Girl Baby Name

Tessa

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Quick Facts on Tessa

  • Gender:
  • Girl
  • Origin:
  • Greek, Spanish
  • Number of syllables:
  • 2
  • Ranking popularity:
  • 242
Pronunciation:
TES-sah
Simple meaning:
Harvester

Characteristics of Tessa

  • Independent
  • Individualistic
  • Ambitious
  • Strong-willed
  • Inventive
  • Successful

Etymology & Historical Origin - Tessa

The name Tessa developed as a pet form of the name Theresa but has become an individually given name in its own right. Theresa, in turn, is a name of uncertain etymology. It is thought to come from the Greek “therizein” meaning ‘to harvest, harvester’. Theresa seems to have been first used in Spain and Portugal. According to tradition, Therasia was the Spanish noblewoman and wife of the 4th century Roman Senator and lawyer, St. Paulinus of Nola. After losing their son, the wealthy couple gave everything to the poor and led a life of religious austerity. It is said that the name Theresa originated from this woman. Teresa of Ávila was a popular Spanish saint in the 16th century Spain and Thérèse of Lisieux in 19th century France. Then of course, there’s the unforgettable Mother Teresa of Calcutta. Theresa became a popular name among Catholics so it spread across many nations and languages. Tessa (like Terri) would eventually form as nicknames for Theresa.

Popularity of the Name Tessa

The name Tessa was first used as a female given name in America in 1964. Before that, it was probably more strictly used as a nickname for Theresa. The name achieved moderate popularity by the 1990s and is actually experiencing some of its highest usage right now. Although not wildly popular by any means, Tessa is holding its own on the charts near the Top 200 list of most commonly used girl names. This means Tessa is bestowed upon roughly 1,400 little girls each year. Tessa is a familiar name since it’s been around so long as a nickname; and it’s considered more modern and relevant than Theresa (which really plummeted in popularity in the past couple of decades). Tessa is a cute and simple name. It’s a bright and friendly choice for any little girl – although we like Tess better as an adult version – not quite as “cutesy”.
Popularity of the Girl Name Tessa
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Cultural References to the Baby Name - Tessa

  • Literary Characters of the baby name Tessa

    Literary Characters of the Baby Name Tessa

    Tess Durbeyfield (Tess of the d’Urbervilles) Tess is the title character of Thomas Hardy’s classic, Tess of the d’Urbervilles (A Pure Woman), published in 1891. Considered extremely scandalous due to its treatment of rape and infidelity in Victorian settings, “Tess” stands as an indictment against the demoralizing forces of hypocritical religious and social mores. Tess herself is a lovely young woman of a family in reduced circumstances, but attached by blood to the ancient name of d’Urbervilles. This distinction brings her nothing but grief, however, as she is seduced and impregnated by the immoral son of the current day d’Urbervilles, who have purchased the name rather than inheriting it. Caught between the classes and condemned for a crime of which she is an innocent victim, Tess is forced over and over to compromise herself, to struggle to survive and to suffer the cruelty of being blamed for a sin against herself. Ultimately she dies for the consequences of that same sin, and in our more enlightened times, has come to represent a tragic figure of the indiscriminate cruelties of fate. A large chore for so light a name – Tess carries it well.

  • Popular Songs on Tessa

    Popular Songs on Tessa

    Tessa - We cannot find any well-known or significantly popular songs featuring the name Tessa.

  • Children's Books on the Baby Name Tessa

    Children's Books on the Baby Name Tessa

    Tess of the d'Urbervilles: A Pure Woman (Thomas Hardy) - After her impoverished family learns of its noble lineage, naive Tess Durbeyfield is sent to make an appeal to a nearby wealthy family who bear the ancestral name d'Urberville. Tess is seduced by dissolute Alec d'Urberville and secretly bears a child, Sorrow, who dies in infancy. Later working as a dairymaid she meets and marries Angel Clare, an idealistic gentleman who rejects Tess after learning of her past on their wedding night. Emotionally bereft and financially impoverished, Tess is trapped by necessity into giving in once again to d'Urberville, but she murders him when Angel returns. After a few days with Angel, Tess is arrested and executed. Recommended for ages young adult.

    Tessa (Jean Giraudoux) - This 1934 French play is based on Margaret Kennedy’s 1924 novel, The Constant Nymph. It tells how a teenage girl falls in love with a family friend, who eventually marries her cousin. The two girls show mutual jealousy over their common love for the man. The novel was a best-seller after it was first published, becoming the first novel of a genre that might be called 'Bohemian'. A significant part of its success was due to its (for the time) shocking sexual content, describing, as it does, scenes of adolescent sexuality and noble savagery in the Austrian Tyrol. Recommended for ages young adult.

    Tessa (Margit Sandemo) - Tessa is the story of Tessa, a sixteen-year-old schoolgirl who has a vivacious imagination but is, in spite of this, a loner. There is a crime or a riddle to solve in that novel, which is typical of Margit Sandemo. The story begins when a burglar makes a wrong phone number. He inadvertently calls Tessa and tells her about his upcoming crime. Tessa plans to check his intentions. Recommended for ages young adult.

    Tessa and Scott: Our Journey from Childhood Dream to Gold (Tessa Virtue & Scott Moir) - Tessa and Scott tracks the pair's first meeting at the ages of seven and nine; their early competitions at the World Junior Championship and World Championships; and their incredible, history-making gold-medal performance at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, which established them as icons of ice dancing. Lavishly illustrated with never-before-published personal photographs and memorabilia collected over the course of their lives, this book is as much as a spectacular visual history as it is a behind-the-scenes look at the ascent of two of skating's premiere athletes. A must-have for fans and collectors alike. Recommended for ages 9-12.

    Tessa on Her Own (Alyssa Chase) - Tessa is a lazy fox who decides to go live on her own. She survives by eating out of garbage cans and gets caught in a dumpster, where she spends hours contemplating her indolence and subsequently vows to learn to hunt. The illustrations rely heavily on wide-eyed creatures smiling at one another, with the piece de resistance being Tristan, a dog fox, stepping out of the tall grass and introducing himself to Tessa. Recommended for ages 4-8.

    Tessa's Tip-tapping Toes (Carolyn Crimi) - Mama house mouse wishes her daughter, Tessa, would scurry quietly like other mice, but when Tessa's "toes weren't tip-tapping, they felt all wrong." New house cat Oscar loves to sing, but his owner, Mrs. Timboni, fears he'll disturb the neighbors. Oscar stifles his song, but "when his tongue wasn't trilling, he felt all wrong." One rainy night the toe-tappin' mouse and warbling cat discover that a good song and dance is infectious, and everyone joins in. Crimi's bouncy, alliterative prose celebrates the joys of creative self expression in a lively read aloud fashion. Tessa, with a frilly pink tutu and a toothy smile, is particularly winning. Recommended for ages 4-8.

    Tessa's Treasures: Cherishing Others (Gary Bower) - This series of heartwarming picture books (#1 Tessa's Treasures; #2 Wyatt's Wagon; #3 Ivy's Icicle) will entertain young children as they learn about the joy of thinking of others. Each book teaches a principle through a compelling story while expressive illustrations fill each page with color and emotion. Recommended for ages 4-8.

    The Jewels of Tessa Kent (Judith Krantz) - Until Maggie is nearly grown, she thinks that glamorous movie star Tessa is her big sister, but when she learns that Tessa is really her mother, she breaks off relations in a fury. Will Tessa win her daughter back? Only Krantz knows for sure. Recommended for ages young adult.

  • Famous People Named Tessa

    Famous People Named Tessa

    Famous People Named Tessa - Tessa Ferrer (actress); Tessa Keller (reality TV); Tessa Virtue (figure skater)

  • Children of Famous People Named Tessa

    Children of Famous People Named Tessa

    Famous People who Named their Daughter Tessa - Dara Torres (Olympic swimmer); Debby Boone (singer); Roald Dahl (novelist)

  • Historic Figures

    Tessa - Girl Baby Name - Historic Figures

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

Personality of the Girl Name Tessa

The number one personality is a leader - strong and competitive. They are willing to initiate action and take risks. One personalities work hard toward their endeavors and have the ability to apply their creative and innovative thinking skills with strong determination. They believe in their ability to succeed and are too stubborn to be hindered by obstacles. Ones meet obstacles head-on with such mental vigor and energy that you better step aside. They resent taking orders, so don't try telling them what to do either. This is an intensely active personality, but they are also known as starters rather than finishers. They have a propensity to become bored and will move quickly to the next project if not properly challenged.  They are the ones to think up and put into action new and brilliant ideas, but they are not the ones to stick around and manage them. This personality has an enthusiastic and pioneering spirit. They are distinctly original.

Variations of the Baby Name - Tessa

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