Gender: Female Meaning of Ophelia: "help" Origin of Ophelia: Greek Ophelia's Popularity in 2019: #387

Ophelia Origin and Meaning

The name Ophelia is a girl's name of Greek origin meaning "help".

Ophelia is a beautiful name that has long been hampered by the stigma of Hamlet's tragic heroine—for whom he seems to have invented the name—but more and more parents are beginning to put that association aside. There is also a gutsy Ophelia in Harriet Beecher Stowe's 1852 Uncle Tom's Cabin, which seems to have had some influence on baby namers at the time.

Off the list since 1958, Ophelia reentered the US Top 1000 in 2015, and rose more than 600 spots since then, with no signs of slowing down. You may be surprised to learn that Ophelia is one of only nine girl names starting with O to rank in the Top 1000, and four of them are spellings of Oakley or Oaklyn. Ophelia may be the next Olivia.

Among the actresses who have played modern non-Shakespearean Ophelias are Jamie Lee Curtis and Blake Lively. The heroine of the film Pan's Labyrinth used the Spanish spelling, Ofelia.

Actress Patricia Neal and author Roald Dahl named one of their now grown daughters Ophelia, and more recently musician Dave Grohl named his baby girl Ophelia Saint.

16 names similar to Ophelia

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


Rank in US: #387

- this week

Famous People Named Ophelia

Pop Culture References for the name Ophelia

Ophelie, Availia, Ubelia, Ovelia, Ovalia, Ophelya, Ophilia, Uvelia, Phelia

Ophelia's International Variations

Ophélie, Ofilia (French) Ofelia, Filia (Spanish)


Lunessence Says:


I think Ophelia and Delphine would make the cutest twin girl names.

Princess Hockey Says:


Can someone tell me why this name skyrocketed? I see it sitting at #374 in the US in 2018 and now on Nameberry its at freaking #16. Is it because of that terrible movie that flopped this year? Is this name really going to skyrocket even further?? :( I don't want my kid to be one of 5 Ophelias in class....

clairels Says:


"Philia" itself has a positive meaning. It's unfortunate that you mostly hear it nowadays attached to the end of very negative things.

clairels Says:


Hamlet is still very much being performed and read. It's a masterpiece.

TechnoKitten Says:


Ophelia is a beautiful name,one of my favorite O names!

livialucille Says:


Ophelia Banksly, nickname Phi, badass femme fatale from the neo-noir webcomic Riverside Extras, is one of my favorite fictional characters of all time. This name is a winner for me.

Rosie2525 Says:


Opium?? 😳 Not what I think of when I hear this name! I think it's beautiful :)

Rosie2525 Says:


I love this name! I'm glad its not overused. I don't get why some don't like it, but they probably like names I find boring or too popular, to each their own, I guess ☺

Rosie2525 Says:


Thank you! My thoughts exactly! I have always adored this name ❤

RoseGoldHeart Says:



Rosie2525 Says:


I realize this is an old post and you've PROBABLY already named your daughter 😄 but I'll give my opinion, anyway: Ophelia is a beautiful name! I'm not knocking Athena, but I'd definitely choose Ophelia over Athena! ☺

Rosie2525 Says:


Haha! That's why my husband vetoed this name! 😆 "Oh feel ya"! I did NOT hear that in the name until he mentioned it. I still like Ophelia, though 😗 Not expecting yet, but getting names together. It's still on MY list 😉

mamanmia Says:


Anastasia was a real person... She was one of the last grand duchesses of Russia and was murdered by the Bolsheviks during the Russian Revolution. Also your daughter will 100% definitely read the play in highschool (i am at the moment), having said that, i love the name Ophelia and personally don't mind the play reference, i think its kind of cool and its awesome you named your daughter that

Eliza1303 Says:


I like this name a lot. I also think the nickname Sophi would be cool.

Looooovenames Says:


I think it's pretty. I named my dog this. But I do think it sounds like "oh feel ya".

SouthernGirl Says:


I don't really like the sound of this

Daiseymae Says:


Athena is way better than Ophelia.

CookieCrumbs Says:


In that case the meaning would be "Love Of" because that's what those suffixes mean. :3

CookieCrumbs Says:


I have an ancestress named Candice Ophelia, and I absolutely love this name. If I ever had to name a child, this would definitely be a middle choice. (Fortunately, I'm not having kids, so no children have to live with my name choices. xD)

oliviamcdonald Says:


I loved this name until my mother starting making "feel ya" jokes. :(

jmumford Says:


While I used to adore this name, but could never use it on a child. We named one of our pets Ophelia and one day I commented, "I'm going to go pet Ophelia" and my husband heard "I'm going to go pedophilia." Now pedophilia is all I think of when I hear it.

Dogandhug Says:


It reminds me more of the Lumineer's song "Ophelia", which is a great one. I wouldn't be surprised if the name became more popular than it is now because of that

Roisin O'Connor Says:


I love this name. In Ireland, while it's not as popular as it is in England, you know an Ophelia. My best friend's name is Ophelia for crying out loud! Eventually you learn to shrug off the tragic meaning and accept it for the beautiful name it is. It would actually fit a Mermaid character really well, don't you think?

FionaW Says:


Not to be mean or anything but for some reason I do not like this name. It kind of reminds me of opium or something. It just sounds odd to me

Daiseymae Says:


Not my style.

priviledgedpistachios Says:


I love this name as well as the french version of it

littlesz Says:


When she gets to high school, I am sure she'll appreciate the edgier side to the name. Teenage girls don't want to be frilly and powder pink.

littlesz Says:


I like the 4 Syl pronounciation: oh feel Li ah

headintheclouds Says:


The Shakespeare character association isn't the best, but Ophelia as a name really is beautiful and stunning. It's one of those lush epic ethereal names that really make an impact when you see it and hear it. I had an English teacher growing up who I thought was just the coolest (free-spirited, got away with dyeing her hair bright colors, was into hiking and organic gardening)-- when she named her baby Ophelia, it solidified this name in my mind as one of good taste and of the more offbeat variety.

ophelia Says:


I personally have never been teased simply told I should shorten 'such a beautiful Shakespearean name'

ophelia Says:


felias a cool nickname my name gets shortened to lia

ophelia Says:


My name is also Ophelia and I've had no teasing at all just people saying I had a nice name as wel as the occasional teacher being upset that I shorten it to Lia as its 'too beautiful to shorten'

ziggywiggy Says:


Juliet is being super popular, and I think Shakespear's Juliet was bat-shit crazier than Ophelia. yes Ophelia was mentally unstable, but she at least had a valid reason for it (her relationship with Hamlet was serious when he started going crazy AND she was pregnant with his child when he was unstable) unlike Juliet who was prepared to kill herself over a boy she had known for less than 10 hours that she had to serious ties to aside from her "love". I would love to name my future daughter Ophelia!

Tillie_Jay Says:


Ophelia is the main character in one of my stories. She's a time traveler that goes back to save her older brother from dying, but ends up realizing that you can't change the past and instead saves herself from years of depression following his death. All though Ophelia is the main character's name, she goes by the nickname Effie. I think it's such a pretty name and Effie is the cutest nickname for it.

jaz.fortune Says:


I'm naming my daughter Ophelia as well. Have you been teased or gotten funny looks since everyone seems to care so much about Hamlet?

jaz.fortune Says:


Good thing you won't be my daughter's teacher in the future. As an adult and a teacher, I would think you would be more open-minded and not tie a child to a character who doesn't exist.

jaz.fortune Says:


I'm naming our baby who is due this month Ophelia, too. I think it's a gorgeous name and like it better than Athena! But do whatever you and your partner love! Ophelia Grace or Athena Grace, both pretty :)

jaz.fortune Says:


Gorgeous name! I find it to be quite vintage and classic. Sounds like a princess name and it's not a popular choice which I love. We are naming our daughter Ophelia Belle and her nickname is Fia and Fia Belle. I love it so much :) I don't get why people care so much about the play like who cares? It's like saying you aren't going to name your child Anastasia or other names because of a character that isn't even real? Maybe if it was a real person, I guess. I think people should get their heads out of the gutter.... Kids aren't really reading Hamlet in school. My husband and I didn't and we don't care, its a character. Our daughter doesn't represent an old play that she will probably never read or hear about in high school. Our daughter is her own person, her own definition of Ophelia.

abertawe Says:


Regardless, oh-FAY-lee is closer to the French than oh-PHIL-ee. It was a valid comment.

Miriahandlulu Says:


Oh this is stressing me!!! Ophelia Grace is the name I've chosen for my daughter who is due next month! I liked Athena as well, but I just couldn't get Ophelia out of my head! I wanted something classic & beautiful.... Girly but not trendy. 😁 As for Grace... There aren't many names that flow well with it!

juliana Says:


ok ophelia was no more crazy than hamlet lmao and it's a beautiful name! yea the connection 2 death & misery is unfortunate but it's not like dooming her 2 a life of tragedy and sadness just bc of shakespeare

caetano Says:


I love it! Beautiful

Moony Says:


I love this name but, it's very firmly in the top 1000. And given how beautiful and elegant and stunningly feminine it is, it's only going to get more popular. Ophelia might very well be the next Sophia, so as much as I adore it and wish I could use it, I'm going to have to let this one go.

Luísa Says:


I pronounce it like oh- FEH-lee-ah.

SimoneKadele Says:


Yes! I hate to nitpick, but sometimes it bothers me when people on here pronounce French a's with very emphasized ay's. It's between ay and eh, especially a Spanish eh.

Lola Says:


If you really pronounces it like it sounds (owe-feel-ee-uh) it doesn't sound like I feel ya.

Shannon4567 Says:


I'm an Australian, so I can imagine people pronouncing the name 'I feel ya' in a bogan accent. This puts me off the name.

Plutophelia Says:


I think that this name is going to get pretty popular. It fits in with the Olivia, Octavia vein. and I love that. it is a lovely name and needs more attention.

Catastroffy Says:


Well, the French é is difficult to translate to an English speaker, but it isn't "ay" in a way that rhymes with bay or lay -- not so broad a sound. It is sort of in between an "ay", an "ee" and an "ih" sound, but closest to the "ih". If you say "ay" very quickly, you just about get it.

ashbee Says:



ziggywiggy Says:


Actually, Shakespeare did not invent this name, but rather took it from Sannazaro's poem "Arcadia". I think this is a lovely name and I don't mind the Hamlet association

Catastroffy Says:


I prefer the sound of the French Ophélie (oh-PHIL-ee).

His Qu33n Ophelia Says:


my name is Ophelia and yes i will say its anice name

His Qu33n Ophelia Says:


the name is really nice cuz my name is ophelia :)

JessicaRK467 Says:


Love Love Love

victoria vanzura Says:


I saw a ballet a few years ago based on Hamlet and by far the most beautiful, memorable part of the whole production was the scene in which Ophelia drowns herself. They has this long, thin tray of water that stretched across the whole stage and the ballerina danced across it so gracefully, drops of water jumping out from under her pointed toes as she moved to the music. Yeah- she was technically drowning herself, but I've never seen a more beautiful sequence of dance in all the ballets I've been too. Ophelia is a beautiful name and I even like the slightly macabre, Shakespearean connection. It's COOLER that way! :)

Ophelia Says:


I get that a lot..

amf0224 Says:


I really love this name but if I would ever consider using it, I would have to read up on its history so I know what I'm getting into with this name!

Zoey_Artemisia Says:


I agree, the only things I know of Shakespeares are Romeo and Juliet and Othello

Renee Says:


My little sisters name is Lily-Ophellia I thought it was weird at first but it really suits her. She usually just goes by Lily or Lily-O

raevynstar Says:


Beautiful name, despite the connection to the play.

raevynstar Says:


But there's also bibliophelia (loving books, although I didn't spell that right...), which is much more positive.

ARose1712 Says:


Lol, whhyyyy!!! I loved this named and this comment just ruined it, will always think of this now!

strawberrydino Says:


Idk, I think it could make a good middle name.

steampunkleo Says:


I'm worried because it kinda sounds like the ending of pedophilia or necrophilia.... Anynody else make this connection?

Guest Says:


One scenario I can think of is that movie Savages starring Blake Lively and she said in the beginning she refused to be called Ophelia because of the reference to the character from Hamlet. I'm just saying when an Ophelia gets to high school and has to learn Shakepeare it's not the best namesake. There are so many more wonderful heroines like Cressida, Hero, Bianca, Beatrice, Katherina, etc. who don't have the stigma behind them.

faithnamer Says:


This is a very pretty name, but it sounds like "I feel ya"

kitchi1 Says:


I don't think Ophelia will be teased. Kids these days aren't that familiar with Shakespeare unless its Romeo & Juliet; even I'm not. Besides, Juliet is getting popular and there's no teasing that I know of, so why not Ophelia?

tori101 Says:


Okay yes Ophelia was one crazy lady, but at the same time the name itself is beautiful. Also if Juliet is perfectly acceptable why can't Ophelia?

Nooshi Says:


I agree- it's pretty, really pretty, but Ophelia was a nutter. As a Shakespeare addict, I love the name, but I can't sever the ties between the name and Hamlet. I prefer the Ofelia spelling for this reason. However, I guess that Juliet is a perfectly acceptable name, so Ophelia might be able to shake off her connection to Hamlet.

Guest Says:


Everyone remotely familiar with Shakespeare knows that Ophelia was bat-shit crazy. That's like going into Juliet territory. Use it only if you're prepared for the jokes.

edit: I love Ophelia Saint which Dave Grohl picked out though!!!!!

kitchi1 Says:


I am really crushing on this name right now. Just watched Pan's Labyrinth for the first time, and the main character's name is Ofelia. It sounds so pretty, like the name of a princess. But it's pretty badass, too, which I love.

lesliemarion Says:


For an English teacher, this will always be a drowned victim's name. Octavia on the other hand has some zip,