Tova

Tova is a Hebrew female name meaning “good”, though it’s also a Swedish variant of Tove, a modern form of Old Norse Tófa which is a short form of Old Norse Þórfríðr (or Thorfrither) meaning “Thor is beautiful” or “beautiful Thor” from Þórr/Thor (Thor) and fríðr (beautiful, beloved), Thor being the Norse god of thunder, strength, war and storms; his name fittingly means “thunder”.

Origin: Hebrew, Old Norse

Variants:

  • Tovah (Hebrew)
  • Tove (Swedish)
  • Tuva (Swedish, Norwegian)
  • Þórfríðr (Ancient Scandinavian)
  • Thorfrithr

 

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Terry

Terry is an English unisex name originally used as a diminutive of Terence (which comes from Roman family name Terentius which is of uncertain meaning though it could be derived from Latin terens meaning “rubbing, wearing away” from Latin terere (to rub, to wear out) though it might also be related to Sabine terenus meaning “soft”) or Theresa ( comes from Greek Therasia, the name of an island (the name is of uncertain meaning but has been linked to several possible meanings such as Greek theros “summer”, therizo “to harvest, to reap”, ther “wild beast”, or therao “to hunt”).

As an surname, however, Terry comes from medieval given name Thierry, the Norman French form of Theodoric meaning “ruler of the people” from Germanic elements theud (people) and ric (power); it could also be an anglicized form of Gaelic surname Mac Toirdhealbhaigh meaning “son of Toirdhealbhach”, the latter being a personal given name meaning “one who is like Thor” or “one who is like thunder”; or it’s a French surname deirved from Occitan terrin meaning “earthenware vessel, earthenware vase”, an occupational surname for a potter, which comes from Latin terra (earth).

Origin: Latin, Greek, Germanic, Gaelic

Variants:

  • Terrie
  • Terri
  • Teri

 

Thistle

Thistle is the name of a genus of prickly plants which comes from Old English þistel from Proto-Germanic *þistilaz which seems to come from Proto-Indo-European *steig-,*steyg- meaning “to prick”. Thistle also refers to a color, a pale purplish color like the flower, as well as also being the national emblem of Scotland. It’s also a surname, likely used to refer to someone who lived near an abundance of thistles or used as a nickname for someone who had a prickly personality.

Origin: Proto-Indo-European

 

 

Tearsa

Tearsa is a very unusual and rare name I can’t find much information on. It could be derived from a surname (also spelled Tearse and Tearce) but I couldn’t find much background about it either. It’s possible that Tearsa is a variant spelling of Tirzah, from a Hebrew female name meaning “favorable” or “pleasantness” which makes more sense.

Origin: Hebrew

Variants:

  • Tirzah (Hebrew)
  • Tirtzah (Hebrew)
  • Thersa (Biblical Latin & Greek)
  • Thirza (Dutch)
  • Thyrza (Dutch)
  • Tersa (English)

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

 

Taylor

Taylor comes from an English surname from Old French tailleor from Latin taliere meaning “to cut, to split” from Latin talea (slender stick, rod, staff; twig). It was originally an occupational surname referring to someone who worked as a tailor.

Origin: Latin

Variants:

  • Tayler (unisex)
  • Tayla (female)

 

Tomyris

Tomyris is a name of uncertain etymology. It’s the Hellenized form of Tahm-Rayiš, the name of a Massagetae queen (the Massegetaens being an ancient Eastern Iranian nomadic tribe in Central Asia in what is now parts of modern day Turkmenistan, Afghanistan, western Uzekistan, and southern Kazakhstan). Although the name is of uncertain etymology, since the original language the Massegetaens spoke is unknown, I’ve seem some sites as possibly linking it to Turkic name Timur meaning “iron” and so her name means “crush iron” or “bend iron”. Another possible meaning is that it comes from Iranian name Tomrouz meaning “girl who respects her home”.

According to Greek historians, Tomyris was the one who killed the Persian ruler Cyrus the Great when he attempted to invade her territory (after she had rejected his marriage proposal). In revenge, and after the death of her son Spargapises, she and her army defeated the Persian army and Tomyris had his corpse beheaded and stuffed the head into a wineskin filled with blood, fulfilling an earlier promise she had made him if he didn’t leave her country- although to be clear, there are different versions of how Cyrus the Great died, and this is just one of them. Apparently, history isn’t as clear-cut as it ought to be.

Origin: Unknown, possibly Turkic or Iranian

Variants:

  • Thomyris
  • Tomris
  • Tomiride
  • Tomiri
  • Tamyris
  • Tamiris
  • Tymar

 

Tamarack

Tamarack is the name of a tree, a species of larch trees. It comes from Algonquian (a Native American language) possibly meaning “wood used for snowshoes”. A poster named Boreas was the one who brought the name to my attention when he (or she) commented on the post about Linden; I’d never heard of it before than although I recognized the pictures when I looked it up. I’ve probably seen trees like that countless times but never knew the name of it.  But the more I think about it, the more I like it.

Nicknames: Tam, Tama, Tammy

Origin: Native American (Algonquian)

*Tamarack is the one with the yellow leaves*

Tawny

Tawny is a given name and the name of a color, referring to something that is light-brown or brownish-orange. It comes from Anglo-Norman tauné, a past particle of taner (to tan) which ultimately derives from Celtic tanno meaning “green oak” or “oak tree”.

Origin: Celtic

Variants:

  • Tawnee (English)
  • Tawnie (English)
  • Tahnee (English)