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Gender: Female Meaning of Cicely: "blind" Origin of Cicely: English variation of Cecilia

The name Cicely is a girl's name of English origin meaning "blind". Cicely and is often added to lists like Unique Girl Names: Unusual and Rare and discussed in our forums with posts like "Names on NB that make you go WOW!".

From the experts:

This frilly Victorian name is a variant of Cecilia and Cecily, with which it might well be confused. Cicely was a surprise choice for comedienne Sandra Bernhard.

Literary Cicelys can be found in Sir Walter Scott's "Kenilworth" and the 1925 Dos Passos novel "Manhattan Transfer."

A distinguished bearer is actress Cicely Tyson. Cicely, or Sweet Cicely is also a herbaceous plant with a strong taste reminiscent of anise,and is sometimes used for medicinal purposes.

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

Famous People Named Cicely

Cicely Tyson, American actress
(Esmerelda) Cicely Courtneidge, English actress, comedienne and singer
Cicely Mary Barker, English author and illustrator ("Flower Fairies")
Cicely Mary Saunders, English nurse who founded the hospice movement

Pop Culture References for the name Cicely

Cicely, Alaska, fictional setting of TV's "Northern Exposure"
Lady Cicely Waynflete, character in G. Bernard Shaw's "Captain Brassbound's Conversion" (1900)

Chilli, Cicily, Ciciley, Cillie, Chilla, Cilly, Cicelia, Cile, Cicilie, Cecilie, Cecily, Cicelie, Cilka, Cicilia


EW314 Says:


Cicely is my preferred variant of Cecilia. When I see or hear Cecily, I can't get past "Cecil", which is still a dated and unattractive masculine name for me. Cicely feels lighter, fresher and more quintessentially English, and the fact that it's also the name of a sweet-smelling herb gives this name a lovely, delicate, summery feel for me.

I don't think the nickname Sissy is a must - I'd personally use Cece, which I think is lovely.

Catastroffy Says:


I think this is my favourite version now.
For starters I pronounce it "SISS-uh-lee", rather than the "SEH-silly" I automatically say when I see Cecily, and I associate it with Cicely Mary Barker and the plant Sweet Cicely.
But being called Sissy would be a drawback.

Saffron_Rice Says:


Cicely can escape the hideous "blind" meaning that Cecily has if we remember that Sweet Cicely is a plant (Myrrhus Odoratus) - therefore it can be argued Cicely is a plant name :)