Etymology & Historical Origin of the Baby Name Anthony

Anthony is the English form of the old Roman Family name “Antonius” from the gens “Antonia”. The Antonius clan name is of uncertain origin, probably originated from the ancient Etruscan civilization in Italy (near modern day Tuscany) whose language is now extinct. The family name was shared by both the patrician and plebian classes, and most famously borne by Mark Antony (Marcus Antonius, 83 B.C.-30 B.C.). Apparently Mark Antony invented a mythological person named Anton (son of Hercules) from whom he claimed descent, most likely in an effort to establish his own greatness. After Julius Caesar’s assassination in 44 B.C., Antony joined together with Octavian and Lepidus to form the Second Triumvirate. This political alliance would later collapse when Octavian defeated Antony and Cleopatra at the Battle of Actium (31 B.C.). Shortly thereafter Antony and Cleopatra committed suicide (made famous by William Shakespeare’s drama “Antony and Cleopatra). In terms of the name Antonius, not much else is known about its origin. The English “th” was added later as some (erroneous) attempt to associate it with the Greek word “anthos” (“flower”) or “anthropos” (“man”). Different variations of the name came into circulation throughout Europe starting in the post-classical era thanks to a couple of early saints, especially the 3rd to 4th century Egyptian Saint Antony the Great (“The Father of All Monks”). St. Antony’s life was memorialized by a Greek biographer shortly after his death; a written work which maintained widespread appeal throughout Europe up through the Middle Ages. St. Antony was not the first monk (as he’s often credited for being), but he was the first to live as a hermit for more than a decade deep in the deserts completely cut off from civilization. He was greatly admired for his ascetic life and religious discipline (apparently St. Antony successfully endured and overcame through prayer all sorts of supernatural temptations flung at him by the Devil). Needless to say St. Antony was one of the most revered saints in medieval Europe and his name was often bestowed on children as a protective measure. St. Antony is also the patron saint against infectious diseases (which were rampant in the Middle Ages), particularly skin diseases that are still referred to as “St. Anthony’s Fire” (e.g., shingles). Folks prayed to him for relief. His Feast Day is January 17. Due to the popularity of this name for over 2000 years, several linguistic forms have endured into the modern era. Anthony/Antony (English), Anton (Scandinavian and Slavic), Antonio (Italian and Spanish), Antwan (African-American), and Antoine (French). Antonia and Antoinette are the female equivalents.

All About the Baby Name – Anthony

Personality

OF THE BOY NAME ANTHONY

The number Seven personality is deeply mystical and highly in tune with their spirituality. They operate on a different wavelength than the average joe. Spending time alone comes easily to Sevens, as it gives them time to contemplate philosophical, religious and spiritual ideas in an effort to find "real truth".  Sevens are wise, but often exude mystery as if they are tapped into something the rest of us don't understand. They love the outdoors and are fed by nature. Sevens are constantly seeking to understand human nature, our place in the universe, and the mystery of life in general. This makes them quite artistic and poetic, but they are also keen observers with high intellect - so they are equally scientific-minded. Sevens are charitable and care deeply about the human condition.

Popularity

OF THE BOY NAME ANTHONY

The name Anthony has been a Top 50 boy’s name in the United States for a hundred years. Honestly, we were surprised by its prolonged and consistent popularity since the name just doesn’t feel worn-out or overused. Long favored by Italian-Americans, the name enjoys success across all ethnicities. Like Michael and David, we would categorize this one as a timeless classic that doesn't ever seem to go out of fashion.

Quick Facts

ON ANTHONY

GENDER:

Boy

ORIGIN:

NUMBER OF SYLLABLES:

3

RANKING POPULARITY:

19

PRONUNCIATION:

AN-tha-nee

SIMPLE MEANING:

Uncertain

Characteristics

OF ANTHONY

Mystical

Wise

Eccentric

Intuitive

Imaginative

Philosophical

Solitary

Cultural References to the Baby Name – Anthony

Literary Characters

OF THE BABY NAME ANTHONY

Bruno Anthony (Charles Anthony Bruno) is the deliciously evil protagonist of Patricia Highsmith’s 1950 thriller, Strangers on a Train, which was adapted into a film of the same name by Alfred Hitchcock in 1951. In the book, he is Charles Anthony Bruno; in the film he is Bruno Anthony. Poor little rich boy Bruno – a coddled Mama’s boy who covets his strict father’s wealth, he tries to arrange a “criss-cross” murder with Guy Haines, a stranger whom he meets on a train – his father for Guy’s wife, who won’t grant Guy a divorce. Bruno is an insecure young man who has no direction in his life, who has coasted thus far on his family’s wealth. Convincing himself that Guy has agreed to the pact, Bruno goes ahead with his part of the scheme. Naturally, things go awry, with disastrous results. Eventually, Bruno gets his come-uppance, and darned if we aren’t rather sorry about that! As portrayed by Robert Walker in the movie, he is much more interesting and watchable than the rather insipid Guy (Farley Granger). And isn’t that always the way with the “bad” guys!

Popular Songs

ON ANTHONY

Anthony Boy (Chuck Berry)
A Chuck Berry classic hit from the 1950's.

Movin' Out / Anthony's Song (Billy Joel)
A catchy Billy Joel tune from the 1980's.

Famous People

NAMED ANTHONY

Anthony Perkins (inspirational speaker)
Anthony Hopkins (actor)
Anthony Michael Hall (comedian)
Anthony Quinn (actor)
Anthony Braxton (jazz musician)
Anthony Burgess (novelist)
Anthony Perkins (inspirational speaker)
Anthony Hopkins (actor)
Anthony Michael Hall (comedian)
Anthony Quinn (actor)
Anthony Braxton (jazz musician)
Anthony Burgess (novelist)
Anthony Perkins (inspirational speaker)
Anthony Hopkins (actor)
Anthony Michael Hall (comedian)
Anthony Quinn (actor)
Anthony Braxton (jazz musician)
Anthony Burgess (novelist)

Children of Famous People

NAMED ANTHONY

We cannot find any children of famous people with the first name Anthony

Historic Figures

WITH THE NAME ANTHONY

Susan B. Anthony is most known for her leadership role in the American woman’s suffrage movement of the 19th century. She was born in Massachusetts to a politically active and anti-slavery family in the early part of the 1800s, so Susan was automatically sensitive to inequalities of any kind. As a young woman, she was active in the Temperance (anti-alcohol) movement, but was chided by her male counterparts who didn’t believe women had a place in politics. The experience inspired her to dedicate her life toward woman suffrage with her fellow activist friend Elizabeth Stanton. Together they founded the National Woman Suffrage Association and wrote a weekly newsletter fittingly called Revolution. Susan was tireless in her speech-giving across the nation and she famously (but illegally) voted in the 1872 presidential election. She was arrested and fined for her impropriety. Imagine that! Unbelievably, Susan B. Anthony never lived long enough to see the right to vote be granted to American woman – yet female voters today have her to thank. The 19th amendment was finally passed in 1920. Women haven’t even been voting for 100 years yet. As Susan herself said: “Oh, if I could but live another century and see the fruition of all the work for women! There is so much yet to be done.” Indeed Susan. Indeed.

Anthony the Great - Anthony the Great, born in Egypt in A.D. 251, is considered the "Father of All Christian Monks" and is mostly known for spreading Christian monasticism. In 285, he sold all his possessions and gave the proceeds to the poor in order to give his life over to Christ. Apparently, this clean-living paid off, as Anthony finally died at the ripe old age of 105.

Anthony of Padua was made a saint only one year after his death at the age of 36, but even before then, the Pope declared him a "Doctor of the Church." Born in Portugal, Anthony left his wealthy family and went to Italy to join the Franciscan Order of religious men and women. Giving his life over to the Church, his teachings were simple and tenacious. He is known to most as the patron saint of lost items, so you may have heard the following prayer: "Saint Anthony, Saint Anthony, if it's around, please place it where it can be found."

Anthony the Great - Anthony the Great, born in Egypt in A.D. 251, is considered the "Father of All Christian Monks" and is mostly known for spreading Christian monasticism. In 285, he sold all his possessions and gave the proceeds to the poor in order to give his life over to Christ. Apparently, this clean-living paid off, as Anthony finally died at the ripe old age of 105.

Anthony of Padua was made a saint only one year after his death at the age of 36, but even before then, the Pope declared him a "Doctor of the Church." Born in Portugal, Anthony left his wealthy family and went to Italy to join the Franciscan Order of religious men and women. Giving his life over to the Church, his teachings were simple and tenacious. He is known to most as the patron saint of lost items, so you may have heard the following prayer: "Saint Anthony, Saint Anthony, if it's around, please place it where it can be found."

Anthony of Padua was made a saint only one year after his death at the age of 36, but even before then, the Pope declared him a "Doctor of the Church." Born in Portugal, Anthony left his wealthy family and went to Italy to join the Franciscan Order of religious men and women. Giving his life over to the Church, his teachings were simple and tenacious. He is known to most as the patron saint of lost items, so you may have heard the following prayer: "Saint Anthony, Saint Anthony, if it's around, please place it where it can be found."

Anthony the Great - Anthony the Great, born in Egypt in A.D. 251, is considered the "Father of All Christian Monks" and is mostly known for spreading Christian monasticism. In 285, he sold all his possessions and gave the proceeds to the poor in order to give his life over to Christ. Apparently, this clean-living paid off, as Anthony finally died at the ripe old age of 105.