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Popularity of the Baby Name Anders


Posts that Mention the Name Anders

Baby names associated with yellow: Sunny, Flavio, Ketut

lemons, yellow

Looking for baby names that are associated with yellow — including baby names that mean “yellow”?

If so, you’ve come to the right place! I’ve collected dozens of options for you in this post.

Before we get to the names, though, let’s take a quick look at what the color yellow represents…

Symbolism of yellow

What does the color yellow signify?

In Western cultures in particular, yellow can be symbolic of:

  • Optimism
  • Cheer
  • Happiness
  • Warmth
  • Caution
  • Energy
  • Intellect

The color is primarily identified with the sun, which is the most important source of energy for life on Earth.

Interestingly, the sun’s light is actually white. It only appears yellow (or, sometimes, orange) from our perspective because particles in the Earth’s atmosphere scatter short-wavelength (e.g., blue) light more efficiently than long-wavelength (e.g., red) light.

Top baby names associated with yellow

Determining the top names in a category isn’t difficult when you’re working with an easily definable category, like gender-neutral names. When it comes to names that have a connection to the color yellow, however, we need to account for the fact that certain names have a stronger connection than others.

With that in mind, here are the top baby names that have an obvious association with the color yellow:

  1. Sunny
  2. Soleil
  3. Sol
  4. Sunshine
  5. Lemon

Unsurprisingly, four out of the five were inspired by the sun.


Here are the same five names again, but this time around I’ve added some details (including definitions, rankings, and popularity graphs).

Sunny

The word sunny simply means “having plenty of bright sunlight.” In Middle English, it was spelled sonni. Sunny is also a homophone of the name Sonny, which is based on the English word son.

Sunny is currently the 650th most popular girl name in the U.S.

Graph of the usage of the baby name Sunny in the U.S. since 1880
Usage of the baby name Sunny

Soleil

The word soleil (pronounced saw-lay, roughly) means “sun” in French.

Soleil is currently the 999th most popular girl name in the nation.

Graph of the usage of the baby name Soleil in the U.S. since 1880
Usage of the baby name Soleil

Sol

The word sol means “sun” in Latin and in several of the languages that descend from Latin, including Spanish and Portuguese. Sol is also a short form of the name Solomon, which explains why it was a popular choice for baby boys in the early 20th century.

Sol is currently the 1,054th most popular girl name in the U.S.

Graph of the usage of the baby name Sol in the U.S. since 1880
Usage of the baby name Sol

Sunshine

The word sunshine refers to the light (and warmth) of the sun. In Middle English, it was spelled sonne-shin.

Sunshine was given to 69 baby girls in 2021.

Graph of the usage of the baby name Sunshine in the U.S. since 1880
Usage of the baby name Sunshine

Lemon

The word lemon — which can be traced back (via Old French limon and Arabic limun) to the Persian word limu — refers to the citrus fruit of the lemon tree (Citrus limon). By extension, it also refers to the yellow color of this fruit.

That said…most of the U.S. babies named Lemon during the 20th century (and earlier) were not named after the fruit. Instead, their names were inspired by the surname Lemon, which was derived from the Middle English word leman, meaning “sweetheart, lover” (from the Old English elements leof, “dear, beloved,” and mann, “person, man”).

Lemon was given to 50 baby girls in 2021.

Graph of the usage of the baby name Lemon in the U.S. since 1880
Usage of the baby name Lemon

More names associated with yellow

Ready for the rest?

All the names below are associated with the color yellow. The names range from common to uncommon, and their associations range from strong to slight.

Those that have been popular enough to appear in the U.S. baby name data are linked to their corresponding popularity graphs.

aspen trees in autumn, yellow leaves
Aspen trees in autumn
  • Antu, the Mapuche word for “sun,” is the name of the Mapuche god of the sun.
  • Arevik is an Armenian feminine name based on the word arev, meaning “sun.”
  • Aspen trees (in particular the North America species Populus tremuloides) are famous for their golden-yellow autumn foliage. The word aspen is derived from from the Old English word for the tree, æspe.
  • Beryl is a mineral that can be yellow. The name of the stone ultimately comes from the ancient Greek word beryllos.
  • Blaine comes from a Scottish surname that can be traced back to the Old Irish word blá, meaning “yellow.”
  • Bowie comes from a Scottish surname that can be traced back to the Gaelic word buidhe, meaning “yellow.”
  • Buff is a light brownish-yellow color — the hue of buff leather, which was often obtained from the European buffalo.
  • Buttercup flowers are yellow. “Buttercup” is the common name of several species of flowering plants in the genus Ranunculus.
  • Canna flowers are sometimes yellow. The genus name Canna is derived from the Latin word canna, meaning “reed.”
  • Chrysanthemum flowers are commonly yellow. The genus name Chrysanthemum is derived from a combination of the ancient Greek words khrysos, meaning “gold,” and anthemon, meaning “blossom, flower.”
  • Citrine, a variety of the mineral quartz, is often yellow. The adjective citrine can be traced back to the Latin word citrus.
  • Daffodil flowers are frequently yellow. “Daffodil” is the common name of plants in the genus Narcissus.
  • Dahlia flowers are sometimes yellow. The genus Dahlia was named in honor of Swedish botanist Anders Dahl.
  • Dandelion flowers are yellow. “Dandelion” is the common name of the plant species Taraxacum officinale. The common name is derived from the Latin phrase dens leonis, meaning “lion’s tooth” — a reference to the shape of the leaves.
    • Fífill is the Icelandic form of Dandelion.
  • Diell is an Albanian masculine name based on the word diell, meaning “sun.”
    • Diellza is the feminine form of Diell.
daffodils, yellow
  • Flavius was an ancient Roman name derived from the Latin word flavus, meaning “yellow, golden.”
    • Flavian was an ancient Roman name based on Flavius.
    • Flavia was the feminine form of Flavius.
    • Flavio is the modern Spanish and Italian form of Flavius.
  • Forsythia (commonly pronounced for-SITH-ee-uh) flowers are yellow. The genus Forsythia was named in honor of Scottish botanist William Forsyth.
  • Fulvio (masculine) and Fulvia (feminine) are the modern Italian forms of the Roman family name Fulvius, which was based on the Latin word fulvus, meaning “deep yellow, reddish-yellow, gold-colored, tawny.”
  • Ginger root (Zingiber officinale) often has yellowish flesh. The word ginger is ultimately derived from the Sanskrit word sringavera.
  • Gladiola refers to Gladiolus, a genus of plants with flowers that are sometimes yellow. The genus name, meaning “little sword” (a diminutive of the Latin word gladius, “sword”) refers to the shape of the leaves.
  • Haetbit is a Korean feminine name meaning “sunlight.”
  • Haru is a Japanese gender-neutral name that can mean “sun,” or “sunny,” depending upon the kanji being used to write the name.
    • Haruki is a Japanese name that can include the element Haru.
    • Haruna is another Japanese name that can include the element Haru.
  • Helios, the ancient Greek word for “sun,” was the name of the Greek god of the sun.
    • Helius is the Latinized form of Helios.
    • Helio (masculine) and Helia (feminine) are the modern Spanish forms of Helios.
  • Helen is part of Helenium, a genus of plants with flowers that are sometimes yellow. The genus was named in honor of Helen of Troy.
  • Heulwen is the Welsh word for “sunshine.”
  • Honey can be yellow. The Old English word for “honey” was hunig.
    • Meli is the ancient Greek word for “honey.”
  • Inti, the Quechua word for “sun,” was the name of the Incan god of the sun.
  • Jonquil flowers (which, like daffodils, are part of the genus Narcissus) are frequently yellow. The species name, jonquilla, means “little rush” (ultimately derived from the Latin word iuncus, meaning “rush, reed”) and refers to the shape of the leaves.
  • Ketut is a Balinese gender-neutral name associated with the word kitut, which refers to a small banana.
  • Khurshid (also spelled Khorshid) is a Persian gender-neutral name derived from the word xorshid, which means “sun.”
  • Lillesol is a Swedish feminine name meaning “little sun.”
  • Marigold flowers are sometimes yellow. “Marigold” is the common name of plants in the genera Tagetes and Calendula.
  • Mehr is a Persian gender-neutral name meaning “sun.”
  • Meyer lemons are a cross between citron and hybridized mandarin/pomelo. They were named after Dutch-American agricultural explorer Frank N. Meyer (born Frans N. Meijer), who discovered the cultivar while in China in 1907. The occupational surnames Meyer and Meijer are both derived from the Middle High German word meier, meaning “administrator, steward.”
  • Mzia is a Georgian feminine name meaning “sun.”
  • Naran is a Mongolian gender-neutral name meaning “sun.”
  • Nou is a Hmong feminine name meaning “sun.”
  • Nurit (pronounced noo-REET) is a Hebrew feminine name meaning “buttercup.”
  • Nyima is a Tibetan gender-neutral name meaning “sun.”
  • Orchid flowers are sometimes yellow. Orchids are all members of the Orchidaceae family of plants.
  • Oriole is a type of bird that often has yellow plumage. “Oriole” is the common name of birds in the genera Icterus and Oriolidae. The common name is derived from the Latin word aureolus, meaning “golden.”
  • Ra, the ancient Egyptian word for “sun,” was the name of the Egyptian god of the sun.
sun, yellow
  • Seqineq is a Greenlandic gender-neutral name meaning “sun.”
  • Sequssuna is a Greenlandic masculine name meaning “egg yolk.”
  • Shams is an Arabic gender-neutral name meaning “sun.”
  • Shimshon is a Hebrew masculine name meaning “sun.”
    • Samson is the Biblical (Late Latin) form of Shimshon.
  • Solaris comes from the Latin word solaris, meaning “of the sun” or “pertaining to the sun.”
    • Solar is a modern word (used in English, German, Portuguese, Spanish, and other languages) based on solaris.
    • Solara is an elaboration of Solar.
    • Solaria is another elaboration of Solar.
  • Sunflower petals are usually yellow. “Sunflower” is the common name of plants in the genus Helianthus, particularly the species Helianthus annuus. The common name is a reference to the sun-like flower heads.
  • Surya, a Sanskrit word for “sun,” is the name of the Hindu god of the sun.
    • Ravi, another Sanskrit word for “sun,” is one of Surya’s alternate names.
  • Susan is part of “black-eyed Susan” — the common name of the plant species Rudbeckia hirta, which has flowers that are typically yellow.
  • Taeyang is a Korean masculine name meaning “sun.”
  • Tonatiuh, the Nahuatl word for “sun,” is the name of the Aztec god of the sun.
  • Topaz is a mineral that comes in several different colors, most notably golden-yellow. Its name is based on the Middle English word topas, which referred to any yellow-colored gemstone (not just topaz). The earliest known form of the word, the ancient Greek topazion, referred to a specific yellow gemstone (possibly yellowish olivine).
  • Tulip flowers are sometimes yellow. The name of the flower can be traced back to the Ottoman Turkish word tülbent, meaning “turban.”
  • Xanthos was an ancient Greek name derived from the word xanthos, meaning “yellow.”
    • Xanthus is the Latinized form of Xanthos.
    • Xanthe (pronounced ZAN-thee) is a feminine form of Xanthus.
    • Xanthia is an elaboration of Xanthe.
  • Zinnia flowers are sometimes yellow. The genus Zinnia was named in honor of German botanist Johann Gottfried Zinn.

Can you think of any other names that have a connection to the color yellow?

Sources:

Images by Richard John from Pixabay, Intricate Explorer from Unsplash, RitaE from Pixabay, and xuuxuu from Pixabay

Baby names associated with orange: Saffron, Anatole, Keahi

small pumpkins

Halloween is right around the corner! Has the upcoming holiday made you curious about baby names associated with the color orange?

If so, you’re in luck — I’ve collected dozens of ideas for you in this post.

But, before we get to the names, let’s take a look at what the color orange represents…

Symbolism of orange

What does the color orange signify?

In Western cultures in particular, orange can be symbolic of:

  • Warmth
  • Creativity
  • Adventure
  • Freshness
  • Happiness
  • Attraction
  • Success

It can also be associated with safety. A vivid reddish-orange — one that contrasts well with the blue of the sky — is used to make clothing and equipment highly visible in certain circumstances (e.g., at construction sites, during hunting season).

In Eastern cultures, orange is considered a sacred color. In Hinduism, for example, orange represents fire and, thereby, purity (as impurities are burned away by fire).

Top baby names associated with orange

To determine the top orange names, I first had to take into account the fact that certain names have a stronger connection to the color than other names. (I did this for the top purple names as well.)

With that in mind, here are the top baby names that have an obvious association with the color orange:

  1. Autumn
  2. Ember
  3. Amber
  4. Blaze
  5. Marigold

Now here are the same five names again, but this time around I’ve added some details (including definitions, rankings, and popularity graphs).

Autumn

The word autumn refers to the season during which the leaves of deciduous trees turn various colors, including orange. Halloween — a holiday strongly associated with the color orange — is also celebrated during Autumn (at least in the Northern Hemisphere).

Autumn is currently the 66th most popular girl name in the U.S.

Graph of the usage of the baby name Autumn in the U.S. since 1880
Usage of the baby name Autumn

Ember

The word ember refers a glowing, slowly burning piece of solid fuel (like wood or coal). It’s often used in the plural to refer to the smoldering remains of a fire.

Ember is currently the 163rd most popular girl name in the nation.

Graph of the usage of the baby name Ember in the U.S. since 1880
Usage of the baby name Ember

Amber

The word amber refers to fossilized tree resin that is commonly used as a gemstone. By extension, the word also refers to the yellowish-orange color of this material.

The fossilized resin, which washes up on the seashore in the Baltic region, came to be called “amber” during the Middle Ages — likely due to an association with ambergris (a material produced by sperm whales that also washes up on the shore).

Amber is currently the 534th most popular girl name in the U.S.

Graph of the usage of the baby name Amber in the U.S. since 1880
Usage of the baby name Amber

Blaze

The vocabulary word blaze refers to a fire, particularly one that’s burning intensely. Blaze is also a homophone of the (more traditional) name Blaise, which ultimately derives from the Latin word blaesus, meaning “lisping.”

Blaze is currently the 775th most popular boy name in the nation. (Blaise ranks 999th.)

Graph of the usage of the baby name Blaze in the U.S. since 1880
Usage of the baby name Blaze

Marigold

The word marigold refers to any flowering plant of either the New World genus Tagetes or the Old World genus Calendula. By extension, it also refers to the yellowish-orange color of these flowers.

Marigold is currently the 1,022nd most popular girl name in the U.S.

Graph of the usage of the baby name Marigold in the U.S. since 1880
Usage of the baby name Marigold

More names associated with orange

Ready for the rest?

All the names below have an association with the color orange. The names range from common to uncommon, and their associations range from strong to slight.

Those that have been popular enough to appear in the U.S. baby name data are linked to their corresponding popularity graphs.

oranges
  • Aethon (also spelled Aithon) is derived from the ancient Greek word aithon, which means “burning, blazing.”
  • Alba is a feminine name meaning “dawn” in Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, Romanian, and other Romance languages.
  • Anatolios was an ancient Greek name derived from the word anatole, meaning “sunrise.”
    • Anatolius is the Latinized form of Anatolios.
    • Anatolia is a feminine form of Anatolius.
    • Anatole is the modern French masculine form of Anatolius.
    • Anatoliy is the modern Russian and Ukrainian masculine form of Anatolius.
  • Apricot fruits are yellowish-orange. Apricot trees are part of the genus Prunus.
  • Aurora, the Latin word for “dawn,” was the name of the Roman goddess of dawn.
  • Azar is a Persian gender-neutral name meaning “fire.”
  • Canna flowers are sometimes orange. The genus name Canna is derived from the Latin word canna, meaning “reed.”
  • Carnelian, a variety of the mineral chalcedony, is frequently orange. The name of the stone ultimately comes from the Latin word cornus, which refers to a type of berry, altered by the influence of the Latin word carneus, meaning “flesh-colored.”
  • Chrysanthemum (pronounced krih-SAN-thuh-muhm) flowers are often orange. The genus name Chrysanthemum is derived from a combination of the ancient Greek words khrysos, meaning “gold,” and anthemon, meaning “blossom, flower.”
  • Citrine, a variety of the mineral quartz, is usually orange. The adjective citrine can be traced back to the Latin word citrus.
  • Clementine fruits are a cross between mandarin orange and sweet orange. They were named after French priest Clément Rodier, who discovered the cultivar while in Algeria. The name Clément is derived from the Latin word clemens, meaning “merciful.”
  • Copper is a metallic element with a lustrous orange-brown color.
  • Dahlia flowers are sometimes orange. The genus Dahlia was named in honor of Swedish botanist Anders Dahl.
  • Dawn refers to the period of time in the early morning (before sunrise) when the sky begins to brighten with daylight. This light at dawn tends to have an orange hue. The word dawn can be traced back to the Old English verb dagian, meaning “to become day.”
  • Dysis, the ancient Greek word for “sunset,” was the name of the Greek goddess of the hour of sunset.
  • Eos, the ancient Greek word for “dawn,” was the name of the Greek goddess of dawn.
fire
  • Fajr is an Arabic feminine name meaning “dawn.”
  • Fiamma (pronounced FYAM-ma) is an Italian feminine name meaning “flame.”
  • Fox fur, if you’re talking about the red fox (Vulpes vulpes), is largely orange. The word fox is ultimately derived from a Proto-Indo-European word meaning “tail.”
  • Gladiola refers to Gladiolus, a genus of plants with flowers that are sometimes orange. The genus name, meaning “little sword” (a diminutive of the Latin word gladius, “sword”) refers to the shape of the leaves.
  • Helen is a form of the ancient Greek name Helene, which is likely based on the word helene, meaning “torch.” Also, plants of the genus Helenium have flowers that are sometimes orange. The genus was named in honor of Helen of Troy.
  • Honey can be orange. The Old English word for “honey” was hunig.
    • Meli was the ancient Greek word for “honey.”
  • Iskra is a feminine name meaning “spark” in Russian, Serbian, Croatian, Bulgarian, and other Slavic languages.
  • Jack is part of “Jack-o’-Lantern” — a term that, since the 1800s, has referred to a carved pumpkin used as a lantern during Halloween. It originated as “Jack of the lantern” in 17th-century England, where it was used as a generic term for any lantern-carrying night watchman.
  • June (besides being a month) is part of “Flaming June” — the name of the 1895 painting by Frederic Leighton. “Flaming June” features a red-headed woman wearing a diaphanous orange dress and sleeping by the sea (which reflects the golden rays of the setting sun).
The Frederic Leighton painting "Flaming June" (1895)
“Flaming June”
  • Keahi is a Hawaiian gender-neutral name meaning “the fire.”
  • Kealaula is a Hawaiian gender-neutral name that means “the light of early dawn” or “the sunset glow.” The literal definition is “the flaming road” (ala means “path, road,” and ula means “to flame”).
  • Monarch butterflies (Danaus plexippus) have wings that are largely orange. They were named “monarch” in the 1800s, possibly in honor of England’s King William III, who was also the Prince of Orange. The word is derived from a combination of the ancient Greek words monos, meaning “alone,” and arkhos, meaning “ruler.”
  • Orange, of course, refers to the color orange. :) Orange fruits were introduced to Europe by the Moors in the 10th century. The word for the fruit, which can be traced back to Sanskrit, entered the English language (via French) in the late 14th century. The first recorded use of “orange” as a color name in English didn’t come along until the early 16th century.
    • This explains why many things that are clearly orange — like red hair, red foxes, and the robin redbreast — are called “red”: They were named long before the color-word “orange” entered the English language.
  • Orchid flowers are sometimes orange. Orchids are all members of the Orchidaceae family of plants.
  • Oriole is a type of bird that often has orange plumage. “Oriole” is the common name of birds in the genera Icterus and Oriolidae. The common name is derived from the Latin word aureolus, meaning “golden.”
  • Peach fruits are typically orange. Peach trees are part of the genus Prunus.
  • Pele, the Hawaiian word for “lava flow, volcano, eruption,” was the name of the Hawaiian goddess of volcanoes.
  • Pyrrhos, meaning “flame-colored,” was an ancient Greek name derived from the word pyr, meaning “fire.”
    • Pyrrhus is the Latinized form of Pyrrhos.
    • Pyrrha is the feminine form of Pyrrhus.
  • Robin redbreast originally referred to the Old World songbird Erithacus rubecula, which has orange plumage on the face and breast. “Robin” is a Middle English diminutive of the name Robert.
  • Roth comes from a German surname that can be traced back to the Middle High German word rot, meaning “red.” It was originally a nickname for a red-haired person.
  • Ruadh (pronounced roo-ah) means “red” or “red-haired” in Irish and Scottish Gaelic.
    • Roy is an Anglicized form of Ruadh.
    • Ruadhán is a diminutive form of Ruadh.
    • Rowan is an Anglicized form of Ruadhán.
  • Rufus derives from the Latin word rufus, meaning “red” or “red-haired.”
    • Rufino (masculine) and Rufina (feminine) are the modern Spanish forms of the Roman family name Rufinus, which was based on Rufus.
  • Rusty is an adjective referring to rust (iron oxide), which tends to be orange-brown.
Saffron robes of Theravada Buddhist monks in Thailand
Saffron robes (of Buddhist monks)
  • Saffron is a spice made from the styles and stigmas of Crocus sativus flowers. By extension, the word — which can be traced back to the Arabic name for the spice, za’faran — also refers to the deep yellowish-orange color of fabrics dyed with saffron.
  • Seville orange is a variety of bitter orange named after the Spanish city of Sevilla.
  • Shachar is a Hebrew gender-neutral name meaning “dawn.”
  • Shraga is an Aramaic masculine name meaning “candle.”
  • Shula is an Arabic feminine name meaning “flame.”
  • Smith comes from a surname that originally referred to a metalworker, such as a blacksmith or a farrier. When heated metal (like iron) comes out of a fire to be forged, it’s often glowing a yellowish-orange color. The smith in “blacksmith” is likely derived from the Old English verb smitan, meaning “to smite” or “to strike” (as with a hammer).
  • Sunrise and Sunset are times at which the sun appears reddish-orange. Particles in the Earth’s atmosphere scatter more short-wavelength light than long-wavelength light, so when the sun is low on the horizon — and traveling a longer distance through the atmosphere to reach your eyes — you’ll end up seeing less violet and blue, but more red and orange.
  • Tangerine fruits are orange. Tangerine trees are part of the genus Citrus.
  • Tawny is an adjective that refers to a brownish-orange color.
  • Tiger (Panthera tigris), the largest living species of cat, has fur that is mostly orange.
  • Tigerlily refers to “tiger lily,” the common name of several species of flowering plant in the genus Lilium — particularly the species Lilium lancifolium — that have showy orange flowers.
  • Ushas, the Sanskrit word for “dawn,” was the name of the Vedic (Hindu) goddess of dawn.
  • Valencia orange is a cultivar of sweet orange named after the Spanish city of València.
  • Zinnia flowers are sometimes orange. The genus Zinnia was named in honor of German botanist Johann Gottfried Zinn. (Fun fact: An orange zinnia blossomed in space in early 2016!)
  • Zora is a feminine name meaning “dawn” in Serbian, Czech, Croatian, Bulgarian, and other Slavic languages.

Can you think of any other names that have a connection to the color orange?

Sources:

Images by Karalina S from Unsplash, Sheraz Shaikh from Unsplash, Ralph from Pixabay, and Evan Krause from Unsplash

20 Baby names from flowers: Kalmia, Magnolia, Begonia, Zinnia

baby names from flowers

Spring is here! Let’s celebrate with some flower names.

But let’s do something a little different. Instead of the same old suggestions, like Lily and Rose, let’s check out some relatively modern flower names that ultimately come from Latinized surnames (via genus names).

Here’s a list of 20. Most of these are rarely used for humans, so if you’re looking for an unexpected nature name for a baby girl, this is a good place to start.

abelia flowers
Abelia

Abelia

Pronunciation: ah-BEEL-ee-uh

Abelia flowers are white or pink, and usually scented. The genus Abelia is part of the honeysuckle family (Caprifoliaceae).

Abelia was named for British surgeon and naturalist Clarke Abel (1780-1826). Clarke’s version of the surname Abel is likely based on the Hebrew name Abel, meaning “breath.” An identical German surname is based on a pet form of Albrecht, made up of elements meaning “noble” and “bright.”

The baby name Abelia is currently very rare.

allamanda flower
Allamanda

Allamanda

Pronunciation: ah-lah-MAHN-duh

Allamanda flowers are typically yellow, though some are pink. The genus Allamanda is part of the dogbane family (Apocynaceae).

Allamanda was named for Swiss botanist Frédéric-Louis Allamand (1736-1803). This French surname is based on the Middle French word meaning “German.”

The baby name Allamanda is currently very rare.

begonia flowers
Begonia

Begonia

Pronunciation: beh-GOHN-yuh

Begonia flowers come in a wide range of colors: white, pink, peach, salmon, red, orange, yellow, etc. With close to 1,500 species, Begonia is the 6th-largest genus of flowering plants.

Begonia was named for French office-holder and plant collector Michel Bégon (1638-1710).

The baby name Begonia is currently very rare.

camellia flower
Camellia

Camellia

Pronunciation: kah-MEEL-ee-uh

Camellia flowers are white, pink, red, and sometimes yellow. The genus Camellia is part of the Theaceae family. Leaves of the species Camellia sinensis are used to produce tea.

Camellia was named for Czech Jesuit missionary and botanist Georg Joseph Kamel (1661-1706). The surname Kamel is derived from a word meaning “camel.” Camels are not endemic to Europe, but they were commonly used on house signs in central Europe during the later Middle Ages.

The baby name Camellia is currently ranked 2,597th.

cattleya flower
Cattleya

Cattleya

Pronunciation: KAT-lee-uh

Cattleya flowers come in a range of colors: purple, orange, white, yellow, etc. The genus Cattleya is part of the orchid family (Orchidaceae).

Cattleya was named for English merchant and horticulturist William Cattley (1788-1835). The first element of the English surname Cattley is based on either Catta, a personal name, or a word meaning “(wild) cat.” The second comes from the Old English word leah, meaning “woodland; clearing.”

The baby name Cattleya is currently ranked 1,684th. It was very rare until a character named Cataleya was featured in the 2011 movie Columbiana. The character’s name was based on the genus name.

clintonia flowers
Clintonia

Clintonia

Pronunciation: klin-TOHN-ee-uh

Clintonia flowers are white, red, or green-yellow. The genus Clintonia is part of the lily family (Liliaceae).

Clintonia was named for U.S. politician and botanist De Witt Clinton (1769-1828). The English surname Clinton is based on one of two different place names. One place name was derived from Old English words meaning “enclosure, fence” + “settlement,” while the other means “Glyme (river)” + “settlement.”

The baby name Clintonia is currently very rare.

dahlia flower
Dahlia

Dahlia

Pronunciation: DAL-yuh (first syllable can rhyme with “gal”, “doll,” or “dale”)

Dahlia flowers come in a wide range of colors. The genus Dahlia is part of the daisy family (Asteraceae).

Dahlia was named for Swedish botanist Anders Dahl (1751-1789). The Swedish surname Dahl is based on the Old Norse word dalr, meaning “dale, valley.”

The baby name Dahlia is currently within the top 1,000, ranked 719th.

forsythia flowers
Forsythia

Forsythia

Pronunciation: for-SITH-ee-uh or for-SIETH-ee-uh (chiefly British English)

Forsythia flowers are bright yellow. The genus Forsythia is part of the olive family (Oleaceae).

Forsythia was named for Scottish botanist William Forsyth (1737-1804). The surname Forsyth is based on Fearsithe, a Gaelic personal name made up of the Gaelic words fear, meaning “man,” and sith, meaning “peace.”

The baby name Forsythia is currently very rare.

freesia flowers
Freesia

Freesia

Pronunciation: FREE-zhuh, FREE-zhee-uh

Fragrant freesia flowers are white, yellow, pink, red, or blue-mauve. The genus Freesia is part of the iris family (Iridaceae).

Freesia was named for German botanist and doctor Friedrich Freese (1794-1878). The German surname Freese is based on an ethnic name for someone from Friesland.

The baby name Freesia is currently very rare.

gardenia flower
Gardenia

Gardenia

Pronunciation: gar-DEEN-yuh

Gardenia flowers are white or pale yellow and strongly scented. The genus Gardenia is part of the coffee family (Rubiaceae).

Gardenia was named for Scottish-born American naturalist Alexander Garden (1730-1791). The English surname Garden is based on an occupational name for a gardener. It ultimately comes from the Old Norman French word gardin, meaning “garden.”

The baby name Gardenia is currently rare.

gazania flower
Gazania

Gazania

Pronunciation: gah-ZAY-nee-uh

Gazania flowers are shades of yellow and orange. The genus Gazania is part of the daisy family (Asteraceae), like Dahlia.

Gazania was named for Greek humanist Theodorus Gaza (1398-1475).

The baby name Gazania is currently very rare.

gloxinia flowers
Gloxinia

Gloxinia

Pronunciation: glok-SIN-ee-uh

Gloxinia flowers are white, pink, red, blue or purple. The genus Gloxinia is part of the Gesneriaceae family.

Gloxinia was named for German physician and botanical writer Benjamin Peter Gloxin (1765–1794).

The baby name Gloxinia is currently very rare.

kalmia flowers
Kalmia

Kalmia

Pronunciation: KAHL-mee-uh

Kalmia flowers are white, pink or purple. The genus Kalmia is part of the heather family (Ericaceae).

Kalmia was named for Swedish-Finnish botanist Pehr Kalm (1716-1779).

The baby name Kalmia is currently very rare. (Years ago, a commenter mentioned that he’d named his daughter Kalmia.)

kerria flowers
Kerria

Kerria

Pronunciation: KER-ee-uh

Kerria flowers are bright yellow. The genus Kerria is part of the rose family (Rosaceae).

Kerria was named for Scottish gardener and plant hunter William Kerr (d. 1814). The Scottish surname Kerr is a topographic name referring to a patch of wet ground overgrown with brushwood. It ultimately comes from the Old Norse word kjarr, meaning “copsewood, brushwood, thicket.”

The baby name Kerria is currently very rare.

lobelia flowers
Lobelia

Lobelia

Pronunciation: loh-BEEL-ee-uh

Lobelia flowers are purple, pink, white or blue. The genus Lobelia is part of the bellflower family (Campanulaceae).

Lobelia was named for Flemsih botanist Matthias de L’Obel (1538-1616).

The baby name Lobelia is currently very rare.

magnolia flower
Magnolia

Magnolia

Pronunciation: mag-NOHL-ee-uh

Magnolia flowers are fragrant and come in white, pink, red, purple or yellow. Because they predate bees and butterflies, they’re typically pollinated by beetles.

The genus Magnolia was named for French botanist Pierre Magnol (1638-1715). The French surname Magnol may be based on either the Latin word magnus, meaning “great,” or on a French place name of uncertain derivation.

The baby name Magnolia is currently within the top 1,000, ranked 831st.

monarda flower
Monarda

Monarda

Pronunciation: moh-NAR-duh

Monarda flowers are various shades of red, pink, and purple, and highly scented. The genus Monarda is part of the mint family (Lamiaceae).

Monarda was named for Spanish physician and botanist Nicolás Monardes (1493-1588).

The baby name Monarda is currently very rare.

plumeria flowers
Plumeria

Plumeria

Pronunciation: ploo-MEER-ee-uh

Plumeria flowers (also known as frangipani) are very fragrant and come in several colors. The genus Plumeria is part of the dogbane family (Apocynaceae), like Allamanda.

Plumeria was named for French botanist Charles Plumier (1646-1704). The French surname Plumier is based on an occupational name for either a feather dresser or a plumber. The former occupational name ultimately comes from the Latin word plumarius, meaning “embroidered with feathers,” while the latter comes from the Latin word plumbum, meaning “lead.”

The baby name Plumeria is currently very rare.

wisteria flowers
Wisteria

Wisteria

Pronunciation: wis-TEER-ee-uh

Wisteria flowers are are purple, violet, pink or white, and often scented. The genus Wisteria is part of the bean family (Fabaceae).

Wisteria was named for American physician and anatomist Caspar Wistar (1761–1818). Caspar’s surname is a modified form of the German surname Wüster.

The baby name Wisteria is currently very rare.

zinnia flower with butterfly
Zinnia

Zinnia

Pronunciation: ZIN-ee-uh

Zinnia flowers come in a wide range of colors (red, purple, orange, buff, yellow, etc.) and shapes. The genus Zinnia is part of the daisy family (Asteraceae), like Dahlia and Gazania.

Zinnia was named for German anatomist and botanist Johann Gottfried Zinn (1727-1759). The German/Jewish surname Zinn is based on an occupational name for a pewter worker or tinsmith. It ultimately comes from the Germanic word zin, meaning “tin, pewter.”

The baby name Zinnia is currently ranked 2,136th.

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What other surname-derived flower names would you add to this list?

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Source: Hanks, Patrick. (Ed.) Dictionary of American Family Names. New York: Oxford University Press, 2003.
Images: All but one of the flower images in this post are in the public domain. They come from MorgueFile, Pixabay, National Park Service websites, and Wikimedia Commons. The gloxinia image was adapted from Gloxinia by abelard1005 under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0.

Reduplicated names: Asher Asher, Owen Owen

two grey crowned cranes

I find it interesting that some people are given forenames that exactly match their surnames. A few historically significant examples include:

(Ford Madox Ford and Horst P. Horst don’t count. They were born Ford Hermann Hueffer and Horst Paul Albert Bohrmann.)

There are also many forename/surname sets out there that are partially reduplicated, such as:

Have you ever met someone whose first name and last name were identical (or nearly so)? Do you like these sorts of names?

P.S. The name Thomas McKean Thompson McKennan (which belonged to a guy who served as U.S. Secretary of the Interior for a few weeks in 1850) is as close to a double double as I’ve ever seen!

[Last update: April 2021]