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Gender: Female Origin of Odessa: Russian place-name

The name Odessa is a girl's name of Russian origin. Odessa and is often added to lists like Unique Baby Names: Unusual and Rare and discussed in our forums with posts like "Baby a Day".

From the experts:

Odessa, a Ukrainian port city, was given its name by Russia's Catherine the Great, who was inspired by Homer's Odyssey. It would make an original and intriguing choice.

Though rare today, Odessa had more U.S. popularity in the past than you might imagine. It actually ranked in the Top 1000 every year from 1880, the year Social Security records began to be kept, through 1956. Michael Chiklis, onetime Commish, has a daughter named Odessa.

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

Famous People Named Odessa

Odessa Cleveland, American actress
Odessa Warren Grey, American milliner, entrepreneur, and performer
Odessa Lee Grady Clay, mother of American boxer Muhammad Ali
Odessa Young, Australian actress
Odessa Chiklis (b. 2009), daughter of actor Michael Chiklis
Jennifer Odessa Nettles, lead singer of American country band Sugarland

Pop Culture References for the name Odessa

Odessa Green-Light, main character in "Odessa Again" by Dana Reinhardt
Odessa Cubbage, minor character in video game "Half-Life 2"
Odessa Dobson, a character in TV movie The Spoils of Babylon
Odessa, character in the fantasy series Etheria
Odessa, song by Caribou
Odessa, Ukraine
Odessa, Texas, USA

Odyssia, Adessia, Adeshia, Adesha, Odyssa, Odissa, Adessa, Odessia


lanareid Says:


Met a little Odessa a few weeks ago who went by the nn Essie. She was very sweet and I think the nn is adorable!

CocoaPuff Says:


Well, until we start naming our babies Kiev and Chernobyl, then I don’t think you have to worry about appropriation as a phenomenon. Lighten up!

eve Says:


unless you're ukrainian don't appropriate my culutre u north american hacks

eve Says:


thats beautiful. odessa's really can cure all and bring happuness

SumiSum Says:


ruined by a really ODD-essa who annoys the soul out of me and she is also the least girliest person I know

paulapuddephatt Says:


Beautiful name, love it

Sara T W Paschal Says:


My grand daughters name <3

headintheclouds Says:


I see Odessa being similar to Odette in its strength and interesting origins, but girlier and more epic-sounding, especially with its close sound to odyssey/Odysseus. It's lovely, and would definitely be a unique and "exotic" name due to its place name association.

Essa Says:


I can definity see this having a pretty rapid climb! I love it! I think I'd be worried about using the nickname Odie incase it got pronounced like odd but I love Dess/Dessa or maybe even Essa (which isn't my real name but would be quite cool to pass onto a daughter).

Odessa Zang Says:


I would prefer the nickname Dessy.

sunberry115 Says:


Love this name and Dessa is an adorable nickname. WOULD SOO USE.

sunberry115 Says:


I absolutely love this name and I love Dessa as a nickname.

amberdaydream Says:


This isn't a Russian place name. It's the English and Russian form of a Ukrainian place name (Odesa).

LadyVanRaven Says:


An interesting and beautiful name. I used to be neutral on this name but now I love it!

faithnamer Says:


This is such a pretty name and I love the nn Odie! :)

redvelvet Says:


Odessa was one of my guilty pleasure names growing up.

Guest Says:


This name sounds like it could be a depression medicine to be honest.