Arianna is the Italian form of Ariadne, the name of a Cretan princess in Greek mythology who helps the hero Theseus escape the labyrinth of the Minotaur, though he later repaid her kindness by leaving her behind on an island while she was sleeping. Ariadne was later found by the god Dionysos who made her his bride, and in some versions of the myth she was later made immortal.
Ariadne is made up of Ancient Greek element ari- (ᾰ̓ρῐ-), an intensive prefix that seems to be related to a sense of goodness and excellence (and also related to another Ancient Greek element, aristos “best, excellent”), combined with adnos ἀδνός (holy), a Cretan dialectal form of hagnos (holy, pure), both of which derive from a PIE origin.
Meaning: “most holy” or “most pure”
Usage: Italian, English
- Ariana (Portuguese, English)
- Aryana (English)
- Ariadne (Ancient Greek)
- Ariadni (Modern Greek)
- Ariadna (Spanish, Catalan, Russian, Polish)
- Arijana (Croatian)
- Ariane (French, German, Dutch)
- Arianne (French)
- Arienne (French)