Let's Get Ready for Baby! Sign up for our monthly pregnancy email series, and you'll get regular updates on your baby's development, helpful timelines to get ready for their arrival, must-have baby needs and so much more! PLUS, you'll get instant access to the MomsWhoThink "Ultimate Guide to Baby Naming in 2022." CLICK HERE to get started!

Cari is an alternative spelling of Carrie and a diminutive form of Caroline, all names derived from the masculine Charles. It was quite popular in the United States throughout the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s, but it fell off the list of the top 1,000 baby names for girls after 1990. However, because other Charles derivatives, like Caroline and Charlotte, are currently top 100 baby names, Cari could easily make a comeback.

Meaning of the name Cari:

German: Free man
Spanish: Charity

Origin of the name Cari:

The baby name Cari is typically thought of as a nickname for Caroline, which is a feminine version of the name Charles. The meaning of Charles is “free man.” It was often used to refer to men who were free but not members of nobility or higher classes of society.

Symbolism of the name Cari:

Cari does not offer much in the way of symbolism, but it could be used to honor a relative or loved one name Caroline or Charles.

Style of the name Cari:

Modern

Gender of the name Cari:

Cari is a girl's name.

Pronunciation of the name Cari:

KARE-ee

Number of syllables in the name Cari:

Two

Emotion evoked from the name Cari:

The baby name Cari evokes images of someone who is pretty and shy.

Alternative spellings for the name Cari:

Nicknames for the name Cari:

  • Car

Popularity of the name Cari:

According to the Social Security Administration, Cari was a top 1,000 baby name for girls between 1959 and 1990. It was most popular in 1976 when it ranked at 379. Cari last ranked at number 962 in 1990.

Related names for the name Cari:

Great middle names for Cari and their meanings:

Famous people with the name Cari:

  • Cari Beauchamp (author and filmmaker)
  • Cari Champion (journalist)
  • Cari Higgins (cyclist)
  • Cari Roccaro (soccer player)
  • Cari Read (synchronized swimmer)

Cari in popular culture:

N/A