Rei

Rei (pr. ray) is a Japanese unisex name though it seems to be more popular for women. Some meanings depending on the kanji are: 玲 “exquisite, clever, sound of jade”; 礼威 “reverence + dominate, intimidate, power”; 礼 (reverence, etiquette, bow); 霊 (soul, spirit, ghost); 玲生 “exquisite, clever, sound of jade + life, existence, being”; 礼唯 “reverence + only, sole, alone”; 零 (zero); 麗 (lovely, elegance, beauty); 例 (example, instance); 令 (order, command); 怜 (to know, wise); 鈴 (bell, chime); 嶺 (peak, summit); 黎 (black, dark, gloomy, many); 澪 (waterway, channel, wake “of a ship”); 励 (strive, encourage); and many more depending on the kanji used. Other variants of the name include Reiko, with the (ko) meaning “child”, only used for females; Reika, also used for females with the (ka) ending meaning 香 “fragrance” and 花 “flower”; and Reiki, a unisex name with the (ki) ending meaning 樹 “tree”; 輝 “radiance, brilliance, splendor”; and likely various other meanings.

Origin: Japanese

Variants:

  • Reiko (f)
  • Reika (f)
  • Reiki (u)

 

Nola

Nola is a short form of Finola, an Anglicized form of Fionnuala meaning “white shoulder” from Irish elements fionn (white, fair) and guala (shoulder). It could also be a nickname for Magnolia, a flower named after French botanist Pierre Magnol; the closest I could find about the name is that it might possibly be a diminutive of given name Magnus, a Latin name meaning “great”.

Nola could also be a feminine form of Nolan, itself derived from Irish surname Ó Nualláin meaning “descendant of Nuallán”, Nuallán meaning “noble, famous”.

Nola is also a town in Campania, Italy, and one that seems to have a long history. It was fought over for control by Hannibal and the Romans three times when the former invaded Italy and failed. I couldn’t find what the etymology behind the name is but it might have derived its name from Latin nola meaning “bell” since the first use of bells for Church services began there.

Origin: Irish, Latin

Variants:

  • Nuala (Irish)
  • Nolene (English)

 

Male forms:

  • Nolan (English, Irish)