Gender: Female Origin of May: Diminutive of Margaret and Mary; month name Meaning of Margaret: Greek, "pearl"

May Origin and Meaning

The name May is a girl's name of English origin.

May is a sweet old-fashioned name that hasn't been on the national charts in several decades, but is definitely sounding fresh and springlike. Parents are beginning to see it once more as one of the prettiest middle name options. May was as high on the list as Number 57 in the 1880s; it's now 228 on Nameberry.

May started as one of the innumerable pet forms of Mary and Margaret, as well as a springtime month name along with April and June. She's represented in literature by May Bartram in Henry James's The Beast in the Jungle and May Welland in Edith Wharton's The Age of Innocence.

Actresses Emily Morton and Madeline Stowe named their daughters May, and Eric Clapton and Jodie Sweetin used it in middle place for theirs.

16 names similar to May

These 16 names were selected by our users that were looking for other names like May. If you didn't find an alternative name that you like better than May, 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 May using our baby name generator.


- this week

Famous People Named May

Pop Culture References for the name May

Maia, Mae, Maya, Maydena, Maybeth, Maeleah, Mayberry, Mayrene, Maelen, Mayela, Maye, Mayetta, Maeona, Maelea, Maydee, Maelle,

May's International Variations

Maj (Scandinavian) Mai (French) Maggia (Italian)


SeaOfTea Says:


Since it's a diminutive of Margaret/Mary/Maire, which can mean "drop of the sea", May can also share the meaning "drop of the sea".

Skittlewiddles Says:


I think May is too closely tied as a girl's nickname but I can see June as being unisex. (Nameberry does list June as such.)

josephinedagnall Says:


For me, it's:

briarblossom Says:


May is a lovely name.

fromtheocean12 Says:


Recently I've started to love May as a first name! I prefer the spelling Mae for a middle and May for a first.

Faye Says:


My name is Mayara and that's my nickname along with Maya and Yara. I like it very much, but the fact that it is a month name and I was born in September annoys me.

paulapuddephatt Says:


My late nan was Mary but known as May. It's lovely, but not sure if people give month names to children born in different months??? It makes a sweet middle name, but of course, is beautiful as a first name, also. Mae is an attractive variant.

berry_chick Says:


This isn't a bad name, but I'll always think of May from the Junie B. Jones series.

scblovesnames Says:


I like it.

CupcakeGirl13 Says:


This is a nice name, but also consider other spellings like Mae and Mei which Mei I dont think is very common

ElsaAnne Says:


This is a common middle name in my family, but due to the huge popularity of this name in the middle spot, I'm seriously put off using it. Although it's very cute.

Guest Says:


I want to use May or June for a boy. 😩🙏 I don't know why but I think it's so cute for boys too.

taliawhat Says:


Haha, it's always so funny to see how different name tastes can be, because mine is exactly what you wrote, only flipped! For me it's Maeve >>>>>>>>>>>Mae>May.

EvaThyssen Says:


This is a nice name :)

NaomiNY Says:


My maternal grandmother's middle name was May.

ClarissaTheBright Says:


I think this is a perfect second name if your baby will be born in May, like her 2name May =)

HatGirl Says:


i know a girl with this name spelled mae