Bay

Origin: English, Germanic, Gaelic/Scottish, Turkish

Meaning: from Latin baca meaning “berry”, originally referring to the berries of a bay tree.

As a surname it comes from Old English Beaga (m) and Beage (f) which mean “garland”, “crown” and “treasure thing”. Bay is also an English word referring to an area of water bordered by land on three sides, as well as referring to the color “reddish brown”.

It also seems to be a variant spelling of Turkish bey, a title used by wealthy leaders referring to a cheiftain or lord.

Bay is also a short form of Bayer, a German surname meaning “Bavaria”, referring to someone from there.

Bay could also be a short form of Gaelic surname O’Bae, itself a short form of McBeth/Macbeth meaning “son of life”, though it also seems to have an implicit meaning of “righteous man” or “religious man”.

Variants: Bae, Baye

Beverly

Origin: English

Meaning: a surname that means “beaver stream” from Old English beofer meaning “beaver” and licc meaning “stream”, denoting someone who lived near one.

Beverly was originally used as a masculien name before becoming more popular for women.

Bev and Verlie are diminutives of the name.

Variants: Beverley

Brigid

Origin: Irish

Meaning: I’ve seen it listed as meaning “exalted one”, but also coming from Celtic brig/brigant meaning “high” or briga meaning “might” and “power”.

Variants: Brighid, Bridget, Bridgette, Bride, Brid, Breda; Brigitta, Brigitte, Birgitta, Britta, Brigida

In Irish mythology, Brigid is one of the triple goddess and ruled over healing, poetry and smithcraft.

Bartholomew

Origin: English, Aramaic

Meaning: the English form of Bartholomaios, the Greek form of an Aramaic name, Bar-Talmai, meaning “son of Talmai”, the first part, Bar, meaning “son” in Aramaic. Talmai is a Hebrew name meaning “furrow”, referring to either a ploughman or someone who owned land.

However, I’ve also seen it listed as meaning “son of Ptolemy”, Ptolemy meaning “warlike, conflict, aggressive”.

Bart, Barty and Tolly are diminutive forms of the name.

 

Bronte

Origin: Irish, Greek

Βροντη (Greek)

Meaning: an Irish surname, the Anglicized form of Ó Proinntigh meaning “descendant of Proinnteach”, the latter meaning “bestower”. Usually spelled Brontë.

Spelled Brontê, it’s the name of the Greek goddess of thunder whose name also means “thunder”, who along with her sister Astrapê the goddess of lightning (whose name also means lightning) were the handmaidens to Zeus.

Bathsheba

Origin: Hebrew

בַּת־שֶׁבַע (Hebrew)

Meaning: “daughter of the oath” or, alternatively, “daughter of seven” since the last part of the name (sheba) is similar to both the word for oath and seven. For a more detailed etymology of the name, I posted the link below.

Variants: Bat-Sheva, Batsheva

Sheba could be a short form of Bathsheba which, by itself, could mean either “oath” or “seven” but from what I found out, Sheba is also used as a male  name several times in the Bible (with a different meaning) as well as a place name.

In the Old Testament, Bathsheba’s husband is intentionally sent to the frontline of battle to be killed so that King David could marry her. They have a son, Solomon.

Links:

http://www.abarim-publications.com/Meaning/Bathsheba.html#.V1eqileVfwx

Beatrice

Origin: Italian

Meaning: the Italian form of Latin Beatrix. This name has somewhat of a tricky meaning. Beatrix comes from Latin Viatrix, a feminine form of Viator meaning “voyager, traveler”. It could also mean “blessed” from Latin beatus, the spelling altered to resemble it.

I’ve also seen Beatrice listed as meaning “happy”, also from latin beatus so I’m not sure if they mean the same thing.

Beatrice is the name found in every dedication of A Series of Unfortunate Events and (spoiler alert) it turns out she is the mother of the Baudelaire siblings. I read that there are plenty of literary allusions in the series and if so, Beatrice would probably be an allusion to Dante’s Divine Comedy. Apparently, Beatrice Baudelaire is the great love of Lemony Snicker, who rejected him and married the Baudelaire children’s father, however it’s his unrequited love for her that makes him chronicle the misadventures of the Baudelaire orphans.

Boston

Origin: English

Meaning: the name of the capital in Massachusetts, named after a town in Lincolnshire, England, meaning “Botulf’s settlement” or “Botulf’s stone”. It was either named after a saint who might have built a monastary around the area in the 7th century, or a landowner who happened to have the same name.

Boston could also be an altered spelling of German Basten, from Bastien, a short form of Sebastian meaning “from Sebaste”.

Bevin

Origin: Irish

Meaning: Anglicized form of Bébinn meaning “fair lady” though some sources also list it as meaning “melodious woman”. It’s also sometimes used as an Anglicization of Vivian though it’s totally unrelated to the name

In Irish mythology Bébhinn is a goddess of childbirth as well as the name of several other figures.

It’s pronounced BAY-vin

Variants: Bébhinn, Béibhinn, Bébhionn

Bellicent

Origin: French, German, English

Meaning: Possibly an Old French form of Germanic Belissendis, possibly composed of elements bili meaning “suitable, proper, fitting, decent, amiable” and swind “strong, brave, powerful”

It could also be another form of Elizabeth meaning “My God is oath” or “My God is abundance”

It could also be related to Belenus, a Celtic god of the sun, whose name means “bright, brilliant”

Bellicent is also used in Alfred Tennyson’s “Idylls of the King” in which Bellicent is the half-sister of Arthur and mother of Gareth, Gawain, Mordred, Gaheris and Agravain

Variants: Belisant, Belsante, Belissant, Belisend, Belisenda

Links:

http://www.britishbabynames.com/blog/2012/07/belisent.html

http://www.behindthename.com/name/bellicent/submitted

http://bewitchingnames.blogspot.com/2011/09/bellicent.html

http://appellationmountain.net/belsante-baby-name-of-the-day/

Baylor

Origin: English, German

Meaning: a surname that has its origins in English and German. As an English surname, it possibly comes from the legal term bailor, referring to someone who transfers their personal property to another person for safekeeping during bailment.

It’s also comes from Middle High German beigel, beile meaning “measuring stick”, referring to someone who was an inspector of measures or a maker of measuring sticks. It could also be an occupational name meaning “barrel inspection” or “sealer of barrels”.

Variants: Bailor, Bayler, Bailer, Beilor