German theoretical physicist Max Planck, 1858–1947 (Bundesarchiv, Bild 183-R0116-504 / CC-BY-SA 3.0)
Max, as both a nickname and full given name, has been very trendy for awhile. It’s been in the Top 100 in England and Wales since at least 1998. In 2018, it was #31, and has charted as high as #18 in 2012. The name has also been in New Zealand’s Top 30 since at least 2004 (many of those years in the Top 20), and was #21 in 2019.
Sweden is another country where Max enjoys great popularity. It’s been Top 50 since at least 1998, when it was #44, and had a high of #13 in 2006. In 2019, it was #67.
Max is also popular in Switzerland (#53 in 2018), Northern Ireland (#33 in 2018), Scotland (#12), Norway (#77 in 2018), Ireland (#34), Germany (#20 in 2018), The Netherlands (#17), Catalonia (#20 in 2018), and Austria (#54 in 2018).
Surprisingly, it’s not as popular as I assumed in the U.S. Max was only #136 in 2018, and its highest position was #96 in 2011.
Russian writer Maksim Gorkiy (née Aleksey Maksimovich Peshkov), 1868–1936
The name’s origin is Roman family name Maximus, which means “greatest” in Latin. In turn, it gave rise to Maximilianus, and became quite popular among the Romans. Lesser-used Roman forms are Maximinus and Maximianus.
Other forms of the name include:
1. Maximilian is German, Dutch, Scandinavian, and English, though by far the most common in German. It was borne by two Holy Roman Emperors, two kings of Bavaria, and a Habsburg emperor of Mexico. The alternate form Maximilián is Slovak.
2. Maximillian is English.
3. Maxmilián is Czech.
4. Maximiliano is Spanish and Portuguese.
5. Maximiliaan is Dutch.
6. Maximilien is French.
7. Maksymilian is Polish and Sorbian.
8. Maksimilian is Russian.
9. Maksimilyan is also Russian.
10. Macsen is Welsh.
Holy Roman Emperor Maximilian I (1459–1519)
11. Maxim is Czech. The alternate form Màxim is Catalan.
12. Maksim is Russian, Bulgarian, Belarusian, and Macedonian.
13. Maksym is Ukrainian and Polish.
14. Maxen is Anglicised Welsh.
15. Máximo is Spanish.
16. Maxime is French.
17. Massimo is Italian.
18. Maksimiljan is Slovenian.
19. Masimilian is Breton.
20. Massimilianu is Corsican.
Infamous French revolutionary Maximilien de Robespierre, 1758–94
21. Maksimilijonas is Lithuanian.
22. Maksymilión is Kashubian.
23. Massimiljanu is Maltese.
24. Maksimilijan is Croatian.
25. Maximilià is Catalan.
26. Maximos is Greek.
27. Maximino is Portuguese and Spanish.
28. Maximiano is Spanish and Portuguese.
29. Maximian is German, English, and Dutch. The alternate form Maximián is Aragonese.
30. Maksime is Georgian.
Maximos the Greek (ca. 1475–1556), a monk, translator, writer, and scholar who served in Russia
31. Maime is Occitan.
32. Maimin is also Occitan.
33. Maksimian is Bulgarian, Russian, and Ukrainian.
34. Maksimijan is Serbian and Croatian.
35. Maksimin is Russian, Bulgarian, Ukrainian, Serbian, and Croatian.
36. Maksymian is Polish.
37. Maksymin is also Polish.
38. Màsim is Emilian–Romagnol, a Gallo–Italic language spoken in Northern Italy and San Marino.
39. Massimiano is Italian.
40. Massimianu is Sicilian.
French military commander Maxime Weygand, 1867–1965
41. Massimilianu is Corsican.
42. Massiminiano is Italian.
43. Massimino is also Italian.
44. Maximien is French.
45. Maximinian is English.
46. Maximiniano is Spanish and Portuguese.
47. Maxwell means “Mack’s stream,” from Medieval English Mack (a diminutive of Scandinavian Magnus [great]) and Old English root wella (stream).
U.S. singer Maxene Andrews (top left), 1916–95, with her sisters LaVerne (top right) and Patty
1. Maxine is English.
2. Maxene is an English variation. I’m not fond of this spelling, since it looks like it should be pronounced Maks-EN.
3. Maximiliana is Latin.
4. Maximilienne is French.
5. Maximiliane is German.
6. Maximilia is a rare German form, mostly used by noble families in bygone centuries.
7. Maksima is Russian, Ukrainian, Serbian, and Croatian.
8. Maksyma is Polish.
9. Massimilla is Italian.
10. Maximiana is a rare Spanish and Portuguese form.
Princess Maximiliane of Bavaria (embracing the lamb), 1810–21
11. Maximina is Galician, Spanish, and Portuguese.
12. Maximine is French.
13. Maximiniana is Spanish and Portuguese.
14. Massimiliana is Italian.
15. Maxime is Swedish and Norwegian.