- this week

Gender: F Origin of Marilyn: English, combination of Mary and Lynn Marilyn's Popularity in 2016: #491

For a name that was in the Top 20 for a whole decade--the 1930's--Marilyn has attained the status of almost a one-person name. Just say the name Marilyn, and most people will know who you mean. Yet strangely enough, though Marilyn Monroe (born Norma Jean and renamed in tribute to earlier star Marilyn Miller) was the sex symbol of her generation, very little stardust adhered to her name. In fact, when Mariah Carey wished to honor the star in her daughter's name, she chose to call her Monroe rather than Marilyn.

There have, however, been a number of other notable Marilyns, including opera singer Horne, novelist French and lyricist Bergman--not to mention male musician Marilyn Manson (nee Brian). Actress Kim Novak was born Marilyn.

And since there were more than six hundred babies named Marilyn last year, it is clearly still a viable choice.

Famous People Named Marilyn

Marilyn Monroe (born Norma Jeane Mortenson/Baker), iconic American actress
Marilyn Pauline Novak, birth name of American actress Kim Novak
Marilyn Horne, American opera singer
Marilyn Meseke, Miss America 1938
Marilyn Buferd, Miss America 1946
Marilyn McKnight, Miss America 1958
Marilyn Denis, Canadian TV host
Marilyn Miller (born Mary Ellen Reynolds), American actress
Marilyn McCoo, American actress and singer
Marilyn Border, American actress; twin
sister Roz Borden
Marilyn Manson (male vocalist, born Bryan Hugh Warner
Marilyn (Rovell) Wilson-Rutherford, American singer; first wife of musician Brian Wilson; mother of singers Carnie and Wendy Wilson

Pop Culture References for the name Marilyn

Marilyn Truman, character on TV's "Will & Grace"
Marilyn Sudor, character on TV's "Boston Public"
Marilyn Lovell, character in film "Apollo 13"
Marilyn Whirlwind, character on TV's "Northern Exposure"
Marilyn Nesbit, one time character in Law and Order: SVU