Admit it — you watched the livestream of St. Mary’s Hospital (all three times) while anxiously awaiting the arrival of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s latest royal baby. And then waited with baited breath for the announcement of the royal baby name to come. (Hey, we totally get it; royal baby fever is REAL, people!)
While your own baby-to-be may not be arriving into the world with quite the same level of national fanfare, one thing’s for sure: They’re definitely going to be the ruler of your universe. So why not give them a name fit for royalty?
We’ve rounded up some of our favorite royal baby names throughout history that have just the right mix of regal elegance and classic style.
Royal Baby Names for Girls
Origin: Czech, English, Greek, Hebrew, Hungarian, Italian, Swedish | Meaning: Defender of mankind
As the wife of Britain’s King Edward VII, Alexandra of Denmark became Queen of the United Kingdom as well as Empress of India in 1901. (Needless to say, the name became pretty popular soon after she ascended the throne.) But it was also the name of Princess Alexandra Feodorovna, wife of Russia’s Czar Nicholas II, the last ruler of the Romanov dynasty and the current Princess Alexandra of Kent. It’s the feminine form of the name Alexander, which means “defender of mankind,” and can shorten to some pretty fun nicknames, like Ali, Alex, or Alexa.
Origin: French, Hebrew, English | Meaning: Graceful
Anne has been a popular name of British queens and princesses for literally centuries, from Queen Anne of Great Britain, who was coronated in 1701, to Britain’s current Princess Royal, the only daughter of Queen Elizabeth II. And who can forget Henry VIII’s second wife, Anne Boleyn? The name, which means “graceful,” is sweet and simple, and works just as well as a middle name as it does as a first.
Origin: Italian, Latin | Meaning: Bringer of joy
Beatrice definitely isn’t a name you hear every day, but that’s exactly what makes it perfect for parents who may want something classic, yet slightly off the beaten path. It has Latin and French roots, with an upbeat vibe: It means “bringer of joy.” As for its royal roots, the name doesn’t have a long history, but is the name of Princess Beatrice, daughter of Britain’s Prince Andrew and his ex-wife Sarah “Fergie” Ferguson. Think it’s cute, but a bit too formal? For a quirky nickname, shorten it to Bea.
Origin: French | Meaning: Free man
In the States, the name Caroline brings to mind American royalty like Caroline Kennedy; but abroad, the name Caroline has belonged to such noteworthy royals as Princess Caroline of Great Britain and Grace Kelly’s eldest daughter, Caroline, Princess of Hanover. Sometimes spelled with a “K,” the name actually means “free man,” as it’s a female form of the name Charles. Still, this name couldn’t be more feminine.
Origin: English, French | Meaning: Free man
Charlotte is one of those tried-and-true classic names that’s here to stay — it currently sits within the top 10 most popular baby names in the U.S., and doesn’t seem to be going anywhere. It’s perhaps best known as the name of Prince William and Duchess Kate’s second child, Princess Charlotte, but is also the name of Grace Kelly’s granddaughter, Charlotte Casiraghi, of Monaco’s royal family. While it may be one of the prettiest names out there, just like Caroline, it’s another feminine form of Charles and translates to “free man”; though some sources cite it as also meaning “feminine” or “petite.”
Origin: Egyptian, Greek | Meaning: Of a famous father
Cleopatra may forever be linked to Cleopatra VII Philopator, the last active ruler of the Ptolemaic Kingdom of Egypt, but the name actually has Greek origins. Many parents choose to shorten the name to Cleo, for a modern and pretty tweak on the classic name.
Origin: Latin | Meaning: Divine
Diana used to be most commonly associated with the Greek goddess of hunting; but ever since Lady Diana Spencer burst onto the scene in 1981 (later to be known as Diana, Princess of Wales), the name has been inarguably linked with royalty. It’s a Latin name that means “divine” — a term that everyone would agree defined the late Princess of Wales in more ways than one. The name rose in popularity soon after she married Prince Charles, though has tapered off some in recent years.
Origin: English, Hebrew | Meaning: God is my oath
When it comes to baby names synonymous with royalty, Elizabeth is probably the first one that springs to mind, thanks to the popularity of Britain’s longest-reigning monarch, Queen Elizabeth II. But long before QEII came along, the name belonged to plenty of other royal ladies throughout time, too — including Queen Elizabeth I, the daughter of Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn, who ruled England and Ireland from 1558 to her death in 1603. Even Queen Elizabeth II’s own mother — Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother — bore the name. The name has tons of nickname potential, too, from Lizette to Eliza to Libby.
Origin: German | Meaning: Tranquil leader; peaceful ruler
Frederica, the feminine form of Frederick, means “peaceful ruler” in Old German; and that’s exactly what many subjects likely thought of Princess Frederica of Hanover, who established several charitable causes for children and the poor during the early 1900s. While the name isn’t so common today, it certainly is unique, and shortens to some pretty cute nicknames, like Freddie, Rica, and Rikki.
Origin: English, Latin | Meaning: Lovely or graceful; virtue
Was there ever a more famous Grace than Grace Kelly? Answer: Nope. The American actress-turned-princess was already making headlines when she was cast in Alfred Hitchcock films like To Catch a Thief and Rear Window, but she became an indisputable icon after marrying Prince Rainier of Monaco in 1956. The name means “lovely or graceful” and often works well as a middle name, too.
Origin: English, Greek, Swedish | Meaning: Light; bright, shining one
When we think of the name Helena today, chances are we think of women like actress Helena Bonham Carter or model Helena Christiansen. But at the turn of the 20th century, the most famous Helena in the world was likely Princess Helena of the United Kingdom, the fifth child of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert. In Greek, the name means “light” or “bright, shining one,” which makes it a pretty upbeat name for any kiddo.
Origin: Greek, Irish | Meaning: Pearl
The name Margaret, which means both “pearl” and “daisy,” is a hands-down classic. It was the name of Queen Elizabeth II’s spirited younger sister (who was often called Margot), as well as the name of several queens of Scotland. But it’s also been the name of plenty of other noteworthy women throughout history, too — like Margaret Thatcher and St. Margaret, the patron saint of expectant women. The name spent the latter half of the 20th century on the decline, but has been making a comeback in the last 20 years — perhaps because “old lady names” are once again on the rise.
Origin: English, Hebrew | Meaning: Bitter
Just like Elizabeth, a long line of royal women have been named Mary throughout history — including Mary, Queen of Scots, Queen Mary, the wife of King George V, and most recently, Mary, Crown Princess of Denmark. It also has biblical ties, as Mary is known in the Bible as the mother of Jesus. And while it’s a sweet name, its meaning is (ironically) not-so-sweet: It means “bitter.” If you’re looking for a fun nickname, consider Mamie or May.
Origin: Latin | Meaning: Victory
The Latin name Victoria, which means “victory,” has long been regarded as a strong royal name. Most notably, it was the name of Britain’s second-longest-reigning monarch, Queen Victoria, who ascended the throne at the young age of 18 in 1837 and ruled until her death in 1901. Queen Victoria was actually named Alexandria Victoria, but opted to use her middle name instead of her first, in a move that helped the name soar to popularity for much of the 1800s. And while it dipped a bit on the baby name charts around the early 19th century, it started picking up steam again around 1950, and hasn’t looked back since.
Origin: Italian, Latin, Spanish | Meaning: Queen
The name Regina might be the most regal baby girl name there is — after all, it means “queen” in Latin. It was the name of Austrian Princess Regina of Saxe-Meiningen, and — fun fact — is also one of Queen Elizabeth’s formal titles, as she’s often referred to as “Elizabeth Regina” or “ER” on royal insignia. Nickname opportunities abound with this name, too, as parents often dub their Reginas Gina, Reggie, or Rainy.
Origin: Hebrew | Meaning: Princess
Speaking of names with royal meanings: Did you know the name Sarah actually means “princess” in Latin? It’s also been the name of famous royals like Sarah, Duchess of York when she was married to Britain’s Prince Andrew, and Sara Forbes Bonetto Davies, a West African princess during the 1800s. The name itself has quite a long history, as Sarah was the mother of Isaac and wife of Abraham according to the Bible, but it continues to be a popular pick among new parents, and has remained on the top 100 baby name lists for decades.
Royal Baby Names for Boys
Origin: English, Greek, Scottish | Meaning: Manly, brave
Talk about a strong name. Andrew means “manly and brave” in Greek, and has been the name of countless U.S. presidents, actors, and musicians throughout time; but it’s also been a popular name among royalty. Today, Prince Andrew, the Duke of York, is perhaps the best-known royal Andrew, but his grandfather, Prince Andrew of Greece and Denmark, also held the name before his death in 1944. It’s remained a popular classic since biblical times (and with good reason).
Origin: English, German, Hungarian, Swedish | Meaning: Noble, bright
Prince Albert was the devoted husband of Britain’s Queen Victoria, who was so devastated by his loss in 1861 that she wore black every day for the rest of her life. It’s also the name of Grace Kelly’s son, Prince Albert of Monaco, and one of the middle names of Prince Harry. The name itself means “noble” — a trait that is certainly synonymous with being royal.
Origin: English | Meaning: Noble, courageous
Arthur has been the name of princes and kings stretching all the way back to medieval times, starting with the legendary British ruler King Arthur. It’s now one of the middle names of the latest royal baby — Prince Louis Arthur Charles, born to Prince William and Duchess Kate. If it feels too formal or dated, there are plenty of adorable nicknames you could opt for, including Artie or Art.
Origin: English, French | Meaning: Manly
When we think of royals named Charles, the first one who springs to mind is of course Prince Charles, the Prince of Wales. But Charles has been a popular royal name for centuries, beginning with King Charlemagne of the Franks, who reigned from 1742-1814. The name’s meaning (“manly”) also might have something to do with its popularity among male rulers, as it is meant to connote strength and masculinity. Nicknames include Charlie, Charley, Chaz, and Chuck.
Origin: English | Meaning: Prosperous, guardian
Another classically regal name, Edward has been the name of eight kings of England since the Norman Conquest. It’s also now the name of Queen Elizabeth II’s youngest child, Prince Edward, the Earl of Wessex. While it may not be as popular as it once was, its shorter nickname options (Ed, Eddie) help modernize the name.
Origin: German | Meaning: Peaceful ruler
Frederick‘s another classic name that has been lower on the baby name lists in recent decades — but that just means it’ll be less likely your kiddo will have another Frederick in his class. It was, perhaps most famously, the name of Frederick the Great, who was the King of Prussia, who ruled for an impressive 46 years. But today, many parents shorten the longer name to Freddie, which gives it a younger, cuter twist for kids.
Origin: English, Greek | Meaning: Farmer
The name George might technically mean “farmer,” but it’s been a common royal name for centuries. It first rose to popularity due to the medieval legend of Saint George, a knight who later became a patron saint of England, and was said to have slain a fire-breathing dragon. Of course now, it’s perhaps best known as the name of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s firstborn son, Prince George.
Origin: English, German | Meaning: A form of Henry, which means ruler of the household
Of course, the only royal you’re thinking of when it comes to the name Harry is Prince Harry, son of Prince Charles and Diana, Princess of Wales. But the prince’s given name is actually Henry, which has belonged to many British royals, including the infamous Henry VIII, who had six wives during his lifetime — many of whom met a disturbing demise.
Origin: English, French, German | Meaning: Famous warrior
Before 2018, the most famous royal with the name Louis was probably Louis XVI, the last king of France who was married to the equally legendary Marie Antoinette. But following the birth of Prince Louis Arthur Charles to the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, there’s officially a new royal Louis in town!
Origin: Greek | Meaning: Victorious
The name Nicholas has been linked to everything from patron saints to Greek gods. But in royalty, we’ve seen the name Nicholas bestowed upon everyone from Russia’s Czar Nicholas to the son of the current day Duke of Kent, Lord Nicholas of Windsor. The name itself connotes strength and success, and comes with a host of possible nicknames, like Nick, Nicky, and Niko.
Origin: English, Greek | Meaning: Lover of horses
Britain’s Prince Philip is perhaps the best-known living royal with the name, though there was also King Philip II of Spain, who lived and ruled during the 16th century. The name is perfect for a little who boy who hails from an equestrian-loving family, though it has dipped in popularity in recent decades.
Origin: English, French, German | Meaning: Powerful, strong ruler
With a name that means “powerful, strong ruler,” who could argue that your kid was basically meant for royalty? Richard was the name of King Richard I of England, who ruled from 1189 until his death 10 years later, and was known as Richard the Lionheart. Not a fan of this name in its long form? Shorten it to Rich, Richie, or Rick.
Origin: German | Meaning: Resolute or brilliant
Prince William, the Duke of Cambridge, is certainly the most famous royal William of our time, but centuries ago, William the Conquerer, the first Norman King of England, was synonymous with the name. Aside from being a popular royal baby name, it’s also been the name to famous U.S. presidents, playwrights, and actors, and enjoys a lot of versatility, since it comes in so many forms and nicknames — from Bill to Billy to Liam.