Gender: Male Meaning of Theodore: "gift of God" Origin of Theodore: Greek Theodore's Popularity in 2019: #36

Theodore Origin and Meaning

The name Theodore is a boy's name of Greek origin meaning "gift of God".

Theodore is a derivative of the Latin Theodorus, a variation of the Greek name Theodōros. The components are from the Greek words theos, meaning “God,” and dōron, meaning “gift,” giving Theodore the meaning “God-given” or “gift of God.” Names with similar origins include Theodora, Dorothy, and Dorothea.

When Theodore Roosevelt took office in 1901, the name Theodore was in the Top 40 boy names, with Teds and Teddys everywhere. After some damaging stereotypes—the chubby Chipmunk Theodore and Beaver Cleaver's real name—Theodore went into a decline, from which it has definitely made a recovery, thanks in part to the popular and likable nickname Theo.

Theodore has been the choice of several celebrities, including Ivanka Trump, Bryce Dallas Howard, Natascha McElhone, and Ali Larter, not to mention being the fictional son of Christian and Ana in Fifty Shades of Grey.

The name has a distinguished history. In addition to being presidential, it was borne by novelist Dreiser, poet Roethke, and French painter Gericault, and it was the first name (spelled Theodor) of Dr. Seuss.

Among the well-known Teds, baseball's Williams and musician Nugent were born Theodore, but Ted Turner was christened Robert, and Ted Kennedy and Ted Danson were originally Edward.

The beloved character Laurie in Little Women was named Theodore Laurence.

16 names similar to Theodore

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


Rank in US: #36

- this week

Famous People Named Theodore

Pop Culture References for the name Theodore

Theo, Tedor, Teodore, Tad, Teddie, Tedrick, Theodoras, Tedric, Teodoor, Theodorus, Theodoros, Ted, Teador, Theodors, Teddy

Theodore's International Variations

Dorek, Tedorik, Tolek, Teodorek, Teos (Polish) Theodoor (Dutch) Thao, Theodosios (Greek) Theodrekr (Norwegian) Tewdwr, Tudor (Welsh) Teodor, Tedik, Bohdan, Teodus (Czech) Tewdor, (German)


BookSneakersMovie Says:


If I had to choose one boy's name to be my favorite, this just might be it. A very handsome name, classic but not dated, it won’t shock Grandma. It has a beautiful meaning (though I’m not religious). I absolutely love nickname Theo.

Dadtwobe Says:


I LOVE this name! Its perfect.

schoolcounselorbrittanie Says:


We just named our youngest Theodore (Theo for short). I have a deep love for more unique names (we have a Saylor and a Finley as well) and old fashion names (also have a Charlotte). Theodore is such a classic and I love using the nickname Theo. Though all my children prefer to be called by there full names, not nicknames. We will see if Theodore follows suit.

penelope_lynson Says:


I like it, also the Boss Baby :)

Dadtwobe Says:


I love this name! Lots of great nn options, too.

alternativekeys Says:


Hey JH, there's a thread that has a few different nickname options for Theodore here:

Hope this helps!

pindorama Says:


Thor? Todd?

JH Says:


I love this name. I was wondering what other nicknames work besides Ted, Teddy, and Theo because we already have a Leo and Freddie and a brother with a rhyming name might be a bit weird.

Leah_ Says:


Love love love this name! So handsome and sophisticated.

peavspet Says:


Wondering if you went with Theodore? In the same situation. A cousin, who lives on the opposite side of the country, used Theodore nn Theo a few months ago. I'm due in a month and wanted Theodore nn Teddy.

Micke156 Says:


Our favorite name for years and now it's getting SO popular :( I adore everything about it. The perfect name and love Teddy!

Tamararama Says:


My sons name is Theodore and goes by Ted or Teddy most of the time. I really dislike the nickname Theo so much I was going to forgo using Theodore just incase people called him Theo but my husband wanted a proper name lol.

stella2007 Says:


I love the name Theodore! I like Theo for the nickname. I don't like Ted as a nickname, sounds daggy and unrelated. Teddy is cute for a baby but if it's my kid I would either call him Theodore or Theo.

stella2007 Says:


It's your child. Once you start asking for opinions you will get a lot of people messing with your head. Name your kid what makes you and your partner happy, you don't want to regret. :)

paulapuddephatt Says:


I love Theodore, Theo, Theodora and Thea.

priviledgedpistachios Says:


I think no matter how popular this name gets, people will always love it. It's timeless

cabosanmucus Says:


I didn't say I hate it.

Daiseymae Says:


I am beginning to like this name, but especially like the name Theo.

Daiseymae Says:


A bit much to hate a name.

hermioneameliastyles Says:


I first heard this name when I saw Leave It To Beaver. Then I heard it on Niall Horan's nephew Theo I thought it was so adorable.

eveyalecia Says:


Theodore and Teddy/Ted are so classic, I really don't think there should be any worry of comparison to Ted Cruz (especially now that he's out of the running...).

eveyalecia Says:


I don't think you need to ask her opinion, especially since her son is Ted and your's would be Theo.

shannonkay Says:


This was my top pick since 5th or 6th grade because of Little Women, and I liked Teddy for the nickname (Again because of Little Women), but now that I'm actually expecting a boy, I find that recent "Teds" have put me off the name. So sad.

AHK Says:


I love the name Theodore and Theo for short.
My cousin has a son called Ted though so I'm wondering should I cross Theodore off my list or ask her for her opinion??

teacupsandtiaras Says:


....Whose name is Rafael Edward

gmontpetit Says:


You could share the first name of our next president, Ted Cruz!

cabosanmucus Says:


This name is Trump related now. Sorry, next! Canceled!

EW314 Says:


Love Theodore! Strong, classic, handsome and distinguished. I like Theo, Teddy or Ted as nicknames.

This is DH's favourite so will be a strong contender if we have a boy. My only reservation is its popularity (in the UK), and the even greater popularity of short form Theo: nos. 59 and 37 in 2014 and still rising I believe. I think combined that might just be a little too high for me, but you never know - I could certainly be convinced!

ag_shame2 Says:


This is my son's name! I think you establish nicknames at an early age [day one really], so if you don't call him Ted/Teddy/Theo no one else will either. We call our Son Theo and in almost 5 years I've never had anyone refer to him as Ted or Teddy.

AldabellaxWulfe Says:


For people who adore Theodore but are intimidated by its newfound popularity, perhaps you might consider the original Theodorus?

Catastroffy Says:


I like this name, and I love the nickname Teddy, although I prefer it for Frederick, Thaddeus, or possibly Edmund.

ambercat Says:


One of my favorite names. The primary drawback that I can think of is Ted sounds like someone with social issues, Theo is definitely a better nickname and sounds more well adjusted.

malloree Says:


A timeless classic. Theo is my go to for a nickname, but Teddy could work too. For Theodora, I'd use Thea or Teddy

yvonne_virginia Says:


I totally agree! Theo is nice on it's own, too (though Teddy can only be a nn, for obvious reasons) and Theodore is so distinguished and ages well.

hannahmd Says:


I love this name, it is a classic, strong name and it ages well. Teddy is adorable, and Theo sounds grown up and sophisticated. Absolutely perfect in every way.

ThistleThorn Says:


Classic name appeal + Vintage Charm + Cute Nickname "Teddy" = Super Great Name

mabespark Says:


I'm beginning to fall head-over-heels. It's so strong and handsome, and I love the nicknames Ed, Teddy, and Theo. (It could even be an out-there way to get to Bear - Teddy Bear. :D)

Caroline Says:


I love this!! I like Theo or Teddy as nicknames!

Catastroffy Says:


Very handsome. Theo and Teddy make equally good nicknames in my eyes, and it is fine in full as well.

Netta5187 Says:


I love this strong, masculine yet old-fashioned name for a boy. It's so rare to hear a name like this used nowadays, which makes it an even more attractive name to use in my opinion.

Theodora_Phoenix Says:


I love this name so much.

chunky Says:


We named our son Theodore and told everyone that they could call him Theo if they wanted to shorten his name, not Ted or Teddy and so far nobody has. He mostly gets Theodore at home. I like to call my children by their full names :-)

KaitB Says:


I love the name Theodore but I would use Tad or Teddy for nicknames. I don't like Ted or Theo.

Maggie Says:


We named our son Theo. So far we have met three others. It seems it may be getting more popular. We went with just Theo to avoid any possibility of Ted being a nickname.

faithnamer Says:


I know a teenage boy named Theodore who goes by Teddy and I only ever heard him get light teasing.. He didn't seem to mind his name and it suited him despite his age.

emiliek815 Says:


My husband likes it too but we both worry about the Ted thing.

KatieNana Says:


We have the name Theodore "Teddy" picked out if we have another boy. I don't mind Ted so much, but I'm not a fan of Theo. I was also apprehensive about Teddy aging well, but since my SO likes it, I feel like its Guy Approved.

Emilie Says:


I love the name Theodore, especially to go with my other "old men" Charlie, Sam and Henry. I love Teddy for sure but worry about when he gets older either kids making fun of the name Teddy or it just getting shortened to Ted, which I'm not a huge fan of. Anyone have a "grown up" Teddy? Am I worrying too much?