Etymology & Historical Origin of the Baby Name Christian

Christian is a name that hardly needs explanation. The English borrowed it from the Latin “Christianus” meaning “follower of Christ”. The Latin language borrowed the word from the Greek “Khristos” (meaning “anointed”). When the Hebrew Bible (Old Testament) was translated into a common form of the ancient Greek language a couple of centuries before Christ, the word “Khristos” was used in place of the Hebrew “Mashiah” (“the anointed”) in reference to the coming of a deliverer of the Jewish nation (i.e., the Messiah). Of course, Christians believe that this expected deliverer came in the form of Jesus Christ the Savior (Khristos being the anointed one by God). In Olde English, Jesus was more commonly referred to as “hæland” (the healer) until the Latin Christus replaced it. According to Acts 11:26, the term “Christian” was first coined by the people of Antioch (present day Turkey) after Barnabas and Saul went there to spread the word to “…a great many people. And in Antioch the disciples were first called Christians.” As a given name, Christian dates back to the Middle Ages and, while it has always been considered gender-neutral, it was originally more common for girls. The reverse is true today. Christian can be found high on the charts of the United States, Italy, Denmark, Austria and Australia.

All About the Baby Name – Christian

Personality

OF THE BOY NAME CHRISTIAN

The number 11 is a Master Number, and embodies heightened traits of the Two. This personality is on a life journey to find spiritual truth. They are extremely idealistic and intuitive. Elevens have a rare and exceptional spiritual energy that brings a sense of obligation to illuminate the world around them. It's a very powerful responsibility, but these people have far more potential than they know. It's important that they surrender to higher ideals. They have the capacity to see the bigger picture, and they possess the skills to inspire others spiritually. Elevens have strong diplomatic skills and can become great peacemakers. Master numbers can be both a blessing and a curse, as they walk the fine line between greatness and the potential for self-destruction.

Popularity

OF THE BOY NAME CHRISTIAN

The name Christian has seen most of its popularity in the United States from the 1970s onward. While considered a unisex name, it is much more readily bestowed upon boys than girls in America (and has been for over a century). For girls, the name Christian didn’t start to show any real usage until the mid-1960s and even then it never really gained any significant circulation. Baby girls are typically given other feminine variations of the name (e.g., Christina, Christine, Kristin, etc.). For baby boys, Christian is gaining ground on Christopher, perhaps owing to its snappier two-syllable sound. And when it comes to declaring one’s faith, you can’t get much better than a name like Christian. We also find it apropos that Christian is the Master Number 11 in numerology - one which seeks spiritual truth. Nicknames include Chris and Crish.

Quick Facts

ON CHRISTIAN

GENDER:

Boy

ORIGIN:

English

NUMBER OF SYLLABLES:

2

RANKING POPULARITY:

35

PRONUNCIATION:

KRIS-chin

SIMPLE MEANING:

Follower of Christ, anointed

Characteristics

OF CHRISTIAN

Inspirational

Highly Intuitive

Spiritual Teacher

Extremely Bright

Uplifting

Truth-seeker

Cultural References to the Baby Name – Christian

Literary Characters

OF THE BABY NAME CHRISTIAN

In Christian tradition (and to some extent in Jewish and Islamic cultures), Michael is one of the great princes of heaven, a leader in the army of God and good against the evil forces of Satan and his minions. Since his overthrow and banishment from the heavens, Satan continues the campaign for evil upon earth. Michael is also anticipated by Revelations as one who will herald the end of days and the rising of the righteous with the thundering of his trumpet. In spite of all this sword-wielding, Michael also carries the mantle of protector of the Jewish peoples, having appeared to the prophet Daniel, identifying himself as one who “stands up for the children of your people”. In addition, he is often looked to as a healer and consoler of the sick and dying, as well as being a guide to heaven for those souls preparing to meet their Maker. All in all, a good guy to have on your side!

Christian is the central character in John Bunyan’s 1678 novel, “Pilgrim’s Progress.” He is the hero of the pilgrimage and he is defined by his faith and search for salvation (hence his name). The novel is an allegory of a Christian’s search for religious truth, and the character “Christian” provides that symbolism. His spiritual journey from the “City of Destruction” to the “Celestial City” brings him to such places as “Vanity Fair” and the “Valley of the Shadow of Death.” Christian’s sense of urgency toward his goal of salvation far outweighs any of his earthy concerns.

Popular Songs

ON CHRISTIAN

Christian’s Inferno
a song by Green Day

Good Christian Soldier
a song by Kris Kristofferson

Good Christian Kings
a song by Joan Baez

The Christian
a song by Jimmy Buffett

The Christian Life
a song by The Byrds

Christian Island
a song by Gordon Lightfoot

Sister Christian
a song by Night Ranger

Christian's Inferno
a song by Green Day

Famous People

NAMED CHRISTIAN

Christian Slater (actor)
Christian Bale (actor)
Christian Dior (designer), Christian Louboutin (designer)
Christian Slater (actor)
Christian Bale (actor)
Christian Dior (designer)
Christian Louboutin (designer)

Children of Famous People

NAMED CHRISTIAN

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

Historic Figures

WITH THE NAME CHRISTIAN

Santa Anna (Latin) or Saint Anne (English) was the mother of the Virgin Mary, and grandmother of Jesus. She and her husband, Joachim, were unable to have a child for many years and then Anna was visited in the night by an angel who let her know that she would soon conceive a child. The couple was so happy with this news that they promised their child, once born, would be in the service of God. In addition to bearing the child who would become the mother of Jesus, Saint Anne is also the patron saint of good parents and women in labor.

Fletcher Christian was the master’s mate on the Bounty under Captain William Bligh who led the mutiny of the ship on its voyage from Tahiti. Although historically factual, the story of Fletcher Christian and his mutiny has been romantically enhanced by Hollywood over the years, most particularly in the 1935 and 1962 versions of Mutiny on the Bounty, starring Clark Gable and Marlon Brando, respectively. The real Fletcher was born into a solidly middle class family, but when his father died when he was a small child, the family was plunged into financial straits. Fletcher managed to get a gentleman’s education in spite of it all (being a schoolmate of the young William Wordsworth), but it was most likely the need to earn a living that sent him to sea in 1787. By all accounts he was a worthy and responsible young seaman, if given to some depression and anxieties. He had served under Captain Bligh previously, and that gentleman, too, by all accounts, was liked and respected by his underlings. So, Hollywood notwithstanding, it was probably the strain of the return voyage, after an idyllic five month stay in Tahiti among the unencumbered-by-sexual-hangups Tahitians, that led to the mutiny. It does not seem to have been the case that a highly principled Fletcher Christian, champion of the underdog, bravely rallied his men and stood up to the evil, torturous and power-mad Captain Bligh. But what fun it that?! At any rate, Bligh and some of his loyalists were set adrift (miraculously surviving to tell the tale), while Fletcher Christian and his followers finally settled on Pitcairn Island. Fletcher’s end came rather ignobly, as well, as he most likely died as a result of the constant warring among the remaining seamen and the Tahitians they had essentially kidnapped. His Tahitian bride bore him three children, and survivors of Fletcher brag about their genesis to this day. Who can blame them if they see Clark Gable when they think of Grandpa Fletcher?

Considered a National Treasure in Denmark, Hans Christian Anderson wrote some of the best loved children's stories of all time. Published in over 150 languages, you'd be hard pressed not to find a child in this world who hasn't been delighted by one of his famous works which include "The Little Mermaid," "The Ugly Duckling" and "Thumbelina.".

Considered a National Treasure in Denmark, Hans Christian Anderson wrote some of the best loved children's stories of all time. Published in over 150 languages, you'd be hard pressed to find a child in this world who hasn't been delighted by one of his famous works which include "The Little Mermaid," "The Ugly Duckling" and "Thumbelina."