Nadezhda

Nadezhda is a Russian female name meaning “hope” via Russian nadéžda наде́жда (hope, expectation)< Proto-Slavic *nadeďa (hope) which ultimately derives from a PIE origin.

Origin: Proto-Indo-European

Meaning: “hope”

Usage: Russian, Bulgarian

Nicknames: Nadia, Nadya (Russian and Bulgarian diminutive)

Pronunciation: nu-DYEZH-də (Forvo)

Variants:

  • Nadejda (Russian, Bulgarian)
  • Nadzeya (Belarusian)
  • Naděžda (Czech)
  • Nadège (French)
  • Nadine (French, German, English)
  • Nadežda (Slovak, Serbian, Latvian)
  • Nadzieja (Polish)
  • Nadya (Russian, Bulgarian, Ukrainian)
  • Nadiya (Ukrainian)
  • Nadia (Russian, Bulgarian, Ukrainian, French, Italian, Spanish, English)

Zara

Zara is a Bulgarian diminutive of Zaharina, the Bulgarian and Macedonian feminine form of Zechariah, a Hebrew masculine name meaning “Yahweh remembers” or “Yahweh has remembered”.

Zara could also be a variant spelling of Sara meaning “lady, princess, noblewoman,” which ultimately derives from Proto-Semitic *ś-r-r (to rule), which seems to be a cognate of Akkadian šarru (king).

Zara is also the English form of Zaïre, a name created by French writer and philosopher Voltaire for his play Zaïre. He may have based it on the Arabic name Zahra زَهْرَة (flower, blossom) or from zahara زَهَرَ (to shine, to be radiant, to give light)

Origin: Hebrew, Proto-Semitic, Arabic

Meaning: a diminutive of Zaharina “Yahweh remembers” or “Yahweh has remembered”; a variant spelling of Sarah “lady, princess, noblewoman”; could also have been based on French Zaïre, itself based on Arabic Zahra “flower, blossom” or “shining, brilliant, light”

Usage: English, Bulgarian

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Variants:

  • Sarah (English, Hebrew, Arabic, French, German)
  • Sara (English, Hebrew, Arabic, Persian, Greek, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, Catalan, Romanian, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Icelandic, Finnish, German, French, Dutch, Slovene, Croatian, Serbian, Macedonian, Polish, Bosnian, Biblical Greek)
  • Sarra (Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek)
  • Zarah (English)
  • Zahra (Arabic, Persian)
  • Zahara (Hebrew)
  • Zaïre (French)

Daniel

Daniel is the name of several figures in the Bible, including the prophet Daniel, who features in the Book of Daniel in the Old Testament. It comes from a Hebrew name meaning “God is my judge” or “judge of God”, made up of Hebrew dan דָּן (to judge) and el אֵל (god).

Daniel is also a surname originating from the given name.

Origin: Proto-Semitic

Meaning: “God is my judge” or “judge of God”

Usage: English, Hebrew, French, German, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Polish, Czech, Slovak, Spanish, Portuguese, Romanian, Slovene, Bulgarian, Macedonian, Croatian, Armenian, Georgian

Nicknames: Dan, Danny/Dannie

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Variants:

  • Danilo (Italian, Portuguese, Spanish, Slovene, Serbian, Croatian)
  • Daniele (Italian)
  • Danijel (Slovene, Croatian, Serbian)
  • Danyal (Arabic, Persian, Urdu, Turkish)
  • Taniel (Armenian)
  • Danel (Basque)
  • Deniel (Breton)
  • Danail (Bulgarian)
  • Daniël (Dutch)
  • Dániel (Hungarian, Faroese)
  • Dánjal (Faroese)
  • Taneli (Finnish)
  • Daníel (Icelandic)
  • Daniels (Latvian)
  • Danielius (Lithuanian)
  • Daniil (Russian)
  • Deiniol (Welsh)

Feminine forms:

  • Danielle (French, English)
  • Danièle (French)
  • Daniela (Bulgarian, Italian, German, Czech, Slovak, Romanian, Portuguese, Spanish, Macedonian, English)
  • Daniella (English)
  • Dana (Romanian, Czech, Slovak, German, Hebrew)
  • Danijela (Slovene, Croatian, Serbian)
  • Daniëlle (Dutch)

Martin

Martin is a shortened form of Ancient Roman Martinus, a derivative of Mars, the Roman god of war (and the Roman counterpart of the Greek god Ares). Mars is a name of uncertain etymology. It’s been linked to Latin mas meaning “man, male” of unknown origin though perhaps derived from a PIE root word meaning young man. However, it’s possible that Mars may be related to an older source, perhaps adopted from the Etruscan god Maris (the god of agriculture and fertility); this might be possible since Mars was also associated with agriculture and fertility.

Mars could also be a contracted form of an older name, Mavors, a cognate of Oscan Mamers. Etruscan seems to be a pre-Indo-European language of which very little is known about; the Etruscan civilization was conquered and than assimilated by the Ancient Romans, and the Etruscan language eventually died out with very little of it left behind. The origin of both names is unknown, but Mavors could possibly be related to Latin mah or margh (to cut) and vor (to turn) essentially meaning “turner of the battle”. Mars could also be derived from the same PIE root as Sanskrit marici “ray of light”, ultimately derived from PIE *mer- meaning “to die; to disappear”. It could also be associated with Latin marceo meaning “to (cause to) wither” and “to (make) shrivel” and Latin marcus meaning “hammer”, but the links are tenuous at best.

Martin is also the name of a type of bird related to the swallow- something about the bird migrating during the time of Martinmas (a festival celebrating St. Martin of Tours, a former Roman soldier who left and became the bishop of Tours). However, as an English surname it may have originated as a topographical name either meaning “settlement by the boundary” via Old English elements mǣre (boundary, border) and tūn (settlement) or “settlement by the lake” with the first element via Old English mere (sea, ocean; lake).

Origin: unknown, possibly Etruscan; Proto-Indo-European

Meaning: from Ancient Roman Martinus “belonging to Mars”, a name of uncertain origin and meaning though various possible meanings attributed to it are “man, male”, “turner of the battle”, perhaps from PIE root word *mer- (to die), or related to Latin marceo “to (cause to) wither” or “to (make) shrivel”, or Latin marcus “hammer”- though all of them are tenuous; Martin is also an English surname, a locational name “settlement by the boundary” or “settlement by the lake”

Usage: English, French, German, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Estonian, Romanian, Russian, Czech, Slovak, Slovene, Croatian, Hungarian, Bulgarian, Macedonian, Finnish, Spanish

Nicknames: Marty/Martie, Mart (Dutch), Tine (Slovene), Tinek (Slovene), Tin (Croatian), Matxin (Basque)

Variants:

  • Martinus (Ancient Roman, Dutch)
  • Maarten (Dutch)
  • Marten (Dutch)
  • Martijn (Dutch)
  • Merten (German)
  • Mårten (Swedish)
  • Morten (Danish, Norwegian)
  • Márton (Hungarian)
  • Martti (Finnish)
  • Mattin (Basque)
  • Martí (Catalan)
  • Máirtín (Irish)
  • Martino (Italian)
  • Martynas (Lithuanian)
  • Marcin (Polish)
  • Martim (Portuguese)
  • Martinho (Portuguese)
  • Martín (Spanish)
  • Martyn (Welsh, Ukrainian)

Female forms:

  • Martine (French, Dutch, Norwegian, English)
  • Martina (German, Italian, Spanish, Catalan, Czech, Slovak, Croatian, Slovene, English, Dutch, Swedish, Ancient Roman)
  • Martyna (Polish)

Elena

Elena is a female given name in several languages, a cognate of Helen. In Greek mythology, Helen (Helene in Ancient Greek) is the name of a daughter of Zeus and Leda, considered to be one of the most beautiful women in the world whose kidnapping by Paris led to the 10 year Trojan war.

The origin of Helen is unknown- it’s been linked to Ancient Greek helene meaning “torch”, likely in reference to something that shines or illuminates, so the name would essentially mean “the shining one” or “the bright one”; another possible origin is from Ancient Greek selene “moon”, which would tie it to the idea of illumination and light.

Elena is also a variant transcription of Yelena the Russian form of Helen.

Origin: uncertain, though it may be derived from a pre-Greek source

Meaning: uncertain, though it’s been linked to Ancient Greek helene “torch” or selene “moon”, essentially meaning “the shining one” or “the bright one”

Usage: Italian, Spanish, Romanian, Bulgarian, Macedonian, Slovak, Lithuanian, Russian, Greek, German, English

Variants:

  • Elene (Georgian, Sardinian)
  • Eleni (Modern Greek)
  • Helen (Greek, English, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish)
  • Helena (English, German, Dutch, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Icelandic, Portuguese, Polish, Czech, Slovak, Finnish, Estonian, Slovene, Croatian)
  • Helene (French, English, Ancient Greek, Swedish, Danish, Norwegian, German)
  • Hélène (French)
  • Heléna (Hungarian)
  • Elin (Scandinavian, Welsh, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish)
  • Elīna (Latvian)
  • Helēna (Latvian)
  • Elēna (Latvian)
  • Jeļena (Latvian)
  • Elina (Finnish, Swedish)
  • Eliina (Finnish)
  • Heleena (Finnish)
  • Eline (Norwegian, Danish, Dutch)
  • Ileana (Romanian, Spanish, Italian)
  • Yelena (Russian)
  • Alyona (originally a Russian diminutive of Yelena)
  • Elaine (English, Old French)
  • Elaina (English)
  • Alena (Belarusian)
  • Jelena (Serbian, Croatian, Estonian, Slovene, Lithuanian)
  • Heleen (Dutch)
  • Ellen (English)
  • Léan (Irish)
  • Olena (Ukrainian)
  • Elen (Welsh)