The Ls of Ukrainian names

Male names:

Lavrin is a folk form of Lawrence, which comes from Roman cognomen Laurentius and means “from Laurentium.” Its ultimate root is probably laurus (laurel).

Les is a diminutive of Oleksandr and Oleksiy.

Lesko is also a diminutive of the above names.

Lohvyn is a folk form of Longinus, a Roman cognomen derived from root longus (long).

Lukash is the Ukrainian form of Luke, which ultimately comes from Greek name Loukas (from Lucania).

Lyubomyr means “love and peace” or “love of the world.”

Female names:

Larysa is the Ukrainian, Belarusian, and Polish form of Larisa, which possibly comes from the name of an ancient city in Thessaly and thus means “citadel.”

Lesya is a Ukrainian nickname for Oleksandra (helper/defender of man).

Lileya possibly comes from the Ukrainian word lileya, a variant of liliya (lily).

Lykera is a folk form of Hlykeriya, which comes from Greek name Glykeria and means “sweet.”

Lyubava is an alternate form of Lyubov (love).

Lyudmyla means “favour of the people,” derived from roots lyudu (people) and milu (gracious, dear). This name appears in many Slavic languages, with several different spellings.

The Ls of Medieval Tuscan and Italian names

Female names:

Lagia (I)

Laria (I) may be a shortened form of Ilaria, a feminine form of Hilarius (cheerful).

Lasia (I)

Laudomia (I) is a form of the Greek name Laodameia, which may mean “to tame the people.”

Liona (T) means “lion.” This was also a Venetian name.

Lionarda (T) is a feminine form of Leonard, which means “brave lion.”

Lukesa (I) is a form of Lucretia (wealth, profit).

Male names:

Lancillotto (I) is a form of Lancelot, which may possibly be an Old French diminutive of Lanzo. If so, it would be an Ancient Germanic name with the root landa (land). During the Middle Ages, it became associated with the Old French word lance (spear, lance).

Lanfrid (I) derives from Old High German root lant and Old Saxon land (land), and Old High German fridu and Old Saxon frithu (peace). This was also a Medieval French and Medieval German name.

Lion (T) means “lion.” This was also a Venetian name.

Lionardo (T) is a form of Leonard, which means “brave lion.”

Loffredo (I) is a form of Godfrey (peace of God).

Luzio (I) is a form of Lucius (light).

Luzzasco (I) may be a combination of Luzzio (see above) and Vasco (crow).

Glorious Slavic names

Slava is a common root in Slavic names, and means “glory, fame.” It appears fairly evenly among East, West, and South Slavic names. A few of these names are so popular, they also have equivalents in non-Slavic languages.

Some sources believe the name Gustave, with its many variants, also comes from the slava root. Though a possible etymology is “staff of the Geats,” from Old Norse gautr (Goth, Geat) and stafr (staff), the name Gautstafr isn’t well-documented in any evidence from that time and place. It may have truly come from Medieval Slavic name Gostislav (glorious guest).

As expected, the common nickname for both sexes is Slava or Sława.

Berislav(a) (Croatian): To gather glory, to take glory

Blahoslav(a) (Czech, Slovak): Pleasant glory

Bogoslav(a) (Croatian), Bohuslav(a) (Czech, Slovak, Ukrainian), Bogusław(a) (Polish): Glory of God

Bojislav(a) (Czech, Croatian): Battle glory

Boleslav(a) (Russian, Czech, Slovak, Bulgarian, Serbian), Bolesław(a) (Polish): Greater glory; more glory

Borislav(a) (Serbian, Russian, Bulgarian): Glorious battle

Branislav(a) (Serbian, Czech, Slovak, Macedonian, Slovenian, Croatian), Bronisław(a) (Polish), Bronislav(a) (Russian, Czech, Slovak), Bronislovas (Lithuanian): Protection and glory

Břetislav(a) (Czech), Bryachislav(a) (Russian), Bretislav(a) (Slovak, Slovenian): To cry glory

Budislav(a) (Czech, Serbian, Croatian): To wake up glory

Czesław(a) (Polish): Honour and glory

Desislav(a) (Bulgarian): Tenfold glory

Dobroslav(a) (Czech, Slovak, Serbian, Croatian), Dobrosław(a) (Polish): Good glory

Domaslav(a) (Medieval Russian): Home glory

Dragoslav(a) (Serbian, Slovenian, Croatian), Drahoslav(a) (Czech, Slovak): Precious glory

Drenislav(a) (Croatian): European cornel (a type of dogwood) glory

Fiebrosław(a) (Medieval Polish): February glory

Goroslav(a) (Croatian): Mountain glory

Hranislav(a) (Serbian, Macedonian, Croatian): To protect glory; to defend glory

Hrvoslav(a) (Croatian): Croatian glory

Jugoslav(a) (Serbian, Macedonian, Croatian): Southern glory

Krumislav(a) (Macedonian): Possibly “rock glory”

Krunoslav(a) (Croatian): Glorious crown

Květoslav(a) (Czech), Kvetoslav(a) (Slovak), Cvjetislav(a) (Croatian): Flower of glory

Lechosław(a) (Polish): Glory of Lech (legendary founder of Poland)

Levoslav(a) (Slovak): Glorious lion

Ľuboslav(a) (Slovak): Glorious love

Mieczysław(a) (Polish), Mechislav(a) (Russian): Sword of glory

Miloslav(a) (Czech, Slovak), Miłosław(a) (Polish): Gracious glory; dear glory

Miroslav(a) (Russian, Serbian, Czech, Slovak, Bulgarian, Slovenian, Macedonian, Croatian), Mirosław(a) (Polish), Myroslav(a) (Ukrainian): Peaceful glory; world glory

Mislav(a) (Croatian): “My glory” or “thought of glory”

Mstislav(a) (Russian, Czech), Mścisław(a) (Polish): Vengeance and glory

Nadislav(a) (Serbian, Croatian): Hope and glory

Ninoslav(a) (Serbian, Croatian): Now glory

Novislav(a) (Bulgarian, Bosnian, Serbian, Croatian): New glory

Pomnislav(a) (Medieval Slavic): To think of glory

Pravoslav(a) (Czech, Slovak): Justice and glory

Prvoslav(a) (Serbian): First glory

Radoslav(a) (Serbian, Czech, Slovak, Macedonian, Bulgarian, Croatian), Radosław(a) (Polish): Happy glory

Ratislav(a) (Serbian): Glorious war

Rostislav(a) (Russian, Czech), Rastislav(a) (Slovak): Growth of glory

Slavěna (Czech): Glory

Slaveya (Bulgarian): Glory

Slavogost (Medieval Slavic): Glorious guest

Slavoj (Slovenian, Czech, Slovak): Soldier of glory

Slavomir(a) (Serbian, Croatian), Slavomír(a) (Czech, Slovak), Sławomir(a) (Polish), Sławòmir(a) (Kashubian): Great glory; famous glory; glorious peace; glorious world

Sobiesław(a) (Polish), Soběslav(a) (Czech): Glory for oneself

Stanislav(a) (Russian, Ukrainian, Czech, Slovak, Bulgarian, Slovenian, Serbian, Croatian), Stanisław(a) (Polish), Stanislaǔ (Belarusian), Staņislavs (Latvian), Stanislovas (Lithuanian, male), Stanislova (Lithuanian, female): To stand in glory; to become glory

Svyatoslav(a) (Russian, Ukrainian), Svetoslav(a) (Bulgarian), Svatoslav(a) (Czech, Slovak), Świętosław(a) (Polish): Holy glory, blessed glory

Tomislav(a) (Serbian, Slovenian, Croatian): Glorious torture

Velislav(a) (Bulgarian): Great glory

Věroslav(a) (Czech), Vieroslav(a) (Slovak): Faith and glory

Víťazoslav(a) (Slovak): Glorious winner; glorious champion; glorious conqueror

Vítězslav(a) (Czech): Master of glory; lord of glory

Vjekoslav(a) (Croatian): Age of glory

Vladislav(a) (Russian, Bulgarian, Slovenian, Czech, Slovak, Serbian, Croatian), Ladislav(a) (Czech, Slovak, Slovenian, Croatian), Vladyslav(a) (Ukrainian), Władysław(a) (Polish), Włodzisław(a) (Polish), Ladislao (Italian), László (Hungarian): To rule in glory

Vlastislav(a) (Czech, Slovak, Serbian): To rule in glory

Vl’koslav(a) (Russian): Great glory

Voyslav(a) (Russian): Glorious war

Vratislav(a) (Czech, Slovak), Warcisław(a) (Polish): To return in glory

Vyacheslav(a) (Russian, Ukrainian), Václav(a) (Czech, Slovak), Vyachaslaǔ (Belarusian), Ventseslav(a) (Bulgarian), Višeslav(a) (Serbian, Croatian), Vjenceslav(a) (Croatian), Vecéslav(a) (Croatian), Věnceslav(a) (Czech), Więcesław(a) (Polish), Wacław(a) (Polish), Vencel (Hungarian), Veaceslav (Romanian), Wenzel (German), Wenzeslaus (German), Venceslás (Spanish): More glory

Witoslav(a) (Medieval Czech): To rule in glory

Yanislav(a) (Bulgarian), Janislav(a) (Slovenian, Croatian): John’s glory

Yaroslav(a) (Russian, Ukrainian), Jaroslav(a) (Czech, Slovak), Jaroslavas (Lithuanian), Jarosław(a) (Polish): Fierce and glorious

Zbysław(a) (Polish): To dispel glory

Zdislav(a) (Czech), Zdzisław(a) (Polish), Zdeslav(a) (Croatian): To build glory

Zmagoslav(a) (Slovenian): Victory and glory

The Ls of Estonian names


Leemet means “broth.”

Leino, of unknown etymology, comes from the pseudonym of Eino Leino (né Armas Einar Leopold Lönnbohm), a Finnish poet and journalist.

Lembit means “beloved.” Lembitu was the name of a heroic king who bravely fought against the conquest of his proud homeland. He was sadly killed in battle in September 1217.

Leonti is adopted from the Russian name Leontiy (lion).

Loit may mean “to cast a spell.”

Lukjan is adopted from the Russian name Lukyan (i.e., Lucian), which means “light.” This also happens to be the Estonian word for “reader.”


Lagle means “goose.”

Laine, or Laina, means “wave.”

Lauli means “song, melody.”

Leegi means “flame.”

Leelo means “folk song.”

Lehte, or Lehti, means “leaf.” The male form is Leho.

Leida means “to discover, to find.” My character Katrin changes her middle name to this, replacing Kaarelovna, the patronymic she’s carried around her entire life. Real Estonians don’t have patronymics, and there’s no love lost between her and her self-hating father.

Leija means “kite.”

Liivika means “sand.”

Luige means “cygnet.”

Lumme means “waterlily.”

Luule means “poetry.” This is the name of my character Vahur Lindmaa’s first wife, who was killed in the final bombing of Tallinn, 24 September 1944, when she was seven months pregnant with her second child. Meri was delivered in a posthumous C-section.

Slavic names of love

Though Slavic names formed from the root lyuby, “love,” aren’t as common as names formed from the roots milu (dear, gracious), miru (world, peace), or slava (glory), there are more than just a few of them. Though there are exceptions, like the almost exclusively Polish names formed from the root gnyevu/gnev (anger), many Slavic names have meanings invoking happy, beautiful concepts. This stands in stark contrast to how many names of Germanic and Old Norse origin invoke war and fighting.

These names include:


Liběna is Czech. The first root, libý, means “pleasant.”

Libuše is also Czech, and formed from the same roots. This was the name of the legendary founder of Prague.

Ljuba means “love” in Serbian, Macedonian, Slovenian, Czech, and Croatian.

Ljubina is Serbian.

Ljubomira means “love of peace/the world” in Serbian and Croatian. Other forms include Ľubomíra (Slovak), Lubomíra (Czech), and Lyubomira (Bulgarian)

Lubina is Sorbian.

Lubosława means “love of glory” in Polish.

Lyuboǔ is Belarusian.

Lyubava is Russian, Belarusian, and Ukrainian.

Lyubov is Russian, Bulgarian, and Ukrainian. This is the name of the female protagonist of my Russian historical novels. Though most of the main characters move to America halfway through the first book, I call them my Russian novels because that’s where most of my very large ensemble cast originated. Lyuba’s name was originally Amy, and I obviously needed to change it to a real, equivalent Russian name.


Bogoljub means “love of God” in Serbian and Croatian.

Bratoljub means “love of brother” in Serbian and Croatian.

Dragoljub means “precious love” in Serbian, Slovenian, and Croatian. This is also their name for the nasturtium flower.

Lubomír is Czech, and means “love of peace/the world.” Other forms include Ľubomír (Slovak), Ljubomir (Serbian, Macedonian, Croatian), Lyubomir (Bulgarian), Lubomierz (Polish), and Lyubomyr (Ukrainian).

Ľubomír means “to think of love” or “thoughts of love” in Polish.

Ľuboslav is a newer Slovak name meaning “love of glory.” The Polish form is Lubosław, and the Bulgarian and Russian form is Lyuboslav.

Lyuben is Bulgarian.

Lyublen means “Love Lenin!” in Russian. This is one of the invented names which were rather popular in the early decades of the USSR.

Slavoljub means “love of glory” or “glory of love” in Serbian and Croatian.

Srboljub means “to love a Serb” in Serbian, and seems like a rather rare name.

Veroljub means “lover of faith” in Serbian.

Živoljub means “living/vivacious love” in Serbian.