Etymology & Historical Origin of the Baby Name Karissa

Karissa is a variant spelling of Carissa. Carissa is an example of a female name popularized by literature, thanks to the 16th century English poet Edmund Spenser and his 1590 masterpiece “The Faerie Queene” (Book I, Cantos ix-x). The poem is really a politico-religious epic which seeks to glorify Queen Elizabeth I and the Church of England while vilifying evil as partly embodied by the Roman Catholic Church. In the first book of this epic poem the protagonist Redcrosse (personification of England’s Saint George) is traveling with his companions King Arthur and Una (Truth) on their way to slay the evil dragon. At one point during their journey, Redcrosse confronts a weary old man in a cave named Despair. Filled with doom and gloom, Despair has the hypnotic ability to arouse suicide in those who challenge him. Even Redcrosse comes close to taking his own life until Una (Truth) brings him to the House of Holiness ruled over by Caelia (heaven) and her three daughters: Fidelia (faith), Sperenza (hope), and Charissa (charity). These virtues nurture Redcrosse back to spiritual health. Spenser borrowed the name “Charissa” from the Greek “charis” meaning “grace, kindness” and his well-known poem served to popularize the name in the following 17th century. Because the “ch” in Charissa is a hard “k” sound, the name eventually morphed into Carissa and Karissa. Karissa is not particularly popular today, but the name does appear on the baby naming lists in the United States and Canada.

All About the Baby Name – Karissa

Personality

OF THE GIRL NAME KARISSA

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 KARISSA

Karissa appeared on the U.S. naming charts for the first time in 1977. The name saw respectable growth until reaching its apex position of #306 out of 1000 in 1991. Names like Karissa, Carissa and Larissa were inspired by the popularity of Marissa which became a Top 100 favorite baby girl’s name in the late 1980s. Today, however, Karissa has retreated back down to low levels of usage. Both Carissa and Karissa are sweet-sounding names, full of “grace and kindness”. They are ultra-feminine and intellectually literary. Carissa feels more traditional while Karissa has more of a modern edge with the K spelling.

Quick Facts

ON KARISSA

GENDER:

Girl

ORIGIN:

English

NUMBER OF SYLLABLES:

3

RANKING POPULARITY:

965

PRONUNCIATION:

kə-RIS-ah

SIMPLE MEANING:

Grace, kindness

Characteristics

OF KARISSA

Humanitarian

Community-minded

Family-oriented

Loving

Affectionate

Compassionate

Sensitive

Cultural References to the Baby Name – Karissa

Literary Characters

OF THE BABY NAME KARISSA

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

Popular Songs

ON KARISSA

Oh Karissa, How I Miss Ya
a song by Hellogoodbye

Famous People

NAMED KARISSA

We cannot find any celebrities or significantly famous people with the first name Karissa.

Children of Famous People

NAMED KARISSA

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

Historic Figures

WITH THE NAME KARISSA

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