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Gender: Female Origin of Marilyn: English, combination of Mary and Lynn Meaning of Lynn: Diminutive of Linda or Welsh, "lake" Marilyn's Popularity in 2017: #528

The name Marilyn is a girl's name of English origin. Marilyn is ranked #528 on our popularity charts and is often added to lists like Girl Names Ending in Lyn and discussed in our forums with posts like "Girls Makeover - Two Middles".

From the experts:

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.

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

Famous People Named Marilyn

Marilyn Monroe (born Norma Jeane Mortenson/Baker), iconic American actress
Marilyn Pauline "Kim" Novak, American actress
Marilyn Chambers, stage name of Marilyn Ann Briggs, American adult film actress
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 (Keith) Bergman, American songwriter
Manfrey Lecta "Marilyn" Duke, American pop singer
Marilyn Miller (born Mary Ellen Reynolds), American actress
Marilyn McCoo, American actress and singer of The 5th Dimension
Marilyn Border, American actress; twin of sister Roz Borden
Marilyn French, American feminist author
Marilyn Tucker Quayle, Second Lady of the U.S. as wife of VP Dan Quayle
Marilyn vos Savant, American advice columnist and record holder for highest IQ
Marilyn (Rovell) Wilson-Rutherford, American singer; first wife of musician Brian Wilson; mother of singers Carnie and Wendy Wilson
Marilyn Manson, stage name of Brian Hugh Warner, American male singer
Marilyn, stage name of Peter Robinson, Jamaican-British male singer

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


TechnoKitten Says:


Adorable name

cheesy-biscuit Says:


Marilyn is such a pretty name and definitely a possibility. It’s powerful and gorgeous. I love the vintage vibe and the Marilyn Monroe association.

Marilyn from Tarot Clarity Says:


Sweet :) I was named Marilyn Elizabeth. Marilyn was a big name as a little girl growing up but as a grown woman, I love it. I was named after my mother who was named after Marilyn Miller who was popular around the time of my mother's birth. Coincidentally, Marilyn Monroe was very popular around the time of my birth, so the name always seems to be associated with glamorous or notorious women.

Daiseymae Says:


It is a lovely name.

Marilyn Says:


My name is Marilyn and in my life time I have only met two other Marilyn's, my fathers cousin, whom i was named after, and a girl from school in the 2nd grade. I do love my name and my father has told me that though i was named after his cousin Marilyn Monroe had a strong effect on the decision.

paulapuddephatt Says:


I love this name, and not just for the Monroe association. It is probably the prettiest Mary related name, in my opinion. Norma Jean chose it for a reason. I think it's lovely to hear on the occasional child, and woman who is not of the generation that generally used it. I don't expect or hope for it to become super popular again, although anything is possible, but I do love it and enjoy hearing it.

indiefendi2 Says:


Team Marilyn over Monroe. I think Monroe is so tacky and dare I say stripperish (well, strippers tend to name themselves after Miss Monroe). Marilyn is lovely.

Andrya Cain Says:


I named my daughter Marilyn in 2007. I haven't come across another Marilyn in this generation of little girls. She is now 8 and we get many compliments on her name probably because it's a good strong name that is not so common anymore. We call her Mary for a nickname.

sirens_sam Says:


I like this name. I think I'd use it on a daughter, Marilyn Elizabeth has a nice ring to it. I'd probably use the nn Lynnie when she's little so she can grow into Marilyn.

Daiseymae Says:


I still think Marilyn is a pretty name.