Boy Baby Name

Anthony

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Quick Facts on Anthony

  • Gender:
  • Boy
  • Origin:
  • English, Latin
  • Number of syllables:
  • 3
  • Ranking popularity:
  • 19
Pronunciation:
AN-tha-nee
Simple meaning:
Uncertain

Characteristics of Anthony

  • Mystical
  • Wise
  • Eccentric
  • Intuitive
  • Imaginative
  • Philosophical
  • Solitary

Etymology & Historical Origin - Anthony

Anthony is the English form of the old Roman Family name “Antonius” from the gens “Antonia”. The Antonius clan name is of uncertain origin, probably originated from the ancient Etruscan civilization in Italy (near modern day Tuscany) whose language is now extinct. The family name was shared by both the patrician and plebian classes, and most famously borne by Mark Antony (Marcus Antonius, 83 B.C.-30 B.C.). Apparently Mark Antony invented a mythological person named Anton (son of Hercules) from whom he claimed descent, most likely in an effort to establish his own greatness. After Julius Caesar’s assassination in 44 B.C., Antony joined together with Octavian and Lepidus to form the Second Triumvirate. This political alliance would later collapse when Octavian defeated Antony and Cleopatra at the Battle of Actium (31 B.C.). Shortly thereafter Antony and Cleopatra committed suicide (made famous by William Shakespeare’s drama “Antony and Cleopatra). In terms of the name Antonius, not much else is known about its origin. The English “th” was added later as some (erroneous) attempt to associate it with the Greek word “anthos” (“flower”) or “anthropos” (“man”). Different variations of the name came into circulation throughout Europe starting in the post-classical era thanks to a couple of early saints, especially the 3rd to 4th century Egyptian Saint Antony the Great (“The Father of All Monks”). St. Antony’s life was memorialized by a Greek biographer shortly after his death; a written work which maintained widespread appeal throughout Europe up through the Middle Ages. St. Antony was not the first monk (as he’s often credited for being), but he was the first to live as a hermit for more than a decade deep in the deserts completely cut off from civilization. He was greatly admired for his ascetic life and religious discipline (apparently St. Antony successfully endured and overcame through prayer all sorts of supernatural temptations flung at him by the Devil). Needless to say St. Antony was one of the most revered saints in medieval Europe and his name was often bestowed on children as a protective measure. St. Antony is also the patron saint against infectious diseases (which were rampant in the Middle Ages), particularly skin diseases that are still referred to as “St. Anthony’s Fire” (e.g., shingles). Folks prayed to him for relief. His Feast Day is January 17. Due to the popularity of this name for over 2000 years, several linguistic forms have endured into the modern era. Anthony/Antony (English), Anton (Scandinavian and Slavic), Antonio (Italian and Spanish), Antwan (African-American), and Antoine (French). Antonia and Antoinette are the female equivalents.

Popularity of the Name Anthony

The name Anthony has been a Top 50 boy’s name in the United States for a hundred years. Honestly, we were surprised by its prolonged and consistent popularity since the name just doesn’t feel worn-out or overused. Long favored by Italian-Americans, the name enjoys success across all ethnicities. Like Michael and David, we would categorize this one as a timeless classic that doesn't ever seem to go out of fashion.
Popularity of the Boy Name Anthony
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Cultural References to the Baby Name - Anthony

  • Literary Characters of the baby name Anthony

    Literary Characters of the Baby Name Anthony

    Mark Antony (Antony and Cleopatra) Mark Anthony is one of the title characters from William Shakespeare’s tragedy, Antony and Cleopatra, first printed in 1623. Mark Antony is one of the triumvirate which rules the Roman Empire after the assassination of Julius Caesar. Antony is a handsome man, a good citizen, a loyal friend. He is also, however, of a somewhat lazy bent, indolent, and with more than a passing eye for women. Antony has lately been spending all his time in Egypt, having an affair with its queen, Cleopatra, and becoming more and more debauched. Antony is aware of his failings, however, and when news comes from Rome that his wife has died and that Pompey is planning to overthrow the triumvirate, he responds to the call of duty. Although Cleopatra begs him to stay with her among the sensuous pleasures of Alexandria, Antony returns to reason, to duty, to Rome. He is prevailed upon to marry another of the triumvirate’s sister, Octavia, which he does without much enthusiasm. When a truce between Pompey and the triumvirate is broken by Octavian and Lepidus, Antony is furious and returns to Egypt. There, he has himself and Cleopatra crowned as rulers of Egypt, and prepares to go to war against Octavian. When Cleopatra withdraws her sea support, Antony loses to Octavian and vows to kill Cleopatra for her treachery. She, hearing this, sends word to Antony that she has killed herself, then confidently locks herself away to await his return. Antony, for his part, is so overcome by grief that he attempts to kill himself and is finally successful, dying in her arms. When Cleopatra bids the asps to have at her, it is with the full expectation of meeting Antony again on the other side. Well, it was Mr. Shakespeare himself who said that the course of true love never did run smooth! (Bur this is a bit beyond merely “not smooth”!).

  • Popular Songs on Anthony

    Popular Songs on Anthony

    Anthony Boy (Chuck Berry) - A Chuck Berry classic hit from the 1950's.

    Movin' Out / Anthony's Song (Billy Joel) - A catchy Billy Joel tune from the 1980's.

  • Children's Books on the Baby Name Anthony

    Children's Books on the Baby Name Anthony

    Big Anthony Series by Tomie DePaola - This is a series of books by Tomie DePaola about Anthony, a hapless helper of the good Italian witch Strega Nona, and all of his mishaps. It will bring smiles to the faces of young readers. Recommended for ages 4-8.

    I'll Fix Anthony by Judith Viorst - Anthony's younger brother puts up with a lot. Every time he wants to play with Anthony and his friends, or even go into the playroom, Anthony starts to clobber him. There's nothing he can do now but just wait until he's six. Recommended for ages 4-7.

    The Mansion in the Mist by John Bellairs - While spending the summer in an old house on a desolate Canadian island, Anthony Monday and Miss Eells discover a chest that can transport them to another world and a maniacal group who are plotting the destruction of people on Earth. Recommended for ages 9-12.

    There's an Ant in Anthony by Bernard Most - In this book, young people are invited to find words within words. The Chicago Sun Times called it "a terrific book." Recommended for ages 4-8.

    Treasure of Alpheus Winterborn by John Bellairs - At the library, Anthony discovers a clue to the treasure that was rumored to have been hidden by the library's builder, the mysterious and strange Alpheus Winterborn. Winterborn's greedy nephew is on the trail too, which makes for an action-packed adventure and a wild and dangerous treasure hunt. Recommended for ages 9-12.

  • Famous People Named Anthony

    Famous People Named Anthony

    Famous People Named Anthony - Anthony Perkins (inspirational speaker); Anthony Hopkins (actor); Anthony Michael Hall (comedian); Anthony Quinn (actor); Anthony Braxton (jazz musician); Anthony Burgess (novelist)

  • Children of Famous People Named Anthony

    Children of Famous People Named Anthony

    Famous People who Named their Son Anthony - Alan Arkin (actor); Angela Lansbury (actress); Bob Hope (entertainer); Donna Reed (actress); Erik Estrada (actor); Eunice Kennedy Shriver (philanthropist); Geraldine Page (actress); Gregory Peck (actor); Hedy Lemarr (actress); Jerry Lewis (entertainer); Jerry Orbach (actor); Joan Collins (actress); John Huston (director); Judith Krantz (writer); Mario Puzo (writer); Merv Griffin (entertainer); Tom cruise (actor); Veronica Lake (actress)

  • Historic Figures

    Anthony - Boy Baby Name - Historic Figures

    Anthony of Padua (circa 1195-1231) - Anthony of Padua was made a saint only one year after his death at the age of 36, but even before then, the Pope declared him a "Doctor of the Church." Born in Portugal, Anthony left his wealthy family and went to Italy to join the Franciscan Order of religious men and women. Giving his life over to the Church, his teachings were simple and tenacious. He is known to most as the patron saint of lost items, so you may have heard the following prayer: "Saint Anthony, Saint Anthony, if it's around, please place it where it can be found."

    Anthony the Great (circa 251-356) - Anthony the Great - Anthony the Great, born in Egypt in A.D. 251, is considered the "Father of All Christian Monks" and is mostly known for spreading Christian monasticism. In 285, he sold all his possessions and gave the proceeds to the poor in order to give his life over to Christ. Apparently, this clean-living paid off, as Anthony finally died at the ripe old age of 105.

    Mark Antony - Born Marcus Antonius 83 years before Christ, Mark Antony is best known for his association with Cleopatra. He was a politician, a military general and a friend to Julius Caesar. He ruled the Roman Empire during the period of the Second Triumvirate. His political alliance broke up over a disagreement and he ultimately loses power. Mark Antony commits suicide by his sword believing that his beloved Cleopatra has already done the same, eager to join her in the afterlife. Their intense love story is famously depicted in Shakespeare's play "Antony and Cleopatra."

Personality of the Boy Name Anthony

The number Seven personality is deeply mystical and highly in tune with their spirituality. They operate on a different wavelength than the average joe. Spending time alone comes easily to Sevens, as it gives them time to contemplate philosophical, religious and spiritual ideas in an effort to find "real truth".  Sevens are wise, but often exude mystery as if they are tapped into something the rest of us don't understand. They love the outdoors and are fed by nature. Sevens are constantly seeking to understand human nature, our place in the universe, and the mystery of life in general. This makes them quite artistic and poetic, but they are also keen observers with high intellect - so they are equally scientific-minded. Sevens are charitable and care deeply about the human condition.

Variations of the Baby Name - Anthony

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