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Gender: Female Meaning of Fenella: "white-shouldered one" Origin of Fenella: Celtic

The name Fenella is a girl's name of Celtic origin meaning "white-shouldered one". Fenella and is often added to lists like Unique Baby Names: Unusual and Rare and discussed in our forums with posts like "Names on NB that make you go WOW!".

From the experts:

More unusual than Fiona and more user-friendly than Fionnuala, the engaging Scottish Fenella, has been scarcely heard in this country.

Fenella first became known outside of Ireland when Sir Walter Scott used it for the character Finella Christian in his novel Peveril of the Peak.

Finola is another underused Anglicization of Fionnuala.

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

Famous People Named Fenella

Fenella of Fettercairn, possibly legendary assassin of the 10th-century Scottish King Kenneth II
Fenella Fielding, English actress
Fenella Woolgar, English actress
Fenella Kernebone, Australian TV presenter
Fenella Ephraim Mukangara, Tanzanian politician
Anne Ferelith Fenella Bowes-Lyon, Princess of Denmark, cousin of Queen Elizabeth II

Pop Culture References for the name Fenella

Fenella Christian, character in 'Peveril of the Peak' (1823)
Fenella Feverfew, character in Jill Murphy's The Worst Witch series
'Fenella Phizackerley' (1970), novel by Margaret Forster (from the book: 'Jordan had never known a Fenella. It was light and soft and pretty')
Fenella, main character in Barbara Cartland's book The Penniless Peer
Fenella, Suze's cousin in the Shopoholic book series

Fionola, Finella, Fionnuala, Fynella, Finola, Fennella


Eliane Says:


Fenella means pullover in Bulgarian so this is too weird for me...

Holbs Says:


I first came across this name in a J. Peterman catalog and loved it. However, I've since been told when I've asked for opinions that it sounds too much like "vanilla"

TheHumanCanvas Says:


I know a girl called Fenella, and I think it's really pretty! It's also very unusual, even here in Scotland. I've only heard it once.

LittleHeifer02 Says:


Fenella sounds adorable. Especially with the nicknames Nellie or Fen.

lesliemarion Says:


I too dislike ella endings as too familiar, but this name is incredibly refreshing and strong sounding. I love its nicknames of Nella and Fenna too.

AnonymousPerson Says:


I like this name, although I am not usually keen on "ella" endings.