Friday, September 7, 2012

Marian Names

I did a quick Google search, and was surprised to not find much by the way of Marian name lists. Marian names are used to honor the Virgin Mary, in cultures where actual saint names are too holy to use. They are thus most common in Roman Catholic areas, particularly Spanish, but exist in other regions, too. Some are concepts; many are place-names; others are seemingly random nouns; but all have some connection to the Virgin Mary.
And, like many lists, they're nearly all feminine.
  • Abene (ah-beh-neh, Basque)--"pillar"
  • África (AH-free-kah, Spanish)--"Africa"
  • Ainhoa (eye-noh-ah, Basque)--poss. "little place"
  • Alazne (ah-lahs-neh, Basque)--"miracle"
  • Almudena (ahl-moo-DEH-nah, Spanish)--from Arabic, "citadel"
  • Angustias (ahn-GOOST-ee-ahs, Spanish)--"anguish"
  • Annunziata (ahn-noon-TSYAH-tah, Italian)--"annunciation"
  • Araceli (ah-rah-SEH-lee, Spanish)--from Latin, "altar of the sky"
  • Arantzazu (ah-rahnt-sah-soo, Basque)--"thornbush". Variant is Arantxa (ah-rahnt-shah).
  • Asunción (ah-soon-see-OHN, Spanish)--"assumption". Other forms are Assunta (ah-SOON-tah, Italian), Assumpció (ah-soomp-see-OH, Catalan), Assumpta (ah-SUMP-tah, Latin), and Asun (ah-SOON, Spanish).
  • Candelaria (kan-deh-LAH-ree-ah, Spanish)--"Candlemas". Variants include Cande (KAHN-deh), Candelas (kahn-DEH-las), & Candela (kahn-DEH-lah). Masculine is Candelario
  • Carmel (KAHR-mel, English; kahr-MEHL, Spanish)--from Hebrew, "garden". Catalan form is Carme (KAHR-meh). 
  • Conceptión (kon-sep-see-OHN, Spanish)--"conception"
  • Consolata (kohn-soh-LAH-tah, Italian)--"consolation"
  • Consuelo (kohn-SWEH-loh, Spanish)--"consolation". Variants are Consuela and Chelo (CHE-loh). 
  • Dolores (doh-LOH-rehs, English, Spanish)--"sorrows". Variants include Lola (LOH-lah, English, Spanish), Dolors (doh-LORZ, Catalan), and Dores (DOR-ez, Portuguese). 
  • Edurne (eh-door-neh, Basque)--"snow". Masculine is Edur.
  • Encarnación (en-kahr-nah-see-OHN, Spanish)--"incarnation"
  • Fátima (FAH-tee-mah, Portuguese, Spanish)--from Arabic, "abstaining"
  • Guadalupe (gwah-dah-LOO-peh, Spanish)--from Arabic, "wolf river" [unisex]. Variants are Lupe and Lupita
  • Idoya (ee-DOY-ah, Spanish)--from Basque, "pond"
  • Igone (ee-goh-neh, Basque)--"ascension". Masculine is Igon.
  • Ihinzta (ee-heen-sah, Basque)--"dew"
  • Iker (ee-kehr, Basque)--"visitation" [masculine]
  • Inmaculada (een-mah-koo-LAH-dah, Spanish)--"immaculate"
  • Itziar (eet-see-ahr, Basque, Spanish)--poss. "old stone". Variant is Icíar (ee-SEE-ahr).
  • Loreto (loh-REH-toh, Italian)--from Latin, "laurel" [unisex]. Variant is Loreta (loh-REH-tah). 
  • Lourdes (LOOR-dehs, Spanish)--Town in France, origin unknown.
  • Luz (LOOS, Spanish)--"light"
  • Macarena (mah-kah-REH-nah, Spanish)--poss. from Latin, "blessed"
  • Madonna (mah-DON-nah, English)--from Italian, "my lady"
  • Maolmoire (mool-MOY-reh, Scottish)--"servant of Mary" [masculine]
  • Maris (MEHR-is, MAH-ris, English)--from Latin, "of the sea"
  • Maristela (mah-ree-STEH-lah, Spanish, Portuguese)--from Latin Stella Maris "star of the sea".
  • Mercedes (mehr-SEH-dehs, Spanish)--"mercies". Catalan form is Mercè (mehr-SAY). 
  • Meritxell (mur-eet-CHEL, Catalan)--from Latin, "midday"
  • Milagros (mee-LAH-grohs, Spanish)--"miracles"
  • Nagore (nah-goh-reh, Basque)--Town in Spain, origin unknown.
  • Naiara (nah-yah-rah, Basque)--from Arabic, "between rocks". Also spelled Nayara.
  • Nekane (neh-kah-neh, Basque)--"sorrows"
  • Nieves (nee-EHV-ehs, Spanish)--"snows". Other forms include Neus (NEH-oos, Catalan), Neves (NEH-ves, Portuguese) and Nives (NEE-ves, Italian)
  • Núria (NOOR-ee-ah, Catalan)--poss. from Arabic, "light"
  • Osane (oh-sah-neh, Basque)--"remedy"
  • Panagiota (pah-nah-YOT-ah, Greek)--"all holy". Masculine is Panagiotis.
  • Paz (PAHS, Spanish)--"peace"
  • Pilar (pee-LAHR, Spanish)--"pillar"
  • Queralt (keh-RAHL, Catalan)--poss. "high rock"
  • Remedios (reh-MEH-dee-ohs, Spanish)--"remedies"
  • Remei (reh-MAY, Catalan)--"remedy"
  • Reyes (REH-yes, Spanish)--"kings" [unisex]
  • Rocío (roh-SEE-oh, Spanish)--"dew"
  • Rosaria (roh-ZAHR-yah, Italian)
  • Rosario (roh-ZAHR-yoh, Italian; roh-SAH-ree-oh, Spanish)--"rosary" [masculine in Italian]. Variants include Charo (CHAH-roh, Spanish), Rosaria (roh-ZAHR-yah, Italian) and Roser (roh-ZAY, Catalan). 
  • Socorro (soh-KOH-roh, Spanish)--"help"
  • Soledad (soh-leh-DAHD, Spanish)--"solitude"
  • Sorne (sohr-neh, Basque)--"conception"
  • Uxue (oo-shoo-eh, Basque)--"dove"
  • Visitación (vee-see-tah-see-OHN, Spanish)--"visitation"


  1. Thanks for the interesting list! As a Catholic, I have met several people with the previous names (Araceli, Lourdes, Maris, etc.). Have you done a list on unusal saint names? In my area--a very Catholic community--there are so many interesting name choices based on the saints. Fulton, Siena, Cabrini, Kolbe, Coeli, Kateri, Athanasius, Augustine, Faustina, Benedicta--these are all children that I know! Just thought it worth exploring a bit more, if you haven't already! I enjoy reading your posts, and those on BabyCenter as well.

    1. You're welcome; I certainly had fun compiling it (and learn a lot, too). A saints' name list actually hadn't crossed my mind, because there are just so many available, but a list focusing on the rarer names could be interesting. :)
      I'm definitely intrigued by the names you've listed, particularly Fulton & Coeli.