Girl Baby Name


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Quick Facts on Esperanza

  • Gender:
  • Girl
  • Origin:
  • Spanish
  • Number of syllables:
  • 4
  • Ranking popularity:
  • 879
es-pe-RAHN-sah (tha)
Simple meaning:

Characteristics of Esperanza

  • Humanitarian
  • Community-minded
  • Family-oriented
  • Loving
  • Affectionate
  • Compassionate
  • Sensitive

Etymology & Historical Origin - Esperanza

Esperanza is a Spanish female name developed from a Late Roman name, Sperantia, from the Latin “sperare” meaning “to hope”. Similar to English-speakers who use the name Hope for their daughters, Esperanza would be considered the Spanish version of this virtue name. But this isn’t the only example we have. The Russian equivalent is Nadezhda (also meaning “hope”) which gave us the names Nadia and Nadine. And African-Americans have discovered the Swahili word for “hope” in the name of Taraji. From a religious perspective, the word “hope” is used to signify the Christian expectation for eternal life and the perseverance not to give up on salvation. The three theological virtues (Faith, Hope and Charity) are the strongholds among Christians. In Romans 8:24-25 we read: “For in this hope we are saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience.” Therefore, hope becomes synonymous with salvation. In a more general sense (outside of the word’s religious significance), Hope means to look forward to something with reasonable desire and confidence that the outcome will be good. After all, la esperanza es lo que tenemos para nuestros hijas, ¿verdad? Esperanza is currently most popular in the country of Chile where it’s ranked on the Top 100 list of favorite girl’s names. Outside of this one South American country, Esperanza is a pretty rarely used nombre today. Although we should mention that Esperanza is a Top 10 favorite in the tiny African country of Equatorial Guinea which at one point in history was a colony of Spain.

Popularity of the Name Esperanza

We try very hard not to play favorites, but on this one we have to throw in the towel. You’d be hard-pressed to find a name so beautiful yet so neglected and under-appreciated. Lucky is the parent who discovers this gem of a name hiding at the bottom of the American female naming charts today. As a distinctly Spanish female name, Esperanza first appeared on the U.S. charts in 1913 and reached her peak popularity in the late 1920s and early 30s. Despite the fact that the Hispanic-American population has grown remarkably since mid-century, Esperanza was never a readily embraced name even among American Latinos. For most of the 1960s up through the mid-90s, the name dropped on and off the charts consistently until finally returning (hopefully) permanently in 1995. Esperanza saw a good little push up the charts between 1999 and 2000 thanks to the critical success of a film called “The Mask of Zorro” (1998) featuring a character named Esperanza (played by Mexican actress Julieta Rosen). Outside of this one brief pop-culture-influenced nudge up the charts; Esperanza has experienced mainly downwards momentum since the turn of the 21st century. How perplexing! Esperanza is such a gorgeous name. Four-syllables? Check. Womanly? Check. Beautiful? Check. Dramatic? Check. Original? Check. Lovely meaning? Check. We also think this one has some Wild Wild West flair – the name makes us picture a feisty, strong and spirited Mexican woman in the southwest before California, Arizona, New Mexico and Texas joined the Union – someone who belongs in open, rugged spaces and has the healthy constitution to withstand all the elements. It’s a happy name, a “hopeful” name and a wistfully beautiful one. Potential nicknames include Anza, Espie, Essie, Pelancha, Pera, Rani, Ranza and Zaza. But, honestly, who would ever want to truncate this absolutely gorgeous name? It may be too exotically Spanish for the average non-Hispanic parent, but it’s certainly more multidimensional than plain old Hope. Multi-talented musician Esperanza Spalding is a famous American name bearer. She holds the distinction of being the first JAZZ artist to win the Best New Artist Grammy award (2011). Spaulding’s ethnic heritage includes African-American, Native-American, Welsh and Hispanic. We also love that Esperanza is a Number Six in numerology – a very “hopeful” and optimistic number. Have we gushed enough? Obviously we give two resounding thumbs-up on this underused beauty.
Popularity of the Girl Name Esperanza
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Cultural References to the Baby Name - Esperanza

  • Literary Characters of the baby name Esperanza

    Literary Characters of the Baby Name Esperanza

    Esperanza We cannot find any significant literary characters with the first name Esperanza.

  • Popular Songs on Esperanza

    Popular Songs on Esperanza

    Esperanza - a song by Enrique Iglesias

    Siempre Hay Esperanza - a song by Sade

  • Children's Books on the Baby Name Esperanza

    Children's Books on the Baby Name Esperanza

    Esperanza Means Hope (Gwen Russell Harvey) - Esperanza is a courageous and imaginative Mexican American girl living in the frontier town of Tucson, Arizona in 1876. She tries to be a responsible young lady, but she and her dog, Chica, always seem to find trouble. Esperanza's dearest wish is to discover what happened to her brother, Carlos, who years earlier was captured by Apache Indians. Then, miraculously, U.S. soldiers locate Carlos and bring him back to the ranch. But instead of the happy homecoming Esperanza envisioned, her brother is angry that he has been taken away from his Apache family and wants to return to them. Can Esperanza find a way to understand her brother? Or will she and Carlos be estranged forever? Filled with humor and adventure, this true-to-life story celebrates the cultures and lives of the people who shaped the American Southwest. Recommended for ages 8-12.

    Esperanza Rising (Pam Munoz Ryan) - Esperanza thought she'd always live with her family on their ranch in Mexico--she'd always have fancy dresses, a beautiful home, and servants. But a sudden tragedy forces Esperanza and Mama to flee to California during the Great Depression, and to settle in a camp for Mexican farm workers. Esperanza isn't ready for the hard labor, financial struggles, or lack of acceptance she now faces. When their new life is threatened, Esperanza must find a way to rise above her difficult circumstances--Mama's life, and her own, depend on it. Recommended for ages 10-15.

    The House on Mango Street (Sandra Cisneros) - The House on Mango Street is a coming-of-age novel by Mexican-American writer Sandra Cisneros, published in 1984. It deals with a young Latina girl, Esperanza Cordero, growing up in Chicago with Chicanos and Puerto Ricans. Esperanza is determined to "say goodbye" to her impoverished Latino neighborhood. Major themes include her quest for a better life and the importance of her promise to come back for "the ones I left behind." Recommended for ages young adult.

  • Famous People Named Esperanza

    Famous People Named Esperanza

    Famous People Named Esperanza - Esperanza Aguirre (President of Madrid); Esperanza Andrade (Secretary of State of Texas); Esperanza Baur (Mexican actress and 2nd wife of John Wayne); Esperanza Martinez (Mexican painter); Esperanza Roy (Spanish actress); Esperanza Spalding (multi-talented jazz musician)

  • Children of Famous People Named Esperanza

    Children of Famous People Named Esperanza

    Famous People Who Named Their Daughter Esperanza - We cannot find any celebrities or famous people who have named their child Esperanza.

  • Historic Figures

    Esperanza - Girl Baby Name - Historic Figures

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

Personality of the Girl Name Esperanza

Romance is the hallmark of the Six personality. They exude nurturing, loving, and caring energy. Sixes are in love with the idea of love in its idealized form - and with their magnetic personalities, they easily draw people toward them. Like the number Two personality, they seek balance and harmony in their life and the world at large. They are conscientious and service-oriented, and a champion for the underdog. These personalities naturally attract money and are usually surrounded by lovely material objects - but their human relationships are always primary. They thrive in giving back to others rather than being motivated by their own desires. This is when they achieve great things. Sixes are natural teachers, ministers and counselors.

Variations of the Baby Name - Esperanza

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