In the spirit of the holiday season, here are some names meaning “holly” and “ivy.” The English names Holly and Ivy are obviously by far the best-known, but sometimes one wants a less-common variation. For those wondering, holly and hollyhock aren’t one and the same, though there are many names whose meanings relate to hollyhock.
This list also includes other languages’ words for “holly” and “ivy” (provided they sounded enough like realistic names), in which case I grouped them according to which sex I felt they’d best work with. As always, some of these names may be better-suited to pets or fictional characters than real-life children!
Leslie, or Lesley, comes from a Scottish surname derived from a place name whose ultimate origin was probably the Gaelic phrase leas celyn, “garden of holly.”
Celynwen means “white/blessed/fair holly” in Welsh. This is a rare name.
Hali is the Hawaiian form of Holly.
Ashe means “holly” in Albanian.
Zelenika means “holly” in Bosnian, Bulgarian, Serbian, and Croatian.
Cesmína (Tses-MEEN-ah) means “holly” in Czech.
Prinari means “holly” in Greek (though it sounds very Sanskrit/Hindi to me).
Borostyán is a rare Hungarian name formed of the words for “amber” and “ivy.”
Edera means “ivy” in Italian, and is also a rare Maltese, Albanian, and Romanian name.
Heura means “ivy” in Catalan. This is a modern, rare name.
Hièrru means “ivy” in Jèrriais
Yedra is a rare Spanish name meaning “ivy.”
Tsutako can mean “ivy child” in Japanese. It was most popular in the first half of the 20th century, and is very rare today.
Lierre means “ivy” in French.
Hedera means “ivy” in Latin.
Celyn means “holly” in Welsh.
Quillan comes from an Irish surname derived from Gaelic Mac Uighilín (son of Hugeulin) or Mac Cuilinn, the latter of which is a patronymical form of a name derived from cuileann (holly).
Prinos means “holly” in Greek.
Azevinho means “holly” in Portuguese.
Järnek means “holly” in Swedish.
Korymbos means “ivy berries” in Greek, after the demigod of ivy fruit.
Thyrsos was a Greek wand or staff wreathed in ivy and vine-leaves, topped by a pinecone. It was frequently used by devotees of Dionysus.
Muratti means “ivy” in Finnish.