Gender: Female Pronunciation: LAY-la Meaning of Leila: "night" Origin of Leila: Arabic Leila's Popularity in 2019: #225

Leila Origin and Meaning

The name Leila is a girl's name of Arabic, Persian origin meaning "night".

Leila was popularized in the West by the poet Byron, who used it in his poem Don Juan for a ten-year-old Turkish girl. Leila also appears as a fairy in the Gilbert & Sullivan comic opera Iolanthe.

The haunting Leila been chosen by such celebs as Al Roker and Greta Scacchi and Vincent D'Onofrio. While Leila has managed to appear on the Top 1000 list in the U.S. since its inception in 1880, phonetic form Layla is now much higher on the list in America. And parents attracted to girls’ names with the double l sound will find that most examples -- from Leila to Lila to Lily and Lillian and Lilith-- are zooming up the charts and, while classics, are bordering on trendiness.

Yet another alternative is Lelia, a Latin name used in Roman times.

16 names similar to Leila

These 16 names were selected by our users that were looking for other names like Leila. If you didn't find an alternative name that you like better than Leila, try our name generator. It allows you to go beyond the similarities of a name, which can provide a lot of inspiration!

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


Rank in US: #225

- this week

Famous People Named Leila

Pop Culture References for the name Leila

Laila, Lilah, Leyla, Lila, Layla, Leela, Leelah, Lela, Lelia, Leilia, Lelah, Leland, Leilah


Yasmin Andries Says:


I see your point, but the name remains foreign and some grammar rules don't apply to them. And not everyone is from America, USA, whatever. In my language for example, Leila is pronounced how its spelled.

Yasmin Andries Says:


In my language is pronounced like it spelled.

Daiseymae Says:


Lee-lah is one of my favorite names, but it is also spelled as "Lela" which is the one that I like the most.

BabyHall Says:


I find that extemly confusing

BabyHall Says:


Same, that definition seems more fitting.

Leila Says:


My name is Leila and spelt this way too. Im Australian and it is pronounced Lee-la

SMH-DraggingMyHeels Says:


Yes, my mother is called Leila /lee-luh/
I also know a 40 something Leila /Leeluh/ and a few toddlers named Leila /Leeluh/
(I am in Ohio -- met one Leila -- pronounced layla - baby in Louisiana, so maybe different locales or regions change things up a bit.

I quite agree with your logic, about American pronunciation ...and it having little to do with
I also remember in the 80s and 90s, all of the arguing over Leigh --- and all of the names that derived from that trend. I know a few Leighs /lee/ yet SEVERAL KayLeighs, Ashleigh one Juleigh,
but now there are a few Leighton babies -- /lay-ton/
I guess it is no wonder people find it all a bit confusing.

SMH-DraggingMyHeels Says:


Sheila is same vowel spelling and is /shee-luh/
I know a few Leilas, and they all are /lee-luh/

pam Says:


I didn't realize there was so much disagreement over the pronunciation of this name! Leila is usually lay-la while Lila is lye (rhyming with eye or my) la and Leela is lee-la. No matter how "correct" the pronunciation you use, you can bet you'll hear plenty of "wrong" ones!

Bellscarlet Says:


Incorrect. I know two separate Leilas, not including my daughter; they both spell their names Leila with the Lee-lah sound. We're all in America, so Arabic or Irish roots has little to do with the rules of American grammar. "Ei" can make the long E sound in English (as in Leigh).

bordercollie Says:


Such a beautiful name. I far prefer it to flimsier double L names like Lily.

roseofjune Says:


Sheila is pronounced that way because it is Irish. Leila is pronounced Layla because it is Arabic.

Leila Cardinal Kjærbo Says:


My name is Leila and it is pronounced Lila :)

Scarlet Silva Says:


It's pronounced Lee-lah. Think Sheila. "Ei" can make the "ee" sound, and that is the case with this name. This was my grandmother's name and also an acquaintance's name. It's also going to be my daughter's name when she is born this October. Leela makes me think leel-a. If you want the Lay-lah sound, then you should spell the name Layla. I love this name!

Lena_Aline Says:


I think the meaning is more along the lines of "beautiful darkness".

Catastroffy Says:


Usually "lay-luh". Lila or Leela would be "lee-luh".

Leah3456 Says:


I love the double "l" sound in this name.

lainerector1 Says:


Is this pronounced like Lee- Luh or Lay -Luh

Guest Says:


I like this spelling better than Layla.