The many Luc- names

I love how versatile the Indo–European names are. They have so many versions across widely differing languages, able to translate into all these languages and cultures. One of those universal names is Lucia/Lucius, which comes from the Latin word lux, “light.”

Male forms:

1. Lucius is Latin and English.

2. Loukios is Greek.

3. Lucio is Italian and Spanish. The Portuguese variant is Lúcio.

4. Lucjusz is Polish.

5. Lūcijs is Latvian.

6. Lucijus is Lithuanian.

7. Luciu is Sicilian.

8. Lucillus is an alternate Latin form.

9. Luzius is Swiss–German.

10. Lutsiy is Russian, Bulgarian, and Ukrainian.

11. Lucije is Serbian, Slovenian, and Croatian.

12. Lucianus is another Latin form.

13. Luciano is Italian, Spanish, and Portuguese.

14. Lucien is French.

15. Łucjan (WOOTS-yahn) is Polish.

16. Lucian is English and Romanian. The Czech and Slovak form is Lucián.

17. Luken is Basque.

18. Luciaan is Dutch.

19. Lučiano is a rare Croatian form.

20. Lucijano is the more common Croatian form.

21. Lukyan is Russian and Ukrainian.

22. Luzian is German.

23. Lyutsian is Russian.

24. Lyuksen is Russian.

25. Lukian is Russian.

26. Lučano is Slovenian.

Female forms:

1. Lucia is Latin in origin, and is used in English, Romanian, Italian, German, Slovakian, and the Scandinavian languages. The Spanish variation is Lucía, the Portuguese form is Lúcia, and the Icelandic variation is Lúcía.

2. Lucilla is an Italian and Latin diminutive form.

3. Lucie is Czech and French, though with a pronunciation difference. Czech pronounces the last two vowels separately, instead of as one.

4. Lucille is the French form of Lucilla.

5. Lucinda is an elaborated form of Lucia, created by the great Miguel Cervantes in Don Quixote (1605).

6. Lucija is Slovenian, Serbian, and Croatian. The Latvian form is Lūcija.

7. Lucinde is the French form of Lucinda.

8. Łucja (WOOTS-yah) is Polish. This is the original birth name of my character Lucinda. Though she was born in the U.S., her parents were very Polish.

9. Lucila is the Spanish form of Lucilla.

10. Llúcia is Catalan.

11. Lucette is French, a diminutive of Lucie.

12. Liucija is Lithuanian.

13. Luus is Dutch and Limburgish.

14. Luce is a French and Italian variation of Lucia. This is also the Italian word for “light.”

15. Luzia is Portuguese and German. This isn’t to be confused with the very similar name Luiza! Though Lucia has long been the more common German form, Luzia is the older form, and has been gaining more popularity in recent years.

16. Luca (LOO-tsah) is Hungarian and Croatian.

17. Liùsaidh is Scottish.

18. Lucy is English, and has been used since the Middle Ages.

19. Lucetta is an English diminutive of Lucette. Shakespeare used it in The Two Gentlemen of Verona (1594).

20. Luciana is Spanish, Italian, Latin, and Portuguese. The Hungarian variant is Luciána, and the Brazilian–Portuguese variant is Lucianna.

21. Lucienne is French.

22. Lucina is derived from the Latin word lucus, “grove,” though it later came to be associated with all the other Luc- names. This was the name of the Roman goddess of childbirth.

23. Lucine is the French form of Lucina, and an alternate transliteration of the Armenian Lusine/Lusineh, though the Luc- root is just a coincidence in this case. It means “Moon” in Armenian.

24. Loukia is Greek.

25. Lleulu (HLYOO-loo) is Welsh.

26. Luchiya is Russian and Bulgarian.

27. Luciane is Swedish.

28. Lucienna is used in various languages.

29. Luçja is Albanian.

30. Lukene is Basque. Another Basque form is Luke, which I wouldn’t use in an Anglophone country due to the obvious pronunciation confusion.

31. Lûsîa is Greenlandic. The Finnish and Faroese form is Lusia.

32. Lusiana is Indonesian, and a rarer Romanian and English form.

33. Lukiana is Russian.

34. Lusiya is Christian Indian (i.e., Asian).

35. Lutsiya is Russian and Bulgarian.

36. Luxia is Basque and Sardinian, though very rare in the former and archaic in the latter.

37. Luziana is Basque and Brazilian–Portuguese.

38. Lukina is Russian.

39. Lyutsina is Russian.


Yelikonida and Yulian


I discovered the name Yelikonida in 2000, while reading August 1914, by my favoritest writer, Aleksandr Isayevich Solzhenitsyn. Yelikonida, called Likonya, is one of the students in Prof. Olda Orestovna Andozerskaya’s Medieval history class for sophomores.

The nameday for Yelikonida is 28 May/10 June. According to what I found at her page at, Saint Yelikonida lived in Third Century Thessaloniki, Greece. She moved to Corinth and began gaining converts. However, during her sermon, she was arrested and brought before Governor Perino. She refused to abandon her faith or worship other deities, and was tortured in some very macabre ways.

The judge stopped the torture at one point and promised Yelikonida honours and the title of priestess. She agreed, to great celebration and acclaim. Once in the temple, she broke all the idols, which naturally enraged the priests when they entered. Yelikonida was beaten and thrown into prison for five days. The faithful believe she was miraculously healed by Jesus and Archangels Michael and Gabriel during a vision. Yelikonida was then brought before three lions in the arena, but they reportedly only licked her feet, and then rushed at the crowd in the arena. Governor Perino finally beheaded her.

According to the source I finally found, Yelikonida derives from the Greek hélix (spiral) and Helikón (torturous mountain), which contained two springs sacred to the Muses. After so many years, it’s exhilarating to finally discover the name’s etymology and history!


Yulian is of course the Russian (and Bulgarian) form of Julian. It comes from the Roman family name Iulianus, which in turn derives from Julius. Julius may be derived from the Greek word ioulos (downy-bearded). It may also relate to Jupiter, which comes from Iuppiter, which in turn derives from the Indo–European Dyeu-pater (Zeus-father).

My favorite forms of Theodore

Theodore is probably my third-favoritest male name of all time, after only Samuel and Peter. If I ever have children, and I have at least three boys, I’ll name the third Theodore, in honor of President Theodore Roosevelt. I’ve just always adored the name, and the nickname Teddy. It also has a lot of awesome foreign variants. My favorites include:

1. Fyodor. This is the Russian form, which some people erroneously transliterate as Fedor or Feodor. The Russian letter Ë transliterates as YO, not E or EO. The modern transliteration Fyodor makes the pronunciation so obvious and immediately clear, whereas Fedor and Feodor suggest much different pronunciations to me. I also love the nickname Fedya, which has cute superdiminutives including Fedyushka, Fedyushenka, and Fedyushechka.

2. Teodor. This is the spelling used in much of Central, Eastern, Southern, and Northern Europe. I’m particularly fond of the Polish nickname Dorek.

3. Théodore. This is the French version. I’m a sucker for names with accent marks.

4. Todor. This is the Macedonian, Serbian, and Bulgarian form.

5. Theodor. This is the German form.

6. Teodoro. This is the Spanish, Italian, and Portuguese form.

7. Tivadar. This is the Hungarian form. An alternate version is Tódor.

8. Fedir. This is the Ukrainian form.

9. Teodoras. This is the Lithuanian form.

10. Tudor. This is the Romanian form, and apparently quite popular at the moment.

My favorite Russian names

I became a Russophile in seventh grade, when I was barely thirteen, and I’ve just gotten more and more passionate over the last 20+ years. As a name nerd, I also love Russian names, and am very picky/purist about transliteration. I use letter-for-letter transliteration, instead of, as some other people do, using X instead of KS, using I instead of Y at the end of names, or writing E instead of Ye at the start of names.

My Top 5 favorite Russian names, for each sex:


Anastasiya (Ah-nah-STAH-see-yah). This name is just gorgeous, even if it’s a bit of a mouthful and could be accused of being pretentious in the West. I would so use this name on a potential future daughter, if I have more than one daughter. (I most want to name a potential daughter Alice, after my great-grandma.) I love the nicknames Stasya and Nastya, though don’t like Asya since it’s too close to “ass” for my liking. Oddly enough, I never even noticed what the first five letters of Nastya are in English, since the name is pronounced NAHST-yah, not Nas-tee-yah.

The Anglo mispronunciation Ann-a-STAY-zha is like nails on a chalkboard. Seriously, whether you’re spelling it Anastasia or Anastasiya, how do you get that pronunciation? If you don’t know how to pronounce a name properly, don’t use it!

Olga. This name has such a beautiful Russian pronunciation, with a rolled L. I never understood why so many English-speakers deride it as ugly, musty, and dated. It’s always seemed so beautiful and regal to me. It’s not like Mildred, Eunice, or Beulah!

Beatrisa. I just discovered this name a few years ago, and have loved it ever since. I didn’t even realize there was a Russian form of Beatrice, a name I also love. It’s too pretty even for a nickname!

Dinara. This name is rare, which makes it even more beautiful. It’s taken from the word dinar, the golden Persian coin, and thus is said to mean “treasure.”

Vasilisa. This name, from a famous old fairytale, is also rarely used and thus even more eye-catching and beautiful.



Aleksey. If you read my main blog, you’ll know my secondary WIP is an alternate history about the rule of Tsar Aleksey II, and that I’ve felt this indescribable, suprarational soul connection to the last Tsesarevich for almost 20 years. However, I honestly can’t remember if I fell in love with this name because of him, or if that’s just a coincidence. It’s a cute name, and grows with the bearer, unlike so many of the cutesy names on the current U.S. Top 100. I also love the nickname Alyosha.

Boris. The proper Russian pronunciation is Bah-REECE. The Anglo mangling BOR-iss is so ugly, and just throws this beautiful name away. It’s just such a romantic, quintessentially Russian name, even if it’s considered kind of dated these days.

Ivan. Yeah, it’s the most historically common male name in Russia, but it’s not as overused as it was 100+ years ago (much like the English name John, which now feels like a breath of fresh air). The proper Russian pronunciation, Ee-VAHN, makes it even more beautiful and romantic. The Anglo mangling EYE-vinn is so ugly, like nails on a chalkboard.

Dmitriy. Another beautiful, quintessentially Russian name, with two nickname forms, Mitya and Dima, to choose from. This name also sounds really cute, with the ability to mature with the bearer instead of making him sound forever four years old like other cute names.

Vsevolod. This name means “to rule all,” and also sounds so romantic, beautiful, quintessentially Russian. Yeah, it might be a bit heavy and a bit of a mouthful, but there’s always the nickname Seva.

Zarema and Zoriy


Zarema is a modern Russian name. No meaning was given for it at the Russian language baby names site I found it at; as far as I can tell from further searching, it’s of Chechen origin. The one site which gave a meaning said it may mean “sweet water” or “war maid.” This name is also possibly derived from the Persian name Zareen, meaning “golden.”

I personally tread very carefully when taking any name site besides Behind the Name as an accurate source for name meanings. It’s all about vetting your sources. I’ve found out a lot of names don’t have the meanings I was led to believe they had. Honestly, a lot of name sites are garbage, the way they lump names in categories they clearly aren’t part of, and by giving blatantly untrue meanings and etymologies. Zarema is obviously a very real name, but I’m not going to definitively give it a meaning or etymology in the absence of scholarly sources.

Zoriy is a modern Russian name, not an invented Soviet name. It means “morning” in the adjectival form. Russian is such an amazingly rich language, with so many forms of words branching off from one simple root. One of the basic nickname forms would be Zorik.

Sources consulted: (penultimate post) (male) (female)