Colonial Names for Girls
Origin:English word name
Description:Charity is one of the Big Three abstract virtue names, along with Hope and Faith, though far less widely used than the others. But as Faith, Grace and Hope grow more common, some parents are beginning to look at the more unusual three-syllable choices like Verity, Amity, Clarity and Charity, which sound much fresher and also have that pleasingly rhythmic 'y'-ending sound.
Origin:Variation of Tziporah, Hebrew
Description:There are many variations of this name, with or without the initial T and the final h, with one p or two. In the Bible she was the wife of Moses.
Origin:Hebrew and Arabic
Description:An interesting and rhythmic name often heard in the Native American community; in fact,in the Gold Rush era in California and Nevada, it was so common that it became a generic English term for a Native American woman.
Description:Letitia is a delicate, once prim and proper sounding name whose staid image has been unbuttoned by numerous phonetic spellings. The original, often used in Spanish-speaking families, would still make an attractive, delicate choice. After a solid century on the Top 1000 list, Letitia fell off in the early 1980s and has not yet returned.
Origin:Diminutive of Margaret
Description:Meg, perennially one of the Little Women, is a Margaret short form that manages to be neither quite in nor quite out of style. Meg is sleeker and more sophisticated than Maggie, more contemporary than Peg, more stylish than Megan, and still one of the best diminutives of Margaret.
Meg Ryan was born Margaret Mary Emily Anne.
Origin:French form of German Amelina
Description:An old name, with a history separate from Emily and Emma and a different kind of vintage feel, that's a possible alternative to top-of-the-pops names. More common spelling is Emmeline.
Origin:Diminutive of Elizabeth
Meaning:"pledged to God"
Description:After a century of association with horses and cows, this name just could be ready for revival by a fearless baby namer -- after all, it did happen to Jessie and Becky.
Origin:Latin virtue name
Description:Patience is a passive virtue turned engaging name, fresher than Hope, Faith, or even Charity. Its resemblance to the trendy Payton may be one reason for its recent spike in popularity.
Origin:Feminine variation of Edwin
Description:Edwina may still be taking tea in the parlor, but we can see her joining friends like Matilda and Josephine for a comeback, especially if pronounced like Edwin rather than Edween.
Meaning:"daughter of an oath"
Description:Popular with the Puritans, this name of the shrewd and beautiful wife of King David and mother of King Solomon could be a bit of a load for a modern girl to carry.
Meaning:"to tie, bind"
Description:Many parents prefer this spelling of Rebecca, used in some versions of the Bible. Still, it's slipped considerably since its heyday in the eighties and nineties.
Origin:English, diminutive of Katherine
Description:Kay, a cigarette-smoking, nightclubbing name of the 1930's, could be ready for a comeback along with cousins May/Mae and Ray/Rae.
Origin:Hebrew; diminutive of Theresa, English
Description:This rarely used Old Testament name will inevitably set off a connection to thirst. Thirza was historically used as both an independent name and as a nickname for Theresa.
Description:A name some people first encountered in the old children's book series The Five Little Peppers, in which Sophronia, the youngest of the Peppers is nicknamed Phronsie.`It was also used by Dickens in two of his novels: The Old Curiosity Shop and Our Mutual Friend.
Origin:Italian diminutive of Maria
Meaning:"drop of the sea, bitter, or beloved"
Description:Marietta would make for a classy and uncommon long form for cool nickname Etta.
Description:In the New Testament, Damaris was an Athenian woman converted to Christianity by St. Paul. Known for her charitable work, her name was a favorite among the Puritans. Having slid off the bottom of the Top 1000 in 2012, Damaris might be deserving of more attention by parents in search of a New Testament name that is unusual but accessible, especially since girls' names ending in 's' are coming back into fashion.
Origin:Variation of Esther
Description:This simplified spelling is a bit too polyester, though this is also the authentic Slavic version of an Old Testament name that's being rediscovered.
Origin:English, diminutive of names ending in -ette or -etta, or variation of Neta, Hebrew
Description:You may never have known a Nettie personally, but there well might be one hidden in your family history, considering that she was a Top 100 name until 1901 and stayed on the Social Security list until 1962.
Description:Keturah, the Old Testament name of Abraham's second wife, is a possibility for anyone seeking a truly unusual and interesting biblical name; certainly a lot more distinctive than that of Abraham's first wife, Sarah.
Origin:Greek mythology name
Description:Atalanta was a beautiful mythological maiden who refused to marry any man who couldn't beat her in a footrace -- quite a role model. This myth is found in Ovid's Metamorphoses and later in Swinburne's Atalantis in Calydon.