Etymology & Historical Origin of the Baby Name Isabela

Isabel developed as a medieval Provençal form of Elizabeth originally used in France, Spain and Portugal. Isabela is a Latinate form used primarily among the Spanish and Portuguese. Isabella was popularized in medieval Europe in part thanks to Isabella of Angoulême, an early 13th century French noblewoman who was betrothed to King John of England in 1200 (at the ripe old age of about 12!). Not only did Isabella hold the lofty position of Queen Consort of England, but she was also the mother to another future king, Henry III of England. Another namesake was Isabella of France (daughter of King Philip IV of France). As a girl of twelve (again!), this Isabella was also sent to England to marry King Edward II (who she would eventually have deposed and murdered, consequently earning her the sobriquet “She-wolf of France”). Another illustrious medieval Isabella was the 15th century Queen of Castile and León who famously financed Christopher Columbus’ 1492 voyage to the New World. See historic references on the Isabella page for more information on these memorable medieval Isabellas. While the name Elizabeth has maintained widespread popularity thanks to the Biblical reference, the forms of Isabel, Isabela, Isabelle and Isabella were largely popularized by European royalty in the Middle Ages (the name is actually Ysabel in Old Spanish). All of the “Isabel” names can find their root origin in the Hebrew "Elisheba", which means "God is my oath". Elisheba/Elizabeth shows up in Exodus as the wife of Aaron (the older brother of Moses and a prophet in his own right). Separately, another Biblical Elizabeth appears in the New Testament (herself a descended of Aaron) as the mother of John the Baptist. Through centuries of movement through various geographies, cultures and languages, Isabela is yet another derivation of Elisheba. The particular spelling of Isabela is most popular in Portuguese-speaking Brazil. Diminutives include Isa, Izzy and Bella.

All About the Baby Name – Isabela

Personality

OF THE GIRL NAME ISABELA

The Master Number Twenty-Two combines the traits of Twos and Fours into a powerful force. The references to The Master Builder and "large undertakings" serve to underscore the massive potential of this personality. They are extremely capable and therefore almost always successful. Twenty-Twos are courageous leaders, innovative thinkers, extremely wise and highly organized. As such, they are able to manifest something of major importance that will have a lasting impact on this world. Master Numbers carry with them a great sense of responsibility, so it can be a burden. However, Twenty-Twos are executors and action-takers. Further, this personality exhibits traits of the Twos, which brings sensitivity, spirituality and harmony, so their endeavors are likely to benefit mankind in some capacity.

Popularity

OF THE GIRL NAME ISABELA

There are currently six different spellings of the original Provençal Isabel in circulation in the United States today. Isabela is the fifth most popular. Isabella is the #2 female name in the country so we’re not surprised at all by the resulting variations. Isabella is followed in popularity by Isabelle, Isabel, and Izabella (which are all Top 150 names). Trailing pretty far behind all of them is Isabela – yet the only thing that separates her from the second most commonly used name in the nation is that one extra “l”. Isabela is a Spanish and Portuguese spelling. When you think about it, the double-l in Spanish is “yah, yeh” sound, so you’d think Isabela would be more common in the U.S. given the Hispanic-American population. Yet it seems Spanish speakers opt for the more simplistic Isabel over the four-syllable Isabela. Of course all of these names are simply gorgeous!

Quick Facts

ON ISABELA

GENDER:

Girl

ORIGIN:

Latin

NUMBER OF SYLLABLES:

4

RANKING POPULARITY:

667

PRONUNCIATION:

ee-sah-BEL-ah

SIMPLE MEANING:

God is my oath

Characteristics

OF ISABELA

The Master Builder

Leader

Large Undertakings

Confidence

Discipline

Organization

Cultural References to the Baby Name – Isabela

Literary Characters

OF THE BABY NAME ISABELA

We cannot find any significant literary characters by the name of Isabela

Popular Songs

ON ISABELA

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


Famous People

NAMED ISABELA

Isabela Corona (Mexican actress of the 1930s)
Isabela Garcia (Brazilian actress)

Children of Famous People

NAMED ISABELA

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

Historic Figures

WITH THE NAME ISABELA

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