Etymology & Historical Origin of the Baby Name Estelle

Estelle is the French form of the Latin “stella” meaning “star”. Although the Modern French word for star is “étoiles”, in Old French is was “estroile”, hence the name Estelle. The name was born by a 3rd century Gaulish Christian martyr (present day southern France). In the first century B.C., Julius Caesar successful conquered Gaul (a then-Celtic region comprising most of Western Europe) and incorporated it into the Roman Empire. By the third century A.D. Gaul was still under the pagan laws of Rome, and as a result, conversion to Christianity was punishable by death. Estelle was one such ancient woman who met her own death in such a fashion. She was the daughter of a prominent Roman governor and descended from a powerful family of Druids (a priestly class of pagan Celts) on her mother’s side. Having come under the spiritual influence of an early Christian bishop in Gaul, Estelle was eventually baptized by him thus sealing her conversion. Estelle’s father had both the bishop and his daughter killed for their “crime” – he with an axe to his head and she by being thrown into an arena (i.e., death by public pleasure). Such “saintly” legends were highly popularized (and often embellished) during the Middle Ages, and medieval folks (especially the French) adopted these pious names for their children (mostly as a protective measure). St. Estelle’s Feast Day is May 11 and she is the patroness to young Christian girls. The French would eventually introduce this celestial name to the English after the Norman Conquest of 1066 but it was not entirely adopted until much later in the 19th century due to the character named Estella Havisham in Charles Dickens’ novel “Great Expectations” (1861). Today Estelle is a Top 100 favorite baby girl’s name in Belgium and a Top 200 in France.

All About the Baby Name – Estelle

Personality

OF THE GIRL NAME ESTELLE

Romance is the hallmark of the Six personality. They exude nurturing, loving, and caring energy. Sixes are in love with the idea of love in its idealized form - and with their magnetic personalities, they easily draw people toward them. Like the number Two personality, they seek balance and harmony in their life and the world at large. They are conscientious and service-oriented, and a champion for the underdog. These personalities naturally attract money and are usually surrounded by lovely material objects - but their human relationships are always primary. They thrive in giving back to others rather than being motivated by their own desires. This is when they achieve great things. Sixes are natural teachers, ministers and counselors.

Popularity

OF THE GIRL NAME ESTELLE

Estelle’s history on the U.S. female naming charts is almost identical to Estella’s,, i.e., they enjoyed most of their success in the late 19th century. The pretty French Estelle did get as high as #106 in 1911, but for the most part, she mainly saw declining interest in the 20th century. The name completely disappeared from America’s Top 1000 list in 1964 and only recently reemerged in 2012 (at #950 out of 1000). Only 265 baby girls were called Estelle in 2012, so she’s still pretty rare. Although we’ve seen a revival with Stella, Estella and Estelle haven’t enjoyed the same notice. We have to say, Estelle is our favorite of all the “star” names. Estelle’s short two-syllables and distinctly French sound gives her an added quality of sophistication. Very pretty!

Quick Facts

ON ESTELLE

GENDER:

Girl

ORIGIN:

French

NUMBER OF SYLLABLES:

2

RANKING POPULARITY:

978

PRONUNCIATION:

es-TEL

SIMPLE MEANING:

Star

Characteristics

OF ESTELLE

Humanitarian

Community-minded

Family-oriented

Loving

Affectionate

Compassionate

Sensitive

Cultural References to the Baby Name – Estelle

Literary Characters

OF THE BABY NAME ESTELLE

Popular Songs

ON ESTELLE

Estelle
a song by Dan Bern

Famous People

NAMED ESTELLE

Estelle Getty (actress)
Estelle Harris (actress)
Estelle Parsons (actress)
Estelle Lefébure (French supermodel)
Estelle (British rapper)
Estelle Winwood (British actress)
Estelle Bennett (singer)
Princess Estelle of Sweden (Duchess of Östergötland)
St. Estelle (saint)

Children of Famous People

NAMED ESTELLE

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

Historic Figures

WITH THE NAME ESTELLE

We cannot find any historically significant people with the first name Estelle