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Gothic Baby Names

Gothic Baby Names
Gothic baby names relate to the culture that combines horror with romanticism. Gothic can refer to the medieval or the modern; Gothic style encompasses music and architecture, literature and fashion. Names inspired by goth culture are a little shadowy and a lot mysterious, such as Damien and Ophelia.

Along with Damien and Ophelia, other Gothic names in the US Top 1000 include Andre, Jasper, Jett, Luna, Raven, Scarlet, Wolf, and Zelda. Gothic baby names with a distinctly dark image include Jezebel, Onyx, Wednesday, and Blackwell.

Names for a goth baby can include those related to goth icons, goth styles, or goth imagery. Here are some boy and girl names that, for a range of reasons, might be considered Gothic. Baby appropriate? In a dark sort of way...

Gothic Baby Names

LunaHeart

  • Origin:

    Latin
  • Meaning:

    "moon"
  • Description:

    The name of the Roman goddess of the moon, Luna is derived straight from the Latin word for moon, luna. Luna’s divine complement is Sol, the god of the Sun. In Roman art, Luna is often depicted driving a chariot.

OpheliaHeart

  • Origin:

    Greek
  • Meaning:

    "help"
  • Description:

    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.

DaphneHeart

  • Origin:

    Greek
  • Meaning:

    "laurel tree, bay tree"
  • Description:

    In Greek mythology, Daphne was the nymph daughter of Peneus, a river god. Peneus saved Daphne from Apollo’s romantic obsessions by transforming her into a laurel tree. It is from this myth that the plant genus daphne, which contains the laurel species, gets its name.

JasperHeart

  • Origin:

    Persian
  • Meaning:

    "bringer of treasure"
  • Description:

    Jasper originated as a variation of the Latin Gaspar, which ultimately derived from the Persian word ganzabara, meaning "bringer of treasure." As a given name, Jasper’s etymology is unrelated to that of the gemstone, which comes from a Semitic word meaning "speckled stone." Jasper is the usual English form for one of the Three Wise Men who brought gifts to the infant Christ according to medieval tradition and appears in the Bible as a reference to the stone itself in Revelations 4:3.

RoseHeart

  • Origin:

    Latin
  • Meaning:

    "rose, a flower"
  • Description:

    Rose is derived from the Latin rosa, which referred to the flower. There is also evidence to suggest it was a Norman variation of the Germanic name Hrodohaidis, meaning “famous type,” and also Hros</>, "horse". In Old English it was translated as Roese and Rohese.

LilithHeart

  • Origin:

    Assyrian, Sumerian
  • Meaning:

    "ghost, night monster"
  • Description:

    Lilith is derived from the Akkadian word lilitu meaning “of the night.” In Jewish folklore she is portrayed as Adam's rejected first wife, who was turned into a night demon for refusing to obey him. Lilith is unrelated to most other Lil- names, with the exception of Lilita, which is the Latvian variation.

LuciferHeart

  • Origin:

    Latin
  • Meaning:

    "light-bearer"
  • Description:

    Lucifer is the name of the archangel cast into hell -- theologians disagree on whether he and Satan are separate beings -- and as such has long been on the forbidden list for religious parents. Still banned in New Zealand, Lucifer is occasionally used in the contemporary U.S.: Six boys were given the name in the most recent year counted.

ZephyrHeart

  • Origin:

    Greek
  • Meaning:

    "west wind"
  • Description:

    If you're looking for a name that's light and breezy, this could be it. A name from mythology: Zephyrus/Zephyr was the Greek god of the west wind-- with many European variations, it's a name that's frequently seen in computer and video games, is a character in the children's book Silverwing, and appears in the Babar books--as a monkey.

AshHeart

  • Origin:

    Diminutive of Asher, English
  • Meaning:

    "ash tree"
  • Description:

    Ash has Southern charm plus the arboreal-nature appeal. Plus your little boy will prize Ash as the name of the hero of the Pokemon cartoons. Ash can also be a dashing short form of Asher, Ashton, or any other "Ash" name.

NyxHeart

  • Origin:

    Greek mythology name
  • Meaning:

    "night"
  • Description:

    In Greek mythology, Nyx was a powerful goddess and the embodiment of the night, but when spoken, its negative meaning can't be ignored.

RueHeart

  • Origin:

    Botanical names or word name
  • Meaning:

    "herb; regret"
  • Description:

    Rue has gone from Golden Girls actress to Hunger Games heroine. This botanical name is also a coincidental double word name, meaning "regret" in English and "street in" French. Despite these unfortunate secondary meanings, Rue has real potential to be one of the most popular new middle names for girls.

RainHeart

  • Origin:

    Word name
  • Description:

    Among a small shower of rain-related names, this pure version can have a cool, refreshing image.

OnyxHeart

  • Origin:

    Gem name
  • Description:

    Unlike Pearl and Ruby, this is one gem name suited for boys, the final x making it sound strong and virile. Musician Iggy Azalea chose the name Onyx for her son.

LaylaHeart

  • Origin:

    Variation of Leila, Arabic
  • Meaning:

    "night"
  • Description:

    Layla is derived from the Semitic element layl, meaning "night." It has roots in the Arabic, Hebrew, and Persian languages. In the Arabic story Qays and Layla, Layla is the subject of the poet’s unrequited love. Among the many alternate spellings are Leila, Laila, Laela, Laelah, Laylah, Leyla, Lejla, and Leighla.

VictoriaHeart

  • Origin:

    Latin
  • Meaning:

    "victory"
  • Description:

    Victoria is the Latin word for “victory” and a feminine form of Victor. It is the name of the ancient Roman goddess of victory, the equivalent of the Greek Nike, and also a popular third century saint. Queen Victoria, for whom the Victorian Era is named, ruled over England for over sixty-three years.

LazarusHeart

  • Origin:

    Latinized Greek variation of Hebrew Eleazar
  • Meaning:

    "God is my helper"
  • Description:

    Lazarus is a name that looks as if it could possibly be raised from the dead, just like its biblical bearer. Look for it in the next wave of Old Testament revivals that transcend their long-bearded images, the way Noah, Moses, and Abraham have for this generation.

WolfHeart

  • Origin:

    Animal name or diminutive of Wolfgang
  • Meaning:

    "traveling wolf"
  • Description:

    Wolf is a name with a split personality. It can be seen as one of the fierce animal names, like Fox and Bear and Puma, with a touch of the werewolf, or it can be viewed as a quieter, Wolf Blitzer kind of name, fairly common in German (where is pronounced Vulf) and Jewish families, sometimes as a short form of Wolfgang.

AuraHeart

  • Origin:

    Greek
  • Meaning:

    "soft breeze"
  • Description:

    Aura has an otherworldly, slightly New Age-y glow, but is beginning to sound more more like a legitimate name. In Greek mythology, Aura was the Titan of the breeze and the fresh, cool air of early morning. But at odds with her peaceful, well, aura, the mythological Aura is a tragic figure, ultimately transformed into a fountain by Zeus.

JettHeart

  • Origin:

    Mineral name
  • Description:

    Aviation enthusiast John Travolta put this fast-paced name in the lexicon when he used it for his late son, and George Lucas followed suit.

IndigoHeart

  • Origin:

    Greek
  • Meaning:

    "Indian dye"
  • Description:

    Indigo is one of the most appealing and evocative of the new generation of color names. Color names have joined flower and jewel names -- in a big way -- and Indigo, a deep blue-purple dye from plants native to India, is particularly striking for both girls and boys. Indigo is the name of a character in the Ntozake Shange novel Sassafrass, Cypress & Indigo, and was used for his daughter by Lou Diamond Phillips.

ZeldaHeart

  • Origin:

    Diminutive of Griselda
  • Meaning:

    "gray fighting maid"
  • Description:

    Classified as an early beauty, Zelda has long and often been used as such for characters in books and films. Since 1986, Zelda has been a prime Nintendo name, as in the Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess.

BowieHeart

  • Origin:

    Scottish
  • Meaning:

    "blond"
  • Description:

    Baseball commissioner Bowie Kuhn put this name in play as a first name, but David Bowie (born with the considerably less marketable moniker of David Robert Jones) dyed it blond and gave it charisma. He changed his surname in 1965 to avoid confusion with the then popular Davy Jones of The Monkees, and especially since his death, his admirers have seen it as an increasingly viable baby name namesake.

LuxHeart

  • Origin:

    Latin
  • Meaning:

    "light"
  • Description:

    This name of a character played by Kirsten Dunst in the movie Virgin Suicides, originally a novel by Jeffrey Eugenides, is gaining attention, also thanks to the heroine Lux, Lady of Luminosity in the League of Legends games. Luz is the Spanish version.

XantheHeart

  • Origin:

    Greek
  • Meaning:

    "golden, yellow"
  • Description:

    X marks the spot in names these days, usually at the middles or ends of names, but here is one that puts it squarely up front.

GrayHeart

  • Origin:

    Color name, also diminutive of Grayson
  • Description:

    The girls have Violet and Scarlet and Ruby and Rose, but for the boys there's a much more limited palette of color names. Gray (or Grey), is one exception, which could make for a soft and evocative--if slightly somber-- choice, especially in the middle. Kaitlin Olson and Rob McElhenney recently named their son Leo Grey.

CirceHeart

  • Origin:

    Greek
  • Meaning:

    "bird"
  • Description:

    In Greek myth, Circe, daughter of Helios, the sun, was a sorceress living on the island of Aeaea, who could turn men into animals with her magic wand, which is just what she did to Odysseus's crew in Homer's Odyssey, transforming them into swine. All was forgiven, however, as Circe and Odysseus later had a child together—Telegonus. The name and legend have appeared in countless forms, from a section of James Joyce's Ulysses to short stories by Julio Cortazar to Toni Morrison's Song of Solomon to films to DC comics to a dance by Martha Graham. So is Circe's seductive legend too powerful for a modern little girl to carry? Your call.

RavenHeart

  • Origin:

    Word and animal name
  • Description:

    Bird name Raven, once a symbol of pride for both African-American and Wiccan parents, is finding new life as a superhero name. Raven Darkholme is the real name of Mystique, heroine of the X-Men films played by Jennifer Lawrence. And there is another Raven superheroine in Teen Titans. Some parents may still choose Raven to signal black pride or mystical powers or maybe even Edgar Allan Poe fandom, but we are guessing most inspiration is coming from the comics.

AmethystHeart

  • Origin:

    Gem and Color name
  • Description:

    As flower names become more unique, so can gem names move beyond Ruby and Pearl to names like Topaz, Sapphire, and Peridot. Amethyst, the purple birthstone for February, has never been in the Top 1000, but could have some appeal, joining similarly-hued Violet and Lilac, all of which make great names for Aquarius babies or names for February babies.

RowenaHeart

  • Origin:

    Welsh
  • Meaning:

    "white spear or famous friend"
  • Description:

    A fabled storybook name via the heroine of Sir Walter Scott's novel Ivanhoe (1819), which featured a heroine called Rowena of Hargottstanstede, and also a Harry Potter name, as Rowena Ravenclaw, founder of one of the Hogwarts houses.. Rowena has some old-fashioned charm, though most modern parents seem to prefer Rowen. Pronunciation, however, is NOT like Rowen with an a at the end, but with a long e and an emphasis on the middle syllable.. She was on the popularity list until 1963, several years in the Top 500.

AbraxasHeart

  • Origin:

    Persian mythological name
  • Description:

    Abraxas is a sci-fi-sounding name with earthly possibilities, but some playground challenges.

BellatrixHeart

  • Origin:

    Latin
  • Meaning:

    "female warrior"
  • Description:

    J.K. Rowling is a modern master of naming who brought a whole constellation of ancient and celestial names to modern parents. Bellatrix, of one of the stars of Orion, combines fashionable names Bella and Beatrix to make a convivial and original name. The down side: the Harry Potter character Bellatrix, played by Helena Bonham Carter, is a character so evil she's called a Death Eater, killing one beloved character and being murdered by another. And the name Bellatrix is so closely associated with that character that it might be challenging to sidestep the association.

JezebelHeart

  • Origin:

    Hebrew
  • Meaning:

    "not exalted"
  • Description:

    Jezebel, the wife of King Ahab in the Hebrew Book of Kings, has long had a bad girl reputation. But in the modern secular world, this is somewhat mitigated by the feminist perspective of her as a strong woman, the power behind the throne. Previously avoided as a baby name, Jezebel is now, along with the also previously avoided Delilah and Desiree, coming into use, helped by its relation to other 'bel' name such as Isabel and Bella.

DamienHeart

  • Origin:

    French from Greek
  • Meaning:

    "to tame, subdue"
  • Description:

    Converting Damian to Damien – or Julian to Julien or Lucian to Lucien – adds a certain je ne sais quoi to names. But most people in English speaking areas will still pronounce this the same as the -an ending form. The French pronunciation is more like "dah-mee-u(n)".

PhaedraHeart

  • Origin:

    Greek
  • Meaning:

    "bright"
  • Description:

    This name of a tragic figure in Greek mythology, the daughter of King Minos, sister of Ariadne and wife of Theseus, has a mysterious and intriguing appeal, and would make a dramatic choice.

StoneHeart

  • Origin:

    Word name
  • Description:

    Though some may find such names rather harsh and severe, increasing numbers of parents are gravitating toward this kind of flinty, steely, stony single-syllable name.

VesperHeart

  • Origin:

    Latin
  • Meaning:

    "evening star"
  • Description:

    This Latin word used for evening spiritual services was introduced to baby namers by the Eva Greene character Vesper Lynd in the modern James Bond film Casino Royale in 2006, based on the Ian Fleming novel, and is just now beginning to provoke interest among namers, with its spiritual reference and soft, whispery sound.

BramHeart

  • Origin:

    Dutch variation of Abraham
  • Meaning:

    "father of multitudes"
  • Description:

    Bram has an unusual measure of character and charm for a one-syllable name; it started as a hipper-than-Abe diminutive of the biblical Abraham, but is also an independent Irish and Dutch name, made famous by Irish-born Dracula creator Bram (nee Abraham) Stoker. Bram is currently Number 16 in the Netherlands; Bram Howard was a character on The West Wing.

GiovanniHeart

  • Origin:

    Italian variation of John
  • Meaning:

    "God is gracious"
  • Description:

    Giovanni is a venerable Italian classic that suddenly sounds fresh and cool. Ubiquitous in Italy, it has countless notable namesakes, from writer Boccaccio to designer Versace (nn Gianni).

MorriganHeart

  • Origin:

    Irish
  • Meaning:

    "phantom queen"
  • Description:

    The mythological Morrigan was the ancient goddess of war, often symbolized by a crow. Besides being a name, this is also used as a proper noun preceded by an article: the Morrigan, defined as a monster in female form. The meaning of Morrigan has been related to both terror and greatness. While some relate the name to Morgan of the Arthurian legends, Morrigan and Morgan are actually unrelated.

StormHeart

  • Origin:

    Word name
  • Description:

    Windswept and dramatic, but perhaps asking for trouble. Quite popular in Denmark and Sweden, where it derives from Stromr, which is a fairly common surname. Storm Thorgerson is a famous bearer of the name - he designed iconic album covers for Led Zeppelin, Black Sabbath, the Cranberries, Anthrax, and Pink Floyd.

NormanHeart

  • Origin:

    English
  • Meaning:

    "northerner, Norseman"
  • Description:

    Norman, perhaps because it sounds so much like the word 'normal', conjures up the image of a normal-looking guy with a normal kind of job-- not necessarily an image many modern parents seek for their sons. But though it's been off the national popularity list for several years, Norman is Number 694 on Nameberry. It was a Top 100 name for more than half a century, hitting a high in 1931 at Number 36, but today it's nowhere near one of the most popular boy names starting with N.

WednesdayHeart

  • Origin:

    English
  • Meaning:

    "Woden's day"
  • Description:

    Name made famous by the macabre character Wednesday – middle name: Friday – Addams is taken from the name of the day dedicated to the Anglo-Saxon god Woden, who relates to Mercury. Cartoonist author Charles Addams was said to choose the name because "Wednesday's child is full of woe."

MorganaHeart

  • Origin:

    Female version of Morgan, Welsh
  • Meaning:

    "sea-circle"
  • Description:

    Since Morgan is used as--or more--frequently for girls as for boys, this feminization has fallen by the wayside. It drew some brief attention via the pop singer Morgana King.

    The similar Morgiana appears in Tales from the Thousand and One Nights.

MorwennaHeart

  • Origin:

    Welsh
  • Meaning:

    "waves of the sea"
  • Description:

    Morwenna is an ancient Cornish name now being revived in Wales. It's been heard in the British series Doc Martin and Poldark.

AndreHeart

  • Origin:

    French and Portuguese variation of Andrew
  • Meaning:

    "strong and manly"
  • Description:

    One international form that's been familiar in the English-speaking world for decades yet still has not been Anglicized.

LenoreHeart

  • Origin:

    German variation of Leonora, Italian derivative of Eleonora, meaning unknown
  • Description:

    A "modernization" of Leonora that has suddenly come back on the radar along with the many other Leo names--both male and female. With literary cred via a famous eponymous poem by Edgar Allan Poe (and also in his even more famous The Raven,) Lenore was steadily in the top half of the popularity list until the mid-fifties, falling off in 1973. Cameron Diaz played a Lenore in The Green Hornet.

NarcissaHeart

  • Origin:

    Greek
  • Meaning:

    "daffodil"
  • Description:

    This Greek flower and mythological choice doesn't make it into the pantheon of possibilities because of its association with narcissism. But narcissa is December's flower of the month, so Narcissa and Daffodil theoretically make perfect names for December babies.

BladeHeart

  • Origin:

    Word name
  • Description:

    One of the new crop of boys' names that manage to be unconventional and macho at the same time -- though Blade verges on the threatening.

DreamHeart

  • Origin:

    Word name
  • Description:

    Singular and serene noun name that's been used by a couple of celebs.

ErisHeart

  • Origin:

    Greek mythology name
  • Description:

    Eris was the goddess of strife and discord, turned fairy tale and then popular culture figure Maleficent in Sleeping Beauty. Ironic, as her name sounds so much like that of Eros, the god of love.
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