Nicholas Name Meaning & Origin


Pronunciation: NI-kə-lis (key)

Origin of the name Nicholas:

From the Latin Nicolaus, a derivative of the Greek Nikolaos (victory of the people), a compound name composed of the elements nikē (victory) and laos (the people). The name was borne by St. Nicholas, a 4th-century bishop of Myra who is regarded as the patron saint of Russia and Greece, and of children, sailors, and wolves.

From A World of Baby Names by Teresa Norman.

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US Popularity of Nicholas Over Time

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Comments and insights on the name Nicholas

Nicholas is the English form of the post-classical Greek personal name "Nikolaos". The spelling with -ch- first occurred in England as early as the 12th century.
In its original form, the name is related to, "Nike," the name of the goddess of victory.

We named our son Nicholas because my husband loved the name. I was opposed at first because I really wanted to name him Ryan. I am so glad that we did name him Nicholas though. It is a beautiful old name with a history. While he was small we did call him Nicholas, but when he began school, he soon became Nick, which is what he prefers. He loves his name and is glad his Dad won the naming battle as am I. He does not like the name Ryan - so Dad knew best!!
I do think there is much to be said for some of the older names - the trendy ones are very cute, but there is something to be said for timeless classic names. They carry us from babies to our golden years with elegance and I think there is much thought to be given when naming a baby - after all, we have it our entire lives. Thoughts from Chrisanna

Personal experiences with the name Nicholas

If you want to insist on your Nicholas never being called Nick, be prepared to fight a losing battle. My mom was constantly saying "-olas!" to people until my brother was 15, when she gave up.
(That being said, some non-holders of the name, especially female, prefer the longer version, thinking it to sound more distinguished.)
"Nick," especially, seems to be thought of as having an "ethnic" sound: Greek, Russian ("Nikolai"), or perhaps Italian. During the Cold War, the name could sometimes be seen as having "Russian" or "enemy" connotations by the unfriendly, but this was not universal.

My Nicholas also became "Nick" somewhere near puberty, but I still call him both. Most people do call him Nick. It fits, he's smart, good looking,likeable,has a strong sense of self and independent in his thinking.

I loved the name Nicholas, my husband liked Cole, so it was an obvious choice. We call him Cole for short so nobody calls him Nick, but Nicholas comes out of my mouth when I need to get his attention.

Nicknames for Nicholas

Nick, Nic, Nicky, Nick-o, Nico, Niko, Nikolei, Nikola, Snick, Snickers, Nickers, Nickle-Pickle, Pricky Nicky, Nick Nack, Cole, Colin, Colias

Meanings and history of the name Nicholas

Due to the renown of Saint Nicholas, this name has been widely used in the Christian world and has been common in England since the 12th century, though it became a bit less popular after the Protestant Reformation.

Famous real-life people named Nicholas

Nicholas II, last Emperor of Russia
Nicholas Sparks, American novelist
Nicholas Braun, American actor
Nicholas "Nick" Jonas, American singer
Nickolas Gene "Nick" Carter, member of 90's boyband Backsteet Boys, older brother of American singer Aaron Carter
Nicholas "Nick" Cannon, American actor/comedian
Nicholas Hoult, British actor
Nicolas "Nick" (Coppola) Cage, American actor
Nicholas Theodore "Nick" Nemeth, WWE professional wrestler under the persona "Dolph Ziggler"

Nicholas in song, story & screen

St. Nicholas, aka Santa Claus
"Old Nick," common nickname for the Devil
Nicholas Nickleby (by Charles Dickens)
Nick & Nora, famous and stylish classic movie sleuthing duo ("The Thin Man," et al.)
Nicholas Bradford (Eight is Enough)
Nick Carraway (narrator of "The Great Gatsby" by F. Scott Fitzgerald)
Nicolae Carpathia, antagonist of the "Left Behind" series
Nick Carter, fictional detective (various pulp novels, radio series)
Nick Knight, fictional vampire/policeman ("Forever Knight")
Nicola Toscani, martial-arts wielding policeman ("Above the Law")
Nick Amaro, SVU detective ( Law & Order SVU)
Nick of "Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist" surely named after Nick & Nora, famous and stylish classic movie sleuthing duo ("The Thin Man," et al.)
The first name of Lord Devereaux, the cute guy in Princess Diary's 2 who tries to steal the crown from Princess Mia.
Nick Stokes, (portrayed by George Eads) is a character on T.V. series "CSI."
Nicholas "Nick" Laws, Youtuber

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