Which Spelling Of Elisabeth/Elizabeth Do You Prefer? Plus Nicknames Options?

Hi guys just a simple question which spelling of the name Elisabeth/Elizabeth do you prefer?

Plus what are some good nicknames for the name?



July 11, 2014 11:46 AM

Oh I love Elisabeth ( prefer this spelling but both are fine honestly) 

We have cousins names Elisabeth ( not in the same families) and both go by Lizzy. 

I think other than that ... Liz, Liza, Ellie, Elle, Eliza* & Beth are probably the best options. 

* my personal favorite ;) 

July 11, 2014 11:49 AM

I really like Elisabeth, something about the "s" makes this very familiar name a little saucier or something. But I don't mind the Elizabeth spelling -- it's on my list (we know an Elisa who has ruined that spelling for us), and some of my favorite nns for it are Liddy, Libby, Ellie, and Betsey. But my very favorite is Tess, which I haven't seen in any name book, but I've heard of Elizabeths irl using the nn Tess, and it makes sense to me since Betty, Bess, and Tetty are all nns for Elizabeth -- Tess fits right in. I've also thought that Eily (pronounced eye-lee) would be doable, inspired by the irish form of Elizabeth, Eilis (eye-lish). I don't care for Beth, but I know a Bethy, and I do think that's a very sweet nn.

By EVie
July 11, 2014 1:23 PM

Is Tess really a traditional nickname for Elizabeth? I happen to know an Elizabeth nicknamed Tess, and I thought it was a really odd and random choice, as did the elderly Elizabeth for whom she was named (she made a comment to me indicating that she felt the "honor" of the namesake was somewhat diluted, considering they were actually calling her something completely different). This Elizabeth also didn't know that Liesel was a German diminutive for Elizabeth, though, even though a friend had been calling her Liesel for years (she just thought it was a random German name he had bestowed on her as a joke when they were traveling in Germany), so take that with a grain of salt. Any clue how Tess is derived from Elizabeth?

July 11, 2014 1:32 PM

Tess is a traditional nickname for Theresa.  I've never heard of it being used for Elizabeth before.

I can see how an American English speaker would not be familiar with Liesel as a nickname for Elisabeth.  The German pronunciation of Elisabeth has a "Lee" sound, where in English it is more of a "Lih", making diminutives like Liesal or Lisa less intuitive for English speakers.

July 11, 2014 2:28 PM

Tess for Elizabeth is a rhyming nickname: Bessie -> Tessie -> Tess. This is the same process by which we get Polly as a nickname for Mary, or Bill(y) for William. The whole category is nearly forgotten nowadays, I think.

By EVie
July 11, 2014 10:51 PM

Fair enough. I've long been familiar with Polly, William, Peggy etc., and with Bess for Elizabeth, but Tess is one that I was just never aware of--possibly because Tess has an alternate and more likely derivation through Theresa. I believe the other rhyming names are all medieval in origin, and I'd be interested to see if there's any historical documentation of Tess as a nickname for Elizabeth prior to the 20th century... though I don't know where one would look for it. 

July 11, 2014 4:12 PM

If you check that interminable wikipedia list of shortened forms and nicknames for Elizabeth, you will see Tess listed.

July 11, 2014 1:29 PM

They are both pretty.  I think it depends on what you want in a name.  

Elizabeth is going to be the version most people are familiar with.  If you think constantly correcting spelling will annoy you, that's the version I'd recommend.

Elisabeth is less common, but still familiar.  The corrections should be fairly simple "Elisabeth with an S" so not any different then what someone named Katherine/Catherine would encounter.  Some people may say the S version a little differently, so that might be something to consider as well.

July 11, 2014 2:13 PM

I like Elisabeth because it seems softer to me. Being from the US, it also seems more European or exotic to me.  Truthfully, they are both nice. 

July 11, 2014 2:17 PM

Both are completely fine, but I really prefer the look of Elisabeth. The S looks so much softer and more feminine to me than the z spelling.

Both have tons of nicknames, but each have some that are distinctly s or z.

Both - Ellie, Ella, Beth

Elizabeth - Liz, Lizzy, Eliza, Liza, 

Elisabeth - Elsa, Elsie, Lisa, Betsy

I am sure there are even more than this.... Elisabeth is the ultimate nicknamey name! 

July 11, 2014 2:50 PM

The English pronunciation has a 'z' sound, so I prefer the Elizabeth spelling, but the 's' version also has plenty of history.

I'm not sure which name has more possible nicknames: Elizabeth or Mary. I think probably Elizabeth wins, by simple virtue of being a longer name, and thus offering more fodder for centuries of elaboration. A few that are pretty uncommon nowadays: Tetty, Tetsy, Libby, Tibby.

I'm reminded of the old nursery rhyme/riddle:

Elizabeth, Betsy, Betty, and Bess,
Went out one day to find a bird's nest.
They found a nest with five eggs in it,
They each took one and left four in it.

July 12, 2014 3:23 PM

I like it spelled with a "z". 


I like the nickname Lizzie. 

July 12, 2014 11:04 PM

I prefer Elizabeth.

My favorite nicknames are Beth and Lissa. Lissa is a nice because it's uncommon but also can clearly come from Elizabeth.