German Girl Names
German girl names include such classics as Alice and Emma along with many girl names that rank among the most fashionable today, both in Germany and the English-speaking world.
Along with Alice and Emma, the top German girl names in the US Top 1000 today include Adele, Amelia, Annalise, Ella, Elsa, Emmeline, Millie, and Zelda. In Germany, unique girl names with modern style include Anja, Frieda, Ida, Maude, Romy, and Tilly.
The top girl names in Germany include both those popular throughout Europe and North America, such as Emma, Mia, and Sophia, along with girl names particular to Germany, such as Lotta, Leni, and Nele, a German short form of Cornelia.
In Germanophone Switzerland, Emma and Emilia are the most popular German names for girls.
The roster of top German girl names includes German variations of many familiar names, often with a spelling twist. Emilia ranks among Germany’s top names rather than Amelia, Klara takes the place of Clara, Emilie stands in for Emily, Sofie and Lilly are used instead of the usual English versions Sophie and Lily.
You can browse the complete roster of German girl names on Nameberry here, ordered by their popularity on Nameberry.
Description:Alice is a classic literary name that's both strong and sweet, which got a big bounce via Tina Fey's choice of the name for her daughter. Alice has experienced a recent surge in popularity along with other girl names starting with A.
Description:Amelia is one of the hottest girls' names, a successor to the megapopular Emma and Emily. Amelia, which spent several years at Number 1 in England, vaulted into the US Top 10 in 2017 and continues to rise.
Origin:Variant of Adelheidis, German
Description:Adelaide is now heading straight uphill on the coattails of such newly popular sisters as Ava, Ada, and Audrey, and in the company of Adeline and Amelia. It was chosen by actress Katherine Heigl for the name of her second daughter.
Description:Matilda is a sweet vintage name that has been gently climbing the popularity list for the past 15 years, after a half-century slumber. The spunky children's book heroine Matilda is one factor in its rise, along with others of its class like Eloise and Caspian.
Origin:Feminine variation of William
Description:Willa has become increasingly fashionable, with its combination of Willa (born Wilella) Cather-like pioneer strength and the graceful beauty of the willow tree.
Origin:German or Turkish
Meaning:"noble, nobility, or island"
Description:Ada is one of the classic baby names for girls that is suddenly super stylish again. A favorite at the end of the nineteenth century, Ada is an alternative to the over-popular Ava. Ada is also part of the trend toward simple, old-fashioned names beginning with a vowel, like Ivy and Ella.
Description:Emma originated as a diminutive for Germanic names beginning with the ermen root. A very old royal name well used throughout the centuries—Queen Emma married King Ethelred the Unready in 1002—Emma is also historically associated with Lady Hamilton, the mistress of Lord Nelson and muse of painter George Romney.
Origin:Old French form of archaic German Amal
Description:Emmeline is an Emma relative and Emily cousin that is destined for greater use in the wake of the megapopularity of those two names. A recommended Nameberry fave, Emmeline hopped onto the US Top 1000 in 2014 for the first time ever. While it is genuinely an old name, it was rarely used a century ago; only 17 baby girls were named Emmeline in 1915, the same number as were named Ernie!
Origin:Diminutive of Mildred or Millicent
Meaning:"gentle strength; strong in work"
Description:Millie is back. It's a Top 100 name throughout much of the English-speaking world, though not yet in the US. Millicent would be an appealing long form, but many people are using Millie all by its cute self -- so many, in fact, that it returned to the Top 500 in 2015 for the first time since World War 2 and continues to climb.
Meaning:"all, completely; fairy maiden"
Description:Ella has parallel derivations, first as the Norman variation of the Germanic Alia—itself a nickname for names containing the element ali. It’s also a Hebrew name, referring to a tree in the pistachio family or in modern Hebrew, "goddess." In English speaking countries and Scandinavia, Ella developed as a diminutive for names beginning with El-, such as Eleanor and Elizabeth.
Origin:Diminutive of Rosemary, Roma, Romana, Romilly etc.
Description:Austrian actress Romy Schneider seemed to be the singular bearer of this international nickname name until it found new style currency in the past decade.
Description:The lovely Lorelei, a name from old German legend, was a beautiful Rhine River seductress whose haunting voice led sailors to hazardous rocks that would cause them to be shipwrecked. And this siren image clung to the name for ages.
Origin:Diminutive of Griselda
Meaning:"gray fighting maid"
Description:Classified as an early beauty, Zelda has long and often been used as such for characters in books and films. Since 1986, Zelda has been a prime Nintendo name, as in the Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess.
Description:Amalia is a widely cross-cultural name, heard from Italy to Romania, Germany to Scandinavia. The current heir to the Dutch throne is Princess Catharina-Amalia of Orange. It can be pronounced ah-MAH-lee-a or ah-mah-LEE-a.
Description:Many vowel names stylish a century ago are coming back, and Ida seems like a possible, logical successor to Ada and Ava.
Origin:French variation of Amelia
Description:Emily gets a Bohemian spin and a French accent when it becomes Amelie. This favorite among French girl names has been gaining notice here thanks to the charming 2001 French film Amelie; it entered the American popularity list in 2002 and is now solidly established in the Top 1000.
Origin:German, diminutive of Margarethe
Description:Greta is an Old World name long tied to the iconic Garbo. Along with other Old Hollywood glamour names, Greta seems to be showing slight signs of a comeback; it was chosen by David Caruso and by Phoebe Cates and Kevin Kline for their daughters.
Origin:German, feminine variation of Wilhelm
Description:Wilhelmina was long burdened with the Old Dutch cleanser image of thick blond braids and clunky wooden clogs, but that started to be changed somewhat by the dynamic Vanessa Williams character on Ugly Betty, and even further by the choice of Wilhelmina by ace baby namers Natalie and Taylor Hanson. For the less adventurous, Willa is, for now, still a more user-friendly female equivalent of William.
Origin:Diminutive of Adelheid; German
Description:Heidi became known—and popular—via the 1880 eponymous children's classic by Swiss writer Johanna Spyri and, despite decades of American Heidis of all sizes, shapes, and personalities, the name seems permanently tethered to that spunky little girl on the Alpine mountaintop in the book and Shirley Temple movie.
Origin:English and French diminutive of Matilda, German
Description:Maude, also spelled Maud, is a lacy, mauve-tinted name that was wildly popular a hundred years ago, but has been rarely heard in the past fifty. Some stylish parents are starting to choose it again, especially as a middle.