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International Variations of Ann

International Variations of Ann
The name of the sainted mother of the Virgin Mary was among the top girls' baby names for centuries, in both the original English Ann spelling and the French Anne. And chic international classic Anna remains in the Top 20 in many countries, including Russia, Switzerland, Sweden and Austria.

Along with Anne and Anna, other international variations of Ann in the US Top 1000 include Anya, Anais, Ana, Nina, Hanna, Anahi, Anika, and Chana. Rarer options that are common in Europe include Anouk in France, Anni in Germany, and Anita in Iceland.

Famous bearers of the traditional girl name Anne or Ann include a British queen, several queen consorts (including two ill-fated wives of Henry VIII), novelist Anne Brontë, diarist Anne Frank, and Anne Shirley of L. M. Montgomery's Anne of Green Gables series.

Modern parents who want to honor an Ann or Anne, but who would prefer to look beyond the classic original, have their choice of dozens of cool international versions, such as the many lovely international forms of Ann below.
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AnnaHeart

  • Origin:

    Variation of Hannah, Hebrew
  • Meaning:

    "grace"
  • Description:

    Anna is the Latin form of Hannah, a Hebrew name that derived from root chanan, meaning “grace.” European Christians embraced the name for its associations with the Virgin Mary’s mother, Saint Anna—known in English as Saint Anne. While Hannah and Anna are the most common forms of the name, variations including Annie, Annalise, Anya, Anika, Nancy, and Anais also rank in the US Top 1000.

AnyaHeart

  • Origin:

    Russian diminutive of Anna
  • Meaning:

    "grace"
  • Description:

    Anya is a Russian variation of Anna, which came from the Hebrew name Hannah. Anya is the form found most frequently in Russia, Poland and other East European countries, while Anja is the spelling usually preferred in Germany Norway, Denmark, Germany, Sweden and The Netherlands. In the Hungarian language, Anya also means mother.

NinaHeart

  • Origin:

    Short form of names that end in -nina
  • Description:

    Nina is as multiethnic as you can get: Nina is a common nickname name in Spain and Russia, a Babylonian goddess of the oceans, and an Incan goddess of fire. Here and now, it's a stylish possibility that's been underused. "Weird Al" Yankovic chose this decidedly nonweird name for his daughter.

AnaisHeart

  • Origin:

    Catalan and Provencal pet form of Hebrew Anna
  • Meaning:

    "grace"
  • Description:

    Anais is an unusual, exotic name forever attached to the daring French-born American novelist and diarist Anais Nin (born Angela, with Anais as one of her middle names), who became the inspiration for the naming of the daughter of musician Noel Gallagher. Anais is also the name of a popular perfume.

AnneHeart

  • Origin:

    French variation of English Ann and Hebrew Hannah
  • Meaning:

    "grace"
  • Description:

    The name of the sainted mother of the Virgin Mary was among the top girls’ names for centuries, in both the original English Ann spelling and the French Anne. Both left the Top 100 around 1970 but Anne is still among the most classic names for girls, although others are more likely to choose the original Hannah, the Anna variation, or even Annabel or Annabella.
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AnnikaHeart

  • Origin:

    Swedish diminutive of Anna
  • Meaning:

    "grace"
  • Description:

    Annika is a surprise hit of recent years, inspired by golfer Sorenstam; for Trekkies, it was also the name of a 'Star Trek:Voyager' character. Some people's first memory of it might be as Pippi Longstocking's friend. A nice namesake for an ancestral Ann.

AnnaliseHeart

  • Origin:

    Combination of Anna and Lise
  • Description:

    Variously spelled Annalise and Annaliese, this is not a modern smoosh but a traditional German combo-name (the liese part coming from a short form of Elizabeth, with a definite Heidi-esque feel). But though it may be seen as old style in Germany, it's a recent success in this country: Annalise jumped onto the popularity list for the first time in 1997.

AnoukHeart

  • Origin:

    Dutch and French variation of Anna
  • Meaning:

    "grace"
  • Description:

    Anouk, made famous by French actress Anouk Aimée, is a singular name with a lovely sound and a Bohemian feel. Anouk Aimée was born as Francoise, but adopted the first name of the character she played in her debut film.

AnnHeart

  • Origin:

    English variation of Hebrew Hannah
  • Meaning:

    "grace"
  • Description:

    Ann, the name of the sainted mother of the Virgin Mary, was among the top girls’ names for centuries, in both the original English Ann spelling and the French Anne. Both left the Top 100 around 1970 and show no signs of returning, with Anne is the middle of the US Top 1000 and Ann dropped out of sight. Once a go-to middle name, Ann has lost its stature in that position as well. Still, it's one of the most common names for girls of the 20th century.

HanaHeart

  • Origin:

    Variation of Hannah or Johana or Japanese
  • Meaning:

    "flower, blossom"
  • Description:

    Many things to many peoples: a flower name, also spelled Hanae, to the Japanese; a Czech and Polish short form of Johana; and an alternate form of the biblical name Hannah in the US.
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AnjaHeart

  • Origin:

    Russian variation of Anna
  • Meaning:

    "grace"
  • Description:

    Anja is one of the most exotic of several versions of Ann/Anna now being imported, also including Anya and Annika.

AnaHeart

  • Origin:

    Spanish variation of Hannah
  • Meaning:

    "grace"
  • Description:

    Pared-down form loses none of the name's grace or power. Ana is one of the most popular Spanish names for girls in the US.

AnitaHeart

  • Origin:

    Spanish diminutive of Ana; Sanskrit
  • Meaning:

    "grace; unguided"
  • Description:

    Once a Top 100 name, this Spanish diminutive of Ana still retains some of her Latin flair. A notable namesake is noted attorney Anita Hill, another is the great jazz singer Anita O'Day. Plus there's Disney cred via the lead human character in 101 Dalmatians.

AnaliaHeart

  • Origin:

    Combination name, Ana plus Lia
  • Description:

    Analia is a melodic newcomer to the US Top 1000, a fresher spin on the Olde Worlde Anamaria. It charted in the US from 2009 to 2012, and then reentered the popularity list in 2015. El Rostro de Analia is a popular Spanish language telenova on the Telemundo channel, which probably greatly contributed to its initial entry to the US list in 2009 at Number 331 when it was unranked the previous year!

AnnetteHeart

  • Origin:

    French, diminutive of Ann
  • Meaning:

    "grace"
  • Description:

    Among the first wave of widely-used girls' names from France, now as passe as the Mouseketeers.
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ÁineHeart

  • Origin:

    Irish
  • Meaning:

    "brilliance, wit"
  • Description:

    Name of a fertility goddess said to confer luck on its bearer, though to avoid confusion you may want to use the phonetic spelling Anya or Enya.

HannaHeart

  • Origin:

    Spelling variation of Hannah
  • Description:

    This simplified version is not nearly as popular as the original (it also destroys a perfectly good palindrome), and has been on the decline in recent years.

AnahiHeart

  • Origin:

    Spanish or Tupi; may also be derivation of Anais.
  • Description:

    This lovely, soft, exotic name is somewhat popular in the US but is unheard of in England and Wales.

AnoushkaHeart

  • Origin:

    Russian, diminutive of Ann
  • Meaning:

    "grace"
  • Description:

    A lively, affectionate Olde World pet name wearing a baboushka and embroidered blouse.

VanyaHeart

  • Origin:

    Russian, diminutive of John
  • Description:

    This short form of Ivan just could join the other Russian nickname names coming into fashion, and it does have the Chekhov connection.
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AnnalieHeart

  • Origin:

    Nordic, German
  • Meaning:

    "grace"
  • Description:

    Melodious and unusual form of a name with an uncountable number of variations. Many will understand it as the more down-to-earth Annalee.

NitaHeart

  • Origin:

    Hindi, Hebrew, and Choctaw
  • Meaning:

    "friendly, to plant, and bear"
  • Description:

    One of those slender names, like Lena or Etta, that's used in several cultures and carries a range of meanings. But by being so many things, it doesn't feel decidedly like anything.

OnaHeart

  • Origin:

    Lithuanian variation of Anna, Catalan diminutive of Mariona
  • Meaning:

    "grace; wave; bitter; wished-for child"
  • Description:

    One of those names with a wide array of meanings across different cultures; it's the Lithuanian form of Anna, for instance, and William Blake used it as the name of one of his mysterious, godlike characters. But it's found major popularity in Spain, where it's just outside the Top 50.

AynHeart

  • Origin:

    English
  • Meaning:

    "grace"
  • Description:

    Ayn is a nonconformist name associated with controversial Russian-born writer and philosopher Ayn Rand, (born Alisa) author of The Fountainhead, who adopted it when she moved to the US in 1926.
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AnneliHeart

  • Origin:

    Scandinavian variation of Annalie or Hannah
  • Meaning:

    "grace"
  • Description:

    Anneli is one of the hundreds of Anne variations with an intriguing spelling. This name has been popular throughout Scandinavia over time and would certainly translate easily to English-speaking countries.

AnikoHeart

  • Origin:

    Hungarian form of Anna or Annika
  • Meaning:

    "grace"
  • Description:

    Aniko has the feel and rhythm of a Japanese name but in fact it's an Eastern European spin on Anna.

ChanaHeart

  • Origin:

    Hebrew; "Grace"
  • Meaning:

    "Grace"
  • Description:

    Variation of Channah and Hannah. Making multiple appearances in the US popularity charts during the latter portion of the twentieth century, Chana has now remained in the Top 1000 since 2008.
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NinonHeart

  • Origin:

    French, diminutive of Anne and Nina
  • Description:

    Sweet and charming à la Mignon.

HanneHeart

  • Origin:

    Danish, Norwegian, German, and Dutch form of Hannah or Johanne
  • Description:

    This spin on the popular Hannah is widely-used in Europe and pronounced similarly to Hannah. Unless you have a cultural or family reason to use Hanne, best stick with the more familiar spelling.

HanneHeart

  • Origin:

    Danish, Norwegian, German, and Dutch form of Hannah or Johanne
  • Description:

    This spin on the popular Hannah is widely-used in Europe and pronounced similarly to Hannah. Unless you have a cultural or family reason to use Hanne, best stick with the more familiar spelling.
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AniceHeart

  • Origin:

    Variation of Agnes
  • Meaning:

    "pure, virginal"
  • Description:

    Anice and Annis are variations of Agnes that have fallen from use, perhaps because of pronunciation issues. Neither spelling was used for any baby girls in the US in the most recent year counted, though a century ago about 100 girls were called Annis or Anice. Potential pronunciation issues ay keep parents away.

NanaHeart

  • Origin:

    Diminutive of Anna and Nancy; also Hawaiian
  • Meaning:

    "spring"
  • Description:

    To most English speakers, Nana is the dog in Peter Pan, the daughter played by Emma Stone in Crazy Stupid Love, and another name for Grandma.

HaniaHeart

  • Origin:

    Hebrew, variation of Chania
  • Meaning:

    "encampment"
  • Description:

    This very unusual name, also related to HANNAH, was chosen for his daughter by Vin Diesel.
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AnnikHeart

  • Origin:

    Russian diminutive of Annika or Ann
  • Meaning:

    "grace"
  • Description:

    Annik is a pleasing combination of exotic and familiar. As first Ann and now Anna become overused, you might want to explore its wilder variations such as this Eastern European short form.

PannaHeart

  • Origin:

    Hungarian variation of Anna; Hindi
  • Meaning:

    "grace; emerald"
  • Description:

    Panna is a name with many allusions — in addition to those above, a serene and sacred city in India and the Italian word for cream. Panna might make a fresh alternative to Anna or Hannah.
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