Etymology & Historical Origin of the Baby Name Simone

Simone is the French female equivalent to Simon. Simon is the English form of the Hebrew name Simeon which means “hearkening” (as in “one who hears”). The name is borne by several characters in the Bible, in both the Old and New Testaments. Simeon was Jacob’s second-born son in Genesis, one of the eleven brothers of Joseph, and the one most responsible for selling him into slavery. Simeon, like Levi, did not receive Jacob’s blessing and are instead dispersed among the other Tribes of Israel having no specific tribal territory of their own (because Jacob felt they used their “swords [for] weapons of violence” and so cursed their anger and wrath) [Genesis 49:5-7]. In the New Testament, Simon was one of Christ’s apostles and one of the “zealots” (a strong religious ideology demanding the complete removal of Roman foreign religion and rule from Israel). It is also believed by some that this Simon was actually Jesus’ brother. The last notable Biblical Simon we’ll mention is Simon Magnus, a Samaritan sorcerer who attempted to purchase the gifts of the Holy Spirit from St. Peter. In Acts 8:20 Peter retorts: “May your silver perish with you, because you thought you could obtain the gift of God with money!” This is where we get the word “simony” (the act of buying or selling sacred Christian objects or purchasing church offices). So it’s interesting to see that most of these Biblical characters named Simon could have ‘hearkened’ or listened better. They were all a little too focused on their own agenda until they were forced to “listen” when it came time to paying the consequences. The French female form (i.e., Simone) and the Spanish Ximena are the most successful girl’s name related to Simon. However, Simone is the highly popular masculine spelling of Simon used among Italians (pronounced see-MAW-ne). The most famous name bearer was French existentialist philosopher and feminist, Simone de Beauvoir (1908-1986), known also for her lifelong relationship with fellow French existentialist Jean-Paul Sartre. Strangely, the beautiful Simone is no longer a popular girl’s name in France; but it does do so-so well in Sweden, Norway, Denmark and the Netherlands.

All About the Baby Name – Simone

Personality

OF THE GIRL NAME SIMONE

The Three energy is powerful and enthusiastic. These personalities are cheerful, full of self-expression, and often quite emotional. They have an artistic flair and "gift-of-gab" that makes them natural entertainers. Their joyfulness bubbles over, and their infectious exuberance draws a crowd. The Three personality is like a child - forever young and full of delight. They are charming, witty, and generally happy people. The Three personality lives in the "now" and has a spontaneous nature. Threes seem to live with a bright and seemingly unbreakable aura that attracts others to them. In turn, they are deeply loyal and loving to their friends and family. Luck also has a tendency to favor number Threes.

Popularity

OF THE GIRL NAME SIMONE

Simone popped up briefly on the American female charts for the first time in the late 1930s. Then she disappeared from usage for a while before returning in 1960. The name’s usage was most likely influenced by the post-modern feminist Simone de Beauvoir as the 1960s and 70s saw their own feminist movement in the United States. French names have never been as heavily used in America when compared to other ethnicities (English, Latin, Spanish, Italian, Irish, etc); mostly because we’ve never experienced a large French wave of immigration (other than from eastern Canada). As such, French names bestowed on children without French heritage runs the risk of coming across as pretentious (outside of the African-American community where we find many French-inspired names). So Simone basically bounced around at low levels of semi-moderation on the charts and has generally seen sporadic usage. There was a huge jump on the charts between 1986 and 1988 following the death of Simone de Beauvoir in 1986. Simone is now backing down to fairly low levels of usage on a relative basis. Lightly used, gorgeously pronounced, accessibly French, Simone remains a strong name choice for baby daughters born to feminist mothers. For Francophile parents out there, Simone goes beautifully with Françoise in our opinion. They both have that two-syllable elegance and French “je ne sais quoi”. You “hear” what we’re saying?

Quick Facts

ON SIMONE

GENDER:

Girl

ORIGIN:

French

NUMBER OF SYLLABLES:

2

RANKING POPULARITY:

675

PRONUNCIATION:

see-MON

SIMPLE MEANING:

Harkening, one who hears

Characteristics

OF SIMONE

Communicative

Creative

Optimistic

Popular

Social

Dramatic

Happy

Cultural References to the Baby Name – Simone

Literary Characters

OF THE BABY NAME SIMONE

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

Popular Songs

ON SIMONE

Simone
a song by Donna Lewis

Latin Simone
a song by Gorillaz

Famous People

NAMED SIMONE

Simone de Beauvoir (French philosopher)
Simone Bittencourt de Oliveira (Brazilian singer)
Simone Signoret (French film star)
Nina Simone (African American musician/activist)

Children of Famous People

NAMED SIMONE

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

Historic Figures

WITH THE NAME SIMONE

Born in Paris in 1908 to a bourgeois family, Simone de Beauvoir was well-educated, intellectually precocious and, as her father is said to have claimed, “she thinks like a man!” Simone studied philosophy at the Sorbonne and went on to write her highly influential feminist-existentialist masterpiece, “The Second Sex” (1949). The work details women’s subjugation and systematic oppression in society as purposefully constructed by the collective patriarchal hierarchy. However, existentialism believes that existence precedes essence, so women need only to reject the conscripted roles they are called upon to serve (by men, obviously). Simone de Beauvoir argues that one is not born “a woman” (as defined by societal expectations). Rather, women have the capacity, the capability and (most importantly) the choice to reject her confinement and choose freedom instead. Women must take this responsibility for themselves and transcend beyond the “female” playbook given to them by a society whose sole intent is to keep women limited to second place as "the second sex". Can we get an Amen, sistas?