Phineas, Phineus

Phineas is a male name of uncertain meaning and etymology. It’s been linked to Hebrew meaning “serpent’s mouth” or “oracle”, as well as Ancient Egyptian meaning “the Nubian”. Spelled Phineus, it’s a Greek name borne by several figures in Greek mythology. The most notable bearer is a king of Thrace who features in the Argonautica, a Greek epic poem written about Jason and the Argonauts. This Phineus is either the son of Agenor or Poseidon, god of the sea, who had the gift of foresight and was blinded because he revealed too much of the gods’ plans (though there are different versions of how he became blind). The Argonauts came upon him on an island and agreed to help them on their voyage if they helped him get rid of the Harpies that were constanty harassing him by eating his food everytime he tried to eat. The meaning behind the name is unknown as well, though I’ve seen it listed as possibly meaning “vulture” or it might be composed from Greek elements iphios (strong, stout) and noûs (mind, reason, understanding) so essentially meaning “strong mind” or “strong understanding”.

Origin: Hebrew, Ancient Egyptian, Ancient Greek

Variants:

  • Phinehas (Biblical)
  • Phinees (Biblical Greek)
  • Pinchas (Hebrew)
  • Finees (Biblical Latin)

 

Female forms:

  • Phinea

 

Porter

Porter comes from an English surname meaning “gatekeeper, doorkeeper” from Old French portier via Latin porta meaning “gate”; it was an occupational name for someone who was a gatekeeper of a town or a large house. Porter could also refer to someone who carried loads for a living with their own strength rather than a cart or a horse, another occupational name which comes from Old French porteour meaning “to carry” via Latin porto (to carry). In the modern era, a porter is someone who works at a hotel who carries luggage.

Origin: Latin

Peter

Peter is the English form of Greek Petros meaning “stone, rock”. It’s also a surname originating from the given name.

Nicknames: Pete, Petey/Petie

Origin: Greek

Variants:

  • Petros (Greek, Armenian)
  • Petrus (German, Dutch)
  • Pieter (Dutch)
  • Pier (Dutch, Italian, English)
  • Piers  (Medieval English, Medieval French)
  • Peers (English)
  • Peder (Swedish, Norwegian, Danish)
  • Petter (Swedish, Norwegian)
  • Butrus (Arabic)
  • Botros (Arabic)
  • Boutros (Arabic, Coptic)
  • Bedros (Armenian)
  • Peru (Basque)
  • Petri (Basque, Finnish)
  • Peio (Basque)
  • Petteri (Finnish)
  • Pietari (Finnish)
  • Per (Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Breton)
  • Perig (Breton diminutive of Per)
  • Pierrick (Breton, French)
  • Pierre (French, Swedish)
  • Petar (Bulgarian, Serbian, Croatian, Macedonian)
  • Penko (Bulgarian diminutive of Petar)
  • Pere (Catalan)
  • Petru (Corsican, Romanian)
  • Petar (Serbian, Croatian, Bulgarian, Macedonian)
  • Petre (Romanian, Macedonian, Georgian)
  • Petr (Czech)
  • Petro (Ukrainian, Esperanto)
  • Peeter (Estonian)
  • Petur (Faroese)
  • Pitter (Frisian, Limburgish)
  • Pika (Hawaiian)
  • Péter (Hungarian)
  • Pétur (Icelandic)
  • Peadar (Irish, Scottish)
  • Piaras (Irish)
  • Pietro (Italian)
  • Pierino (Italian diminutive of Pietro)
  • Piero (Italian)
  • Petras (Lithuanian)
  • Petera (Maori)
  • Petruccio (Italiam medieval diminutive of Pietro)
  • Pèire (Occitan)
  • Piotr (Polish)
  • Pedro (Spanish, Portuguese)
  • Pedrinho (Portuguese diminutive of Pedro)
  • Pyotr (Russian)
  • Petya (Russian diminutive of Pyotr)
  • Petia (Russian diminutive of Pyotr)
  • Pedr (Welsh)
  • Perrin (French diminutive of Pierre)
  • Piere (Swedish)

 

Female forms:

  • Petra (English, German, Dutch, Czech, Slovak, Slovene, Croatian, Hungarian, Swedish, Finnish)
  • Petrina (English diminutive of Petra)
  • Pietra (Italian)
  • Piera (Italian)
  • Pierina (Italian diminutive of Piero)
  • Peta (English Australian)
  • Perrine (French)
  • Pierrette (French diminutive of Pierre)

 

Panthea

Panthea is a Greek name meaning “all the gods”, composed from Greek elements pan (all) and theios (gods). It’s also the name of a genus of owls.

Nicknames: Pan, Thea

Origin: Ancient Greek

Variants:

  • Pantheia (Ancient Greek)
  • Panthia (Latinized Greek)

 

Perry

Perry is a nickname for Peregrine, from Latin Peregrinus meaning “traveler”, or Percival, likely based on Welsh Peredur meaning “hard spear” though the spelling of the name was altered to resemble Old French percer val “to pierce the valley”. Perry is also an English surname which comes from Middle English perrie meaning “pear tree”, referring to someone who lived near a pear tree. As a Welsh patrynomic surname it comes from ap Herry meaning “son of Herry”, the latter a medieval English form of Henry meaning “home ruler”. Spelled Perriit’s an Italian surname derived from given name Peter meaning “stone”.

Origin: Latin, Welsh, Old French, Greek

Variants:

  • Peregrine
  • Percival
  • Perri (u)
  • Peri (u)
  • Perrie (u)

 

Potiphar

Potiphar the name of a wealthy Egyptian who served as the captain of palace guard under the Pharoah’s rule according to the Book of Genesis. He bought Joseph and made him the head of the household slaves. However, Potiphar’s wife was interested in Joseph and when her attempts to seduce him failed she accused him of trying to rape her and was thrown into prison, though he later got out when his ability to interpret dreams reached the Pharoah’s notice. Potipher’s name comes from Ancient Egyptian meaning “he whom Ra gave”.

Origin: Ancient Egyptian

Variants:

  • Potiphera (Ancient Egyptian)
  • Potifar (Ancient Egyptian)

 

Penna

Penna comes from Latin meaning “feather, plume, wing”. It’s also an Italian surname, either derived from the given name, or from Spanish Peña meaning “rock, cliff”, a locational surname referring to someone who lived near a cliff or rocky land.

There’s also the Penna river in India (also known as Penneru) which comes from the Telugu words penu (grand) and yeru (river, stream) or neeru (water).

Origin: Latin, Spanish, Telugu

Piper

Piper comes from an English surname meaning “pipe player”, from Old English pipere referring to someone who played the pipes. The name is derived from Latin piper meaning “pepper” via Greek piperi  from Sanskrit pippali (long pepper).

Origin: Sanskrit, Indo-Aryan

Variants:

  • Pyper