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100+ Italian baby names with unique origins and meanings

Are you searching for a baby name that has suave continental feel? Or maybe you’re just sick and tired of Jack and Olivia. If you're considering an Italian baby name for your new arrival, take a look at the top Italian picks for both girls and boys.

By Laura Westerman | Last updated Feb 29, 2024

smiling baby crawling

Home to pizza, pasta and the illustrious history of the Roman Empire (to name a few), Italy is a wonderful place to be connected to.

From the rolling hills of Tuscany to the bustling streets of Rome, Italian baby names carry a unique charm and history that resonates worldwide. Each name tells a story, reflecting a tapestry of traditions, values and the profound influence of Roman and Renaissance legacies.

It’s common in Italian families for the first child to be named after the paternal grandparent and the second child to be named after the maternal grandparent. If you’re looking to keep a family tradition of Italian names alive, then this is the list for you.

Or are you looking for an Italian baby name for you new arrival and curious about which are the most popular? Either way, we've collated over 100 of the most popular Italian baby names for your perusal, including unusual names, traditional and old-fashioned names, modern names and gender-neutral names.

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What is the most popular baby name in Italy?

According to the Italian Institute of National Statistics, the most popular Italian baby boy name is Leonardo, followed by Alessandro. The most popular name for Italian baby girls is Sofia, followed by Aurora.

How we chose the top Italian baby names

We looked at the latest data from the Italian Institute of National Statistics for 2021 to find the most popular Italian baby names in Italy for both girls and boys. We also searched our own Baby Names forum for inspiration from Mumsnet parents - those with Italian heritage and those without. To further round out our research, we scoured other trusted baby name lists to see which Italian baby names were most prominently featured this year.

Popular Italian baby girl names

  1. Alessandra - of Greek origin, meaning 'defender of mankind'. A popular name for baby girls in Italy

  2. Alessia - is the feminine form of the male given name Alessio. It was the second most popular name for Italian baby girls born in 2006 and remains popular now. It means ‘defending warrior’

  3. Ambra - meaning 'amber' in Italian

  4. Angelica - of Latin origin, meaning 'angelic'

  5. Anna - meaning ‘grace’ or ‘favour’. This one is a popular one of Latin origin, a real crowd-pleaser

  6. Antonella - of Italian origin, meaning 'priceless'

  7. Antonina - the feminine form of the name Antonius, which is of Roman origin and means 'priceless'. You can use the name Nina for short

  8. Arianna - of course this name can’t go without mentioning Ariana Grande, herself of Italian heritage. This one means ‘most holy’. For a little girl who has star quality!

  9. Aurora - from the Latin word for ‘dawn’

  10. Azzurra - this unique Italian baby name means ‘blue’ or ‘sky-blue’. A rare choice for a little girl with sky-high potential

  11. Beatrice - from the Latin ‘Beatrix’ meaning ‘she who blesses or bringer of joy’

  12. Bianca - meaning white. It is the Italian cognate of the French name, ‘Blanche’

  13. Caterina - of Italian origin, meaning 'pure'

  14. Camilla - of Italian origin, meaning 'young ceremonial attendant'

  15. Carlotta - an Italian spin on the French name Charlotte, it means 'free man'

  16. Cecilia - of Latin origin, meaning ‘blind’

  17. Chiara - meaning ‘bright’ and ‘luminous’. This name was the subject of some discussion on Mumsnet, many agreeing that this was a ‘lovely name’ for your bright spark

  18. Diletta - derived from the Italian word 'diletto', which means 'delight' or 'joy'

  19. Diana - of Roman origin, meaning 'divine' or 'heavenly'. This is a name that has been integrated into Italian culture

  20. Elena - of Greek origin initially, this variant of Helen means ‘shining light’

  21. Eleonora - meaning 'shining light of compassion', it is the equivalent of the name Eleanor

  22. Elisa - of Hebrew origin, meaning ‘God is a promise’

  23. Emilia - of Latin origin, meaning 'rival', 'laborious' or 'eager'

  24. Fiorella - of Italian origin, meaning 'little flower'

  25. Francesca - meaning ‘from France’ or ‘free’. This is a popular one that can be shortened in many ways, we like Fran

  26. Giada - of Italian origin, meaning 'jade'

  27. Gianna - of Italian origin, meaning 'God is gracious'

  28. Ginevra - is the Italian version of the name Guinevere, which is a Norman French version of the Welsh name Gwenhwyfar, meaning ‘white’ and ‘smooth’ or ‘white phantom.’ It is also associated with the juniper tree in Italy, where the name for the tree is ‘ginepro’

  29. Gioia - meaning ‘jewel’. Gioia will be a precious joy to her parents

  30. Giorgia - meaning, ‘farmer’

  31. Giovanna - the Italian form of the name Joanna or Johanna. It means 'God is gracious'.

  32. Giulia - the Italian version of Julia, meaning ‘youthful’

  33. Isotta - of Italian origin, meaning 'beautiful'

  34. Ludovica - of Italian origin, meaning ‘famous in war’

  35. Lucia - of Italian origin, meaning 'light'.

  36. Marcella - of Latin origin, meaning 'young warrior'

  37. Margherita - of Italian origin, meaning 'pearl'. It is a variation of the Greek name Margaret

  38. Maria - of Latin origin, meaning ‘of the sea’ or ‘rebellious’. In keeping with the Twelfth Night theme. Viola and Maria for a pair of sisters?

  39. Marta - of Italian origin meaning ‘lady’. This one is full of sass and attitude for a strong-willed girl

  40. Martina - of Latin origin means ‘dedicated to Mars’

  41. Mia - of Italian origin meaning ‘mine’.

  42. Ottavia - of Latin origin, meaning 'eighth'

  43. Raffaella (or Rafaela) - of Italian origin, meaning 'God has healed'. The feminine form of the name Raffaello

  44. Rosalia - of Italian origin, meaning 'rose'

  45. Sara - derived from Hebrew, meaning ‘princess’ or ‘lady’. A low-key choice, but Sara never seems to go out of fashion. You can see why it’s so popular!

  46. Serena - of Latin origin, meaning 'clear', 'tranquil' or 'serene'

  47. Sofia - has been the most popular choice since 2017. With Greek origins, this one means ‘wisdom’

  48. Valentina - of Italian origin, meaning 'strong' or 'healthy'

  49. Viola - of Italian origin, meaning ‘purple’, ‘violet’. A lovely Shakespearean undertone to this one, Viola being the protagonist in Twelfth Night. Viola remains a popular choice: strong and unique with a rich legacy

  50. Vittoria - a modern twist on the Latinate classic Victoria, meaning ‘victory’, ‘triumphant” and ‘conqueror.’ This is a fresh take on a name with regal associations

What Mumsnetters say about Italian baby girl names

"Lucia, Chiara and Alessia are my favourite Italian girl names" - Mumsnet user, BillyAndTheSillies

"I love the name Valentina" - Mumsnet user, BumpNGrind

"Rafaela. My DD made friends with a little Italian girl on holiday called this. It so suited her. They called her Raffie for short" - Mumsnet user, Dandybelle

Popular Italian baby boy names

51. Alessandro - the Italian variant of Alexander, meaning ‘defender of the people’

52. Alessio - of Italian origin, meaning 'defender'

53. Andrea - a popular choice for Italian baby boys. Originating in Greece, it means ‘manly’ and ‘virile’. In spite of these meanings, it is actually a gender-neutral baby name

54. Antonio - of Latin origin meaning: ‘the one in front’, ‘tackles’, ‘fights’. Although giving your baby the nickname Tony might age him a bit before his time

55. Ciro - a unique name of of Italian origin, meaning 'sun'. It is pronounced seer-oh

56. Cosimo - of Italian origin, meaning 'order', 'organisation' or 'beauty'

57. Damiano - of Italian and Greek origin, meaning 'one who tames or subdues'

58. Daniele - deriving from the name Daniel, this name is of Hebrew origin and means 'God is my judge'

59. Dario - of Italian origin, meaning 'possessing goodness'

60. Davide - meaning ‘beloved’. Unfortunately this name might need a while to lose its Love Island connection with winner, Davide. Unless of course that’s something you want to encourage!

61. Diego - of Hebrew and Spanish origin, a version of ‘James’, meaning ‘he who supplants’.

62. Edoardo - of Italian origin, meaning ‘rich guardian’. Edoardo is prosperous and might take care of you in your old age if you’re lucky!

63. Elia - of Hebrew origin but widely used in Italy thanks to how pleasant it sounds, it means 'Yahweh is my God'.

64. Elio - of Italian, Latin and Spanish origin, meaning 'the sun'

65. Emanuele - of Italian origin, meaning 'God is with us'. The Italicised version of the Hebrew name Emmanuel.

66. Enea - a unique choice here. Also gender neutral, meaning ‘the praised one’

67. Ettore - of Italian and Greek origin, meaning 'holds fast'

68. Federico - the Italian version of ‘Frederick’, meaning ‘peaceful ruler’

69. Filippo - the Italian variant of ‘Phillip’, this one means ‘friend of horses’

70. Fiorello - of Italian origin, meaning 'little flower'

71. Fiorenzo - of Italian origin, meaning 'flowering'. The masculine version of the name Florence

72. Francesco - of Italian origin, meaning ‘French man’ or ‘Free man’. Great choice for a little free spirit

73. Gabriele - of Italian origin, meaning ‘God is my strength’. Gabe for short?

74. Giacomo - of Italian origin, meaning 'supplanter'. Pronounced jah-ko-mo

75. Gioele - the Italian form of the name Joel, which is of Hebrew origin. It means 'God is willing'

76. Giovanni - of Italian origin, meaning: ‘God is gracious’. You can use Gio for short

77. Giulio - of Italian origin, meaning, ‘youthful’

78. Giuseppe - a stone cold Italian classic, this one calls to mind a gentleman of renown. It means ‘God will add’.

79. Jacopo - a variation of the name Giacomo, meaning 'he who supplants'

80. Leandro - of Greek and Roman origin, meaning 'lion man'

81. Leonardo - the most popular name in Italy is an unerring choice. This one is of Italian origin, meaning ‘lion’.

82. Lorenzo - of Latin origin, meaning ‘laurel crown’. We can see why this one is so popular; Enzo for short will never not be brilliant. A great choice if you’re looking for something different!

83. Luca - of Italian origin, meaning 'bringer of light'

84. Lucio - of Italian, Spanish and Portuguese origin, meaning 'light'. Pronounced loo-chi-oh

85. Luigi - of Italian origin, meaning 'renowned warrior'. Most notably associated with the video game series Mario & Luigi

86. Marco - from the Roman god ‘Mars’, this one means ‘war-like’. Without wanting to encourage aggression, we think this a great choice!

87. Mario - of Italian origin, meaning 'manly'

88. Matteo - of Hebrew origin, meaning ‘gift from God’. A unique update on Matthew we think

89. Mattia - of Italian origin, meaning ‘gift of God’

90. Michele - of French origin, meaning ‘who resembles God’

91. Nicola - of Italian and Greek origin, meaning 'victory of the people' or 'people of victory'

92. Nicolo - of Greek origin, meaning ‘people of victory’

93. Orsino - of Italian origin, meaning 'bearlike'

94. Ottavio - of Italian origin, meaning 'eighth'

95. Pietro - of Italian origin, this one means ‘rock’. We can see why this is a popular choice, for a little man who will stick by your side

96. Raffaele - of Italian and Hebrew origin, meaning 'God heals. It's the Italian form of the Hebrew name Rafael

97. Renzo - of Italian origin, this unique name is derived from the name Lorenzo. It means 'third link' or 'third son'

98. Riccardo - the Italian version of Richard, this one means ‘powerful leader’.

99. Salvatore - of Italian origin, meaning 'saviour'

100. Samuele - of Italian origin, meaning ‘told by God’.

101. Simone - of Hebrew origin, meaning 'he has heard'. It's the Italian variation of Simon.

102. Tommaso - the Italian variant of Tom, meaning ‘twin’. A cooler update on Thomas.

103. Vincenzo - of Italian origin, meaning 'victorious'. Associated with the name Vincent

What Mumsnetters say about Italian baby boy names

"Elio. I’ve been in love with it since hearing it" - Mumsnet user, Arethechildreninbedyet

"Mattia is very popular these days as is Alessio" - Mumsnet user, Geamhradh

What makes Italian baby names timelessly popular?

Italian baby names have stood the test of time for several reasons. These names boast a rich history dating back to ancient Roman times and often carry beautiful meanings that resonate with parents. The melodic and lyrical quality of Italian names, along with their global popularity influenced by Italian culture and fashion, adds to their timeless appeal.

What are some traditional Italian baby names?

When we think of traditional Italian names for baby boys, we tend to think of: Marco, Alessandro, Giuseppe, Flavio, Luca, Giovanni. Traditional Italian names for baby girls include: Anna, Maria, Sara, Laura, Aurora and Valentina.

How to name your baby

For more unusual baby name inspiration or opinions on your baby name ideas, head on over to our Baby Names Talk forum. Or get weekly insight into your pregnancy and baby's development with our Pregnancy newsletter.

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About the author

Laura Westerman is an editor, writer and Deputy Head of Editorial Content at Mumsnet, overseeing the website's baby and pregnancy content. She is mum to a one-year-old.

With over seven years' experience as a full-time editor and a passion for SEO, Laura has written extensively on everything from parenting to travel, but likes nothing more than researching the best and most unique baby names, as well as their fascinating origins, to help parents decide on the perfect moniker for their new arrival.