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Ellen is a vintage baby girl’s name. Ellen means “torch, shining light” and is derived from the Greek name Helen. It may have dropped in popularity in the second half of the 20th century, but Ellen has remained in the top 1000 baby names since 1900.

Meaning of the name Ellen:

English: torch, shining light

Origin of the name Ellen:

Ellen is a baby girl’s name of English origin that means “torch, shining light”. Ellen is derived from the Greek name Helen.

Symbolism of the name Ellen:

Ellen means “shining light, torch”. Light is a common symbol of beauty, purity, innocence, and wisdom. A torch is a symbol of protection and illumination in the dark.

Style of the name Ellen:

traditional

Gender of the name Ellen:

Ellen is a girl's name.

Pronunciation of the name Ellen:

EHL-ən (English), EHL-lehn (Finnish)

Number of syllables in the name Ellen:

two

Emotion evoked from the name Ellen:

Ellen evokes feelings of hard work and honesty.

Alternative spellings for the name Ellen:

Elen, Ellan, Ehlen, Ellyn

Nicknames for the name Ellen:

Popularity of the name Ellen:

According to the Social Security Administration, Ellen is a popular baby girl’s name. Ellen has been in the top 1000 names list since 1900. It was in the top 100 names for most years between 1900 and 1961.

Related names for the name Ellen:

Great middle names for the name Ellen and their meanings:

Famous people with the name Ellen:

  • Ellen DeGeneres (American comedian and TV host)
  • Ellen Muth (American actress)
  • Ellen Karolina Sofia Key (Swedish feminist author)
  • Ellen Gallagher (American artist)
  • Ellen Louise Hopkins (American novelist)

Ellen in popular culture:

  • Ellen Rosen (literature, “Number the Stars” by Lois Lowry)
  • Ellen Hickle (television, “The Adventures of Pete & Pete”)
  • Ellen Robillard O'Hara (film & literature, “Gone with the Wind”)
  • Ellen “Ellie” Degler (film, “Jurassic Park” series)
  • Ellen Carr (literature, “A Song for Summer” by Eva Ibbotson)