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

 

Topaz

Topaz comes from Old French topaze, topace which comes from Greek topazos which is derived from Sanskrit tapas meaning “heat, fire”. However, according to Roman author, naturalist, and philosopher Pliny, the name came from a remote island in the Red Sea called Topazein meaning “to divine, to locate” though that seems to be folk etymology rather than fact.

Topaz is the birthstone of Novemer and associated with love and good luck, as well as believed to have healing properties.

Origin: Sanskrit

Variants:

  • Topaze

 

Esmeralda

Esmeralda is the Spanish and Portuguese word for “emerald”, also used as a given name. It comes from Old French esmeraude via Vulgar Latin (which is the common speech of Latin including different dialects) esmeralda, esmeraldus which comes from Ancient Greek smaragdos meaning “green gem”. That itself could come from a Semitic source such as Hebrew baraket or bareqeth meaning “emerald, shine” or Arabic barq “lightning”.

Origin: Hebrew, Arabic

Variants:

  • Esmeraude (Old French)
  • Emeraude (French)
  • Émeraude (French)
  • Emerald (English)

 

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

 

Zoe

Zoe is a Greek female name meaning “life”. It was used as a calque of Eve by Jews (a calque being a loan translation of a word or phrase that means the same thing in another language), as well as being the name of several figures in the Ancient world such as the Byzantine empress Zoe Porphyrogenita (purple-born), as well as another Byzantine princess (whose name was later changed to Sophia) who married Ivan III, Grand Prince of Moscow, and was the grandmother of Ivan the Terrible, who became the first tsar of Russia.

Origin: Greek

Variants:

  • Zoë (Dutch, English)
  • Zoé (French)
  • Zoey (English)
  • Zoie (English)
  • Zowie (English)
  • Zoja (Macedonian, Polish)
  • Zoya (Russian, Ukrainian)
  • Zoa (English, Spanish)

 

Maya, Maia

Maya is the name of the Mayan civilization and its people, a Mesoamerican civilization that stretched out in southern Mexico, Belize, Guatemela, El Salvador, and Honduras, though it’s of unknown meaning.  Maya is also an Indian girl’s name meaning “illusion” or “magic” in Sanskrit, featuring as a concept in Hinduism and Buddhism. In Hindu mythology, Maya is an epithet for Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth, prosperity, and love, and Durga, a warrior goddess.

Maya is also a Hebrew female name meaning “water” derived from mayim (water).

In Japan, Maya is a unisex name that has a variety of meanings depending on the kanji used: “hemp,flax,linen + to be”; “ten thousand + to be”; “true + to be”; “true + night”; and “to rub, graze, grind + eight”; there are other meanings besides these.

Maya also seems to have been a male name in Ancient Egyptian, being the name of a High Priest of Amun in Ancient Egypt who lived during the 14th century during the reign of Akhenaten, as well as being the name of  a treasurer who lived in the 16th century, though I couldn’t find any meaning behind the name.

Maia is the name of one of the oldest of the Pleiades, seven nymphs who are the daughters of Atlas, a Titan, and Pleione, an Oceanid. By Zeus, she is the mother of the god Hermes, and also helped raise Arcas, the son of Zeus and Callisto, whose mother was turned into a bear by Hera. The name possibly means “good mother” in Greek, and was used as an honorific for motherly figures. Maia also means “midwife”.

Maia is also a Roman goddess of spring, the wife of Vulcan; her name comes from Latin maius meaning “great”, and the month of May is named after her.

Maia is also the Basque form of Maria, the Latin form of Hebrew name Miriam, a name of unknown meaning though possible meanings ascribed to it are “sea of bitterness”, “rebelliousness” or “obstinacy”, and “wished for child”. It’s also possible that it might be derived from an Egyptian name either meaning “beloved” from myr, or from mr “love”.

Maia means “palm tree” in the Maori language.

Origin: Sanskrit, Greek, Roman, Hebrew, Ancient Egyptian, Maori, Japanese

Variants:

  • Maja (Croatian, Serbian, Slovene, German, Danish, Swedish, Norwegian, Polish)
  • Maïa (French)

 

Male forms:

  • Maj (Slovene)

 

 

Maya 麻也 (Japanese kanji) “hemp,flax,linen+to be

Maya 万也 (Japanese kanji) “ten thousand + to be”

Maya 真也 (Japanese kanji) “true + to be”

Maya 真夜 (Japanese kanji) “true + night”

Maya 摩八 (Japanese kanji)”to rub, graze, grind + eight”

 

 

Melantho

Melantho is a Greek feminine name meaning “black flower” from Greek elements melos (black, dark) and anthos (flower).

In Homer’s Odyssey, Melantho is one of the maids of Penelope, wife of Odysseus, who treats her like a daughter, though Melantho is ungrateful to her generosity by sleeping with the suitors of Penelope and who is rude to Odysseus when he returned to Ithaca disguised as a begger. She, along with the other unfaithful maids as well her her brother Melanthios, were all killed when Odysseus revealed himself.

Origin: Greek

Variants:

  • Melantha

 

Hercules

Hercules is the Latinized spelling of Greek name Herakles meaning “glory of Hera” from Greek elements kleos (glory) and the name of the goddess Hera. It’s rather an ironic name for the son of Zeus and a mortal woman, Alcmene, considering Hera hated him as she hated all of Zeus’s illegitimate offspring, and drove him mad enough to kill his wife Megara and their children, in which Hercules had to perform the Twelve Labors for penance. Hercules also had a twin brother, Iphicles, though he’s the son of Alcmene’s husband Amphitryon, and a full mortal. Apparently the same night Zeus seduced Alcmene (disguised as her husband), Amphitryon came home later that same night and slept with his wife, resulting in the birth of twin sons by different fathers).

As the son of a god, Hercules had great strength and killed many monsters. He was also very sexually active with many women (fathering many children) and men, and was killed (by accident) by his third wife Deianeira who was tricked into soaking his shirt with the blood of the centaur Nessus who attempted to kidnap and rape her before being killed by Hercules; after his death he became a full god and joined the other gods on Mount Olympus, where he married Hebe, the goddess of youth the cupbearer of the gods, and they had sons Alexiares and Anicetus.

Origin: Greek

Variants:

  • Herakles (Greek)
  • Heracles (Latinized spelling of Heracles)
  • Heraclius (Ancient Greek, Latinized spelling)
  • Herakleios (Ancient Greek)
  • Iraklis (Modern Greek)
  • Heraclio (Spanish)
  • Erekle (Georgian)
  • Irakli (Georgian)
  • Irakliy (Russian)
  • Hercule (French)
  • Ercole (Italian)
  • Ercwlff (Welsh)

 

Female forms:

  • Heraclea
  • Heracleia
  • Heraclia
  • Iraklia (Modern Greek)

 

 

Demeter

Demeter is the goddess of agriculture who presides over all growing things, particularly crops, the mother of Persephone, and the sister of Zeus. Though the etymology behind the name is uncertain, the second element of the name is from Greek meter meaning “mother”. The first part of the name is a little tricky. It could be linked to da meaning “earth” which is the Doric form of Greek ge (earth) essentially meaning “mother earth”. Another possible theory is that it comes from the same Proto-Indo-European root word as Zeus’s name, *Dyeus, likely meaning “shine” or “sky, heaven, god”.

Demeter is also the Hungarian male form of Demetrius which is actually the masculine form of Greek Demeter.

Origin: Greek, Proto-Indo-European

Female variants:

  • Demetria (Ancient Greek, English)
  • Demetra (Greek, Italian, Romanian)
  • Dimitra (Modern Greek)

 

Male forms:

  • Demetrius (Ancient Greek)
  • Demetrios (Ancient Greek)
  • Dimitrios (Modern Greek)
  • Dimitris (Modern Greek)

 

Poseidon

Poseidon was the Greek god of the sea, horses, storms and earthquakes in Greek mythology, and the brother of Zeus. Though the etymology behind the name is unclear, it could be derived from Greek posis (husband, lord) and da (earth) meaning “lord of the earth”.

Origin: Greek