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)

Oliver

Oliver is a male given name that has two possible origins. The first is that it could be from Germanic Alfhar from Old Norse Alvar meaning “elf warrior” or “elf army” from Old Norse elements alfr (elf) and arr (warrior, army); or it’s derived from another Old Norse name, Áleifr, meaning “ancestor’s descendant” from Old Norse anu (ancestor) and leifr (descendant). Oliver is also a surname originating from the given name.

Nicknames: Olly/Ollie

Origin: Old Norse

Variants:

  • Olivier (Dutch, French)
  • Olivér (Hungarian)
  • Oliviero (Italian)
  • Oliwier (Polish)

 

Female forms:

  • Olivera (Serbian, Croatian, Macedonian)
  • Olivette (English)
  • Olivia (English, Spanish, Italian, German, Finnish, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish)

 

Olivia

Olivia is a female given name first used by Shakespeare for a character in his play Twelfth Night (1602). He could have based it from Latin Oliva meaning “olive” or he could have based as a feminine form of Oliver, which either derives from Germanic name Alfher from Old Norse Alvar meaning “elf warrior” or “elf army”; or it could be from Old Norse Olaf meaning “ancestor’s descendant”.

Origin: Latin, Old Norse

Variants:

  • Olyvia (English)
  • Alivia (English)
  • Olivie (French, Czech)
  • Olívia (Hungarian, Portuguese, Slovak)
  • Oliwia (Polish)
  • Ólivía (Icelandic)
  • Oliva (Latin)

 

Male forms:

  • Oliver

Harry

Harry is a medieval form of Henry which comes from Germanic given name Heimirich meaning “home ruler” from Germanic heim (home) and ric (power, ruler).

Harry could also be a short form for Harold, a modern form of Old English Hereweald meaning “army leader” or “army ruler” from Old English here (army) and weald (ruler, leader, power) which ultimately comes from Ancient Germanic.

As well as being a given name, Harry is also a surname derived from the given name.

Origin: Ancient Germanic

Variants:

  • Henry (English)
  • Harold (English)
  • Hank
  • Hal

 

Harold

Origin: Germanic

Meaning: Harold is a modern form of Old English Hereweald meaning “army leader” or “army ruler” from Old English here (army) and weald (leader, ruler, power) which ultimately come from Ancient Germanic elements hari (army) and wald (leader, ruler, power).

As well as being a given name, Harold is also a surname derived from the same source.

Nicknames include: Harry or Hal.

Variants:

  • Hereweald (Old English)
  • Haraldr (Ancient Scandinavian)
  • Harald (Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, German)
  • Haraldur (Icelandic)
  • Chariovalda (Ancient Germanic)
  • Hariwald (Ancient Germanic)
  • Aroldo (Italian)
  • Haroldo (Portuguese, Spanish)