Quick Facts on Ellis
- English, Welsh
- Number of syllables:
- Ranking popularity:
Yahweh is God; or Kind
Etymology & Historical Origin - Ellis
Ellis has two possible etymologies. For one, it’s the transferred use of an English surname imported during the medieval Crusades (a series of Holy Wars whereby the European Christians unsuccessfully attempted to recapture the Holy Lands in and around Jerusalem to restore access for their own religious position). Ellis is essentially derived from the Greek Elias (from the Hebrew Elijah) in reference to the Old Testament prophet who was taken to heaven by chariots of fire. From this perspective, Elijah (and therefore Ellis) comes from the ancient Hebrew Eliyahu meaning “Yahweh is God”. Elijah’s role in the Bible was to restore the Hebrew faith to just one God (hence the appropriate etymology of his name). Christian pilgrims to the Holy Land during the Middle Ages would bestow these Old Testament names on their children in honor of their forefathers who fought for the Promised Land centuries before Christ. The first recorded spelling of this medieval surname in England appeared in 1200 and rendered as “Elyas” and then a couple years later as “Elis”. Separately, Ellis is considered the anglicized form of a Welsh personal name “Elisedd” meaning “kind”. Elisedd was an early medieval name of at least two Kings of Powys (an ancient eastern kingdom of Wales). Widely considered a masculine name, Ellis is bestowed on baby girls from time to time.
Popularity of the Name Ellis
Ellis is another example of a name whose historical usage surprised us. The name actually dates back to the late 1800s when Ellis reached his peak popularity in terms of usage (ranked as the #155 most popular boy’s name in 1899). As the 20th century got underway, Ellis slowly declined in popularity as the decades advanced. Now that we’ve entered a brand new century, Ellis is hitting some of his lowest points ever on the charts. In fact, the name came dangerously close to falling out of circulation in 2001 but has since rebounded some (mostly thanks to a TV character named Ellis Carver, an African-American lieutenant on HBO's critically-acclaimed series "The Wire" appearing between 2002 and 2008) . For a name that’s been around uninterruptedly for 130+ years we’d be quite disappointed to see him go. There’s something quite dignified and intelligent sounding about the name Ellis. There are many different ways to look at this name. One, it’s an original alternative to the trendy and arguably overused Elijah. Two, it’s a surname which is a hot trend in America today. Three, it could be considered a Place Name as in Ellis Island (which gives him “melting-pot” flavor). Four, it’s a potential choice for parents with Welsh heritage (we love the “kind” etymology); and lastly, Ellis has the potential to be gender-neutral for literary loving parents. The three Brontë sisters (Anne, Charlotte and Emily) used the masculine sounding pseudonyms Acton, Currer and Ellis Bell in the publication of their earlier works in order to prevent prejudicial attitudes from their uptight Victorian readers. Ellis Bell = Emily Brontë, the woman who gave us “Wuthering Heights” (1847).
Popularity of the Boy Name Ellis
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Cultural References to the Baby Name - Ellis
Literary Characters of the Baby Name Ellis
Ellis Burden (All the King's Men) Ellis Burden is a character in Robert Penn Warren’s 1946 Pulitzer Prize-winning political novel, All the King’s Men. Ellis is referred to as the “Scholarly Attorney”, and he is that. The narrator/protagonist, Jack Burden, has held his father, Ellis, in contempt all his life, believing that Ellis abandoned the family when Jack was young because he didn’t love them anymore. After Ellis leaves his wife, child, and his own familial fortunes behind, he pursues a life of fanatical religious proselytizing, and is looked upon as a holy figure by many. During the playing out of the complications of the drama, Jack Burden comes to realize that Ellis is in fact not his father, and that he had left the family because of the affair his wife was having with Judge Irwin, which produced the boy, Jack. It is Jack’s dogged journey toward the freeing power of truth that results in his final acceptance of and respect for Ellis, not just as a man, but as a true, spiritually if not biologically, father of his.
Ellis Wyatt (Atlas Shrugged) Ellis Wyatt is a larger than life character in Ayn Rand’s 1957 novel, Atlas Shrugged, which is saying something in a book teeming with super-heroes. He is one of the original strikers to get behind John Galt’s banner of individualism against the state-sanctioned collectivism of his society. Ellis is a highly intelligent oil industrialist and engineer who sets fire to his own fields rather than succumb to the restrictions of the state. He is passionate about John Galt’s cause, and throws his entire person into it. It is he who so forcefully introduces the protagonist, Dagny Taggart, to their unconventional rebellion, and it is Ellis Wyatt who provides the book with its enduring symbol of freedom, Wyatt’s Torch.
Popular Songs on Ellis
Ellis Dee - a song by Jimmy Buffett
Ellis Island - a song by Big Head Todd & the Monsters
Ellis Island - a song by Marc Cohn
Children's Books on the Baby Name Ellis
At Ellis Island: A History in Many Voices (Louise Peacock) - Ellis Island was the gateway to America and the promise of freedom for thousands. Its walls are rich with stories. Its walls are rich with stories. In this book we hear myriad of those voices. First we follow a young person today. Her great-great-grandmother entered America through Ellis Island. As this young girl walks the halls of the famous site, she wonders about the past, the people, and their hopes, dreams and challenges. Here, too, is the voice of Sera, an Armenian girl from the early 1900s. Fleeing the unthinkable in her home country, she longs to join her father in America. As Sera enters the halls of Ellis Island, she lives those same hopes, dreams, and challenges. The voices of real immigrants -- their suffering in steerage, their first glimpse of the Statue of Liberty, and their journey through the Great Hall -- complete this touching look into an important part of America's history. A pivotal time and place is brought to life through a combination of many voices speaking in harmony. Recommended for ages 7-10.
Sweet Land of Liberty (Callista Gingrich) - How did America become the land of the free? In Sweet Land of Liberty, Ellis the Elephant sets off on a quest to find out. Through an amazing afternoon at the library, Ellis the Elephant travels through time and discovers the pivotal moments that have shaped our nation’s unique history, including, the Pilgrims’ first Thanksgiving, the Boston Tea Party, George Washington crossing the Delaware, pioneers settling the great frontier, the first man on the moon and many more of the astounding events and people whose dreams, courage, and hard work have made America great. With its vivid illustrations and charming rhymes, Sweet Land of Liberty is a must read for children and parents alike who want to explore our nation’s great history—and discover why America is a free and exceptional nation. Recommended for ages 4-8.
Famous People Named Ellis
Famous People Named Ellis - Ellis Burks (baseball player); Ellis Lankster (football player)
Children of Famous People Named Ellis
Famous People Who Named Their Son Ellis - We cannot find any celebrities or famous people who have named their child Ellis.
Ellis - Boy Baby Name - Historic Figures
Ellis - We cannot find any historically significant people with the first name Ellis.
Personality of the Boy Name Ellis
The Three energy is powerful and enthusiastic. These personalities are cheerful, full of self-expression, and often quite emotional. They have an artistic flair and "gift-of-gab" that makes them natural entertainers. Their joyfulness bubbles over, and their infectious exuberance draws a crowd. The Three personality is like a child - forever young and full of delight. They are charming, witty, and generally happy people. The Three personality lives in the "now" and has a spontaneous nature. Threes seem to live with a bright and seemingly unbreakable aura that attracts others to them. In turn, they are deeply loyal and loving to their friends and family. Luck also has a tendency to favor number Threes.
Variations of the Baby Name - Ellis