Etymology & Historical Origin of the Baby Name Gregory

The name Gregory comes from the Greek Gregōrios, derived from the verb “gregōrien” meaning ‘watchful, vigilant’. In Latin, the name Gregorius has been in use for well over 1,500 years. The name was adopted by early Christians heedful of the Biblical passage located in 1 Peter 5:8, “Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.” Like Benedictus (meaning ‘blessed’) and Boniface (meaning ‘good fate’), Gregorius has been a heavily used name among Roman Catholic popes (16 of them, in fact!). There were also many highly revered early saints named Gregorius which helped to popularize the name during the Middle Ages. Gregory of Nazianzus was a 4th century Archbishop of Constantinople in the early days of the Roman Empire’s institutionalization of Christianity. He is most notable for shaping the theology around the Holy Trinity as well as synthesizing Hellenistic culture and philosophy into Christianity. Also, Gregory the Great was a 6th century pope known as a Doctor of the Church and a prolific Church theologian, writer and reformer. Gregory was a name mainly introduced into England after the Norman Conquest of the 12th century; however, it existed in Scotland prior as Griogar, the Gaelic form of Gregorius. The Scottish clan MacGregor (son of Griogar) arguably dates back to the first king of Scotland and the ancient Picts. As such, the names Gregory or Gregor had been particularly popular in Scotland.

All About the Baby Name – Gregory

Personality

OF THE BOY NAME GREGORY

The number Five personality loves the excitement of life and can easily adapt to all situations. As natural adventurers, these personalities thrive on the new and unexpected and prefer to be in constant motion. It makes them feel alive. They'll stir up some action if there's not enough around, and as inherent risk-takers they enjoy pushing the envelope. Naturally rebellious, the Five personality has no fear and never resists change.  Traveling and new experiences feed their souls. Fives are very social and attract friends with ease. People love to be around the Five fun-loving and exciting energy.  This is also a lucky number in numerology (like the Threes), so fortune seems to shine on them, helped along by their own optimism and good-nature. Fives have a quick wit, a cerebral mind, and are generally very persuasive. 

Popularity

OF THE BOY NAME GREGORY

The name Gregory has had an illustrious career as a little boy’s name in America. The name has been around since the U.S. government began tracking naming trends in 1880. However, it wasn’t until the 19-teens that the name Gregory really took hold and began his steady climb up the charts. The name’s heyday came during the 1950s and 1960s when it was a Top 30 choice for almost 25 straight years. Certainly this had something to do with Gregory Peck, the handsome and dashing film star whose career spanned from the 1940s through the 1960s. However, today the name Gregory is on a downward trend. In 1997, the name fell off the Top 100 list and quickly thereafter (2005) it fell off the Top 200. Gregory is thought of more as a mid-century name, perhaps a little outdated. Nonetheless, the name has a long, time-tested history and clear staying power. Even though the name dates back to ancient Greece, it still has a modern sensibility and a dignified resonance. The one-syllable pet form (Greg) is strong, masculine and confident. A solid, classic name, Gregory is no longer as common as it once was thereby making it a distinctive choice for today.

Quick Facts

ON GREGORY

GENDER:

Boy

ORIGIN:

Greek

NUMBER OF SYLLABLES:

3

RANKING POPULARITY:

299

PRONUNCIATION:

GREG-ə-ree

SIMPLE MEANING:

Watchful, vigilant

Characteristics

OF GREGORY

Freedom-loving

Adventurous

Adaptable

Intellectual

Easygoing

Progressive

Sensual

Cultural References to the Baby Name – Gregory

Literary Characters

OF THE BABY NAME GREGORY

Popular Songs

ON GREGORY

We cannot find any popular or well-known songs with the name of Gregory


Famous People

NAMED GREGORY

Gregory Peck (actor)
Gregory Hines (actor/dancer)
Greg Lemond (bicycle racer)
Gregg Allman (musician)
Gregor Mendel (scientist/father of genetics)
Greg Maddux (baseball player)
Greg Norman (golfer/entrepreneur)

Children of Famous People

NAMED GREGORY

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

Historic Figures

WITH THE NAME GREGORY

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