Gillian is the Medieval feminine form of Julian, which comes from the Roman family name Julius which is either possibly derived from Latin ioulos meaning “downy-bearded” or it could be related to the Roman god Jupiter, which is made up of Indo-European *Dyeu-pater, dyeus meaning “shine” or “sky” and pater meaning “father”.
Gillian is also a surname, the Anglicized form of Gaelic Mac Gileáin meaning “son of Gileán”, the latter derived from personal name Gealán, a diminutive of geal meaning “bright, white”.
The name Gillian has two possible pronunciations, either with a hard g like Gilbert, or like a j, like Julian.
Origin: Latin, Indo-European, Gaelic
- Jillian (English)