Ralph: Meaning, Popularity, Origin of Baby Name Ralph

Ralph

Pronunciation: RALF, RAYF (key)

Origin of the name Ralph:

From the Old Norse Rađulfr, Rathulfr, a compound name composed of the elements rađ, rath (counsel) and ulfr (wolf). The name, introduced by the Scandinavians, was reinforced by the Normans, who brought in the Germanic cognate Radulf, which is from the elements rād (counsel) and wulf (wolf). The English developed their own cognate, Rædwulf, from the Old English elements ræd (counsel) and wulf (wolf). The name evolved into Rauf, Raff, and Rafe in the Middle Ages, Ralf in the 16th century, and Ralph in the 18th century.

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Related Names:

Raul, Rolf, Rollo

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US Popularity of Ralph Over Time

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Comments and insights on the name Ralph: | Edit

Sadly, this classic name has two unfortunate associations in the United States. One is the slang term "to ralph," meaning to vomit. The other is that, in Judy Blume's extremely popular young adult novel "Forever," it is the name the young protagonist, Michael, gives his male member in order to make it seem friendlier to Katherine, his virginal lover. In England (where it is pronounced "rafe", not "ralf"), the name does not have these problems.

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Nicknames for Ralph: | Edit

Ralphie, Rafe

Meanings and history of the name Ralph: | Edit
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Famous real-life people named Ralph: | Edit

Ralph Waldo Emerson, American writer and leading figure of the transcendentalist movement
Ralph Stanley, American bluegrass musician featured on the soundtrack to the movie "O Brother Where Art Thou?"
Ralph Fiennes, English actor - his name is pronounced "Rafe"
Ralph Vaughan Williams, British composer - also pronounced "Rafe"
Ralph Lauren, American designer

Ralph in song, story & screen: | Edit

Ralph Kramden, lead character in the classic TV show "The Honeymooners," played by Jackie Gleason
Ralphie Parker, lead character in "A Christmas Story"
Ralph Dibney, real name of superhero "The Elongated Man" in DC comics
Ralph Wiggum, the son of the town's police chief on "The Simpsons"

No Way
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67
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Smart?

61
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Sexy?

65
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Friendly?

60
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Creative?

64
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Strong?

55
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Young?

59
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Sophisticated?