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Gender: Female Meaning of Gladys: "land, nation" Origin of Gladys: Possibly a form or Claudia or Welsh

The name Gladys is a girl's name of Welsh origin meaning "land, nation". Gladys and is often added to lists like Saints' Names for Girls and discussed in our forums with posts like "Baby a Day".

From the experts:

Hard as it might be to believe, Gladys was the Harper of 1900, emerging almost out of nowhere to take the naming world by storm. It became a favorite among parents--and writers of romantic Edwardian novels, seen as somewhat exotic. One impetus was the 1870 Ouida novel Puck, whose heroine was the idealized beauty, Gladys Gerant.

Gladys reached as high as Number 11 at the turn of the last century, popular along with other s-ending names such as Doris. Though Gladys hasn't shown any signs of revival yet, some parents might respond to the 'glad'ness of it, and its gladiola-flower feel.

It's been associated in the U.S. with singer Gladys Knight.

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

Famous People Named Gladys

Saint Gladys, Welsh queen of saint-king Gwynllyw Milwr, mother of Cadoc the Wise
Gladys Maria Knight, American singer of The Pips
Gladys Constance Cooper, English actress
Gladys Moncreiff, Australian singer
Gladys Blossom Noon Spellman, U.S. Congresswoman from Maryland
Gladys Hulette, American silent film actress
Gladys May Aylward, English missionary to China
Gladys Gillem, American pro wrestler
Gladys Medalie Heldman, American tennis promoter
Gladys Louise Smith, birth name of Mary Pickford, Canadian-American actress
Gladys Love Presley, mother of singer Elvis Presley
Gladys Pearl Baker Mortensen, mother of actress Marilyn Monroe

Pop Culture References for the name Gladys

Gladys Eysenarch, character in "Jezebel" by Irene Nemirovsky (1936)
Gladys Herdman, character in "The Best Christmas Pageant Ever" by Barbara Robinson
Gladys Biggs, character in "Meet Mr Mulliner" (1927) by P. G. Wodehouse
Gladys Worsley, character in "Sylvia Scarlett" (1918) by Compton Mackenzie, twin sister Enid
Gladys Kravitz, neighbor on TV's "Bewitched"
Gladys Hilman, character in the "St Clare" book series by Enid Blyton
Gladys Witham, a well-to-do young woman working in a munitions factory in WWII-era Canada, on TV's "Bomb Girls" (2012-2014)
Gladys, Flavia's bike in the Flavia de Luce saga
GLADoS, antagonist from the video game Portal
Gladys Hannah, a character in "Fran Bow"
Gladys Gatsby, protagonist in the book "All Four Stars"

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