Girl Baby Name


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Quick Facts on Ida

  • Gender:
  • Girl
  • Origin:
  • English, German, Nordic
  • Number of syllables:
  • 2
  • Ranking popularity:
  • N/A
Simple meaning:
Labor, work

Characteristics of Ida

  • Freedom-loving
  • Adventurous
  • Adaptable
  • Intellectual
  • Easygoing
  • Progressive
  • Sensual

Etymology & Historical Origin - Ida

Ida is a name with Germanic origins, from the Old Norse “ið” meaning "work, labor”. Attesting to the name’s ancient Germanic roots is Ida, the King of Bernicia, an Anglo-Saxon kingdom settled by Anglicans (present day southeast Scotland and northeast England). King Ida must have “labored” hard to establish his kingdom to be worthy of his name! In later medieval times, Ida became a somewhat common female name and was borne by two saints. Although unrelated, Mt. Ida is the name of the place on Crete where the god Zeus was purportedly hidden after his birth and nursed by mountain nymphs. Ida became a fantastically popular female name in the latter half of the 19th century persisting on into the 20th century. And there’s a reason for this. In 1847, Alfred Lord Tennyson wrote a best-selling comic poem called “The Princess” about a Victorian Era feminist named Princess Ida (see literary references below). English folk immediately took interest in the name Ida and it quickly jumped the pond over to America. Although no longer fashionable among English speakers today, Ida still reigns supreme in Scandinavia (Denmark, Norway and Sweden) and remains quite popular in Germany as well.

Popularity of the Name Ida

Ida was truly a late 19th century American favorite. This was the 7th most popular baby girls name in 1884 (only Mary, Anna, Emma, Elizabeth, Minnie and Margaret had her beat in terms of popularity back then). For whatever reason, Emma has come raging back into style, but old Ida has enjoyed no such revival. It wasn't until 1932 that Ida lost her Top 100 standing and by 1987 she was no longer a Top 1000. In fact, today Ida is barely a Top 2000 choice, given to only about 100 baby girls per year. It seems weird to us that American parents are all about Ava, Emma and Mia but not Ida. It’s a small little name that packs a lot of punch and “works” hard for it! African-Americans should take notice of this name. Ida B. Wells was an early Civil Rights activist.
Popularity of the Girl Name Ida
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Cultural References to the Baby Name - Ida

  • Literary Characters of the baby name Ida

    Literary Characters of the Baby Name Ida

    Princess Ida (“The Princess”) Ida is the lady of Alfred, Lord Tennyson’s narrative poem, “The Princess”, published in 1847 (upon which Gilbert and Sullivan’s 1884 comic opera, “Princess Ida” is based). Ida is a beautiful princess who has been betrothed to a neighboring prince since birth. Ida, however, decides that she will establish a university strictly for women, and will forgo the world of men. Her prince doesn’t take this lying down, and along with two friends, all disguised as women, applies to the university. Needless to say, the disguise is not an easy one to uphold and, before long, they are found out. This almost brings about war, backed by the main participants’ fathers, but all is well in the end. Ida is persuaded by her prince, who had been raised by an extremely futuristic mother, that he is all for equality in love and education. That he is several generations ahead of real men does not seem to bother Ida at all, and she happily acquiesces, even tending to the wounds he had sustained in his “battle” with her. Critics still disagree on whether or not the piece is pro or anti feminist. How about you?

    Princess Ida (Princess Ida) Princess Ida is the title character of Arthur Sullivan and W. S. Gilbert’s 1884 comic opera, Princess Ida; or, Castle Adamant, based upon Alfred, Lord Tennyson’s 1847 poem, “The Princess”. Gilbert and Sullivan set the poem to music and lyrics, and applied a healthy swath of satire against such hot Victorian topics as women’s equality and right to education, as well as the theories of Darwin. It was well received, but did not run as long as expected and was not revived in London again until 1919. The play is still performed regularly today, but 21st century audiences are bound to find it rather dated in its treatment of gender roles.

  • Popular Songs on Ida

    Popular Songs on Ida

    Big Leg Ida - a song by Bill Morrissey

    Ida Sweet as Apple Cider - a song by Frank Sinatra

    Ida, Ida - a song by Good Religion

  • Famous People Named Ida

    Famous People Named Ida

    Famous People Named Ida - Ida Lupino (actress); Ida Saxton McKinley (former First Lady); Ida B. Wells (early Civil Rights leader and feminist); Ida Henriette da Fonseca (Danish opera singer); Ida Østergaard Madse (Danish singer); Ida Jenshus (Norwegian singer)

  • Children of Famous People Named Ida

    Children of Famous People Named Ida

    Famous People Who Named Their Daughter Ida - William McKinley (U.S. President)

  • Historic Figures

    Ida - Girl Baby Name - Historic Figures

    Ida Lupino (4 Feb 1918 – 3 Aug 1995) - Ida Lupino was a hard-working film actress as well as being one of the first women directors of film and television. English born, Ida Lupino came to the United States in 1933 after launching a successful career in her homeland. She started at Warner Brothers with modest success, often being on suspension for refusing studio proffered roles. Moving to Columbia Pictures in the late 1940s, Ida began finding herself pulled toward directing, eventually becoming the first actress to produce, direct and write her own films, including 1953’s film noir, The Hitch-Hiker. Ms. Lupino continued acting well into the 1970s, but her directing efforts were now centered on television. The earthy, no-nonsense Ida Lupino seems to be undervalued today, both as an actress and as a pioneer of women directors; perhaps her renaissance will come along someday.

Personality of the Girl Name Ida

The number Five personality loves the excitement of life and can easily adapt to all situations. As natural adventurers, these personalities thrive on the new and unexpected and prefer to be in constant motion. It makes them feel alive. They'll stir up some action if there's not enough around, and as inherent risk-takers they enjoy pushing the envelope. Naturally rebellious, the Five personality has no fear and never resists change.  Traveling and new experiences feed their souls. Fives are very social and attract friends with ease. People love to be around the Five fun-loving and exciting energy.  This is also a lucky number in numerology (like the Threes), so fortune seems to shine on them, helped along by their own optimism and good-nature. Fives have a quick wit, a cerebral mind, and are generally very persuasive. 

Variations of the Baby Name - Ida

  • No Variations Found.
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