Powerful Girl Names

There have been plenty of powerful women scattered throughout our past.These names not only compliment our favorite heroines of past and present, but your baby as well.
  1. Audrey
    • Origin:

      English
    • Meaning:

      "noble strength"
    • Description:

      Audrey is one of the girls' names that have been rising due to their connection to Old Hollywood glamour—in this case the eternally chic and radiant Audrey Hepburn. Audrey has another very different appeal as one of the elite group of girl names that mean strong, brave, or powerful.
  2. Bambi
    • Origin:

      Diminutive of Bambina, Italian
    • Meaning:

      "child; baby girl"
    • Description:

      Although Disney's cute deer was a male, Bambi has always been used for girls. It first appeared on the charts in 1943, the year after the Disney movie was released. Bambi featured in the Top 1000 from 1954-1964 — a decade where girl names ending in I, like Lori and Teri, were big — and again from 1977-1982.
  3. Beatrice
    • Origin:

      Latin
    • Meaning:

      "she who brings happiness; blessed"
    • Description:

      Beatrice is back. Stored in the attic for almost a century, the lovely Beatrice with its long literary (Shakespeare, Dante) and royal history is being looked at with fresh eyes by parents seeking a classic name with character and lots of upbeat nicknames, like Bea and Bee.
  4. Claire
    • Origin:

      French form of Clara
    • Meaning:

      "bright, clear"
    • Description:

      Claire, luminous, simple, and strong, is one of those special names that is familiar yet distinctive, feminine but not frilly, combining historical depth with a modern edge. And though Claire is enjoying revived popularity, it will never be seen as trendy. Claire is also a great middle name choice.
  5. Cleopatra
    • Origin:

      Greek
    • Meaning:

      "glory of the father"
    • Description:

      A royal name in ancient Egypt that's never quite made it to the modern world, though nickname Cleo is widely used. Other now-extinct Cleopatra diminutives, including Cleora and Cleola, achieved some popularity in the early 20th century when there was a crazy for all things Egypt-related as the ancient tombs were opened and artifacts displayed. In the US, Cleopatra became a popular silent film in 1917 starring Theda Bara.
  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. Cressida
    • Origin:

      Greek
    • Meaning:

      "gold"
    • Description:

      Cressida is a pretty mythological and Shakespearean heroine name much better known in Britain than it is here — an imbalance the adventurous baby namer might want to correct.
  8. Esperanza
    • Origin:

      Spanish
    • Meaning:

      "hope, expectation"
    • Description:

      Esperanza is a Spanish classic that's found its way onto the national popularity list in recent years. It came into the spotlight not long ago when jazz singer Esperanza Spalding "stole" the Best New Artist Grammy from favorite Justin Bieber. It's also the name of the main character in the novel The House on Mango Street by Sandra Cisneros, about a young Latina growing up in Chicago.
  9. Evangeline
    • Origin:

      Greek
    • Meaning:

      "bearer of good news"
    • Description:

      Evangeline is a romantic old name enjoying a major comeback, thanks to its religious overtones, Eva's popularity, and the star of the TV megahit Lost, Evangeline Lilly. Evangelia and Evangelina — two variants of Evangeline — are sure to tag along for the ride.
  10. Eve
    • Origin:

      Hebrew
    • Meaning:

      "life"
    • Description:

      Eve, the oldest name in the Book, is now coming back into style, having the virtues of simplicity and purity, yet with more strength and resonance than other single-syllable names like Ann. British actor Clive Owen chose Eve for his daughter, as did Jessica Capshaw.
  11. Fiona
    • Origin:

      Scottish
    • Meaning:

      "white, fair"
    • Description:

      Fiona entered the American consciousness with the opening of the 1954 Broadway musical Brigadoon, but didn't come onto the U.S. popularity list until 1990.
  12. Gemma
    • Origin:

      Italian
    • Meaning:

      "precious stone"
    • Description:

      Gemma is a jewel of a name, an Italian classic that was very popular in 1980s England, but has only recently been started to be used here; it entered the list in 2008.
  13. Godiva
    • Origin:

      English
    • Meaning:

      "God's gift"
    • Description:

      Whether you think of the chocolates or the naked long-haired lady on the horse, Godiva is a name with baggage no child should have to carry.
  14. Hannah
    • Origin:

      Hebrew
    • Meaning:

      "grace"
    • Description:

      Hannah is one of the nation's top biblical girls' names—it surpassed Sarah in 1998, and ranks in the Top 50 along with Elizabeth, Abigail, Chloe, and Naomi. Hannah is a name with many sources of appeal: Old Testament roots, soft and gentle sound, and a homey yet aristocratic image.
  15. Helen
    • Origin:

      Greek
    • Meaning:

      "torch; shining light"
    • Description:

      Helen is a name that has connoted beauty since ancient times – Helen of Troy was the the mythological "face that launched a thousand ships," over whom the ten-year Trojan War was fought.
  16. Heloise
    • Origin:

      French from German
    • Meaning:

      "healthy; wide"
    • Description:

      Heloise is an ancient name related to sleek, peppy classic Eloise. Both ultimately derive from the Germanic name Helewidis, which became Helewis in medieval England. In the twelfth century, the name was borne by the beloved of the French philosopher Pierre Abelard, who was considered to be one of the most learned women of the Middle Ages.
  17. Ingrid
    • Origin:

      Norse
    • Meaning:

      "fair; Ing is beautiful"
    • Description:

      The luminous Ingrid Bergman's appeal was strong enough to lend universal charisma to this classic Scandinavian name, which has been somewhat neglected in the US. Even today, a child named Ingrid would be assumed to be of Scandinavian ancestry, signaling the name has never been fully integrated into the English lexicon the way other European choices from the same era like Danielle or Kathleen have.
  18. Irene
    • Origin:

      Greek
    • Meaning:

      "peace"
    • Description:

      Serene Irene, the name of the Greek goddess of peace and one of the most familiar Greek goddess names, was hugely popular in ancient Rome and again in the United States a hundred years ago.
  19. Jacqueline
    • Origin:

      French, feminine diminutive of Jacques
    • Meaning:

      "supplanter"
    • Description:

      Jacqueline originated as a feminine form of Jacques, the French variation of James, and therefore Jacob. Jacob was ultimately derived from the Hebrew name Ya’aqov, and gets its meaning, "supplanter" from the story of Jacob supplanting his brother Esau as the first-born son in the Bible. Jacqueline was first used in France in the Middle Ages.
  20. Julia
    • Origin:

      Latin
    • Meaning:

      "youthful or sky father"
    • Description:

      Julia was an ancient Roman imperial name given to females in the house of a Julius, as in Caesar. Its origin is shrouded in history, but possible roots include Latin iuvenis, meaning "youthfu"; Greek ioulos, meaning "downy-bearded"; or Jovis, a form of Jupiter, which means "sky father".