Ion

Ion is a figure in Greek mythology, the son of Creusa (an Athenian princess) and either the god Apollo or the Peloponnesus king Xuthus depending on some versions, and who is the ancestor of the Ionian people. The meaning behind the name is unknown, though it might be a stretch to relate it to Greek ion which means “violet”. I’ve also seen it listed as being the feminine form of Io, borne by numerous figures in Greek myth. Though the etymology behind the name is also unknown, it’s has also been linked to ion (violet).

Ion is the Basque and Romanian form of John, a Hebrew male name meaning “Yahweh is gracious”, as well as being a word, used to refer to an electrically charged atom or a group of atoms formed by the loss or gain of one or more electrons. It comes from Greek ión, the neuter present particle of ienai meaning “to go”, named because the ions move toward the electrode of the opposite charge; -ion is also a suffix indicating something in action from Latin ionem. Ion is also a surname derived from the Romanian given name

Origin: Greek, Hebrew, Latin

Variants:

  • Ioan (Romanian, Bulgarian, Welsh)

 

Alexander

Alexander is the Latinized form of Greek Alexandros meaning “defending men” or “defender of men” from Greek elements alexo (to defend, help) and aner (man). In Greek mythology, it was another name for the Trojan prince Paris, famous for abducting Helen, wife of Menelaus, which started the ten year Trojan war. It’s also the name of Alexander the Great, king of Macedon, who created one of the largest empires in the ancient world. Alexander is also a surname derived from the given name.

Nicknames: Alex, Xander, Lex, Ander, Sandy, Sander

Origin: Ancient Greek

Variants:

  • Alexandros (Ancient Greek)
  • Aleksander (Polish, Slovene, Albanian, Estonian, Norwegian, Danish)

 

Female forms:

  • Alexandra (Ancient Greek, English, German, Dutch, French, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Icelandic, Portuguese, Romanian, Czech, Slovak, Hungarian, Spanish, Italian, Russian, Ukrainian)
  • Alexandria (English, Ancient Greek)
  • Alexandrina (Portuguese, English)
  • Aleksandra (Russian, Ukrainian, Polish, Serbian, Bulgarian, Slovene, Croatian, Macedonian, Estonian)

 

Ara

Ara is the Latin word for “altar” as well as the name of a constellation in the southern hemisphere. According to Greek mythology, it received its name when the Greek gods overthrew the Titans and the smoke from the altar was what the Milky Way represented. Other possible meanings in Latin are “refuge” and “protection, sanctuary” while in Greek ara means “prayer”, “vow”, and “curse”. Ara is also the singular form of Arai (also spelled Arae), female spirits (or daimones) of curses summoned from the underworld by the dead on those responsible for their deaths. They’re often confused with the Furies (Erinyes) and seem to be the children of Nyx, goddess of the night.

Ara is also the name of a legendary Armenian prince also known as Ara the Handsome because he was so beautiful that even the legendary queen Semiramis (known as Shamiram in Armenian) waged a war to capture him but he ended up being killed in battle. The meaning behind the name is unknown. Ara could also be a variant spelling of Arah, a Hebrew male name meaning “wayfarer, wanderer”. It could also be a nickname for names that being with Ara such as Arabella, Araceli, Ariadne and Arianna, etc. It’s also a place name in several places, as well as also being a Korean female name meaning “to know, to be wise” (아라).

Origin: Latin, Greek, Armenian, Hebrew, Korean

Variants:

  • Arah (Hebrew)
  • Arra (English)

 

Corin

Corin is the French masculine form of Quirinus, a Latin name meaning “spear” or “lance” from Sabine quiris. In Roman mythology, Quirinus was a Sabine god who was later absorbed into the Roman pantheon, as well as being an epithet of Janus, the Roman god of beginnings, doorways, and endings. Corin could also be a variant form of Corinne, which is the French form of Greek Corinna meaning “maiden”. Corin could also be related to Cures, the name of an ancient Sabine town, or perhaps from Latin curia meaning “court”. It could also be derived from Cyrene (originally pronounced ky-ree-nee), the name of an ancient town in Libya named after a nymph beloved by the Greek god Apollo; her name could be derived from Greek kuros meaning “supreme power”.

Origin: Sabine, Greek

Variants:

  • Coren

 

Kaitlin

Kaitlin is a variant spelling of Caitlin, itself the Anglicized form of Caitlín the Irish form of Katherine which comes from Greek Aikaterine though the etymology behind the name is not certain. It could be derived from another Greek name, Hekaterine from hekateros meaning “each of the two” or from Hecate, the name of the Greek goddess of witchcraft, the underworld, and crossroads, from hekas possibly meaning “far off” though another theory states it comes from a Greek word meaning “will”. It might also be derived from Greek aikia “torture”. Katherine could also be from a Coptic name meaning “my consecration of your name”. The spelling of the name was later changed to be associated with Greek katharos “pure”.

Origin: Greek, Coptic

Variants:

  • Caitlin (Irish, English)
  • Caitlín (Irish)
  • Kaitlyn (English)
  • Caitlyn (English)
  • Katelyn (English)
  • Catelyn (English)
  • Kaitlynn (English)
  • Caitlynn (English)
  • Catelynn (English)
  • Kaitlynne (English)
  • Caitlynne (English)
  • Catelynne (English)

 

Ambrose

Ambrose is the English form of Latin Ambrosius, derived from Greek Ambrosios meaning “immortal”. In Greek mythology, ambrosia is the food of the gods which also bestowed immortality on those who ate it. Ambrose is also another name for Merlin, the wizard who helps King Arthur in Arthurian legend, known as Merlin Ambrosius. It’s also a surname originating from the given name.

Origin: Ancient Greek

Variants:

  • Ambrosius (Latin)
  • Ambrosios (Greek)
  • Ambrogio (Italian)- Ambrogino and Giotto are Italian diminutives of the name
  • Ambroise (French)
  • Ambrosio (Spanish)
  • Ambrósio (Portuguese)
  • Ambrus (Hungarian)
  • Emrys (Welsh)
  • Ambrozije (Croatian)
  • Ambrož (Slovene, Czech)
  • Ambroos (Dutch)- Broos is the Dutch and Limburgish diminutive of the name
  • Ambrosi (Georgian)
  • Ambroży (Polish)
  • Amvrosiy (Russian, Ukrainian, Bulgarian)
  • Amvrosy (Russian)

 

Female forms:

  • Ambrosia (Ancient Greek)
  • Ambrosine (English)
  • Ambrosette (English)

 

Alexa

Alexa is a short form of Alexandra, the feminine form of Alexander, derived from Greek Alexandros meaning “defender of men” or “defending man” from Greek elements alexo (to defend, help) and aner (man). Alexandra was also an epithet for the Greek goddess Hera.

Origin: Ancient Greek

Variants:

  • Alexandra (Ancient Greek, English, German, Dutch, French, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Icelandic, Portuguese, Romanian, Czech, Slovak, Hungarian, Spanish, Italian, Russian, Ukrainian)
  • Lexa (English)
  • Lexie (English)
  • Lexi (English)

 

Hestia

Hestia is the name of the Greek goddess of the hearth, home, family and domestic life, and the Greek counterpart to the Roman goddess Vesta. The name comes from Ancient Greek hestia meaning “hearth, home”.

Origin: Ancient Greek

 

 

 

Ksenia

Ksenia is the Polish form of Xenia, a Greek female name meaning “hospitality” from Greek xenos (foreigner, guest). In ancient Greece, xenia was the Greek concept of hospitality towards strangers or friends. It was even an important aspect to the Greek gods, one of the epithets accorded to the god Zeus being Zeus Xenios, the protector of guests and the patron of hospitality who will avenge any wrongdoing done to guests by their hosts.

Origin: Polish

Variants:

  • Xenia (Ancient Greek)
  • Xene (Ancient Greek)
  • Zenia (English form of Xenia)
  • Oxana (Russian, Ukrainian)
  • Kseniya (Russian)
  • Aksinya (Russian)
  • Ksenija (Serbian, Croatian, Macedonian, Slovene)
  • Senja (Finnish)
  • Oksana (Ukrainian)

 

Echo

Echo comes from Greek ekhe meaning “sound”. This was the name of a nymph in Greek mythology who loved talking and often used her loquaciousness to distract Hera when Zeus was off on one of his affairs. When Hera found out, she cursed Echo so that she could only repeat the last thing someone else said. Echo also fell in love with the youth Narcissus but because she couldn’t speak to him, he spurned her advances and she wasted away to nothing because of her unrequited love.

Echo is also a word in English derived from the same source above, used to refer to a sound made by an echo, which is why I decided to list it as a unisex name.

Origin: Greek