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Names That Mean Ruler or Royal

Names That Mean Ruler or Royal
Names with royal meanings are not necessarily actual royal baby names, such as George and Charlotte, but names that mean king, prince, queen, royal, or ruler. There can be some overlap — Henry, the birth name of Prince Harry, has the royal meaning "estate ruler."

Along with Henry, other names that mean ruler or royal in the US Top 1000 include Aubrey, Frederick, Kingsley, Malik, Queen, Reagan, Rory, and Sarah. Unusual but fashionable names with royal meanings include Eulalia, Juno, Laszlo, and Riordan.

Choosing a baby name with a royal meaning is one of the many positive ways you can give your child a name to live up to. There are names that mean ruler or royal in every style, from a range of cultures, for girls and for boys. A complete list of our names that mean royal or ruler is here.
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HenryHeart

  • Origin:

    German
  • Meaning:

    "estate ruler"
  • Description:

    Henry was derived from the French Henri, which ultimately comes from the Germanic name Heimrich, made up of the components heim, meaning "home" or "estate," and rich, meaning "ruler." The most famous wearer is Henry VIII of England, best known for having six wives—two of whom he beheaded for not bearing him sons. It’s been used in the British royal family many times since.

EttaHeart

  • Origin:

    English and Scottish, feminine diminutive suffix of Henry
  • Meaning:

    "estate ruler"
  • Description:

    Etta, once a short form of Henrietta, has long been used on its own, and we wonder if it could follow the progression of Emma to Ella to...Etta.

MiraHeart

  • Origin:

    Latin, Slavic, Arabic, Sanskrit
  • Meaning:

    "admirable; peace; female ruler; ocean"
  • Description:

    This name owes its present life to actress Sorvino. Mira and Mirra have an arty aura. Mira is a true cross-cultural choice, with the literal meaning of "look" in Spanish, a peaceful meaning in several Eastern European languages, a well-used name in Arabic cultures meaning queen-like or a female ruler, and a nature name in Sanksrit. In Greek, it means "fate, destiny". Mira can also be a short form of Miryam or Miranda.

SadieHeart

  • Origin:

    Diminutive of Sarah
  • Meaning:

    "princess"
  • Description:

    Sadie started as a nickname for Sarah, but their images couldn't be more disparate. Where Sarah is serious and sweet, Sadie is full of sass and fun.

ZaraHeart

  • Origin:

    Hebrew and Arabic
  • Meaning:

    "blooming flower; God remembers"
  • Description:

    Zara has multiple origins, but most notably is a variation of Zahrah, a name derived from the Arabic zahrah, meaning “blooming flower.” Zara can also be a diminutive of the Bulgarian name Zaharina, a feminine form of the Hebrew Zechariah. Today, Zara is heavily associated with the Spanish fast-fashion empire of the same name.
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AveryHeart

  • Origin:

    English
  • Meaning:

    "ruler of the elves"
  • Description:

    Avery originated in the Middle Ages as a Norman-French pronunciation variation of the Anglo-Saxon name Alfred and the Ancient Germanic name Alberich. The elements aelf, meaning "elf" and ric, meaning "ruler" give Avery its meaning. While Avery is considered by many to be a surname name, it was a given name first. It was used as a patronymic surname when England began to require last names.

RyanHeart

  • Origin:

    Irish
  • Meaning:

    "little king"
  • Description:

    Ryan’s use as a given name was inspired by the surname Ryan, a variation of the Irish O’Riain meaning "son of Rían." Rían is composed of the Irish-Gaelic elements , meaning "king" and an, a diminutive suffix. Ryan is considered a unisex name in the US, where variant spellings Ryann and Ryanne are also valid for girls.

IsoldeHeart

  • Origin:

    Welsh
  • Meaning:

    "ice ruler"
  • Description:

    Now that Tristan has been rediscovered, maybe it's time for his fabled lover in the Arthurian romances and Wagnerian opera, a beautiful Irish princess, to be brought back into the light as well.

JunoHeart

  • Origin:

    Latin
  • Meaning:

    "queen of the heavens"
  • Description:

    Juno is an ancient name that feels as fresh as if it had been minted — well, not yesterday, but in 2007. Since the release of the popular indie film Juno, this lively but strong o-ending Roman goddess name has become more and more prominent as a potential baby name — Coldplay's Will Champion chose Juno for one of his twins (whose brother is the kingly Rex).

FrederickHeart

  • Origin:

    German
  • Meaning:

    "peaceful ruler"
  • Description:

    Frederick, and friendlier nickname Fred, seemed almost to have disappeared, leaving just the memory of Freds past such as Astaire, Mr. Rogers and Flintstone. But today's parents are beginning to recognize it as a strong classic and one of the top royal baby boy names.
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HattieHeart

  • Origin:

    English, diminutive of Harriet
  • Meaning:

    "estate ruler"
  • Description:

    In the USA, Hattie is one of those nicknames that is now more popular than its parent name, Harriet. In England, however, Harriet is still by far more popular than Hattie, while in Australia, Harriet is highly popular while no data exists on Hattie. In the US, we’d like to see Harriet get more usage but we’re happy to see Hattie again.

HarrietHeart

  • Origin:

    English variation of French Henriette
  • Meaning:

    "estate ruler"
  • Description:

    Harriet has long been considered a stylish, upscale name in England, but it's still waiting to be revived in the US—though some parents seeking a solid, serious semi-classic are beginning to consider it.

RoryHeart

  • Origin:

    Irish
  • Meaning:

    "red king"
  • Description:

    Rory is a buoyant, spirited name for a redhead with Celtic roots. The name Rory is getting more popular overall, but for the past few years has been trending decidedly toward the boys' side -- however, it's been rising to new heights for girls in recent years.

HarryHeart

  • Origin:

    Diminutive of Henry
  • Meaning:

    "estate ruler"
  • Description:

    Harry is the medieval English form of Henry, which derived from the Germanic name Heimrich, meaning “estate ruler.” Harry was the nickname of all eight King Henrys; it is also a diminutive of Harold and Harrison.

RexHeart

  • Origin:

    Latin
  • Meaning:

    "king"
  • Description:

    Now that many dogs are named Max, it's safe to use this sleek, solid, regal name again for your child. And with the charm of its final x, its regal meaning, and its offbeat simplicity, Rex is definitely one to consider.
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OrlaHeart

  • Origin:

    Irish
  • Meaning:

    "golden princess"
  • Description:

    Orla is an Irish name closely associated with the high king Brian Boru, as it was the name of his sister, daughter and niece. It was very popular in the Middle Ages – the fourth most popular name in twelfth century Ireland – and has become popular again in Ireland, Scotland, England and Wales today. In Irish, the name is commonly spelled Orlaith or Orlagh.

DariusHeart

  • Origin:

    Persian or Latin from Greek
  • Meaning:

    "weath, kingly"
  • Description:

    Darius is a historic name via Emperor Darius the Great, a key figure in ancient Persian history, and several other Persian kings. His name today has an appealingly artistic image, which might well be found on a concert program or gallery announcement.

AlaricHeart

  • Origin:

    German
  • Meaning:

    "all-powerful ruler"
  • Description:

    Alaric is an ancient regal name that sounds modern enough to be considered. Alaric was a traditional name for the kings of the Ostrogoths, the most famous of whom was Alaric I, the King of the West Goths who sacked Rome in 410.

WalterHeart

  • Origin:

    German
  • Meaning:

    "army ruler"
  • Description:

    Walter was seen as a noble name in the Sir Walter Raleigh and Sir Walter Scott era, but it then spent decades in baby name limbo. Now quite a few independent-minded parents are looking at it as a renewable, slightly quirky, classic, stronger and more distinctive than James or John, second only to William among the handsome classic boy baby names starting with W. The recent popularity of Breaking Bad has brought us Walter White, conferring on the name Walter a new kind of cool and prompting a fresh wave of popularity.

KingHeart

  • Origin:

    English
  • Meaning:

    "monarch"
  • Description:

    King is a name that sends a mixed message. While some might think of it as more fitting for a canine, others see it as a strong name with offbeat style and a full court of rich associations, from Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. to Elvis. King Vidor was an important early Hollywood director; King Camp Gillette invented the safety razor.
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LaszloHeart

  • Origin:

    Hungarian
  • Meaning:

    "glorious ruler"
  • Description:

    The Hungarian classic Laszlo, with its zippy 'z' middle and energetic 'o' ending, has become something of a hipster option, beginning to be considered by cutting-edge parents.

EricHeart

  • Origin:

    Old Norse
  • Meaning:

    "eternal ruler"
  • Description:

    Eric is derived from the Old Norse name Eiríkr, from the components ei, meaning "ever," and ríkr, "rule." It was adopted by English speakers in the mid-nineteenth century, who were already familiar with the exploits of the tenth century Viking navigator and discoverer of Greenland, Eric the Red. Erik is an alternate spelling and the preferred form of the name across much of Europe.

AubreyHeart

  • Origin:

    English from French version of German Alberic
  • Meaning:

    "elf ruler"
  • Description:

    The unisex name Aubrey is scooting up the girls' popularity charts, along with the revived Audrey. After being a 100% male name, it tipped to female in 1974, and is now 98% girls, among the most popular girls' names starting with A.

MeredithHeart

  • Origin:

    Welsh
  • Meaning:

    "great ruler"
  • Description:

    Meredith is a soft, gentle-sounding name with subtle Welsh roots. Although originally a boys’ name , Meredith is used mainly for girls now.

KinsleyHeart

  • Origin:

    English
  • Meaning:

    "king's meadow"
  • Description:

    Kinsley, a name that straddles the line between cute and classy, continues to rise in popularity and is now one of the top girls' names starting with K. Kinsey is the name of the heroine of Sue Grafton's alphabet mysteries and Tinsley gives the name a high society spin.
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SarahHeart

  • Origin:

    Hebrew
  • Meaning:

    "princess"
  • Description:

    Sarah was derived from the Hebrew word sarah, meaning “princess.” Sarah is an Old Testament name—she was the wife of Abraham and mother of Isaac. According to the Book of Genesis, Sarah was originally called Sarai, but had her name changed by God to the more auspicious Sarah when she was ninety years old.

RhiannonHeart

  • Origin:

    Welsh
  • Meaning:

    "divine queen"
  • Description:

    Most of us had never heard this lovely Welsh name with links to the moon until we heard the 1976 smash hit Fleetwood Mac song of that name, with lyrics by Stevie Nicks. That same year it popped onto the U.S. Top 1000 at Number 593.

RichardHeart

  • Origin:

    German
  • Meaning:

    "dominant ruler"
  • Description:

    A classic old Norman name popular for a thousand years and favored for kings (Richard Nixon was named for Richard the Lionhearted), as well as the hoi polloi (as in every Tom, Dick and Harry), Richard was the sixth most popular US boys’ name in 1925, and was still Number 8 in 1950, but is now much less popular.

DerekHeart

  • Origin:

    English from German form of THEODORIC
  • Meaning:

    "the people's ruler"
  • Description:

    Derek started out as a sophisticated Brit, but the name became so common over the last decades of the twentieth century that it lost much of its English accent, along with its stylish edge. Derek was a Top 100 name in the U.S. for 25 years, from 1970 to 1995.

EulaliaHeart

  • Origin:

    Greek
  • Meaning:

    "sweetly speaking"
  • Description:

    Eulalia is a melodious name with a southern drawl, thanks to those lilting double Ls.
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HaroldHeart

  • Origin:

    Scandinavian
  • Meaning:

    "army ruler"
  • Description:

    The name of the last Anglo-Saxon king of England before the Norman conquest, and a name that's long been associated with a pipe-smoking, bespectacled grandpa or uncle.

ReaganHeart

  • Origin:

    Irish
  • Meaning:

    "little king"
  • Description:

    A strong, straightforward Irish unisex surname, with a merry glint in its eye, Reagan has been leaping up the popularity lists, to become one of the top girl names starting with R. Some will inevitably link it to President Ronald, but spell it Regan and it's a Shakespearean name: a daughter of King Lear.

KingsleyHeart

  • Origin:

    English
  • Meaning:

    "king's meadow"
  • Description:

    Kingsley is a sophisticated Harry Potter name that entered the US Top 1000 in 2013.

RainaHeart

  • Origin:

    Slavic and German variation of Regina
  • Meaning:

    "queen"
  • Description:

    Strong and solid, with a touch of foreign intrigue, it's the most popular of the rain-related names, with a variety of pronunciations—RAY-na, rah-EE-na, or RY-na. Alternate spellings Reyna and Rayna currently rank higher in the US.

HankHeart

  • Origin:

    Diminutive of Henry, German
  • Meaning:

    "estate ruler"
  • Description:

    Hank is a midcentury guy nickname (which actually dates back to the seventeenth century) of the Al/Hal/Dick school, which has been on recess from the playground for decades. Now it's just beginning to be given on its own again, appreciated for its earthy, sportsguy cool. Hanks Aaron and Greenberg (born Henry) and Hank Williams (born Hiram) Sr and Jr. are worthy namesakes.
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KingstonHeart

  • Origin:

    English
  • Meaning:

    "king's town"
  • Description:

    Chosen for their first son by musical couple Gwen Stefani and Gavin Rossdale, this Jamaican place and elegant British surname also boasts the more regal yet user-friendly short form, King.

HenriettaHeart

  • Origin:

    Feminine variation of Henry
  • Meaning:

    "estate ruler"
  • Description:

    Despite a return to such feminizations of male names as Josephine, Clementine, and Theodora, starchy Henrietta has not made it into that group. Still, if you look hard enough, you'll see that Henrietta has the same vintage charm.

VladimirHeart

  • Origin:

    Slavic
  • Meaning:

    "renowned prince"
  • Description:

    Vladimir, which has a musical prodigy kind of vibe, is a cultured Russian name associated in this country with political strongman Vladimir Putin, piano virtuoso Vladimir Horowitz, and the author of Lolita, Vladimir Nabokov.

RoyalHeart

  • Origin:

    English word name
  • Description:

    Even less subtle than Duke or Earl, this name is leaping up the popularity charts, probably due in part to a boost from the hit Lorde song "Royals."

TianaHeart

  • Origin:

    Slavic
  • Meaning:

    "fairy queen"
  • Description:

    Tiana gained a lot of popularity after Disney bestowed this pretty name upon its first African-American princess. Although it has declined in usage over recent years, Tiana’s connections to dainty Tatiana, Christiana and Bastiana should see it in continued usage for a while to come
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ZenoHeart

  • Origin:

    Anglicized form of Greek Zenon, related to Zeus, king of the gods
  • Description:

    Zeno, the name of two ancient philosophers, has a muscular dynamism that's lightened by its cheerful final vowel, resulting in a kind of offbeat sci-fi feel. Zeno of Citium was the founder of the Stoic school of thought, Zeno of Elea was another early, original Greek thinker, famed for his Paradoxes.

MalikHeart

  • Origin:

    Arabic; Greenlandic
  • Meaning:

    "king; wave"
  • Description:

    A name popular among African-American parents, with many spelling variations, including Malek and Maliq.

ReinaHeart

  • Origin:

    Spanish, Yiddish or Japanese
  • Meaning:

    "queen; pure; wise"
  • Description:

    An appellation for the Virgin Mary, "Queen of the apostles." After three years off the US popularity charts, Reina rejoined the list in 2014, though it lags behind alternate spellings Raina, Rayna, and Reyna. It is also used in Yiddish and in Japanese.

EricaHeart

  • Origin:

    Norse, feminine form of Eric
  • Meaning:

    "eternal ruler"
  • Description:

    The straightforward Erica is a Norse feminization that was long associated with the complex, mega-popular character Erica Kane, played by Susan Lucci for decades on the soap opera All My Children. Used in Scandinavia since the early eighteenth century, where it was usually spelled Erika, it was in the Top 50 girls' list in the USA in the 1970s and eighties.

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.
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SaraiHeart

  • Origin:

    Hebrew
  • Meaning:

    "princess"
  • Description:

    In the Old Testament, God changed Sarai's name to Sara, so this would make a very legitimate variation.

QuintonHeart

  • Origin:

    English or Latin
  • Meaning:

    "queen's manor or fith"
  • Description:

    Quinton is among several attractive Q-beginning, n-ending two-syllable names for boys, that also includes Quentin (the most popular iteration) and Quenton. They only suffer from their similarity and possible spelling confusion, ala girls' names Kristin, Kirsten and sisters. Quinton has slipped a bit in the standings over the past few years but remains an appealing choice. Quinton may be a descendant of the Roman family name Quintus, which means fifth, or may also be an English place-name meaning queen's manor or town.

ZariahHeart

  • Origin:

    Arabic, Hebrew, Russian
  • Meaning:

    "flower, God has helped, dawn"
  • Description:

    Zariah has three possible origins: the Arabic Zahrah which means ‘flower’, the Hebrew name Azariah, meaning ‘God has helped’, or the Russian word Zaria which means ‘sunrise/dawn’. Either way, it's a strong and striking name with a range of lovely meanings.

ZadieHeart

  • Origin:

    English variation of Sadie
  • Meaning:

    "princess"
  • Description:

    When aspiring British writer Sadie Smith decided to change her name to the more distinctive and zippy Zadie at the age of fourteen, this attention-magnet name was born. But though it might sound like a modern initial-switch, Zadie was actually Number 539 in 1881, remaining in the Top 1000 for almost thirty years.

FritzHeart

  • Origin:

    German, diminutive of Friedrich or Frederick
  • Meaning:

    "peaceful ruler"
  • Description:

    Since female cousins Mitzi and Fritzi have entered the realm of possibilities, there's a chance that Cousin Fritz could as well. Fritz is the name of several notables, from early German-born film director Lang to early footballer Fritz (born Frederick) Pollard, the first African-American to play in the Rose Bowl in 1916.
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