Talia

Talia has several meanings depending on the origin:

  • it’s a variant transcription of Talya, a Hebrew female name meaning “dew from God”;
  • Talia is also an Aboriginal word meaning “near water” and is the name of a town in Australia;
  • it’s also an Aramaic unisex name, a variant of Talya meaning “young lamb”, derived from taleh;
  • it’s also a variant form of Thalia, a Greek name meaning “to flourish, bloom, to be verdant”. In Greek mythology, Thalia is the name of several figures including one of the nine Muses who presides over comedy and idyllic poetry;
  • Talia is also an Arabic female name, perhaps a variant transcription of Dalia meaning “grape vine”;
  • it may also be a nickname for Natalia, a Late Roman name meaning “birth” or “birthday” though the name is often associated with Christmas Day because of the expression natale domini (the birth of the Lord).

Origin: Hebrew, Aboriginal, Aramaic, Ancient Greek, Arabic, Latin

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There’s an Italian fairytale by Giambattista Basile called Sun, Moon, and Talia (Sole, Lune, e Talia in Italian), the original Sleeping Beauty. In this version, Talia is the daughter of a lord. He was told by his wise men and seers that Talia’s life would be endangered by a piece of flax and in response, the lord ordered that no piece of flax would ever enter his home. It seems the lord never told his daughter about the danger because one day, Talia sees an old woman spinning some flax and curiously asks her if she can spin it herself; a splinter of the flax got under her fingernail and she falls in apparent death. Unable to bury his daughter, the lord puts her in his country estate.

A king approaches the country estate when he’s out hunting, goes inside, and finds the sleeping Talia lying on a bed. Entranced by her beauty he tries to wake her up but when he can’t, he rapes her and then leaves. Later on, Talia gives birth to twins, a boy and girl, and one of them sucks at her finger where the piece of flax is stuck under her fingernail, dislodging it and awakening their mother. She names them Sun and Moon.

When the king finally returns, he finds Talia awake and with their twins, but he’s already married. When his wife finds out about Talia and the twins, in her jealousy she orders them brought to the royal court, and that the children be killed, cooked, and fed to the king. However, the cook hides them and cooks two lambs instead. Then the queen orders a big fire to be lit and orders Talia to be thrown in, however Talia stalls for time by asking to take off her clothes, and with piece she takes off she screams loudly until the king hears her. When he shows up, the queen taunts him, telling him that he had eaten his own children. In his grief and anger, he orders his wife, his secretary, and the cook burned, but as he is dragged to the fire the cook reveals that the twin were still alive and is rewarded by being made into a royal chamberlain, and the king marries Talia and they, and their children, live happily after.

 

Variants:

  • Tahlia (English)
  • Thalia (Greek)
  • Thaleia (Ancient Greek)
  • Taliah (English)
  • Talya (Hebrew, Aramaic)
  • Tal (Hebrew)

 

Male forms:

  • Tal (Hebrew)

 

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