Meaning: Friend of the deer; divine spear
Origin: Irish; English
Alternate spellings: Oskar, Osker
Oscar is an Irish name that means “friend of the deer” and also has English roots, meaning “divine spear.” (You can decide for yourself whether you think these definitions are contradictory or not.) Oscar has been around as a first name for centuries, and various famous Oscars have crossed a range of ethnic and cultural divides: English playwright Oscar Wilde, Sesame Street character Oscar the Grouch, and even heavyweight boxer Oscar De La Hoya are just a sampling. As for the most famous Oscar – the swashbuckling gentleman who graces the Academy Award – the story goes that he was named for the uncle of the Academy’s executive secretary, which is so much less exciting than Bette Davis’s claim that it was named after one of her many husbands.
Oscar has always been surprisingly popular in the U.S. The lowest it’s ever been on the U.S. charts is #245 and the highest is #26, with its most popular stretch at the turn of the last century. Oscar is a great choice if you like vintage-sounding names that aren’t too offbeat.
By The Numbers
U.S. Rank by Year
Rank of Similar Names in 2008