Dagmar

Dagmar is a Scandinavian and German female name meaning “day maid” made up of Old Norse elements dagr (day) < Proto-Germanic *dagaz which derives from an uncertain etymology though it’s been linked to PIE root *dʰegʷʰ- (to burn); and mær (maid, girl; and, in a more poetic sense, daughter).

I’ve also seen Dagmar listed as being an Old Danish form of Slavic Dragomira, the feminine form of Dragomir meaning “dear, precious + peace; world”

Origin: Proto-Indo-European; Proto-Slavic

Meaning: “day maid”; could also have originated from Slavic Dragomira “dear, precious + peace; world”

Usage: Danish, Swedish, Norwegian, Icelandic, German, Czech, Slovak

Variants:

  • Dagmær (Ancient Scandinavian, Old Norse)
  • Dagmara (Polish)
  • Dagna (Polish)
  • Dagnė (Lithuanian)

Viola

Viola comes from the Latin word viola meaning “violet (flower)”, related to Ancient Greek íon (violet) which seems to be derived from a pre-Indo-European Mediterranean source. In Italian, viola is the Italian word for violet.

Viola is also the name of a musical instrument though in this case the word comes from Italian viola< Old Occitan viola< Medieval Latin vitula (stringed instrument) which ultimately derives from a PIE root word.

Viola is the name of the heroine in Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night (1601-02), the twin sister of Sebastian, who dresses up as a man and becomes entangled in a somewhat humorous love triangle that all works out in the end.

Viola is also the name of a genus of flowering plants that includes violets and pansies.

Viola is also an Italian and Catalan surname; in the case of the former it derives from the female given name; the latter is likely an occupational name for a viol player.

Origin: uncertain, perhaps from a Mediterranean source; Proto-Indo-European

Meaning: “violet (flower”); also the name of a musical instrument as well as the color violet

Usage: Latin, Italian, English, Swedish, Danish, Finnish, German, Hungarian, Czech, Slovak

Pronunciation: vye-o-lah or vee-o-lah.

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Variants:

  • Violet (English)
  • Violette (French)
  • Violetta (Italian, Russian)
  • Violeta (Bulgarian, Romanian, Spanish, Macedonian, Serbian, Lithuanian)
  • Wioletta (Polish)
  • Wioleta (Polish)
  • Wiola (Polish)
  • Viorela (Romanian)
  • Viorica (Romanian)

Male forms

  • Viorel (Romanian)

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)

Roman

Roman is a male given name derived from Late Latin Romanus meaning “Roman” and “of Rome”, denoting someone who was a citizen of Rome. Rome itself is a name of uncertain origin though there are several possible theories regarding the name’s etymology:

  • according to Roman mythology, Rome’s name derives from the name of its founder and first king, Romulus whose name means “of Rome”, also of unknown meaning;
  • it may be derived from Rumen or Rumon, an archaic name for the Tiber river, which may be derived from PIE root word *srew- (to flow, stream);
  • it may have originated from Etruscan ruma meaning “teat”, perhaps in reference to the wolf that took in and suckled the infants Romulus and Remus in Roman mythology when they were left to die as infants, or it could have been named for the shape of the Palatine and Aventine hills;
  • it’s also possible that it’s from Ancient Greek rhome ῥώμη meaning “strength”, of unknown origin.

Roman is also a surname originating from the given name, though it could have also originated as a locational name for someone who came from Rome or from Italy in general, or who had made a pilgrimage there.

Origin: unknown

Meaning: “Roman, of Rome”, referring to someone who was a citizen of the Roman Empire

Usage: Russian, Polish, Czech, Slovak, Ukrainian, Slovene, Croatian, German, English

Nicknames: Roma (Russian), Ro

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Variants:

  • Romanus (Latin)
  • Romanos (Latin, Greek)
  • Romain (French)
  • Romano (Italian)
  • Romeo (Italian)
  • Romolo (Italian form of Romulus)
  • Romaeus (Latin form of Romeo)
  • Romà (Catalan)
  • Román (Hungarian, Spanish)
  • Romão (Portuguese)

Female forms:

  • Romana (Italian, Polish, Slovene, Croatian, Czech, Slovak, Late Roman)
  • Romola (Italian feminine form of Romulus)
  • Romaine (French, English)
  • Romane (French)
  • Romayne (English)
  • Romána (Hungarian)

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)

Linda

Linda is a female given name which originated as a short form of Germanic names containing Germanic element lind, linde meaning “soft, tender” via Proto-Germanic *linþaz (bendsome, flexible; pliable; weak, soft, mild) derived from a PIE root word. I’ve also seen lind, linde associated with the linden tree or, more poetically, “dragon, serpent, snake”.

Linda is also a Spanish and Portuguese word meaning “pretty, beautiful”, the feminine singular form of lindo which derives from an uncertain etymology. It seems to come from an Old Spanish word which has been linked to Latin legitimus (lawful, proper) and limpidus (clear, bright), but it’s not certain.

Linda could also be used as a nickname for names ending in -linda such as Belinda, Delinda, Celinda, Melindaetc.

In the Kalevipoeg (1861), an Estonian national epic poem written by Estonian writer Friedrich Reinhold Kreutzwald (based on Estonian mythology and various folk legends of Estonia) Linda is the mother of the hero Kalevipoeg; in this case her name comes from the Estonian word lind meaning “bird” via Proto-Finnic *lintu (bird) from Proto-Uralic *lunta (bird; goose).

Origin: Proto-Indo-European; Proto-Uralic; uncertain etymology

Meaning:  various depending on its usage- as an English name it comes from a shortened form of Germanic element lind, linde “soft, tender”, has also been associated with the lime/linden tree and, more poetically, “dragon, serpent, snake”; is also used as a nickname for names ending in -linda; also a Spanish and Portuguese word “pretty, beautiful”; also means “bird” in Estonian

Usage: English, German, Dutch, Italian, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Icelandic, French, Latvian, Finnish, Hungarian, Czech, Slovak, Estonian

Nicknames: Lin, Lindy/Lindi/Lindie

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Variants

  • Lynda (English)
  • Lindy (English)
  • Lindi (English)
  • Lyndi (English)
  • Lindie (English)
  • Lind (English)
  • Linde (Dutch)
  • Linza (Ancient Germanic)