Etymology & Historical Origin of the Baby Name Milan

Milan is one of those “twofer” names in that you get two etymologies out of a single name. For one, Milan is a place name referring to one of the largest cities in Italy. Originally settled by Celtic tribes centuries before Christ, Milan was known as Mediolanum which is a Latin name thought to be derived from ancient Celtic language elements, essentially meaning a settlement located in the “middle of a plain”. This would make sense as Milan is situated in the plains of the Lombardy region of Italy. Other sources suggest that the name is ultimately derived from a Celtic word denoting a sanctuary or religious center for the particular Celtic tribes who inhabited the ancient area. The Romans would conquer the Celtic settlement in the 3rd century B.C. and Mediolanum eventually became the capital of the Western Roman Empire (with Nicomedia representing the East). The Germanic Visigoths arrived in the early 5th century followed by the Huns a few decades later. The Germanic Ostrogoths sacked Milan during the Gothic Wars in the 6th century and the Lombards finally moved in during the latter half of the 6th century (also a Germanic tribe from which the region of Lombardy takes its name). When the Franks (another Germanic tribe) conquered the city in the 8th century, Milan became part of the Holy Roman Empire under Charlemagne. At some point, the Spaniards and then the Austrian’s took control before the city was finally annexed to the Kingdom of Italy in the 19th century. Strategically placed in the North of Italy, Milan is the gateway to the rest of the peninsula. It’s no wonder scores of tribes and nations fought for its possession. Aside from the clear association with the prominent Italian city, Milan is also a name of Slavic origin. The Slavic element “mil” means “gracious, dear”. Interestingly, Milan is considered a female name among Americans, but as a masculine name it is a top choice in Belgium, the Netherlands, and Hungary. From a Slavic perspective, at least, Milan is all male. In fact, they would probably scratch their heads upon meeting a woman named Milan.

All About the Baby Name – Milan

Personality

OF THE GIRL NAME MILAN

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 MILAN

People of Slavic descent will be happy to hear that Milan started out as a boy’s name in America. It showed up sporadically on the charts in the late 19th and early 20th centuries before disappearing permanently in 1958. Suddenly the name reemerged in 2009 but this time for baby girls. Obviously, the usage for girls is tied to the “place name” trend. Other international city names have become quite popular for females in the United States. For instance there’s Alexandria (Egypt), Kimberly (South Africa), Sidney (Australia), London (England), Paris (France) – not to mention our own American cities like Brooklyn, Savannah and Madison. We take on countries too (Ireland, India, Kenya). Hell, we’ll even take on continents (Asia, Africa and America). So what’s so bad about Milan? At least in the United States, Milan is now officially a girl’s name. And it appears to be on the upswing. In other words, more and more American parents are choosing Milan (Siena is another Italian city name which is favored for girl’s in the U.S.). Obviously a place name trend, we can think of a hec of a lot worse places than Milan. But we have to admit, we like the “dear, gracious” etymology better than “mid-plain”.

Quick Facts

ON MILAN

GENDER:

Girl

ORIGIN:

Celtic

NUMBER OF SYLLABLES:

2

RANKING POPULARITY:

597

PRONUNCIATION:

MEE-lawn or Mә-LAWN

SIMPLE MEANING:

Mid-plain; or Gracious, dear

Characteristics

OF MILAN

The Master Builder

Leader

Large Undertakings

Confidence

Discipline

Organization

Cultural References to the Baby Name – Milan

Literary Characters

OF THE BABY NAME MILAN

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

Popular Songs

ON MILAN

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


Famous People

NAMED MILAN

Milan Kundera (Czech novelist)
Milan Lucic (hockey player)

Children of Famous People

NAMED MILAN

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

Historic Figures

WITH THE NAME MILAN

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