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Gender: Male Meaning of Alexander: "defending men" Origin of Alexander: Greek Alexander's Popularity in 2017: #13

The name Alexander is a boy's name of Greek origin meaning "defending men". Alexander is ranked #13 on our popularity charts and is often added to lists like Middle Names for Boys and discussed in our forums with posts like "A brother or sister for little Jack or Olivia".

From the experts:

Alexander has been in the Top 25 since 1991. The noble Alexander has led to the popularity of so many spinoffs, such as Alex, Zander, Xan and Zan -- not to mention all the female versions -- that it almost feels as if the name world's been Alextrified out. But namers are still attracted to its imposing historic pedigree.

According to Greek legend, the first Alexander was Paris, who was given the nickname Alexander by the shepherds whose flocks he defended against robbers. He was followed by Alexander the Great, aka Alexander III, who conquered much of Asia. A royal name in Scotland, it is still highly popular there. In Gaelic, the name became Alasdair; in Spain, Alejandro; and in Italy, Alessandro.

Among the many notable Alexanders in history, standouts are Hamilton, Graham Bell, Fleming, Pope and Haig.

Naomi Watts and Liev Schreiber's Alexander is known as Sasha.

Find other names based on Alexander using our baby name generator.

Famous People Named Alexander

Alexander the Great, Macedonian conqueror
Alexander I and II, Emperors of Russia
Alexander, King of Greece
Alexander I-III, Kings of Scotland
Alexander, King of Yugoslavia
Willem-Alexander Claus George Ferdinand of Orange-Nassau, King of the Netherlands
Alexander Graham Bell, Scottish inventor of the telephone
Alexander Hamilton, Revolutionary War general, first Secretary of the Treasury and American Founding Father
(Friedrich Wilhelm Heinrich) Alexander von Humboldt, German biogeographer
Alexander Calder, American sculptor
Alexander William Gaskarth, singer of pop/punk band All Time Low
Alexander Ludwig, Canadian actor
Alexander Meigs Haig, United States general and Secretary of State
Alexander Pope, English poet
Alexander Rae "Alec" Baldwin, American actor
Alexander Johan Hjalmar Skarsgard, Swedish actor
Alexander, Jewish leader (Acts 4:6)
Alexander Cameron Rutherford, Canadian politician; 1st Premier of Alberta
Alexander, Bishop of Lincoln
Alexander Igoryevich Rybak, Belarusian-Norwegian singer-songwriter
Alexander Jerome Gould, American voice actor
Alexander David "Alex" Turner, English lead singer of Arctic Monkeys
Alexander David "Alex" Linz, American actor
Alexander Peden, Scottish Covenanter preacher
Alexander James "AJ" McLean, American singer of the Backstreet Boys
Alexander Armstrong, English comedian and presenter
Alexander Masters, English author
Alexander Dimmi, Yugoslavian singer
Alexander Kapranos, lead singer of Scottish band Franz Ferdinand
Alexander "Alex" Hirsch, creator of Disney cartoon "Gravity Falls" and Actually Satan
Miss J. Alexander, runway coach on "America's Next Top Model"
Alexander Instøy, member of Norwegian boy band The Main Level
Alexander Vail "Alex" Eckstein, American child actor; triplet brother of Benjamin and Caleb
Alexander Grigoryevich Lukashenko, President of Belarus
Alexander Massialas, American fencer
Alexander Gamelin, American-born ice dancer who represents South Korea
Alexander Johan Hjalmar Skarsgård, Swedish actor
Alexander Thomas "Alex" Castle, German music producer of "Twoloud"
Alexander Timothy "Alex" Marshall, American musician of rock band "The Cab"
Alexander Biehn (b. 2003), son of actor Michael Biehn
Alexander Puck (b. 2006), son of celebrity chef Wolfgang Puck
Alexander "Sasha" Pete Schrieber (b. 2007), son of actors Liev Schrieber and Naomi Watts
Alexander David Conrod (b. 2010), son of journalist and TV personality Nina García
Alexander "Zander" Rafahi Mehran, III (b. 2011), son of model Maggie Rizer
Alexander "Jack" John Buckley Ford (b. 2012), son of fashion designer Tom Ford
Alexander Frost Brown (b. 2014), son of country music singer Zac Brown
Prince Alexander Erik Hubertus Bertil of Sweden, Duke of Södermanland (b. 2016), son of Prince Carl Philip of Sweden, Duke of Värmland and Princess Sofia of Sweden, Duchess of Värmland
Alexander Clooney (b. 2017), son of actor George Clooney and Amal Clooney; twin of sister Ella
Talus Alexander Meraz, son of actor Alex Meraz

Pop Culture References for the name Alexander

Alexander "Alex" Stowe is a character in Lisa McMann's "Unwanteds" book series
Alexander Rozhenko, Worf's son on TV's "Star Trek: The Next Generation"
Alexander Saxton, character in "Horror Express"
Dr. Alexander "Alex" Karev, character on TV's "Grey's Anatomy"
Alexander "Xander" Harris, main character on TV's "Buffy The Vampire Slayer"
Alexander "Alec" Lightwood, character in 'The Mortal Instruments Series by Cassandra Clare
Alexander Ashford, character in the Resident Evil video game series
Alexander von Brennenburg, character in video game "Amnesia: The Dark Descent"
Alexander "Alex" Mercer, character in video game series Prototype
Sir Alexander Dane/Dr. Lazarus, character in movie "Galaxy Quest"
Alexander Szukalski, character from "Night Trains" by Barbara Wood
Alexander Goth, character in "The Sims"
Alexander Cross, character in "The Sims"
Alexander "Alex" Summers, also known as Havok, character in Marvel Universe
Alexander Goodwin Pierce, character in Marvel Universe
Alexander Joseph "Lex" Luthor, character in DC Universe
Alexander Knox, character in DC Universe
Alexander, a maleficent, ancient deity in the video game Final Fantasy XI
"Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day," children's book by Judith Viorst and 2014 movie
Alexander DeLarge, main character in "A Clockwork Orange" by Anthony Burgess

Alexander's International Variations

Alexei, Sasha, Aleksandr, Shura, Sanya (Russian) Alessandro, Sandro (Italian) Alexios, Alexandros (Greek) Alasdair, Alistair (Scottish Gaelic) Sándor (Hungarian) Alexio (Portuguese) Alexandre (French) Alastar (Irish Gaelic) Alejandro (Spanish) Alexandru (Romanian)


stella2007 Says:


Xander is a great name on its own too! Love it and much fresher. I'm not a big fan of name Alex and 99% of Alexander's will eventually be called Alex which is my only concern.

stella2007 Says:


Agree! My only issue with this name is the nickname Alex, I don't want my son to be automatically called Alex. I would prefer Alexander or Xander.

Alaina Says:


Alexander is a very good sounding name. But I think Alex is a little cutier and more handsome!

Yara Says:


I would go with Sasha/Sascha to be more original.

MonikerWanderer Says:


I love this name. It's so sophisticated and has endless nickname choices. I'd go with Lex.

LV51sfan91 Says:


Great strong name!!! Alexander could be called Al, Alex, Xander, or Andy!

pixelatedinfants Says:


How does a bastard, orphan, son of a whore and a Scottsman

pixelatedinfants Says:


There's a million things I haven't done!

Introverted Says:


Alexander Hamilton. My name is Alexander Hamilton!

The Ubiquitous Shadow Says:


Love this name, and I love the name Alec that can be used as a nickname

Jazzy7 Says:


Husband actually likes this name, I'm surprised because I never that he would think this name was "cool". Our son will most likely be an Alexander with nn Xan or Xander. Andy could work too or Axe/Axel if you want to edge it up.

RoddyThlayli Says:


I really like the name Alexander. Also the spelling Aleczander. Not a fan of the nickname Alex, but I really like Alec, Xan and Xander. Or even Lex.

kiwipop Says:


Xander sounds a lot better.

Nikolai_Michaletos Says:


Alexander is a great name, but I prefer its nickname Xan. I think it's milder somehow.

Olivia Dearing Says:



hannahmd Says:


I love this name, it's a strong name that fits a little boy or a man. The nickname Alex is horrible and very overused. It almost ruins the name for me, but I love the nickname Alec. The name is subtly different then Alex, but is much more sophisticated, and fresh.

TaliaCat Says:


yeah, the nickname ALEX ruins this name for me... But I do like Xander all on it's own

TaliaCat Says:


I prefer just Xander... More masculine and strong, somehow.

Addie88 Says:


I really dislike this name, and Alex even more.

Leah3456 Says:


This name reminds me of Alexander the Great.

Nicholas_Masovich Says:


This is a name that I adore! You can't wear this out. It's strong, sophisticated and smart.
I love it!

hellogoodbye111 Says:


Its a good name, but over used

kittykate928 Says:


I love the nn Andy with this name. It makes sense because if the 'ander' at the end of it, and it's so unexpected!

young_dreamer Says:


Great name!