Boy Baby Name


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Quick Facts on Dorian

  • Gender:
  • Boy
  • Origin:
  • English, Gaelic, Greek, Irish
  • Number of syllables:
  • 3
  • Ranking popularity:
  • 544
Simple meaning:
People of the gift; Exiled one

Characteristics of Dorian

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

Etymology & Historical Origin - Dorian

The name Dorian was a literary creation by Oscar Wilde in his 1891 novel “The Portrait of Dorian Gray”. There is no evidence that Dorian as a given name existed prior to the book’s publication. It’s believed that Wilde took the name from the Dorians, one of the most prominent ethnic groups in ancient Greece. It was the Dorians (Spartans) who fought in the Peloponnesian War against the Ionians (Athenians) in the fifth century B.C. In reference to the Greek tribe, the name Dorian purportedly comes from Dorus, son of the mythological Hellene (the progenitor of the Greek people). The etymology of “Dorian” (Greek: Δωριεύς) is still debated. Some credible sources suggest that dōris means “woodland” (as a place of origin). A second theory is from the Greek doru meaning “spear-shaft” or “people of the spear” (given the Dorian’s militaristic prowess). Lastly, dōron means “gift” in reference to a poem fragment found written by Tyrtaios in the 7th century B.C. in part translates to “Zeus the husband of fair-crowned Hera, hath given this city [Sparta] to the children of Heracles.” This supports the mythological belief that the migration of the Dorian tribe down to southwestern Greece was in essence considered “The Return of Hercules”. In this case, the Dorians would be considered the “people of the gift.” There’s also another potential meaning for the name Dorian. Some consider it an anglicized form of the Irish-Gaelic Ó Deoradháin (descendant of Deoradhán) whereby Deoradhán is an old personal name meaning ‘exiled one, stranger’. In any case, in Wilde’s novel, Dorian Gray is a “Faustian” character who in essence makes his deal with the devil by staying perpetually young while a portrait of him in the attic does all the aging. The macabre, pleasure-seeking Dorian has done little to discourage parents from using this interesting name. In fact, Dorian is on the Top 100 lists of most commonly used male names in France and Hungary, and it’s a Top 50 favorite in Croatia.

Popularity of the Name Dorian

Dorian did not appear on the American male naming charts until 1946 and it wasn’t until the mid-1960s that he displayed any significant movement on the list. For the first 20 years of his existence in the United States, the name hung down at the lowest levels of usage, often falling off the charts back into obscurity. The highest position Dorian has ever achieved is #398 in the year 2000. In other words, Dorian has never shown signs of trendiness or overuse. It’s a fictional classic with a ghostly sort of place in the annals of literature; but that’s what makes this name mysteriously fascinating. It’s also a name rich in ancient history with appealing etymologies. Some people feel that Dorian sounds too feminine (like Doreen or Doris), but to us, Dorian has a confident masculinity. After all, he shares the same name with the Spartans of ancient Greece. That doesn’t sound too girly to us!
Popularity of the Boy Name Dorian
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Cultural References to the Baby Name - Dorian

  • Literary Characters of the baby name Dorian

    Literary Characters of the Baby Name Dorian

    Dorian Gray (The Picture of Dorian Gray) Dorian Gray is the eponymous protagonist of Oscar Wilde’s enduring gothic tale, “The Picture of Dorian Gray”, published as a novel in 1891, which has enjoyed numerous adaptations to film, theater, and television. Young Dorian is a beautiful man, the subject of a painting by a renowned artist. He whimsically declares that he would sell his soul in order to remain as young as he appears in his portrait. Be careful what you wish for. Of course his wish is granted, and as he plunges deeper and deeper into a life of debauchery, remaining young and handsome as ever, the portrait begins to reflect the ravages of his life, sin by sin. After having committed almost every immoral act for which there is a name, and narrowly having escaped detection, Dorian begins to think about turning his ways around. Alas, the damage is done, and the portrait cannot be reversed by the mere wishful intentions of “being good”. In horror, Dorian destroys the painting. It, of course, returns to its original pristine state, while Dorian dies beside it with his sins written upon his face. A very effective morality tale; nonetheless, the name Dorian has become synonymous with beauty, and rightly so.

  • Popular Songs on Dorian

    Popular Songs on Dorian

    Dorian - a song by Brother Ali [explicit]

    Dorian - a song by Demons & Wizards

    Dorian-Envy - a song by Bloodflowerz

    Picture of Dorian Gray - a song by The King of Luxembourg

  • Children's Books on the Baby Name Dorian

    Children's Books on the Baby Name Dorian

    The Picture of Dorian Gray (Oscar Wilde with Ian Edginton) - “Youth! Youth! There is absolutely nothing in the world worth having but youth!” The Picture of Dorian Gray is a graphic adaptation of Oscar Wilde’s classic work, stunningly re-imagined by writer Ian Edginton and artist I.N.J. Culbard. This Gothic morality tale is the story of a man who, taken by his own beauty, pledges his soul in a desperate bid for eternal youth. But when his wish is granted, things go terribly wrong. A painting of Dorian begins to age in his place, while Dorian himself becomes a dangerous narcissist who destroys everyone standing in his way until the day he is forced to come face to face with the ugliness of his own conscience. Recommended for ages 13-18.

  • Famous People Named Dorian

    Famous People Named Dorian

    Famous People Named Dorian - Dorian Harewood (actor); Dorian Gregory (actor); Dorian Yates (bodybuilder)

  • Children of Famous People Named Dorian

    Children of Famous People Named Dorian

    Famous People Who Named Their Son Dorian - Lindsay Wagner (actress)

  • Historic Figures

    Dorian - Boy Baby Name - Historic Figures

    Dorian - We cannot find any historically significant people with the first name Dorian.

Personality of the Boy Name Dorian

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 - Dorian

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