Aster

Aster is the name of a flower derived from Greek astḗr meaning “star”. It could also have been used as either a misspelling or a variant spelling of Esther, a name of uncertain etymology though it could be related to Persian meaning “star”; Esther has also been linked to Ishtar, the Mesopotamian goddess of love, fertility, and war, though the meaning is unknown. As a surname, it could be derived from Middle High German agelster meaning “magpie”.

Origin: Greek, Persian

Variants:

  • Astra (English)
  • Astraea (Greek)
  • Astraia (Greek)
  • Esther (English, French, Spanish, Dutch, German, Danish, Norwegian, Swedish)
  • Ester (Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, Czech, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Icelandic, Finnish)

 

Ashton

Ashton comes from an English surname derived from a place name meaning “ash tree town”, composed from Old English elements aesc (ash tree) and tun (enclosure, settlement).

Origin: Old English

Variants:

  • Asheton

 

Arlo

Arlo is an English male name of uncertain meaning. It was used by English poet Edmund Spenser for his epic poem The Faerie Queen (1590-1596) as the name of a place called Arlo Hill which he might have based on a real place name, Aherlow, a Gaelic name meaning “lowland between two high lands” or “between two highlands”. I’ve also seen it listed as being a variant form of Harlow, a surname derived from a place name meaning “rock hill” or “army hill”. It might also be a variant of Carlo, the Italian form of Charles derived from Germanic name Karl meaning “man”. It was originally used to refer to men who were not thralls or or servants but who still lived at the bottom of society, connoting the idea of a “free man”.

Several sites have also listed the name as meaning “barberry tree” in Spanish but when I looked it up bérbero was the Spanish word for barberry, not Arlo, so I’m not sure whether it was an older Spanish form of the name or whether it comes from a different dialect.

Origin: Gaelic, Old English, Germanic

Variants:

  • Arlow (English)
  • Arlowe (English)

Annora

Annora is a medieval English spelling of Honora which is a variant spelling of Honoria, the feminine form of Honorius meaning “honor” from Latin honos.

Nicknames: Nora, Ann, Annie/Anny

Origin: Latin

Variants:

  • Honora (Irish, English)
  • Onóra (Irish)
  • Honoria (Roman)

 

Male forms:

  • Honoré (French)
  • Honorius (Roman)

 

Artemis

Artemis is the Greek goddess of the hunt, wild animals, childbirth, and fertility, as well as a protecteress of young girls. A huntress who is often depicted with a bow and arrow, Artemis is the daughter of Zeus and Leto and the twin sister of Apollo. Some versions of the myth say Artemis was born first and helped her mother give birth to Apollo, and Artemis herself remained a virgin, forsaking any relationships with men. She’s also been associated with the moon (and Apollo with the sun). As for her name, Artemis is of uncertain etymology and meaning with some sources citing it as pre-Greek. It could possibly be related to Persian *arte or *arta meaning “great, excellent, holy” or from Greek árktos meaning “bear” since she did have a link to bears. The name has also been associated with Greek artemes “safe”, artamos “butcher”, artios “perfect, complete”.

Although Artemis is the name of a Greek goddess, it’s also had some usage as a boy’s name, making it unisex.

Origin: Persian, Greek

Feminine forms:

  • Artemisia (Ancient Greek, English)
  • Artemisa (Romanian)

 

Male forms:

  • Artemas
  • Artemus
  • Artemisios (Ancient Greek)
  • Artemidorus (Ancient Greek)
  • Artemidoros (Ancient Greek)

 

Apollo

Apollo is the Greek god of prophecy, medicine, the sun, light, music, poetry, plague and disease, and one of the most important gods in both the Greek and Roman pantheon. He is the twin brother of Artemis and often associated with the sun (and Artemis the moon), and the son of Zeus and Leto. His name is of uncertain etymology and meaning though the ancient Greeks often associated it with the Greek apollymi meaning “to destroy”. It’s also been associated with Doric apella “wall”, later referring to an assembly. Other possible theories regarding the name link it to Indo-European apelo “strength”, Greek apolusis “to redeem”, apolousis “purification”, apoloúōn “washing”, apolúōn “delivering”, aploun “simple”, and aei bállōn “always shooting (arrows)”. However, it seems more likely that Apollo is pre-Greek in origin, perhaps related to Appaliunas, an Anatolian god  whose name possibly means “father light” or “father lion”, though it could also be related to the name of a Hittite god related to Aplu, a Hurrian and Hittite god of plague and healing; the name might be derived from Akkadian Aplu Enlil meaning “the son of Enlil”, a title given to the Mesopotamian god Nergal (who was the god of war, pestilence, and death), though I’ve also seen it listed as meaning “father light” or “father lion”. Appaliunas might also have a Luwian etymology (Luwian being an ancient language related to Anatolian and closely related to Hittite) from *appal- meaning “trap, snare, pitfall, ambush”.

Origin: Indo-European, Greek, Akkadian

Variants:

  • Apollon (Ancient Greek)
  • Apollinaris (Ancient Greek)
  • Apollonios (Ancient Greek)
  • Apollinaire (French)
  • Apolinary (Polish)
  • Apolinar (Spanish)
  • Apollodorus (Ancient Greek)
  • Apollodoros (Ancient Greek)

 

Female forms:

  • Apolla
  • Apollonia (Ancient Greek, Italian)
  • Apollodora (Ancient Greek)
  • Apolena (Slovak, Czech)
  • Apolonia (Spanish, Polish)
  • Apolline (French)

Atalya

Atalya is a variant spelling of Athalia, a Hebrew female name meaning “Yahweh is exalted”, or a variant spelling of Attalia, the ancient name of Antalya, a city in Turkey. The name seems to be derived from the name of its founder, Attalos (also spelled Attalus). Though the etymology behind his name is uncertain, it might be derived from Greek atalos meaning “tender, delicate”, or it could be a diminutive of atta meaning “father”.

Origin: Hebrew, Ancient Greek

Variants:

  • Athaliah (Hebrew)
  • Athalia (Hebrew)
  • Atalia (Hebrew)
  • Athalie (French)
  • Attalia
  • Antalya

 

Male forms:

  • Attalos (Ancient Greek)
  • Attalus (Ancient Greek)

 

Amberly

Amberly is an elaboration of Amber, which comes from Arabic ‘anbar(عنبر) meaning “ambergris (gray amber), used to refer to a color that is yellowish-brown-orange or jewelry that is made out of amber, or fossilized tree resin which can sometimes contain the fossils of insects stuck within it. The -lee or -ley ending comes from Old English meaning “clearing” or “grove”, so the name essentially means “amber clearing”. Amberly also has a long history as a surname; although the origins are unclear, from what I could find it could be an occupational name for someone employed as an enameller (from Anglo-Norman-French amayler), someone who applies color or varnish to ceramics. Amberly could also be derived from Old English ambler meaning “to walk slowly” and is usually used to describe the easy gait ofa horse, referring to someone who was employed with horses.

Technically speaking, amber is not an actual gemstone but fossilized tree resin.

Origin: Arabic, Old English

Variants:

  • Amber
  • Amberley
  • Amberleigh
  • Amberle