Ancient Names: Beyond Jupiter and Mars

Ancient Names: Beyond Jupiter and Mars

We’re all familiar with the ancient Greek and Roman pantheons of mythological deities, from Adonis and Athena to Zeus, but there a number of other ancient names from other cultures with their own pantheons of intriguing god and goddesses.  We’ve delved into the some of the most intriguing mythologies—Egyptian,  Phoenician, Norse, Celtic, Indian, African, et al– and discovered some striking mythological names for the intrepid baby namer.


ÁINE (AWN-ya)– Irish Celtic goddess of love, summer, wealth and fertility

AINO (EYE-no)  —  A Finnish mythological water sprite

ALA—African (Nigerian) creator goddess and earth mother

ANAHITA —  A Persian mythological goddess of river and water

ANCASTA – A Celtic goddess worshipped in Roman Britain

ANNIKKI (accent on the first syllable) —  A forest goddess in Finnish mythology

ANU – Irish Celtic goddess of fertility, magic, moon, air and prosperity

ASTARTE — Ancient Phoenician goddess of love, fertility, motherhood and war (morphed into Greek mythology as Aphrodite)

ASTRILD – Norse goddess of love

ATLA—Norse water goddess

BELISAMA – A Celtic goddess of light and fire

BRANWEN –Irish Celtic goddess of love, beauty, sexuality and the sea

BRIGHID (pronounced breed) —  Irish goddess of fertility and creativity, martial arts and healing

DAMARA – Celtic fertility goddess worshipped in Britain, associated with the month of May

DANU —  Irish Celtic mother of the deities , goddess of rivers, water, magic, prosperity and wisdom

ELAINE – A Welsh Celtic maiden moon goddess

ELLI—Norse goddess of old age who managed to defeat Thor in wrestling

FREYA – Norse goddess of love, beauty, war, magic and wisdom; the most beautiful of the goddesses

INANNA —  A Sumerian goddess of the earth, sky and love—and also war

ISIS – an Egyptian goddess, known as mistress of charms or enchantments

KALMA – Finnish goddess of death and decay (maybe skip this one)

KALI – Hindu goddess of power (and—oops—destruction)

LAKSHMI—Hindu goddess of beauty and prosperity, purity, chastity and generosity

LEZA  — African goddess of protection and divination

LISSA —  In African mythology, goddess of the sun, the moon, and the supreme god of all things

MACHA (MOK-ah)  — one of three Irish Celtic war goddesses

MAEVE — Celtic goddess of earth, fertility and war

MORRIGAN – Celtic Queen of fairies and witches, goddess of war and revenge

NEITH —  An Egyptian goddess of the hunt and of war

NIAHM (neev) – Irish Celtic goddess of beauty and brightness

OLWEN — Welsh Celtic goddess of flowers and springtime

PARVATI—Hindu goddess of fertility, love and devotion

RAKA – Indian goddess of the full moon

RANA/RANIA—Norse goddess of the sea

RHIANNON – Welsh goddess of the moon and inspiration

SEQUANA — Goddess of the source of the River Seine

SESHETA —  Egyptian goddess of learning and writing

SIDDHI—Hindu goddess of success

SULLA/SULIS – Celtic goddess of hot springs, healing (also the name of a Roman emperor)

TAMESIS – Anglo-Celtic river goddess who gave her name to the River Thames.

TANIT/TANITH—Phoenician goddess of love, fertility and the heavens, including the stars and moon

TAMRA – Ancient Cornish river goddess

TARA – Important and compassionate Hindu goddess of peace and protection; probably the oldest goddess still worshipped in modern times

TOZI —  Aztec goddess of healing and sweet water

UMA – Hindu goddess of self-sacrifice and love

XILONEN (zil-o-nen) –A beautiful goddess in Aztec mythology

ZARYA – In Slavic mythology, a goddess and protectors of warriors


ABELLIO –Celtic god of the apple tree

ADAD – the Mesopotamian god of thundery weather

ANGUS Og – Irish Celtic god of youth, love and beauty

ARAWN—Welsh Celtic god of the hunt and the underworld

AGANJU —  An African (Yoruba) deity, ruling volcanoes, the wilderness and the river

ASHUR —  The supreme deity of the Assyrian Empire, creator of all things

BRAN — Irish Celtic god of health

BRAHMA – The Hindu supreme deity, creator of the universe

EBISHU — In Japanese mythology, the god of luck and labor, fishermen and fortune

GANESHA – Indian elephant deity of knowledge, education, wisdom and wealth

GWYDION—Welsh Celtic god of enchantment, illusion and magic

KRISHNA — Part of the Hindu Trinity, considered by some the Supreme Being

LLEW Llaw Gyffes Celtic god of healing, poets, sorcerers and waters

LOKI — Norse god of fire, trickster god

LUGH/LLEW – (loo) — Celtic sun god, god of war, magic and good harvest

MANU – The Indian mythological progenitor of mankind

MUNGO — African (Kenyan) rain god

ODIN — Norse god of all men, father of all gods

OSIRIS — African god of the dead, ruler of the underworld

RAIDEN – In Japanese myth, the god of thunder and lightening

RAMA — Indian hero god, preserver of families, destroyer of evil

SETH — African god of chaos

TALIESIN — Welsh Celtic god of song and poetry

TANE (tah-neh) —  Maori protector of birds and forests

THOR –Norse god of thunder and battle

TIKI – God of stone in Norse mythology

VIDAR ––  A silent Norse god known for his great strength

VISHNU — God of courage, knowledge and power

About the Author

Linda Rosenkrantz

Linda Rosenkrantz

Linda Rosenkrantz is the co-founder of Nameberry, and co-author with Pamela Redmond of the ten baby naming books acknowledged to have revolutionized American baby naming. You can follow her personally at InstagramTwitter and Facebook. She is also the author of the highly acclaimed New York Review Books Classics novel Talk and a number of other books.