Lena is often thought of as its own name, but it developed that independence after being the shortened version of a variety of longer names. Helena, Magdalena, and Yelena were quite often shortened to Lena. Over time it began to stand alone and from 1880 to 1920, Lena was in the top 100 most popular baby girl names. Keep reading to find out more about this baby name.

Meaning of the name Lena:

British: Torch
Hebrew: Woman from Magdala

Origin of the name Lena:

British, German, Hebrew, Dutch, Persian, Russian, Arabic. Since Lena originated as the shortened version of a variety of names that ended with -lena, it is hard to specify one culture as the point of origin for the name.

Symbolism of the name Lena:

Lena symbolizes “the ray of light” that shines upon its bearer. Bringing hope, positivity, sympathy, and intelligence into the world and spreading it much like the sun spreads its light across the land.

Style of the name Lena:


Gender of the name Lena:

Lena is a girl's name.

Pronunciation of the name Lena:


Syllables in the name Lena:


Emotion evoked from the name Lena:

The name Lena evokes a feeling of admiration and dedication.

Alternative spellings for the name Lena:

Leena, Lina, Leenna

Nicknames for the name Lena:

Lee, Len, Lin, Na

Popularity of the name Lena:

According to the Social Security Administration index, Lena was ranked as the 270th most popular girl name in 2020. In the last 20 years it has continually climbed up the name list gaining in popularity.

Related names for the name Lena:

Leana, Linka, Leina

Great middle names for Lena and their meanings:

  • Anne (grace)
  • Blue (the color)
  • Grace (charm, goodness, generosity)
  • Louise (famous warrior)
  • Michelle (who is like God?)
  • Snow (frozen rain)

Famous people with the name Lena:

  • Lena Horne (singer)
  • Lena Dunham (actor)
  • Lena Headey (actor)
  • Lena Waithe (screenwriter, producer, and actor)
  • Lena Olin (actor)

Lena in movies/pop culture:

  • Lena (character in the movie “Annihilation”)
  • Lena Adams Foster (character in the television series “The Fosters”)
  • Lena(character in the “Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants” book series)