Strong Russian names?

(62 Posts)

I'm Russian born and bred. Don't live there now, and have a DD named Sofia.

I like Artem for a boy...I like strong sounding names for girls (although I admit Sofia doesn't match that but that was more down to ex) but maybe a long elegant name (like Anastasia) which can be shortened?

Any ideas, as I'm stuck?

steppemum Sun 09-Feb-14 00:05:26

I thought Artem was pronounced Artyom in English?
Sasha (Alexander)

Tatiana (I love this name)

Can't remember any more!

JeanSeberg Sun 09-Feb-14 00:07:09


bodandbagpusssittinginatree Sun 09-Feb-14 00:10:33



I like both the names you have suggested [helpful]

The only problem with Anastasia is people will think you've named her after 50 shades of grey! angry

I like Katya and Natalia. (And love Artem for a boy)

anothernumberone Sun 09-Feb-14 00:12:34

Elena I adore that name and valoude and arsene for a boy.

bodandbagpusssittinginatree Sun 09-Feb-14 00:13:03

Diminutive of Anastasia?

Would Anya/ Ania be authentically russian?

steppemum Sun 09-Feb-14 00:24:02

Anya is very Russian

I love the name Svetlana (Sveta for short) as well

I think of russian princesses when I think of Anastasia, not 50 shades of grey, but then I have refused to read it!

nikkihollis Sun 09-Feb-14 01:45:40



Natasha has bad connotations unfortunately (it's like calling a kid 'gold digger'- I hate the stereotypes and so on and I love the name, but won't name my child that iyswim).

Svetlana is nice. I quite like the nn Lana I think, sounds more English? I like Natalia. Not sure about Tatiana, I like the nn Tanya for it however. My exMIL was called Victoria, so won't use Viktoria. Anastasia is beautiful, I like Ana and Anya actually for a nickname, that would work. I like Katerina and Katya, as Kat is a very strong sounding name imo, and also Elena, but my neighbour is called Elena, which puts me off hmm

Fr boys- Nikolai- like it. Mikhail isn't really my taste unfortunately. Sasha- well, I like the name Alexandr and it would be a reasonable shortening, and his friends would be able to give him Alex/Xandr as an English nickname too, definitely top of my list right now. I don't really want to Anglicise it with Alexander/adding an e, confused I know an Egor (not an Igor) and I don't really like the name, but thank for the suggestion.

Thanks to everyone thanks So far, my favourites are Anastasia, Svetlana, Katerina(Katya) and Elena for girls, and Nikolai and Alexandr for boys.

AdoraBell Sun 09-Feb-14 03:29:01

Why the bad connotations with Natasha? I thought it was a kind of unofficial version of Nataliaconfused.

I've only met one Russian person though, so not exactly an authority on the subjectblush, sorry.

TheBookThief Sun 09-Feb-14 07:27:31

I don't know any Russian names but I knew a woman once called Polina which I thought was very pretty.

mathanxiety Sun 09-Feb-14 07:37:23

Natasha is a term used for sex slaves. It's a sort of generic/fantasy name for young women from Eastern Europe/Russia in the minds of people who have an interest in forgetting their humanity.

I like:


TamerB Sun 09-Feb-14 07:42:09

Google 'Russian names for girls' or ' Russian names for boys' and you get alphabetical lists.

winkywinkola Sun 09-Feb-14 07:44:11


baskingseals Sun 09-Feb-14 07:45:08

I love Tatiana and Zinaida. I also like Oksana. Beautiful names.

tomverlaine Sun 09-Feb-14 07:53:29

Larissa (Lara)

Britishseamonkey Sun 09-Feb-14 08:35:44

What's Masha short for? I always liked Masha
I like Zoya too- which I understand to be the Russian equivalent of Zoe? Meaning life??

crashbangboom Sun 09-Feb-14 08:39:09

Tatiana - Tania as nn?


Love Katerina

Whichonetochoose Sun 09-Feb-14 08:56:28

How about Elizabeth (Elizaveta in Russian)?

tomverlaine Sun 09-Feb-14 10:22:51

Masha is short for Maria - similarly you get Dasha as a shortened form of Daria and nasha for naria

SantanaLopez Sun 09-Feb-14 12:41:32

These names are all fabulous grin

Nastia is another nickname isn't it? Pity about the 'nasty' link because it sounds lovely.

AdoraBell Sun 09-Feb-14 14:01:52

Thanks Math I had no idea.

jkklpu Sun 09-Feb-14 14:08:17

Milena (Mila) and Alexei are my favourites

Umnitsa Sun 09-Feb-14 23:51:40


Xfirefly Sun 09-Feb-14 23:55:44

Svetlana I love. if it's not Russian then please correct me smile

mumbaisapphirebluespruce Mon 10-Feb-14 00:15:55

I love, love, love Anastasia. I've been watching the Sochi Olympics today and heard someone announce an Anastasia, and the pronunciation in Russian is so lovely, much nicer than how it will get said in the UK. I'm not going to do it any justice trying to spell it out phonetically, but here goes, it was
Ana-stah-seeeeya with the focus on the seeeeya bit, as opposed to the way I think Brits would say it, which is Anna-stays-yah, which has more focus on the 'stays' bit.

Sorry a pointless ramble, I think it is a beautiful name, either way it's pronounced, although I secretly hope you would go for and encourage the Russian pronunciation. I would go for it. Don't worry about 50 shades. I haven't read it. It's not a compulsory read. It wouldn't be my automatic connection.

florascotia Mon 10-Feb-14 08:38:17

I met a very impressive older Russian lady some time ago. Her name was Irena (Ih-RAY-nah). I think it means 'peace', which can only be good.

Nataleejah Mon 10-Feb-14 11:41:58

Natalia for a girl blush

For a boy
Yegor or Igor

I like Anastasia and know one shortened to Tasia always.

Katerina goes really nicely with Sofia too.

For boys, I really like Gregori/y but not sure how Russian it is blush

steppemum Mon 10-Feb-14 20:32:06

wow, I had no idea about Natasha!!

Irena I think is lovely in the Russian pronunciation but likely to become Irene in English?

Elena is another one with interesting pronunciation, in German it is pronounced like Eleanor, but in Russian - El lay na which is pretty.

When we were in Kazakhstan, a very popular Russian name was Yaraslav, for boys and Yaraslava for girls. The girl I knew was Yara for short.

(secretly hoping you will go for Svetlana!)

Nadezhda has such a lovely meaning, it means Hope.

tigrou Tue 11-Feb-14 14:51:14

How about Vladlena, or a similar power type name for boys : Vlad, Vladimir, Vsyevolod - can't get much stronger than that!
Also love Antonina (both strong and cute) or Anton.
Varvara, Zhanna, Zoya, Izolda for girls
Abram, Viktor, Lev for boys

coffeeinbed Tue 11-Feb-14 15:53:08

Short version of Svetlana can be Lana.
Which is nice.
Irina is lovely, pronunciation can be trouble.

I like Nina.

coffeeinbed Tue 11-Feb-14 15:54:19

Anastassya would be an Assya, generally.

coffeeinbed Tue 11-Feb-14 15:56:44

Oh, sorry.
Missed the born and bred bit, in which case you are obi. aware of all this.

NaggingNellie Tue 11-Feb-14 15:58:29







ProfondoRosso Tue 11-Feb-14 16:02:10

I love Yekaterina. One of my favourite actresses, Yekaterina Golubeva, died a couple of years ago and she was a brilliant, creative woman.

For boys, I'm a big fan of Andrei and Arseny (after Tarkovsky) but I know a name with 'arse' in it might be tricky in Anglophone countries! wink

My friend's boyfriend is called Pacha (I admit I don't know what it's short for), but I love that for a boy.

NannyPlumForPM Tue 11-Feb-14 19:32:36

Pacha might have connotations of the club circuit (pacha cherries/ Ibiza club remixes etc)

I love svetlana nn Lana and also petrochemical and andrei for boys!

Very interesting about the 'Natasha' meaning/ connotation in Eastern Europe!

NannyPlumForPM Tue 11-Feb-14 19:32:56

Sorry that was petroV Not petrochemical

Anjou Tue 11-Feb-14 21:14:13

Some lovely names here. Love Artem & Anya/Anje. How about ...

Kirill (nn Kir)
Igor (nn Igor)
Alexandr (nn Sasha)

Elizaveta (so many nns!)

coffeeinbed Tue 11-Feb-14 21:19:57

Orofondo Pacha is short for Pavel.

rhetorician Tue 11-Feb-14 21:25:14

I have an Anastasia, we are not Russian, but it was a family name in my DPs family (used quite a lot in ireland actually). I adore it, she is only 2, so is usually called Annie, but think we will use her full name as she gets older. It's pretty, feminine, strong, unusual, not hard to spell. It is a little long is the only objection you might have

Dilidali Tue 11-Feb-14 21:36:14

Vania for boy.
Olga for girl.

Also, have a look in the saints calendar, see what's close to date of birth and if you can get inspired?

Dilidali Tue 11-Feb-14 21:39:04


ShatterResistant Tue 11-Feb-14 21:43:11

How about Alina? I was at school with an English one, but know lots of russian ones too. Also love Pavel and Piotr.

LynetteScavo Tue 11-Feb-14 21:48:28

I love the name Anastasia (DS2 would have been Anastasia - the only reason we didn't call DD Anastasia is that DH said it might get shortened to Stacy which is my least favorite name ever) I think if I had another girl I would definitely go for Anastasia, shortened to Ana.

I also love Tatiana (DD's middle name)

I also love Boris and Vladimir. I knew a little boy called Vladimir, and when he was called from the other side of the park, it just sounded so cool. I also love Conrad.

There are so many great traditional Russian names.

holycowwhatnow Tue 11-Feb-14 21:49:09

Haven't a clue how to spell them but these are the names of the children we met in Russia when we adopted DD and the names of some of the carers (mostly in their 40s/50s)

Girls Boys

Nazdya Sasha x 2
Dakmina Dasha
Anya Ramon
Kristina Sergei
Sonia Andrei
Grunthilda (No not really, that was what we nicknamed the only horrible carer in DD's baby home)

LynetteScavo Tue 11-Feb-14 21:50:10

rhetorician I only found out Anastasia was used a lot in Ireland after we chose not to go for it. If I had known, I think I would have stuck to my guns, as DH's family are from Ireland, and we have an Irish surname.

rhetorician Tue 11-Feb-14 21:58:30

Yes, Stacy is pretty crap! I think it was used here because it was sort of aspirations but she is one of the sAints named in the litany for the Christmas mass. Quite a cool saint, as it happens.

We discovered, after we named both dds, that there were two sisters in the family with same names back in the 1830s, which was quite something.

OpenMindedSceptic Tue 11-Feb-14 22:02:50

I love the name Yefim (nn Fima)

holycowwhatnow Tue 11-Feb-14 22:10:53

LynetteScavo Anastasia was used a lot in Ireland years ago- you won't find one under 70 now and the pronunciation was dreadful - Ana-STAY- sha, or STAYsha for short. Dreadful. So different to the beautiful Russian name. If you'd called your dd that, your head would be melted by your Irish relatives pronunciation of it. smile

rhetorician Tue 11-Feb-14 22:24:48

I have an irish Anastasia who is 2!!

LynetteScavo Tue 11-Feb-14 22:31:42

holycowwhatnow I think you and DH both know something I didn't! grin

mathanxiety Wed 12-Feb-14 04:52:07

It was indeed used a lot in Ireland. I have a third generation one aged 12 smile. We used the -sia spelling as my mum found her name had been misspelled in the register of births and so she got the more unusual (in Ireland) Russian version. They were going for Anastatia to name her after a great aunt.

I think the version used most in Ireland was Anastatia, which is Latin afaik, and was also used in Medieval English along with other variations (pr Anastay-sha and sometimes shortened to Staysha).

There's a very funny book called 'The Tailor and Ansty' (pr Ann-stee) by Eric Cross about an old couple in Cork iirc.

mathanxiety Wed 12-Feb-14 04:53:51

That is, she is at least third generation, probably much more, as in my mother's neck of the woods, old naming traditions tended to be widely honoured -- the great aunt would have been named after someone else and so on and so forth back into the mists of time.

MasterOfTheYoniverse Wed 12-Feb-14 05:03:29


LCHammer Wed 12-Feb-14 05:49:25

Go for Petrochemical. That would be indeed strong and unique smile

NannyPlumForPM Wed 12-Feb-14 19:59:30

A little abrasive? Or corrosive? wink

ProfondoRosso Wed 12-Feb-14 20:15:55

Fyodor, Konstantin and Dmitri are good too.

rhetorician Wed 12-Feb-14 20:20:58

mathanxiety never knew that about you! We found Anastasia (spelled that way) back in the early 1800s in family records, in Co. Cork (where DPs family are from). The last one was DPs great aunt, born before the Famine, the last irish speaker on the family farm. She was known as Ansty. As you were...

rhetorician Wed 12-Feb-14 20:23:13

Ha ha math DP has just said, wonder if your lot were noonans.

mathanxiety Thu 13-Feb-14 05:48:47

No, but my mother's maiden name is not a million miles from Noonan weirdly enough smile

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