Wednesday, 30 April 2014

Dante


"Dante and Beatrice" by Henry Holiday


Origin: Italian
Meaning: "enduring"
Gender: masculine
Pronunciation: DAHN-te

Dante is the medieval short form of Durante, which is the Italian form of the Late Latin name Durans which means "enduring". The most famous bearer is Dante Alighieri, a 13th century poet who wrote The Divine Comedy and is known for his love for Beatrice Portinari, who appeared on his works La Vita Nuova and The Divine Comedy. Another famous bearer Dante Gabriel Rossetti, a painter and poet.

   Related names:

   Dante - Italian (m)
   Deonte - African American (m)
   Durans - Late Roman (m)
   Durante - Italian (m)


Dante is ranked #278 in United States, #405 in England/Wales and #320 in Netherlands.

Tuesday, 29 April 2014

Atalanta


"The Race between Atalanta and Hippomenes" by Nicolas Colombel


Origin: Greek
Meaning: "equal in weight"
Gender: Feminine
Pronunciation: ah-tah-LAHN-tah

Atalanta is a name which comes from the Greek Atalante meaning "equal in weight", which is derived from Atalantos, a word that is related to Talanton which means "scale, balance".

In Greek mythology, the goddess Artemis was forgotten at a sacrifice by King Oineus, so she sent a Calydonian Boar that killed land, men, and cattle and prevented the crops from growing. Atalanta joined Meleager and many other heroes on a hunt for the boar. She became the first one to hit the boar and draw blood. After Meleager killed the boar he gave the skin (or the head) to Atalanta.

After the Calydonian Boar hunt, Atalanta refused to marry anyone who couldn't beat her in a footrace, and those who lost the race were killed. Many men died until Hippomenes came, and with the help of the goddess Aphrodite, he won the race by throwing three golden apples which Atalanta would pick up every he threw them. She was the only female that was allowed to sail with the Argonauts.

Atalanta is also a character in the book No Darkness For Love by Barbara Cartland.

Monday, 28 April 2014

Faustus


Dr. Johann Georg Faust




Origin: Latin
Meaning: "auspicious, lucky"
Gender: Masculine
Pronunciation: Faʊs-tәs

Faustus is a latin praenomen, or personal name. During the period of the Roman Empire, it was wildely used as a cognomen, or surname.

In Roman mythology, Faustulus was the shepherd who found Romulus and Remus on Palantine Hill. He and his wife, Acca Larentia, then raised them as their children.

Faust is also the protagonist in a German legend. He is a highly successful scholar who doesn't like his life so he makes a pact with the Devil, exchanging his soul for unlimited knowledge and wordly pleasures. He is believed to be based on Dr. Johann Faust, an alchemist, astrologer, and magician of the German Renessaince. The story has been adapted by many writers such as Christopher Marlowe and Goethe.

There several saints bearing the name, Saint Faustus of Milan, a soldier and martyr, Saint Faustus of Riez who was a 5th century bishop, and Saint Faustina, a nun who was canonized.

   Related Names:

Faust - German surname (m)
Fausta - Italian, Ancient Roman (f)
Faustina - Ancient Roman, Italian (f)
Faustine - French (f)
Faustino - Spanish, Italian, Portuguese (f)
Faustinus - Ancient Roman (m)
Fausto - Italian, Spanish, Portuguese (m)