Celebrity baby names: Meanings and origins

Find out what some of the latest and most famous celebrity baby names mean and why their parents chose them.

By Haley Overland
Celebrity baby names: Meanings and origins

Celebrity baby names: Meanings and origins


Halle Berry and Olivier Martinez recently welcomed a baby boy, and they named him Maceo Robert Martinez.

The name "Maceo" means "Gift of God" in Spanish — it's basically the medieval version of Matthew or Matteo. Olivier's dad, Robert (hence the baby's middle name), is Spanish, so it looks like the baby was named in his honour.

"Gift of God" may also be a reference to the baby's conception, which Halle has famously said was a "surprise" given her age, 47.

Click on for more celebrity baby names and their origins! >>>>>

Celebrity baby names: Meanings and originsPhoto: CHP/FameFlynet

Prince George Alexander Louis

The most highly anticipated baby name of the decade: His Royal Highness Prince George Alexander Louis of Cambridge. Here's the scoop on its origins in a nutshell:

The name has been popular among British kings, starting with George I, the first Hanoverian King of Great Britain. The Queen's father was King George VI (played by Colin Firth in The King's Speech, of course). St. George is also the patron saint of England. 

Alexander: This relatively common name means “man’s defender” or “warrior.” It also harkens back to Alexander the Great — and so, looks ahead to another Golden Age. The Queen's middle name is Alexandra, and its said to be a favourite of Kate's.

Louis: Prince William’s full name is William Arthur Philip Louis, so father and son share a middle name. Louis is also the name of many French kings and several saints. It means "famous warrior."

Celebrity baby names: Meanings and originsGetty Images


North West

And the second most highly anticipated name of the decade (heh!): Kim Kardashian and Kanye West's baby girl, North West.

This name choice is probably all Kanye. The rapper considers himself a "genius" poet — so it's no surprise he's giving us the most poetic name he can think of. Various sources say the name's a metaphor for "up." "What's North of North?" Kanye reportedly says. "Nothing."

They say the name's also a reference to the North Star: Baby North is the highest point, the "pinnacle," of Kim and Kanye's relationship. Poetic, right?

Read more: Hollywood's newest babies>

Celebrity baby names: Meanings and originsPhoto: KrisJennerShow, Twitter

Everly Elizabeth Maiselle Tatum

Channing Tatum and Jenna Dewan-Tatum welcomed their baby girl, Everly Elizabeth Maiselle Tatum, on May 30, 2013. We don't know much about what inspired them to choose the name Everly — which is actually a traditional English boy's name, typically spelled Everleigh, and means "wild boar." The name is, however, making its way into the mainstream these days as a girl's name. 

Channing recently shared the origins of Everly's middle names on the Late Show with David Letterman. Both names honour the actors' grandmothers: Jenna's grandmother Elizabeth, and Channing's grandmother Maiselle.

Read more: Hollywood's newest dads and dads-to-be>

Celebrity baby names: Meanings and originsPhoto: Channing Tatum, Facebook

Luna Encinas Cruz

Celebrity baby names: Meanings and originsPhoto: Gtres/FameFlynet


Winnie Rose

Jimmy Fallon and his wife, Nancy Juvonen Fallon, recently welcomed their first child, Winnie Rose. Jimmy explained the name in an interview with The Today Show. "It's not Winnie-the-Pooh at all . . . though I do love Winnie-the-Pooh," he said. "My wife and I got engaged in New Hampshire at this lake house that her family's had forever, and it's on Lake Winnipesaukee. And so we went there every summer as we were dating."

Since "Winnipesaukee" was just a little long, he and Nancy went with "Winnie."

"And yeah, Winnie from The Wonder Years is the coolest girl in any TV show ever," he continued. "And also, she's a 'win' for us." Awww, love that!

Read more: Celebrity parents who married mere mortals>

Celebrity baby names: Meanings and originsPhoto: Diane Cohen/FameFlynet

Ace Knute

Jessica Simpson and Eric Johnson's new baby boy's name, "Ace Knute" (pronounced "Kah-newt"), definitely got people talking. The name "Ace" isn't so off base: Sporty, monosyllabic, retro names are making a comeback in the mainstream. 

Knute, however, is another matter — not so common at all... Turns out it's Eric's Swedish grandfather name. It's also the name of legendary football coach Knute Rodney, who be one of former NFL star Eric's inspirations.

Celebrity baby names: Meanings and originsPhoto: BJJ/Stoianov/FameFlynet


"The name Milan (pronounced MEE-lahn), means dear, loving and gracious in Slavic," reads the baby announcement on Shakira's offficial website, "in Ancient Roman, eager and laborious; and in Sanskrit, unification." 

Milan is the first child for Shakira and her boyfriend, Gerard Piqué.

Celebrity baby names: Meanings and originsPhoto: FameFlynet



So where did the name "Lincoln" originate for new parents Kristen Bell and Dax Shepard

Funny Kristen shared the simple inspiration behind her daughter's name on Ellen Degeneres' talk show. "It's always been Dax's favorite name," she explained, "and he's substantially bigger than I am, so I lost." Ha!

Read more: Vegetarian celebrity parents>

Celebrity baby names: Meanings and originsPhoto: Juan Rico/FameFlynet

Blue Ivy

Beyoncé and Jay Z Carter reportedly chose the name "Ivy" for their now-one-year-old daughter, Blue Ivy, because they love the number "4." Get it? Roman numeral "IV."

The number 4 is special to Jay Z and Beyoncé because both singers were born on the fourth day of the month — Beyonce on September 4, Jay-Z on December 4. They were also married on April 4 (2008), and the title of Beyonce's latest album is, of course, 4

As for the name "Blue," Beyonce recently posted an excerpt from Rebecca Solnit‘s novel, A Field Guide to Getting Lost, on her Tumblr — which is basically an ode to the colour blue: "The world is blue at its edges and in its depths. This blue is the light that got lost....” And the world is taking that as a major clue to the name's very poetic origin.

Read more: Baby bling! Outrageous gifts celebrities give their kids>

Celebrity baby names: Meanings and originsPhoto: FameFlynet Pictures


"I never would have guessed that would have been the name," Drew Barrymore told Ellen Degeneres of her baby, Olive's name. "But I was reading a book with my husband. I was three months pregnant and they said, 'your baby is the size of an olive,' and that was it. We never looked back."

Not the most uncommon name these days (Sacha Baron Cohen and Isla Fisher also have a daughter named Olive), the name "Olive" also might have special meaning for Drew because she played the voice of the main character, Olive, in the animated flick Olive, The Other Reindeer. Did you see that adorable movie?

Celebrity baby names: Meanings and origins


Harper Seven

Ahh, Harper Seven Beckham. The name definitely surprised us. But if you look at its meaning and origins, you'll see why makes sense for the Beckhams. 

"Harper" is simply an old English name that mom, Victoria Beckham, has reportedly "always loved." Because Victoria is such a fashion lover, I'm guessing it's also a nod to one of the most respected fashion mags in the world, Harper's Bazaar. ("Vogue" would have been an odd choice — but maybe "Elle"?)

The name "Seven" has nothing to do with Seinfeld, of course... Rather, it's reportedly a lucky spiritual number for the Beckhams — plus, as various sources have said, Harper was born in the seventh hour in the seventh month, on the seventh day of the week, weighing in at seven pounds (10 ounces). Also dad David Beckham has been lucky number seven on two soccer teams.

Celebrity baby names: Meanings and originsPhoto: Teach/FameFlynet

Cricket Pearl

We don't yet know the origins of Busy Philipps' new baby, Cricket Pearl's name. But it's worth noting she recently tweeted a response to the public's criticism of her kids' names, Cricket and Birdie: "It's weird people think my kids will be in therapy because of their names. Guys, my kids will be therapy for LOTS of reasons, I'm sure."

Celebrity baby names: Meanings and originsPhoto: Moe/FameFlynet

Lula Rosylea Adams

Celebrity baby names: Meanings and originsPhoto: API/FameFlynet



The name Suri is said to have its origins in the Hebrew meaning, "princess," or the Persian meaning, "red rose." But "Suri" has been quite the subject of contention among Hebrew experts. Some have even called it a mistake. According to them, "Suri" has no connection to "princess," but rather, it's a nickname for the biblical name "Sarah," may refer to a "person from Syria," or it simply means "go away."

Since I personally think the name is beautiful and love it for Ms. Suri Cruise, I'm going to ignore the fact that, in some Indian dialects, "Suri" means "pointy nose," or that, in Japanese, it means "pickpocket."

Celebrity baby names: Meanings and originsPhoto: Teach/FameFlynet


Aleph, Bet, Gimel, Daled, Hei, Vuv...: I can totally recite the entire Hebrew alphabet. And did you notice the first letter? ALEPH.

As you know, that's the name of Natalie Portman's two-year-old son Aleph. She hasn't publicly explained why she chose the name, but it seems to be a nod to her native country, Israel.

Celebrity baby names: Meanings and originsPhoto: FameFlynet Pictures

Willow Sage

Singer Pink rarely does anything less than poetic.

Her choice of the name "Willow Sage" for two-year-old daughter with Carey Hart was inspired by nature. “The willow is my favorite tree. I grew up near one," she told People Magazine. "It’s the most flexible tree in nature and nothing can break it — no wind, no elements."

As for the middle name "Sage," Pink took it from the healing herb of that name. "Sage is cleansing and sacred,” she tells the mag. “And it sounded great together. It doesn’t hurt that her last name is Hart — flexible cleansed heart.”

Celebrity baby names: Meanings and originsPhoto: Goodwin/Miguel/VM/FameFlynet



“It’s kind of a funny story," Nick tells People Magazine regarding the name of his baby boy with wife Vanessa. "I’ve always liked the name Colin. We thought that Colin would be the name." But, as it turns out, Vanessa wasn't enamoured by it. So, one day, when they went to Vanessa's obstetrician's office, Nick pointed out the name of the street it was on: Camden Drive. And the rest was history.

“We didn’t really know anyone else named Camden," he insists. "It was such a neat name. We fell in love with it and decided on it five or six months ago" — which is to say, they did not steal the name from Kristin Cavallari (who named her son Camden just weeks earlier!).

Celebrity baby names: Meanings and origins

Edward Duke

"Edward is Bill's late dad's name and my dad's name," Giuliana Rancic told Life & Style Magazine of her baby boy, Edward Duke. "It was a way to honour them. And Duke means leader."

Did you happen to catch my interview with Giuliana a couple weeks ago? It's a fun one — checkit!

Celebrity baby names: Meanings and originsPhoto: ER/FameFlynet

Maxwell Drew

Before her baby Maxwell Drew, now six months old, was born, Jessica Simpson hinted that the name would be "nontraditional"? And it turned out to be really nontraditional — especially for Jessica, who prides herself on being a genuine Southern belle — in the sense that it's traditionally very much a boy's name.

Why the name? "Maxwell" is Jessica's husband Eric Johnson's middle name and his grandmother's last name. "Drew" is Jessica's mother's maiden name.

Celebrity baby names: Meanings and originsPhoto: AAR/FameFlynet


Tennessee James

We don't have a lot of details on the origins of Reese Witherspoon's son Tennessee James' name. But some have speculated Reese and her husband, Jim Toth, chose the name because Reese is a Nashville girl at heart; she spent her childhood there. Or, it's in praise of the famous playwright Tennessee Williams.

Celebrity baby names: Meanings and originsPhoto: FameFlynet Pictures


Such a cutie. There's Alicia Keys and her son Egypt, 2.5. Alicia says she chose the name "Egypt" for her little guy because of a life-changing trip she took alone to Egypt many years ago.

"We were talking about baby names, and we were like, 'It would be cool if it could be something for a boy or a girl,'" she tells iVillage (in a sweet video). "And my husband was really like, 'But your trip to Egypt. . . . You talk about it all the time, it was really empowering to you, it really changed your life, [and] so will this. What do you think about Egypt?' And I was like, 'Oh my gosh!' . . . It was it. . . . We knew it was Egypt from very early on."

Celebrity baby names: Meanings and originsPhoto: FlynetUK: FameFlynet Pictures


Alicia Silverstone opened up a bit about the origins of her 2.5-month-old son Bear's unusual name in an issue of Us Weekly Magazine. Apparently, the name "Bear" was her mother-in-law's idea — likely inspired by the "crazy amounts of hair [the] when he came out."

Celebrity baby names: Meanings and originsPhoto: FameFlynet Pictures



Kate Hudson and her fiancé, Matt Bellamy, named their now-2.5-year-old baby "Bingham" (Bing!) in honour of their families. 

"For those wondering, Bingham is my mum's maiden name," Matt revealed on Twitter, shortly after Bingham's birth. "Bing Russell was also Kurt [Russell] dad. Family connections all around!"

As you may know, Kurt Russell (Kate's mom Goldie Hawn's partner of 29 years) isn't Kate's biological father, but she's always said she considers him her father. They also put "Hawn" in the name in honour of Goldie: Bingham Hawn Bellamy.


Celebrity baby names: Meanings and originsPhoto: CHP/FameFlynet Pictures

Rosalind Arusha Arkadina Altalune Florence

Aka "Luna"!

We don't know the exact origins of Uma Thurman's baby's many, many names. The couple's rep said Uma and her hubby, Arpad Busson, are keeping that info to themselves. But she did stress that each name "has a special reason and meaning to [the] mother and father."

Celebrity baby names: Meanings and originsPhoto: FlynetUK/FameFlynet Pictures

Moroccan and Monroe

Mariah Carey and Nick Cannon had very precise reasons for naming their 2.5-year-old twins "Moroccan" and "Monroe."

The name "Monroe" is, of course, an homage to Mariah's idol, Marilyn Monroe.

The name "Moroccan" is an homage to the Moroccan-themed décor in the top level of the family's NYC apartment, where Nick proposed to Mariah....

Celebrity baby names: Meanings and originsPhoto: Dn09/FameFlynet Pictures



Love the name Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie chose for their daughter Shiloh, 7. 

"Shiloh" is said to be a Hebrew name meaning "Messiah" or "Peaceful one."

The name also has some family roots. As Angelina's brother, James Voight, told Grazia Magazine, their parents, Jon Voight and Marcheline Bertrand, were originally going to give him the middle name "Shiloh," but they switched it last minute to "Haven."

"It was very cool when Brad and Angie came to me and said, 'We're thinking of names and our favourite is Shiloh. We know that was your original name, so would that be OK?'" James was so honoured by their gesture, he says, "I was almost in tears."

Celebrity baby names: Meanings and originsPhoto: FameFlynet Pictures

Harlow Winter

5-year-old Harlow's beautiful name was inspired by mom Nicole Richie's love of fashion and dad Joel Madden's love of movies. Here's what the couple said in an interview with People Magazine shortly after Harlow was born: 

Nicole: I wanted a hippie name and he wanted a more biblical name. Joel: I really like Jean Harlow the actress, and she likes Shalom Harlow the model. Harlow’s cool because it feels like a classic name.  Nicole: And no one has it. Joel: Winter [is] so serene and quiet and that’s how she is.

Celebrity baby names: Meanings and originsPhoto: Goodwin/Pablo/FameFlynet Pictures


Nicole Kidman and Keith Urban's five-year-old daughter, Sunday, was named after the Australian patron of the arts, Sunday Reed. It was Nicole's father's idea, and Nicole and Keith loved it.

They also love the day Sunday. "That’s our favourite day," Nicole said on the Opera Winfrey Show shortly after Sunday was born. "If you’re lonely Sunday is a very lonely day, and if you’re happy and you’ve got your family around you, then Sunday is a beautiful day. So our baby’s called Sunday."

Celebrity baby names: Meanings and originsPhoto: Rocstar/CPR/FameFlynet Pictures


Bronx Mowgli

Singers Pete Wentz and Ashlee Simpson chose "Bronx Mowgli" for their five-year-old for reasons they won't totally divulge.  On On air with Ryan Seacrest, Pete confirmed the literary origin of "Mowgli": "Rudyard Kipling is really cool and The Jungle Book is something me and Ashlee bonded over." No surprise there!

As for the NYC borough "Bronx," Pete was more elusive: "We came up with the idea Bronx. We’ve been throwing [ideas] back and forth a while. It’s kind of cool to just leave the narrative what it is. People are stoked or pissed or whatever. And you’re like, you know what: I don’t think anyone really has the real story.”

Celebrity baby names: Meanings and originsPhoto: Fame Pictures


"I know," Gwyneth Paltrow told Hello! Canada Magazine when asked about her daughter, Apple's unique name. "People did talk about Apple a lot! My husband named her." (Of course, Apple's father is Coldplay's Chris Martin.)

"I loved it straightway," she added. "I thought it was so unique and sounded cool. . . . And it fits her so perfectly. I can't imagine her being called anything else."

When Apple, now 9, asked her mom how she got her name, Gwyneth said, "Ask your father!"

Celebrity baby names: Meanings and originsPhoto: FameFlynet Pictures


ZUMA! In an old interview with Detroit’s Mojo in the Morning, Gwen Stefani shed some light on her (now-five-year-old) son Zuma's adorably quirky name (love it!). 

She said she was inspired by Zuma Beach, California, which is “really close to where we live.”

More precisely, though, Gwen says she got the name from her No Doubt bandmate Tom Dumont, who's wife was also expecting a baby at the time. Gwen jokes that they were talking baby names instead of working on their album. When Tom brought up "Zuma," Gwen says, "I kind of stole it from him . . . I didn't steal it, I mean his wife didn't want it. It was just one of those things that just happened. I just wanted [Zuma] to have a little bit of a quirky name."


Celebrity baby names: Meanings and originsPhoto: CAD/FameFlynet Pictures
This article was originally published on Oct 11, 2013

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