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Baby Names Based on Saints

Photograph by Twenty20

You'll do everything possible to protect your child, but you can't control everything. A parent of faith might find comfort in knowing her child carries the name of a saint everywhere he goes.

Nicholas

Popularity rank in the U.S.: #57

Meaning: Victory of the people

He's the patron saint of children, so St. Nicholas is perhaps the most fitting namesake for a little one. Little Nicks are impish and lovable; Nicholas suits everyone from CEOs to poets. This name is derived from Greek.

Philomena

Popularity rank in the U.S.: Not ranked

Meaning: Friend of strength

Philomena is the patron saint of infants and youths, and her name is derived from a Greek word for loved. If that's not reason enough to pick Philomena, consider this: When you call for her on the playground, she'll be the only kid who comes running.

Thomas

Popularity rank in the U.S.: #54

Meaning: Twin

There are multiple saints with the Greek name Thomas; perhaps you'll choose to name your son after St. Thomas, the patron saint of architects. But it's St. Thomas of Aquinas who's really aspirational. He's the patron saint of students and is considered one of the greatest theologians in history.

Brigid

Popularity rank in the U.S.: Not ranked

Meaning: Exalted one

Brigid is a classic name for a baby born of Irish descent. St. Brigid is the patron saint of Ireland, and her name comes from the mythological Celtic goddess of fire, poetry and wisdom. Pronounce it as "BRIDGE-id."

Gabriel

Popularity rank in the U.S.: #24

Meaning: God is my strong man

St. Gabriel was the archangel who told the virgin Mary that she would give birth to Jesus. Your little Gabriel is more likely to deliver messages like "Look at this dead frog I found." This is a Hebrew name.

Cecilia

Popularity rank in the U.S.: #206

Meaning: Blind

Long before Simon & Garfunkel put her name in song, Cecilia was the patron saint of music and musicians. This Latin name is the perfect choice for musical parents-to-be.

Jude

Popularity rank in the U.S.: #162

Meaning: Praised

St. Jude Thaddaeus is the patron saint of desperate cases. Hopefully you and your little Jude will never find yourselves in a desperate situation, but choosing this Hebrew name could give you a sense of comfort just in case.

Monica

Popularity rank in the U.S.: #538

Meaning: Adviser; one

St. Monica is the patron saint of married women and mothers. Until your baby Monica gets to that stage of life, she'll enjoy sharing a name with a "Friends" character. This name means "adviser" in Latin and "one" in Greek.

George

Popularity rank in the U.S.: #134

Meaning: Farmer

He's the patron saint of England, so it's no wonder Prince William's son bears the name George. This Greek name is a stately one. St. George is often depicted slaying a dragon, something that will one day delight your own little George.

Agnes

Popularity rank in the U.S.: Not ranked

Meaning: Chaste

St. Agnes' story isn't a happy one: At 13 she was martyred for refusing to marry because her love for God was too great. She's associated with chastity, which may give you some peace of mind when your own Agnes is a teenager. This name is derived from Greek.

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