienor, meaning unknown
Description:While some think Eleanor is a variation of Helen via Ellen, it actually derives from the Provencal name Aliénor, of highly-debated meaning. It may come from the Germanic name Adenorde, meaning "ancient north" or "noble north". Another theory is that it derives from the Latin phrase alia Aenor, meaning "other Aenor," used to distinguish some original Eleanor, who was named after her mother Aenor. Queen Eleanor of Aquitaine brought it from France to England in the twelfth century. Other spellings include Elinor and Eleanore.
Origin:Spelling variation of Zoe
Description:Zoey is a modern spelling variation of Zoe, the Greek Jewish translation of Eve. Despite its Jewish origins, Zoe was historically more popular among Christians. Two early saints were named Zoe—Saint Zoe of Rome and Saint Zoe of Pamphylia.
Origin:English from Latin, variation of Julius
Meaning:"youthful, downy-bearded, or sky father"
Description:Julian was derived from Iulianus, which in turn came from Julius, a Roman family name. Its origin is shrouded in history, but possible roots include Latin iuvenis, meaning "youthfu"; Greek ioulos, meaning “downy-bearded”; or Jovis, a form of Jupiter, which means "sky father".
,br/>Julian was a 4th century Roman emperor, and St. Julian the Hospitaller is the patron saint of travelers. In Medieval England, Julian was considered a unisex name, eventually giving rise to the feminine given name Gillian.
Origin:Feminine variation of Emil, Latin
Description:Emilia is the feminine form of the Roman clan name Aemilius, which derived from the Latin aemulus, meaning "rival." In Shakespeare’s Othello, Emilia is the wife of Iago and confidante of Desdemona. Amelia, although homonymous, has a different root and meaning.
Origin:Spelling variation of Jackson
Meaning:"son of Jack"
Description:Jaxon has been mostly climbing in popularity since it entered the Top 1000 in 1997, proving the point that many parents have decided to rev up the cool factor of Jackson and give it this streamlined spelling. (Though we still prefer the original.) Kristin Cavallari used it for her son. Jaxson is another popular spelling.
Origin:English, variation of Lucia
Description:Lucy is the English form of the Roman Lucia, which derives from the Latin word "lux" meaning "light." Lucy and Lucia were at one time given to girls born at dawn. Lucy can alternatively be spelled Luci or Lucie.
Origin:French variation of Russian Natalia
Meaning:"birthday of the Lord"
Description:Natalie is the French variation of Natalia, a name originally derived from the Latin phrase natale domini, meaning “birthday of the Lord.” It was historically given to girls born around Christmas for this reason. Nathalie is an additional, though less common, spelling of the name.
Origin:Greek variation of Elijah, Hebrew
Meaning:"Yahweh is God"
Description:Elias, strong and charismatic, is following in the path of family members Elijah and Eli, and is also moving on up in popularity.
Origin:Spanish, Italian, German, Greek variation of Helen
Meaning:"bright, shining light"
Description:Elena, a pan-European version of Helen, has roots in Spanish, Italian, Slavic, and Romanian, among others. Helen, the name from which it derives, came from the Greek word helene, meaning "torch." Alternate spellings include Elaina, Ellena, and Alena.
Origin:Greek mythology name; Central American Indian empire name; Latinate variation of May; Spanish, diminutive of Amalia; variation of Maia; Hebrew
Description:In addition to being the name of a Central American culture, Maya was the legendary Greek mother of Hermes by Zeus, and means "illusion" in Sanskrit and Eastern Pantheism. It can also be spelled Maia, though both names have so many possible origins and meanings that not all of them are related. To the Romans, Maia/Maya was the incarnation of the earth mother and goddess of spring, after whom they named the month of May.
Origin:Spelling variation of Schuyler
Description:Newer, simpler forms of the Dutch surname Schuyler, stylish for both genders, are rising up the popularity list. Skylar is the most popular variation for girls. Skylar has been used by several celebs, including Sheena Easton and Joely Fisher.
Origin:Italian variation of Luke and Lucas
Meaning:"man from Lucania"
Description:If there was once a bias against this charming and venerable Italian name for possibly sounding too feminine, consider it gone. Since Luca entered the boys’ names U.S. popularity list in 2000, it has shot up in popularity. It's one of the top Italian baby names in the US and a popular choice throughout Europe as well.
Origin:French, feminine variation of Charles
Description:Caroline is a perennial classic, in the Top 100 since 1994. Caroline is elegant, calling to mind the Kennedy Camelot years and Princess Caroline of Monaco.
Origin:Scandinavian variation of Absalom
Meaning:"father of peace"
Description:A classic in its native Scandinavia, Axel has a cool rock 'n' roll flavor in the US, thanks to Guns N' Roses' Axl Rose (born William). Axel is a popular Scandinavian form of the Biblical Absalom, who was a son of King David, and is the name of the title character of William Faulkner's Absalom, Absalom.
Description:Valentina is a more romantic and artistic ballerina-type successor to Valerie; a pretty, recommended choice. Mexican-born actress Salma Hayek and husband Francois-Henri Pinault named their daughter Valentina Paloma.
Origin:French variation of Sophia
Description:Sophie is the French form of the Greek Sophia, for which it is also commonly used as a nickname. Sophies are scattered throughout European royal history, including Sophie of Thuringia, Duchess of Brabant, Princess Sophie of Sweden, and in modern times, Sophie, Duchess of Wessex, the wife of Britain's Prince Edward. German-born Catherine the Great was born Sophie of Anhalt-Zerbst, but changed her name to Catherine upon her conversion to Russian Orthodoxy.
Origin:Italian feminine variation of Gabriel
Meaning:"God is my strength"
Description:Gabriella is the feminine form of Gabriel, a name derived from the Hebrew Gavri’el. Gavri’el is composed of the elements gever, meaning "strong," and ’el, referring to God. Gabriella is used among a variety of cultures in the US, including Italian Americans, Latinos, and in the Jewish community. Gabriela is the Spanish spelling.
Origin:Italian variation of Ariadne, Greek
Description:The smooth, attractive Ariana is on the rise along with the fame of pop princess Ariana Grande. Also famous is twin spelling Arianna, which is associated with Greek-born online presence Arianna Huffington. Both Ariana and Arianna are widely used names and are equally acceptable spellings.
Origin:French feminine variation of Joseph
Description:Josephine is the feminine form of Joseph, a name ultimately derived from the Hebrew Yosef, meaning "Jehovah increases." In French it has an accent over the first E, which was omitted in the English, German, and Dutch translations of the name. Empress Joséphine du Beauharnais was born Marie-Josephe-Rose, but called Josephine by her husband, Napolean Bonaparte.
Origin:Italian and Spanish variation of Leonard, German
Description:For centuries this name was associated primarily with the towering figure of Italian Renaissance painter-scientist-inventor Leonardo da Vinci, and was scarcely used outside the Latin culture.
Origin:English variation of the German Eberhard
Meaning:"brave as a wild boar"
Description:Everett is a statesmanlike, wintry New England name whose recent leap in popularity can be credited to its similarity to trendy girls’ names such as Eva and Ava. Its high point was about a century ago, when Everett was a Top 100 name.
Origin:English variation of Magdalen
Meaning:"high tower or woman from Magdala"
Description:This lovely name with a soft and delicate image is an old-fashioned favorite that returned to favor in the 1990's, combining a classic pedigree with a cute nickname option: Maddy.
Origin:Spelling variation of Riley
Description:This substitute spelling of Riley has been popular with parents for a decade.
Origin:Welsh variation of John
Meaning:"the Lord is gracious"
Description:Evan was derived from Iefan, a Welsh version of John. John is ultimately a derivative of the Hebrew name Yochanan, comprised of the elements yo, meaning “God” and chanan, “to be gracious.” Evan is actually a Hebrew word itself, meaning “rock.”
Origin:English masculine variation of Emma, German
Description:Emmett, honest and sincere, laid-back and creative, is on the rise as a male cognate of the megapopular Emma and Emily, not to mention being a character in the popular Twilight series.
Origin:Hebrew or Egyptian
Meaning:"drop of the sea, bitter, or beloved"
Origin:Spelling variation of Irish surname Braden
Description:Brayden is the top spelling of one of the epidemically popular rhyming cousins of Aiden, hitting the Top 100 in 2005.. It has dipped a bit recently, but is still widely used. Other popular spellings include Braden, Braeden, Braydon, Braiden, Braedon and Bradyn. Take your pick.
Origin:Sanskrit; Modern variation of Aria
Description:Arya was derived from an Indo-Iranian word meaning "Aryan" or "noble." It is a masculine given name in Iran, Indonesia, Bali, and Sanskrit-speaking regions of India. In Hindu- and English-speaking parts of the world, Arya is more often a feminine name, the latter influenced by the similar Italian name Aria, meaning "air" or "song."
Origin:American variation of Kayla
Description:A widely used name, Kaylee pulls together something from Kayla and something from Hailey, yet somehow loses something in the process. It has surpassed cousin Kayla on the charts and is one of three girls' names starting with Kthat ranks in the US Top 100.
Origin:Spelling variation of Lila, Arabic
Description:The Lyla spelling variation has now superseded the original Lila — the former remains on the rise while the latter is consistently falling in popularity.
Origin:Italian variation of John
Meaning:"God is gracious"
Description:Giovanni is a venerable Italian classic that suddenly sounds fresh and cool. Ubiquitous in Italy, it has countless notable namesakes, from writer Boccaccio to designer Versace (nn Gianni).
Origin:French variation of Isabel
Meaning:"pledged to God"
Description:Isabelle is the French variation of Isabel, which emerged in the Middle ages as an Occitan form of Elizabeth. Medieval queens Isabella of Angoulême and Isabella of France helped popularize the name in the United Kingdom. Isobel is the Scottish version, Isabella the Italian, and Izabel is used in Brazil.
Origin:English spelling variation of Miles
Description:This alternate spelling of Miles has its fans, among them Myles-parents Eddie Murphy and Lars Ulrich. Pro basketball player Myles Turner uses this spelling. The Myles spelling is also associated with Pilgrim Myles Standish and so can make one of the classic Thanksgiving baby names.
Origin:Spanish variation of James
Description:The energetic Diego is rising rapidly along with a lot of other authentically Spanish baby names that work perfectly well with surnames of any origin.
Origin:French, variation of Remy (a boys name)
Description:Adorable name that's fashionable and keeps gaining momentum. Remi entered the US Top 1000 in 2013 and is now approaching the Top 100. The Remi spelling is more popular for girls, while Remy is more popular for boys, both both spellings are in the Top 1000 for both genders. That's a remarkable success story for a name that, in the late 1900s, was given to only a handful of babies in the US.
Origin:Feminization of Ximeno, Spanish
Description:Ximena, sometimes spelled Jimena, is a variation of boys’ name Ximeno. Spanish origins and popularity in the Latino community have boosted this name's popularity. Ximena Diaz was the wife of the Spanish national hero known as El Cid. Several well known Latin American actresses bear this name.
Origin:Spelling variation of Eliana
Meaning:"my God has answered"
Description:For if you prefer a double-L spelling of Eliana.
Origin:French and German variation of Louis
Description:Luis has long been one of the most popular Hispanic names in America — it was in the Top 100 every year from 1980 to 2014, though it's dropped a bit in popularity. It's familiar, yet would add a worldly touch to a basic surname.
Origin:French and English variation of Heloise
Description:To some, Eloise will forever be the imperious little girl making mischief at the Plaza Hotel, while the original version Heloise recalls the beautiful and learned wife of the French philosopher Peter Abelard, admired for her fidelity and piety.
Along with many other names with the El- beginning and featuring the L sound in any place, Eloise is newly chic. Eloise jumped back onto the popularity list in 2009, possibly thanks in part to the Eloise Hawking character on the popular TV series Lost. Eloise was the name of Jennifer Aniston's character in Love Happens. Denise Richards named one of her daughters Eloise.
Origin:Spelling variation of Kaden, modern invented name
Description:This version of Kaden is also a popular choice and one of the many boys' names starting with k that can also start with a C, as in Caiden, Cayden et al.. Kaiden Alenko is a character in the video game Mass Effect.
Origin:French variation of Valeria
Description:The name of a martyred medieval saint, Valerie has been on the popularity list since its earliest publication in 1880. Though it peaked in the 1960s, remaining in the Top 100 until 1988, it still doesn't sound terminally dated; the association with the word valor gives it a sense of boldness and makes it one of the special group of girl names that mean strong.
Origin:Spanish and Manx variation of John
Meaning:"the Lord is gracious"
Description:Juan, the Spanish version of John, is ubiquitous in the Spanish-speaking world, and is familiar internationally via such references as Don Juan and San Juan.
Origin:Feminine variation of Brian
Meaning:"strong, virtuous and honorable"
Description:Many different versions of Brianna are in the Top 1000 -- a sure sign that, though pretty, Brianna's gotten more and more difficult to make distinctive. This is the most popular spelling. It entered the US list in 1976, rose to the Top 100 in 1988, then got as high as Number 14 in 1999. Country singer Trace Adkins called his daughter Brianna. Though it sounds like it might be a modern invention, the name actually appeared as far back as the sixteenth century in Edmund Spenser's poem The Faerie Queen.
Origin:Feminine variation of Andrew, Greek
Meaning:"strong and manly"
Description:Andrea — a feminine form of Andrew (and a male name in several European cultures) — comes with a good selection of pronunciations — ANN-dree-a, AHN-dree-a, or ahn-DRAY-a — each with a slightly different image: girl next door/slightly affected/downright mysterious