CLAS224 Word Elements. Monmouth College Monmouth, Illinois

Instructor: Thomas J. Sienkewicz (

Personal Names based on Greek Roots

English Meaning (with Greek base)

Acme tip, highest point (ACME)

Agatha good, noble, brave (AGATH-)

Agnes chaste, pure (AGN-)

Alexander; Alexandra a defender of men (ANDR-;Alex=help, defend)

Alexis help (ALEX-)

Alice, Alicia truth

Althea a healer

Ambrose immortal

Anastasia of the Resurrection (STA-)

Andrew; Andrea strong, manly (ANDR-)

Angela, Angelica, Angelina, lovely, angelic (ANGEL=messenger)


Anthea a flower (ANTH-)

Aphrodite from the goddess of love & beauty (born from the foam APHROS)

Ariadne holy (from the Cretan heroine)

Aspasia welcome

Athena from the goddess of wisdom

Barbara a foreigner, stranger (BARBAR-)

Basil a king; royal

Berenice bearer of victory (NIKE)

Catherine, Katharine, pure (CATHAR-; KATHAR)

Kathleen, Karen

Cassandra, Cassie from one Trojan priestess Cassandra

Charissa, Charis grace (CHARIS)

Chloe young, green shoot; herb (related to CHLOR-)

Christian; Christina; one who is like Christ (CHRISTOS)


Christopher the Christ-bearer (CHRIST-PHER)

Cleone glory, fame (KLE-)

Cleopatra glory of her country (or father; family) (KLE-, CLE-; PATR-)/

Cora, Corinna, Corrine maiden, girl (KORE, COR-)

Cynthia from the title of the moon goddess Artemis or from Mt. Cynthus/

Cyril lordly

Daphne laurel; the laurel tree

Delia girl from the island of Delos

Denis, Dennis; Denise belonging to Dionysus (Bacchus)

Doris, Dora gift (DO-)

Dorothy, Dorothea; Theodora gift of God (DO-; THE-)

Eudora generous; good gift (EU-; DO-)

Eugene, Gene; Eugenia well-born (EU-; GEN-)

Eunice happy victory (EU- NIKE)

Euphemia of good report (EU-; PHE-)

Eustace; Eustacia well-established; firm (EU-; STA-)

Evadne fortunate, lucky (EU-; EV-)

Evangeline; Evangelina bringing good news (EV-; ANGEL-)

George; Georgia, Georgina a farmer; belonging to the earth (GE-)

Gregory vigilant; watchful

Hector holding fast (from the great Trojan hero)

Helen, Helene, Eelena, Ellen,

Elena (Old French; Elaine) from Helen of Troy

Hera from the queen of the gods (HERE- feminine of Hero/

Ione a girl from Ionia (referring to Greek cities along the West coast of Turkey)/

Irene peace (EIRENE)

Iris rainbow; goddess of the rainbow

Isidore; Isadora gift of Isis (DO-)

Jason healer (related to JATR--physician, medicine)

Jerome bearing a holy name (HIER-ONYM)

Leonidas, Leon strong or brave as a lion (cf. Latin--LEO)

Lillian, Lily a lily (also in Latin)

Lydia a woman from Lydia (country in what is now Turkey)

Lois desireable (?)

Marguerite, Margaret, Rita a pearl

Melanie black, dark (MELAN-)

Melissa a bee

Myrtle the myrtle tree

Nicholas, Nick a victorious army of people (NIKE)

Olympia heavenly (related to Mt. Olympus, the home of the gods)

Ophelia helpful

Penelope, Penny a weaver (related to the wife of Odysseus)

Peter a rock (PETR-)

Philemon loving (PHIL-)

Philip; Philippa lover of horses (PHIL-; HIPP-)

Phoebe shining (also used of the moon goddess)

Phyllis a green leaf (PHYLL-)

Rhoda a rose (RHOD-)

Sebastian honored, holy (SEBAST-)

Sibyl a prophetess

Sophia, Sophie;

(Russ.-Sonia) wisdom (SOPHIA)

Stephen, Steven; Stephanie a crown (STEPHAN-)

Thea a goddess (THE-)

Theodore, Ted a gift of God (THE-; DO-)

Theophilus dear to the gods or God (THE-; PHIL-)

Timothy, Tim God-honoring (TIM-)


Ulysses a hater or a sufferer (?) (Latin form of Odysseus)

Urania heavenly (URAN-)


Zoe life (ZO-)

Back to the Top

Return to Monmouth College Classics Dept. Home Page