Beautiful, Elegant Names

  1. Adeline
    • Origin:

      French, diminutive of Adele
    • Meaning:

      "noble, nobility"
    • Description:

      Adeline has a lovely, old-fashioned "Sweet Adeline" charm, but has become so popular in the US under so many spellings and variations -- with Adalynn and Adalyn also popular -- that considered together it is far more popular than it first seems. Adorable nickname Addie is also pervasive.
  2. Alexandra
    • Origin:

      Greek, feminine form of Alexander
    • Meaning:

      "defending men"
    • Description:

      Alexandra fell out of the Top 100 for the first time since 1983 in 2015 but is still a popular choice. Strong, tasteful, and elegant, Alexandra remains a chic modern classic with a solid historic pedigree.
  3. Antoinette
    • Origin:

      French feminine diminutive form of Antoine
    • Meaning:

      "priceless one"
    • Description:

      This feminization of Anthony, like other early French forms, such as Babette and Nanette, is not heard as often as it once was, but it could be time for a reappraisal of this delicate Gallic choice.
  4. Arabella
    • Origin:

      Latin
    • Meaning:

      "yielding to prayer"
    • Description:

      Arabella, lovely and elegant, has long been well used in Britain and finally made it onto the American list in 2005. Its meaning may also be interpreted as "beautiful," thanks to -bella.
  5. Charlotte
    • Origin:

      French, feminine diminutive of Charles
    • Meaning:

      "free man"
    • Description:

      Charlotte, the name of the young Princess of Cambridge, is the latest classic name to join Sophia, Emma, Olivia, and Isabella at the top of the popularity list. It is now among the most popular girl names in many English-speaking and European countries.
  6. Cordelia
    • Origin:

      Latin; Celtic
    • Meaning:

      "heart; daughter of the sea"
    • Description:

      Cordelia is exactly the kind of old-fashioned, grown-up name for girls that many parents are seeking for their daughters today. The name of King Lear's one sympathetic daughter, Cordelia has both style and substance along with its Shakespearean pedigree.
  7. Dahlia
    • Origin:

      Flower name, from Swedish surname
    • Meaning:

      "Dahl's flower"
    • Description:

      One of the flower names, used occasionally in Britain (where it's pronounced DAY-lee-a). It seems to have recovered from what was perceived as a slightly affected la-di-dah air. The flower was named in honor of the pioneering Swedish botanist Andreas Dahl, which means dale.
  8. Elisabeth
    • Origin:

      Spelling variation of Elizabeth
    • Meaning:

      "pledged to God"
    • Description:

      This spelling of the classic name is found in France, Germany, Greece, and other cultures, and is worn by such notables as Elisabeth Kubler-Ross, Elisabeth Shue, Elisabeth Moss, and Elisabeth Hasselbeck. The name's pronunciation is usually just like the Z version, but some parents choose this because they want to discourage the Liz or Lizzie short forms and so pronounce it as if it has Lisa in the middle.
  9. Fleur
    • Origin:

      French
    • Meaning:

      "flower"
    • Description:

      Fleur is a generic, delicate flower name that emigrated into the English-speaking world when John Galsworthy bestowed it on one of the Forsytes in his celebrated saga. More recently, there was Fleur Delacour, a French witch and the Beauxbatons champion for the Triwizard Tournament in Harry Potter.
  10. Genevieve
    • Origin:

      English from French
    • Meaning:

      "tribe woman"
    • Description:

      Genevieve is derived from the Germanic medieval name Genovefa, or Kenowefa, which consists of the elements kuni, meaning "kin", and wefa, meaning "woman." The medieval saint Genevieve, patroness of Paris, defended the city against Attila the Hun through her rational thinking, courage and prayer.
  11. Guinevere
    • Origin:

      Welsh
    • Meaning:

      "white shadow, white wave"
    • Description:

      Guinevere was the name of the beautiful but ill-fated queen of Camelot, for so many years eclipsed by its modern Cornish form Jennifer. Today, Guinevere could be a cool possibility for adventurous parents intrigued by this richly evocative and romantic choice.
  12. Jessamine
    • Origin:

      English from Persian
    • Meaning:

      "jasmine"
    • Description:

      Jessamine, a charming name occasionally heard in England, is just beginning to be appreciated in the U.S. as a possible successor to all the Jess names of the past. It's also spelled Jessamyn, as in Quaker novelist Jessamyn West, author of Friendly Persuasion--who started life with Jessamyn as her middle name.
  13. Katarina
    • Origin:

      Slovak variation of Katherine
    • Meaning:

      "pure"
    • Description:

      The Russian version of Katherine is usually Ekaterina, but this Slovak form is used throughout Eastern Europe and may be more friendly to the American ear.
  14. Lynnetta
    • Maria
      • Origin:

        Hebrew or Egyptian
      • Meaning:

        "drop of the sea, bitter, or beloved"
      • Description:

        As a highly popular girls’ name in all Spanish-speaking countries, this saintly Latin variation of Mary retains a timeless beauty. Through the centuries, Maria remains one of the most widely-used girl names starting with M.
    • Nicolette
      • Origin:

        French, diminutive of Nicole, feminine variation of Nicholas, Greek
      • Meaning:

        "people of victory"
      • Description:

        Nicolette is the ultra-feminine name of an enchanting princess in the medieval French romance, Aucassin et Nicolette, a name that got stacks of publicity in the heyday of Desperate Housewives and its star Nicolette Sheridan. It was also the name of Chloe Sevigny's character in Big Love.
    • Priscilla
      • Origin:

        Latin, diminutive of Prisca
      • Meaning:

        "ancient"
      • Description:

        Despite her somewhat prissy, puritanical air, Priscilla has managed to stay widely used for well over a century -- it reached as high as Number 127 in 1940 -- appreciated for its delicacy and solid history.
    • Rosabelle
      • Susanna
        • Origin:

          Hebrew
        • Meaning:

          "lily"
        • Description:

          Susanna is an old and under-appreciated name, perhaps because of the recent overpopularity of Susan, that is certainly due for a comeback.
      • Victoria
        • 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.