What do the Greek names mean?

“The name is a sign!” The ancients spoke and were right. Surprisingly, this combination of letters and sounds sometimes influences a person and his fate. Perhaps that is why at all times, people with great attention to the choice of the name for the child. In this regard, the ancient Greeks succeeded: they not only carefully chose the names, based on the melody of the sound, but also tried to make the value auspicious. Let's talk more about the meaning and origin of the Greek names.

Name and geography

According to onomastics - the science of the meaning and origin of names - it is believed that the Greeks came up with names, based on some realities. Conventionally, Greek names can be divided into several groups.

The first group includes those names that were invented on the basis of geographical features. For example, the name Lydia literally meant "Asian, who came from another country." So called the girls who got to Greece from Asia Minor. Hellas is another name that is directly related to a geographic name.That was how Greece itself was previously called, and, apparently, the indigenous Greek women received this name from their mothers. The name Xenia also belongs to this group, since it literally means “foreigner”. The Greek root "Xeno" is translated as "alien", respectively, the girls from another country were called Xenias. The wonderful name Barbara, common throughout the world, also means "foreign woman, a woman from the tribe of barbarians." As you know, it was the name of the people who spoke a language incomprehensible to the Greeks.

Names and human qualities

The second group includes names that were invented in accordance with the positive traits of a person. For example, the name Sophia meant “wise”, and Elena was called a girl who possessed bright beauty. Otherwise, how to explain that this name means “bright, sunshine” and has a common root with the name Helios, who, as we know, was the sun god. It was not by chance that it was Elena who called the beautiful wife of Menelaus, who became the cause of the Greek-Trojan War. Alexander was called the men who had incredible courage and ability to protect their country from enemies.“Courageous defender” - it was such a proud name that was given to the strongest of husbands. Noble people were often called Gennadii and Eugene, and a woman of royal blood — Vasilisa.

Divine names

The third group includes names that have a religious basis, as well as related to the gods and their envoys. For example, the name of Nick for the first time sounded in connection with the Greek goddess of victory. Aida - derived from the male name Hades. So called the gloomy god ruling in a kingdom of the dead. The name Anastas, meaning "resurrection", was at first masculine. Oddly enough, it was not fixed in everyday life and did not become as popular as the female name Anastasia, which means "returned to life." The beautiful name Christina is also of Greek origin. So called women who have dedicated themselves to Christianity. Timofey, without any doubt, was a man who was particularly religious, because this name means "worshiping God."

Greek names today

Many of the names that the ancient Greeks used to wear with pride were not widely known. Hardly anyone today called Poseidon, Theseus or Calliope.However, a huge number of names still became incredibly popular. Many girls today are called Irina, Larissa, Catherine, Zoya, Eugenia, and boys - Denis, Basil, Fedor, Grigorii. No less popular are the derivatives of Greek names that have become widespread throughout the world: Jane (from Eugenia), Anastacia (from Anastasia), Helen (from Elena).

So we figured out what the Greek names mean.

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